Wait, wait, wait… Who am I? Why did I put on your favorite lipstick? Did I believe it would hold the magic of reconnection? Truthfully I wanted it to but I know were in far to deep for a cover up fix. I leave the restaurant with a bitter red tongue. I feel the tingle of the alcohol on my lips as I walk to our third story apartment. Its the smallest on the block and the first one that caught our eyes on our hunt for a home. It’s close to public transit, a few long city blocks from a cute corner filled with restaurants, shops and coffee houses and a park within walking distance. Boston, MA is now where we call home. We moved here when you got your first “Big Boy Job.” I followed and in all honesty I truly didn’t mind. Coming from a small town in southern Minnesota, where everything is small, I was excited for big. Big buildings, busses and a big dream to make something of my life. I remember the day you asked me to move here, when you got the call. I saw your eyes light up, you were always to become a somebody. I found you to always be so logical, it plays out in every aspect of the way you live your life. Becoming a lead data analyst for a large electric company was perfect for you, you easily found your fit. Would I consider a large salary as becoming somebody? No, but you did and I am happy for you that you found what you were looking for. It also allowed me to make a free choice in work when we landed here. I didn’t need to make ends meet and I could just live. So that cute little coffee shop at the corner, that’s where I applied.
So that’s me, I am that girl, the one who hands you your almond milk latte. The delicately poured design of steamed milk on your espresso is my artwork, my skilled trade. My name is Millie, short for Mildred but I will never give out that name willingly. My mother thought it was important to pass down her mothers name and I always told her it didn’t do my any favors. I grew up with tradition in a house full of hidden dysfunction and 3 other children. I am the oldest and the one who always had to pretend to have her shit together. Actually, when I married you I validated that insecurity. I for once really think I had my shit together, I married a businessman. Next in line is my sister Mary. We’re only two years apart yet she’s miles ahead in the game of life. She’s married and currently pregnant with her second baby. Mary is really simple, she gets that from my father. He could sit drooling over the news an entire Sunday. My mother would be doing circles around the house with laundry, in passing she’d glare at his bald head from behind. What she never seemed to come to terms with is that he wouldn’t get her hints. All that huffing and puffing, tossing dishes and slamming doors didn’t do her any good. Dad honestly never noticed, the sound of his white socks rubbing together on the coffee table drowned the sound of her footsteps. Third down the line, my youngest sister Maggie. If I placed a newborn puppy in your arms and had you describe it, you’d define her. Sweet, soft, cute and cuddly. A soul full of gold and honorably has held by family together through her love. My youngest sibling Forrest, he died 8 years ago at the young age of 7. Over the past 8 years I’ve witnessed my mothers pain through the color and texture of her face. Every sip of alcohol seems to wash away any pigment left in her skin. Gravity is tugging her to the floor and I don’t know how she isn’t sinking underground with him at this point. I’m the most like my mother, which at this moment doesn’t seem very attractive. I don’t take it offensively, if my mother were still truly living, she lived in color and it was beautiful.
My shifts here are short but my days seem to take forever lately. I think I need a purpose, something more than swirling whole milk. I all of a sudden need to be needed, I think I am longing that from you. For the past year every night I go home, wait for you to walk through that door and hope for love. Tonight is different, I don’t wait for you. Maybe I have finally hit my breaking point of desperation. I’m unsettled by how much I want to run but it also excites me that tonight I don’t feel afraid of leaving.