“Marissa! What are you doing here?” Kayla asks, standing in the door frame with her hands on her hips.
It’s hard for me to just come right out and say why I’ve traveled such a long distance. After all, it’s been 11 years since I’d last seen my baby girl. “Kayla, can I come in?” I ask.
Reluctantly, Kayla slightly pushes the screen door open and invites me in. I follow my daughter down a narrow hallway that lead into a tiny kitchen. The kitchen is small but cozy with just enough space for its basic amenities.
“Would you like a cup of coffee?”
“Thanks,” I say. I quickly settle down at the kitchen table then take in a deep breath. “Okay, I’m just gonna come right out and say it. I’m here to apologize for being such a lousy mother.”
“Oh really,” Kayla says. She hands me a steamy, hot cup of black coffee then sits down at the table across from me. When she takes a sip of her coffee, I can swear I see her eyes grinning over the cup at me. I know I could have given a much better apology, but apologizing has never been one of my strong traits.
“I don’t need your apology,” she continues, “but I’ll accept it anyway.”
I couldn’t believe what I had just heard. I come all this way to tell you that I’m sorry and you say you don’t need my apology – but you’ll take it? Like you’re doing me some kind of favor? I wanted to kick this skinny, wench in the butt but instead I just say, “Kayla, I just thought it would be a good thing for the both of us if I told you I was sorry for not being the mother I could have been had I not been so doped up and drunk all the time.”
“Okay Marissa. I accept, if it makes you feel better.”
“Well, you condescending witch!”
With the smirk still plastered on her face, Kayla clasps her hands together, leans into my face, and says, “you’re incapable of ever changing, Marissa. You’ll always be the cold, heartless, monster you’ve always been. And like I said before, I don’t need your apology nor do I want it, so keep your sorry apologies to yourself and go back to wherever you came from to live the lonely, pathetic life you were destined to live because that is what you deserve.”
I can’t comprehensively explain what happens next because everything seems to happen so fast. All I really do remember is first seeing the rage of red then everything going black. When I come to, I find my daughter pinned underneath me and my hands wrapped tightly around her throat. She’s gasping for air as her eyes plead for me to stop.
“What’s wrong with me?” I yank my hands back from around my daughter’s throat and collapse on the floor beside her. She coughs and tries standing but she’s too dazed by the trauma. Tears begin to stream down my face. Maybe I am the spawn of some demon, incapable of ever having a healthy relationship with anyone.
I quickly grab my purse and run to my car. All I can think about right now is putting as much distance I can between me and this nightmare. I destroy everything and everyone I know. I slow the car down once I reach the bridge then I just sit, contemplating my next move. All I ever wanted to do was make things right. Now I’m wondering if the world would be better off without me.
I open my car door and walk toward the edge of the bridge and stand.