Jet lag is an absolute bitch.
I let myself fall face first on the bed. The plane took off at around five yesterday afternoon and I arrived at Manchester airport five a.m. UK time, but that wasn’t even it. I had to walk around the airport first, collect my luggage and drive home. I am absolutely exhausted right now – to put it mildly.
I start counting the hours and fuck, my biological clock is still set at two in the morning. I remain in my starfish position and sleep away half of my day due to this ridiculous jetlag.
At around midday I get woken up by a little boy jumping into my bed, I guess Mum has finally released him and allowed him to come and see me. Nothing matters anymore when I see a pair of green eyes looking into mine; the jetlag, being woken up so abruptly, leaving Ashton behind, not even our fight and our unsure relationship status matters to me when I pull my little brother into my arms. I hold him until he starts squirming in my arms and I release him from my tight hug to kiss his forehead.
“Hi honey, I missed you.” I sign to him. Eliot is honestly the first boy I have ever loved. It often confuses people when they find out how much I care for my little brother, a lot of people fight with their siblings, but Eliot and I never do. The ten year age difference probably helps with that and of course the fact that Eliot is my little helper, my partner in ice cream crime, my buddy. We always agree with each other and never fight.
Well, that is up until now I realise as Eliot’s mouth starts moving and he takes my hand tugging me off my bed and rushing down the stairs. I greet both Mum and Dad and sit down with the cup of tea that Mum hands me.
Eliot excitedly starts speaking again, but I can barely catch anything from it; he’s too excited, he keeps moving his head, blocking my view of his mouth. I glance over at my Mum who desperately tries to focus on her tea, trying to avoid eye contact. My dad seems too caught up in something he’s reading on his iPad and I don’t think he realises that Eliot isn’t signing to me.
“Eliot,” I slowly start. “You have to sign to me. I am deaf, honey. I don’t understand you when you speak.” I try to be slow, I try to emphasise every sign. I know he understands my signs, I can see it in his eyes.
I feel slightly relieved as I see Eliot using a few signs along with his spoken words, that way I can half lip read him and half watch his signs and finally I’m able to understand him. “But everyone says signing is bad.”
But in this case I am not sure if I wanted to understand what he’s saying.
My Dad suddenly joins the conversation: “Signing isn’t right at school and with D-a-v-i-d. With Mummy and Dad you can choose, but to your sister you have to sign. She can’t hear you.”
Eliot slowly nods, it must be quite confusing for him. He has spent his entire life signing in this house and suddenly people start telling him to stop signing and start speaking. And now that he’s finally getting used to speaking all the time he learns that some people can’t be spoken to and others can’t be signed to.
I can’t possibly be mad at Eliot for not signing to me all the time, it’s not his fault that he doesn’t know. I’m not even mad at my parents anymore, any parent wants their child to do well in school, I might have even done the same. Right now I’m just very glad that my parents haven’t banned BSL from his household.
I walk down to Lynn’s house, the same route I’ve walked time after time after time, but never have I been this nervous. After lunch and a shower I felt somewhat better, but I can still feel my tummy twist at the thought of having to face her.
I take a deep breath and ring the doorbell, Lynn’s mum opens the door and immediately lets me in and signs “upstairs” to me. This woman knows me way too well. I quickly knock on Lynn’s door too and walk in after giving her a few seconds, I can’t hear her response so I just guess it’s alright for me to come in.
“Hello.” I wave at her.
“Beth!” She signs as she jumps up from her bed. “Oh my god. I haven’t talked to you in so long.” She continues and pulls me into a tight hug.
I hug her back and let out a breath I didn’t know I was holding. And I realise that she is far too good of a person to be friends with me. She doesn’t even appear to be upset, I was horrible for not talking to her for days and here she is welcoming me back into her arms just like that.
I pull back and ask her: “You’re not mad at me?”
“Nah, I got over that. But I will be mad when you don’t tell me every detail of your little trip to freaking North America!” She replies. And yeah, she’s definitely too good for me.
So I tell her the whole thing, providing her with every detail from the trip. She doesn’t care if I repeat myself from previous Skype calls we’ve had so I leave nothing out, I tell her all about how he taught me that one song on the drums, how I told him to sign and how fast he’s been learning, I talk about the concerts, the fans, the other lads. I especially talk about the date and all the times we’ve kissed, which is all new information to Lynn and the whole thing makes her smile almost as wide as myself.
“I’m so happy for you! I’m so happy you finally stopped fighting with him and that you’re together now.” She excitedly tells me.
I give her a small smile, so yeah, maybe I haven’t described one part of the story in detail to her: the arguments. Maybe I just kind of left that out a little bit. It’s something Lynn doesn’t understand and telling her about the argument I had with Ashton right before I left is just not worth it especially not since it’ll probably cause an argument between Lynn and I again.
“Wait, you are together though, right?” She proceeds.
And I nod.
I know we might not be together anymore, the argument kind of left me with an unsure relationship status, but nothing is official yet. I wouldn’t say I was lying to Lynn, because I don’t think of it as a lie. Saying that Ashton and I are still in a relationship isn’t lying, because technically we are not not dating. Saying we are still together is just wishful thinking, because at the end of the day I just miss Ashton, I just want to be with him, I still want to be with him.