Wednesday 3 June 2020

Your Mid-Week Update for 06/03/20

Last Wednesday was hella long. As I said, I went to pick up Heather from her house after she called me (drunk) at 5am. The things I do for my friends. When I got there, she was sobering up but she didn’t look well. She had clearly been crying and throwing things and maybe hadn’t slept in a while. I didn’t know what was going on with her but I got her in the car, we grabbed some very disgusting chicken burgers from a drive-thru and I drove her home. I don’t think she said more than “sorry” and “thank you” over and over the entire ride.

And that was a five-hour drive of near silence. I was ready to pull my own hair out. But I didn’t push her to talk even though I desperately wanted to know what happened.

I got her inside, I sent her to shower and borrow one of my dresses (because neither of us were smart enough to pack a bag for her) while I made her dinner. As she was getting changed, Casey came out of her room and I realized I’d left a fifteen-year-old alone without an explanation. Kind of. I called James while I was on the road and explained the situation. He was more than happy to talk to Casey and make sure she was safe before heading to work.

Still felt a little guilty. But she said she understood and was excited to meet a “friend of the family” who knew a little of what life was like for us.

I hadn’t really thought about it much, but Casey’s lonely. She has friends at school – for the short period of time she was there at least – but she doesn’t have anyone to share things with that aren’t her legal guardians. And I am well aware that there are some things a girl can’t share with an authority figure in their life (no matter how awesome).

But first, I had to check on Heather and make sure she was okay before I introduced her to the girl who’s slowly becoming like a daughter to me.

Heather was not okay.

In the wake of my sudden disappearance, she was fired from her job and quickly became isolated. Apparently, they’d found remains over the summer that matched her husband’s and she was questioned by police some time after I left. The whole experience brought back painful memories and sent her spiraling downwards until she eventually called me.

I think I was the first person she’d talked to in months.

I didn’t know any of this was going on.

So Heather is staying with me for a while. She sleeps the couch and we spend time together. She didn’t come down to dinner that first night but the next day, she met Casey and the two of them have formed this wary bond. They’re not all chummy, but they can stand each other and seem content to just sit and play board games or watch tv together.

I made Heather join us for our daily “attempt at cooking” class yesterday and it helped. The three of us got to just spend time together and it’s been great. I didn’t realize how much I’d missed her – or other people for that matter – until I got her call.

I can’t believe I didn’t know any of this was going on. I wish she’d called sooner but I’m glad she called me at all. I don’t how long she’ll be staying so I’m thinking about doing some online shopping for her (getting her clothes and other things we kind of abandoned at her place). I want her to know that she’s not alone.

And I hope having her around will help both of us.

As always, dear readers,

Stay Safe (Seriously)

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