5. Chapter five
The sweet scent of cookie dough greets me as soon as I open the front door. As I walk in, Julie walks towards me with a tray of oatmeal and raisin cookies. Ahh, my favourite kind. I take one off the tray and bite into it. Still warm. Mmmmm it's good. I swear this woman must have been Jamie Oliver in a past life because her cooking -and especially her baking- is to die for. I take a couple more cookies and head to my room, without uttering a word to Julie. I'm not being rude. It's just I want to be alone now and she never understands how I feel. Also it would have been rude to address her with a mouth full of cookie as I would only have showered her with soggy crumbs. She's only 29 but she acts like she's 40. I suppose that's what having a child does to you. Not that I hate children. I loved my little brother Ben with all my heart, even if I didn't always show it.
A few minutes later and the door creaks open. Julie pads across the floor, followed by Tilly. She sits on the edge of my bed, not quite sure what to say to me.
"Jennifer," She begins. Oh great, she used my full name, now I know I'm in for a lecture-. "I know it must be hard for you growing up without a dad and being in and out of care, but I just want you to know that I'm here for you if you need me." Julie then leaves my room. I'm surprised there was no lecture. She didn't even try to have an awkward mother-daughter chat. Tilly creeps across towards me. She puts her old toy rabbit into my lap.
"This is Ben. He's my special rabbit but you can have him now to keep you company when you get sad." Tilly says. I slowly lift the rabbit up to my face and breathe in its scent. It still smells of Tilly. It's all warm and flowery. I burst into tears and Tilly backs away, clearly shocked. She is quickly comforted by Julie, who pulls her into a hug after rushing back into the room to the sound of Tilly’s sobs. I hold my arms out and Julie walks over, pulling me into the hug. I breath in, my nose invaded by the smell of fresh cookie dough. It wasn't the sentiment that overwhelmed me. It was the fact that her rabbit had the same name as my little brother AND the jerk who just ruined the best relationship I've ever had. When I was little, I had a toy rabbit similar to the one Tilly had just given to me. I remember one day I convinced myself that I was too old to be playing with toys so I gave it to my little brother. Tilly's action reminded me of what I did all those years ago and it made me sad because he's not even here anymore. I never even got a chance to say goodbye. Sometimes I wish that I'd been in the house alongside them and died too. Today just intensified that feeling. I've haven't felt so low in a long time and I want the feeling to go away again. I don't want to go back to how I was before I moved in with Julie. I was diagnosed with depression at some point and I remember not eating until I was hospitalised, which is when the depression was diagnosed, and that was when they decided that I had to be out with a foster family as I was too ' mentally unstable' or however they want to define it. Basically having a nut job in your care home doesn't win you any awards. You just lose sponsors and potential foster carers, and I wasn't worth much so I had to go.
The last thing I want is to go back to that hospital. It was just full of sick children and a depressing atmosphere, and to be honest it made me feel worse rather than better. It took me weeks after moving in with Julie to actually unpack my stuff and actually converse with her. Clearly I also have trust issues. But right now, I feel that big cloud of depression looming over my head, threatening to rain on my parade (I say parade, I mean sad excuse for a life). I hope things get back to normal soon as I don't think I can take much more heartbreak and rejection in my life.
Quote of the day: You never know what you have until you lose it.