E I G H T | Faith

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{Pic of Neel}

Song: Hold On

Artist (s): Chord Overstreet

There is no undo in real life

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I sat on the bed looking down at the pictures of my parents. I wiped the the tear that had fallen onto it and turned it around reading what it said in my mothers handwriting.

'Be fearless. Have the courage to take risks. Go where there are no guarantees. Get out of your comfort zone even if it means being uncomfortable. The road less travelled is sometimes  fraught with barricades, bumps and uncharted terrain. But it is on the that road where your character is truly tested. And have the courage to accept that you're not perfect - nothing is and no-one is - and that's okay.'

Mom wrote this only days before she died. It was like she knew she was leaving, and she needed let me know that she'll always be there for me. I choked on a sob just wanting to hug her again. Hug them again. Dad died a few years before mom in a car crash. It broke mom and that broke me. Death changes everything and time changes nothing. I still miss the sound of their voices, the wisdom in their advice, the stories of their life and just being in their presence. I miss them now as much as I did the day they died.

You should love your parents and treat them with loving care. Because you'll only know their value when you see their empty chair, like I did.

I was crying a river by now, and I couldn't help but let it flow. Grief is like an ocean, it comes in waves, ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes its overwhelming. All we can do is learn how swim. 

I took a deep breath placing my hand on my heart, wanting it to calm down. I placed the picture under my pillow, throwing on an old hoodie I had, and some new trainers which Neel had bought me. I didn't want them, but he forced them on me. I had taken out a piece of paper earlier and wrote down every item Neel had bought me and totalled the price, hoping to pay him back one day.

I walked down the stairs as quietly as I could, not wanting to disturb anyone. I made it to the door when I heard Neel behind me.

"Where are you going?" I turned around facing him. I wanted to go to my parents grave. I rarely visited them because I wasn't allowed out of the house.

"erm...the cemetery" Neel nodded taking his car keys walking out side mumbling a 'I'll drive you there' over his shoulder. I didn't want to waste his time, he didn't have to drive me is what I wanted to say, but instead I stayed quiet. We sat in silence the entire ride.

I couldn't buy any flowers. I didn't have the money. Guilt settled in my stomach and I  tried to keep the tears at bay. I swallowed the lump in my throat leaning my head against the window. A few minutes later Neel pulled up into a street. I looked up at him in confusion. This wasn't the cemetery. Neel got out of the car walking into a shop, my eyes widened when he returned holding a handful of flowers. He sat back in, placing the flowers on my lap.

"Thank you" I barely got out, overwhelmed with emotion. He looked at my through the corner of his eyes. Why was he doing this for me? Why would anyone do this for me?

"No worries" he pulled up in front of the grave yard and sat in the car, wanting to give me privacy. I got out, walking the path, hoping I hadn't forgotten where the grave was. surely enough, I didn't and soon I was standing in from of the two adjacent graves. My eyes filled with tears immediately when I sat down in front of them, dividing the flowers equally laying them on the dry mud. 

I lifted my hand running my hand over the gravestone. My breath caught in my throat and I found it hard to breathe. 

"Hi mom. You too dad" I looked between the graves, the feeling of guilt growing in my stomach. I cried harder, covering my mouth with my hand.

"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry, I didn't visit. I wanted to, I..I" I stuttered trying to get my breath back. I looked down at the graves I hadn't visited for over a year. I ran my hand over the mum covering my mothers grave, feeling a panic attack taking over. 

"You can't stay in there" I shook my head frantically. I grabbed dirt off the grave trying to dig somehow. "You're scared of the dark mom, you can't stay in there" my heart started beating faster and I wasn't thinking anymore. I jumped when I felt a pair of arms wrap around me. 

"Hey, hey, it's me" Neel whispered sitting down next to me. I looked back at him frantically.

"Neel, help me. Help me take mom home. She's scared of the dark. It's so dark down there. She must be so scared. Dad can come too" I choked and Neel looked down at me, raw emotion flashing through his eyes. Neel wrapped his hand around my check, holding me against his chest. I latched onto his shirt, burrowing my face into his neck, finally letting go. I cried for what seemed like hours, as I usually do, but the difference this time was that, this time I had a shoulder to cry on.

Neel led me back to the car after I had calmed down, helping me into the passenger seat. We didn't move immediately once we were seated. Neel clutched the car wheel as if he was conflicted with himself.

"Do you believe in God?" Neel finally asked. I sniffled, nodding my head.

"Do you have faith?" I nodded. He sighed looking out of the windshield again.

"Then let that faith reassure you, that you'll meet again" with that said he started his car and began to drive. Throughout the drive, I contemplated until I truly believed his words. And I did. I did believe that we would meet again. Only it'll be in a better place.

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I understand that this chapter wasn't as long as it should be and I'm working on it. It's just really hard to tie all this plot together right now. Just hang on. You won't regret it.

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