chapter 18.

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Anxiety rushed through my veins so fast that I thought I was going to be sick as we were going up the elevator to my apartment. It feels strange knowing that this will probably be the last time I ever step foot in my own home. A sense of sadness comes with that, but so does relief.

On the drive over, Laura was telling me things about the foster family that would soon be taking me in. Apparently they have a son about a year younger than me that they adopted a couple of years ago, and the have a biological daughter who is five. She also assured me that I wouldn't have to change schools or anything crazy like that which makes me feel better because I don't know how I would survive without seeing Annie as much as I do.

Speaking of Annie, my new house - I guess you could call it - is in the same suburb as her house and it's only three streets behind which means I can walk up and see her and her family more often. My home now that I'm currently about to walk into is in Inglewood which is only about a twenty minute drive from Sherman Oaks, but I usually would take the bus which literally triples the time because Los Angeles public transport sucks big time.

"We still have a couple of hours until Kennedy and Joe are going to pick you up, so take your time. I'm just going to have a look around the place," Laura informs me to which I nod. Kennedy and Joe are the foster parents. Noah is their son and Skye is their daughter.

I walk back into my bedroom, taking a deep breath as I do so. The sheets still hadn't been put back on my bed after what happened earlier this week so I picked them up and carried them into the laundry, dumping them in front of the washing machine.

Taking a suitcase out from under my bed and going into my closet, I fill it up with all my clothes and a couple of my dads old shirts that I like to sleep in occasionally on those nights that I miss him. Maybe one day we'll be able to reconnect again. I'll never forget how he just packed up and left, but he's still my dad and I hope to find out in the future an explanation as to why he did what he did.

Once the first suitcase is filled with clothes, I go into the guest bedroom and take out another which we keep hidden away in the closet. This one I fill with all my personal belongings such as keep sakes from when I was little, photo albums, sketch books etc.

Last but not least, I find a big box that we used when we were moving into this place and I fill it with books. I used to love reading when I was younger, it made me feel safe in a way. Mom and Dad used to fight a lot before their divorce and exploring new worlds, safer worlds, in my mind was my sense of comfort.

Me personally, I've never been one for clutter so I don't really own that much. I mean two suitcases full seems like a lot but it's basically my whole life packed up in sixty kilograms worth of stuff.
I still have at least an hour to kill before my foster parents are here and as far as I'm aware, Laura is on the phone to someone writing whatever she's writing in a notepad, so I ponder, staring at my wall as I decide what to do with the last hour in my own home.

My mind starts running over all the things I wish I'd felt like I had the voice to say to my mother. The ways I felt like I was merely a burden in her life, the ways she actually made me feel loved. All the sappy emotions you get when your whole life is about to change I guess.

I might regret this later on, but I pick up a pen in the home office and a scrap piece of paper from the desk as I sit down and begin to write.

Dear Mom,

I don't particularly know why I'm about to write this, you've never been one for sentiment. Not when it comes to me. But, I'm going to hide it in the box of Dad's things you keep at the back of your closet in the hopes that when you take it out on his birthday like I know you do every year, you'll see this and maybe, you'll read it and not throw it in the trash like you did when I wrote you a Christmas card last year.

I'm waiting for my new foster parents to pick me up. They'll be here in an hour. I just finished packing up my room and I have no idea where you are or what the extent of your injuries are after the events of last night, but I really hope you're going to be okay.

I'm going to be completely honest with you because I felt like I never got the opportunity to be, and might not for a very long time so, yeah.
Sometimes I think you were really trying your best to be a mother to me and sometimes, I don't think you tried at all. Maybe all the hurt you caused me (emotionally) was done subconsciously. I never felt like you gave me the chance to have my own voice. My opinion felt like it didn't matter to you. I felt like I didn't matter to you - especially when you were in a bad mood.

Last night, I got told that you had lost your rights as a parent and that I would be put in foster care. Hearing those words felt like a knife to the stomach and a huge sense of relief all at once. It was a relief because it meant I didn't have to be scared to come home each day to a mother who spent everyday the last two years reminding my that I was merely a burden in her life. That my father should've taken me with him when he left. But I also feel incredibly sad because in the blink of an eye, everything I've ever known was taken from me.

I don't remember the last time you told me you loved me, but I want you to know that I will always love you despite all the hurt you caused me. You're always going to be my mother, that's never going to change, but you haven't been my mom for a while now.

I need you to know that I forgive you - partly for selfish reasons. I hate holding onto anger because it only makes me feel weighed down - but also because sometimes I don't think you had anybody in your life to show you how to grow and change. You didn't have anybody to help you through the divorce or to hold you when you cried for weeks on end.

Also, if you think in the future you're capable of being a mom or even just having some sort of relationship with me and want to know how the rest of my teen years turn out, I promise I'll right each major event down in a letter like this and give them to you one day.
My first crush. My first kiss. The first time I get drunk, which will probably not happen for a while. My first movie premiere which is going to happen probably in late next year. I don't ever plan on getting high but you know, things happen, so if I ever do, I'll tell you that too.

I love you, mom.

From Alexandra

P.S I really hate when you call me that but I'll let it slide. Just next time you see me, call me Lexie please :)

"Lexie, Kennedy and Joe our waiting out the front for you," Laura knocks on the office door. I nod, "I'll just get my things," I tell her. "Of course. can help too."

Quickly, I fold the letter up and run into my moms bedroom, hiding it in the box full of Dad's things that he left behind before going to get the suitcases from my room. Laura managed to carry the box of books.

Like they do in the movies, I take one last look at my bedroom, breathing deeply with tears in my eyes before I make my way out for the last time.

oh hi :) I hope you are enjoying this book so far aha. I have so much planned and I'm excitedddd!

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