He reminded me of my son; my son who I lost. He had the same hair, brown and tousled; the same eyes, vacant, almond oceans of angst.
I still can’t breathe from the vacuous loss, he walked away one night after we fought. He was doing drugs, I could tell he was, and I threatened him – I said I didn’t know him anymore.
And I’ll never forget, he turned to me, with that dimpled chin, the cherubic cheeks – the ones I kissed those newborn weeks. He said to me in unthinkable anger: I never wanted you as my mother. Then he left. He never came back. I still wonder if he meant what he said. If he preferred his life without me in it.
Could he have hated me so very much that he chose to break me, not right then, but as the days turned to weeks, then to months, and to years – as if on a stretcher, turn by turn… My body ripping apart at the seams, every year more bloody: ever more obscene.
Each birthday of his is more quiet than the last. Just me with myself, a cupcake and a glass of wine for friends. The wind in the trees and the hatred in his eyes, staring me down from a starry sky.
The boy in the ward, he could have been mine. His name was Andrew, and I mourned when he died, as if he had been my own, my son, the one who still hates me; who never came home to his momma.