Failure’s not flattering
I was lost inside my head just thinking what the hell was I going to do next. I had no idea what the time was as my phone died on me after I phone Alex last night so I was pretty lost on the time part, all I knew was that I was bloody tired but my body just refused to let me sleep like with all the other hospital trips I’ve done in the past.
I heard the door open and I looked and saw Hallie running towards me and I stood up and got down to her level and welcomed her huge hug.
“What you doing here?” I asked as I looked at Ella.
“It’s the only way I could get her to go to school.” Ella said and I nodded slightly and pulled back a little and noticed Hallie was wearing one of my hoodies.
“This, is miles too big for you.” I chuckled as I pulled on the hoodie gently which made Hallie giggle.
“Right you, you’ve seen Jack and now it’s time for school.” Ella said and Hallie latched herself onto me and she wasn’t going to let go.
I stood up and I picked her up as well.
“You go to school and I’ll get you a treat.” I said hoping bribing her would work but it probably wouldn’t knowing how stubborn Hallie was.
“No, you take me to school.” Hallie said and pointed between me and her which made me sigh loudly.
“Take her, I’ll stay with mum and you go home and get some rest as you look like shit Jack.” Ella said and I looked at her and then too mum.
“The doctors are coming round later. I need to be here so I know what is going on and what is happening.” I said and Ella sighed.
“Jack you can’t keep running yourself down like this. You’ll crack and then you’ll do something stupid.” Ella said and I looked at Ella hard.
“I’ve been doing this for the last 5 years, today isn’t going to make any bloody difference. How do you know? You’ve only been here for 5 minutes and you have already relapsed back into drinking, so don’t you dare speak to me like I’m that vulnerable boy all those years ago because I’m not that boy anymore.” I said seriously and Ella sighed again.
“I’m just trying to look after you.” Ella said.
“Well I don’t need it.” I spat and Ella looked down.
“Hallie, I need you to go with Ella today.” I said and put my focus back on Hallie who shook her head at me and wrapped her arms round my neck.
“No.” Hallie said and I sighed loudly.
“Hallie I need to stay with mum, Ella isn’t that bad.” I said and Hallie looked at me.
“But she’s not you.” Hallie said and I smiled and I kissed her cheek.
“She might not be me but it’s the best I can do I’m afraid. I’ll be home tonight.” I said and looked at Ella.
“Can you sit with mum tonight?” I asked and Ella smiled as she nodded.
“Of course Jack.” Ella said and I smiled and looked at Hallie.
“Go with Ella and I’ll pick you up from school later on.” I said and Hallie pouted at me but she nodded which made me kiss her forehead and I put her down on the floor.
“Don’t lose my hoodie.” I said and Hallie smiled.
“I won’t.” Hallie said and Ella offered Hallie her hand which Hallie took and they walked off.
I watched them before I turned back round and looked at mum.
“It’s going to be okay Mum. Nothing is going to happen to you.” I said quietly as I rested my head on the bed and just listened to her monitors beep away.
After countless visits from the doctors it turns out that mum was now on reaching that point I’ve been absolutely dreading.
“Do you want her to stay here or would you like her to go home?” A nurse asked and I looked her.
“I want her home.” I said quietly as loads of stuff went through my mind.
“Okay sweetie. Do you have the support you need. Not just for your mum but for yourself and family?” The nurse asked as she sat next to me as we talked about the next step in Mum care.
“My family is messed up, nobody seems to really care.” I said quietly as I looked down.
“If they don’t care then their either too young to understand what mum has wrong with her or their too drunk to know what day it is.” I said and the nurse nodded.
“Do you know what your mum would like happen when the times come? Does she have a DNS in place, stuff like that.” The nurse said and I nodded.
“She has a DNS and she wants to be kept comfy and clean and all the other stuff.” I said and the nurse nodded again.
“Okay, I have most of the information on your mum. Now you, What support do you have at home? Because things are only to get tough now.” The nurse said seriously.
“I’m not talking about that. When can my mum come home?” I said as I stood up.
“Someone will bring her home tommorow. You go home and get some rest. I’m on all day today and I’ll stay with her tonight if you don’t trust anyone here.” The nurse said and I looked at her and smiled.
“Only if it isn’t too much trouble.” I said quietly and looked back at mum.
“Not at all sweetie. You need to rest as like I said it’s only going to get tougher when your mum goes home.” The nurse said and I sighed loudly and kissed mums forehead.
“Be good, no getting into trouble.” I said in Arabic as I got my bag and left over pizza I had from last night.
“My number is on the side if you need to call me about anything. Promise me you’ll call me if anything happens.” I said and looked at the nurse who smiled and nodded.
I kissed the top of Mum head again and I went to pick Hallie up from school.
“I need you too look after Hallie for me. Just for an hour or something.” I said to Ella who frowned at me.
“Why? She’s gonna kick off about the fact she’s left with me again.” Ella said.
“I need to go to the school.” I said as Hallie looked at me.
“Stay with Ella for a hour and I will be back and then we’ll sit down on the sofa and we will watch as many of those Disney films as you like.” I said to Hallie who didn’t look very happy with me but she nodded with a big sigh.
“Okay.” Hallie sighed as I got down to her level and she hugged me which I returned.
“Go and do your homework and then show Ella how well you are doing with your reading.” I said as Hallie loved reading and she would read to me everyday or I’ll have to read to her everyday.
Hallie nodded and she let me go and went running off and I stood up and Ella looked at me.
“Jack what you doing?” Ella asked.
“I’m dropping out of school.” I said and Ella looked at me shocked.
“What!” Ella said loudly.
“Someone needs to look after mum. You’re always fucking hungover so you can’t bloody cope. Josh couldn’t give a shit and Hallie is fucking 5, all she should be caring about is when her next lot off food is not wether mum is going to die or not.” I said and walked off and went to the school.
“What do I have to do to drop out of school?” I asked the receptionist who looked at me confused.
“Why do you want to drop out?” She asked.
“I have my reasons okay. Just what do I have to do to drop out of school.” I said and the receptionist sighed and she looked through her draws and handed me some paperwork with a clipboard.
“Fill out this paper work and hand over your locker key once you have cleared your stuff out.” The receptionist said and I nodded and walked off to the seats and filled out the paperwork and handed it to the receptionist and walked off to my locker to empty it.
I noticed Alex with his group of friends and he smiled at me which I just ignored and went to my locker.
“Hey Jack, what are you doing?” Alex asked as he stood next to me.
“What does it look like?” I answered him in a question.
“You’re clearing your locker out but my question is why are you clearing your locker out?” Alex said and I looked at him.
“I quit.” I said and Alex frowned at me.
“Why you quitting? Alex asked.
“Unlike you my family is completely fucked up. Unlike you I have no parents yes your have two dads and your mum is fucking dead big fucking deal Alex. Also unlike you some of us make to give up things we really want to fucking do so we make sure the people we care about are going to be okay.” I spat and slammed my locker door shut and glared at Alex as I walked of and I heard everyone go ‘oh’ which I just ignored and handed my locker key in and I walked home.
After a load of Disney films Hallie had finally fell asleep so I put her in my bed and I was watching something on Netflix when I got a text and I looked and saw that Alex had texted me saying that he was outside and sat on the porch.
I sighed loudly and quietly got out of bed and checked on Ella who was passed out with god knows how many cans of beers and a bottle of vodka.
I walked out and saw Alex sat on the swing seat that brought back so many bad memories for me.
“You the only one awake?” Alex asked and I could just see his cigarette end light up as he smoked his cigarette and I looked down.
“Yes, I’m the only one awake.” I said quietly.
“Where’s your sister?” Alex asked.
“Hallie is in my bed asleep and Ella is passed out asleep surrounded by empty bottles and cans.” I said and looked up slightly and Alex hadn’t moved from the swing seat.
“Where’s you Mum?” Alex asked.
“Mum is in hospital still.” I said quietly.
“Hey, What’s the matter?” Alex asked and I heard him move which made me flinch away from him.
“Jack?” Alex said softly.
“Never sit on that swing chair again.” I said quietly.
“Jack I don’t understand.” Alex said.
“He used to sit in that chair. He used to sit there and wait for one of us to come home and do stuff.” I said but it was slowly was coming out as a sobbing mess.
“Woah, Jack what’s happening? Your outburst at the school, you quitting school and this and you looking like you are ready to shit yourself. Talk to me please.” Alex said and I just sniffed loudly as I looked down again.
“My mum is dying Alex and I don’t know what to do.” I said and I felt the tears roll down my face.
“You’ve got family right? Probably someone more supportive than your older sister.” Alex asked and I shook my head.
“My dad is in prison and my older brother ran as soon as he was old enough.” I said sniffed loudly.
“Okay, well if you need someone more supportive then just know that I’m here. If you want someone to talk to then I’m here. You want someone to sit with your mum then I’m here. Want someone to babysit either of your sisters then I’ll babysit them for you so you can have a break. I’m here to support you Jack. Please let me help you though this.” Alex said and I looked at him.
I heard Ella gag loudly and I sniffed and sighed loudly as I looked towards the house.
“I’ll be back in a second.” I sniffed as I walked inside and Ella was gagging loudly and she was about to throw up before I put a bowl on the floor and rolled her onto her side and quickly picked the bowl up as she threw up in the bowl.
Ella had finished throwing up and I was just sat on the floor watching her and messing with her hair when I heard the front door close and someone walking into the sitting room.
“You shouldn’t have to live like this Jack.” Alex said softly and I looked at him.
“Well I do.” I sniffed as I kissed Ella’s forehead and I stood up and took the bowl of sick with me and I went to the kitchen and Alex followed me.
“Your sister needs help.” Alex said and I looked at him.
“You think I don’t know that? If my sister goes to rehab that will be her 4th visit and she’s only 22 years old. My sister is wasting away and I can’t do nothing to stop her drinking her life away Alex.” I said and I put the bowl in the sink and started to clean it.
“What time do you even go to bed? I mean have you been to sleep yet?” Alex asked.
“What are you like a social worker or something?” I asked and looked at Alex.
“Go to bed and I’ll clean up and keep on your sister.” Alex said softly.
“I can’t sleep until I have done everything.” I said and I heard Hallie come down the stairs and wonder into the kitchen.
“What you doing up?” I said as I walked over to Hallie and picked her up.
“You really need to stop waking up at 2 in the morning missy.” I said as I held Hallie closer to me and I looked at Alex.
“Well you could have Hallie’s bed for the night but you big be too big for it. Can’t have you sleeping in mums bed as I need to change the covers yet and Ella has hogged the sofa so it’s either the floor or sharing the bed with me and Hallie.” I said and Alex chuckled.
“Trust me I can make anywhere comfy.” Alex said.