The sun fought to enter the room. The windows were shut but the curtains were drawn aside. Sunlight flooded the room, and I stared out of the window, still wrapped in bed. It was early morning after a sleepless night. It had been impossible for me to stop myself from recalling the night exactly ten years ago:
I ran and ran, as fast as my little legs could take me. My bag swayed on my back, my ponytail dangled on my head and my eyes were fixed on the road that lay ahead. My heart was thumping in my chest, clearly audible in the silence of the moonlight. The easy wind was blowing, making the weather pleasant. I was about to reach the forest when I stopped. I turned and looked at the road I had left behind, the people I had run away from, the life I had cast off.
“I shall never see them again,” I told myself. I didn’t let out a sigh, I wasn't frustrated nor was I gloomy but the thought still fed on my soul. No tears came out of my eyes. I just turned back to the road I was to take and headed forward.
I hurried deep inside the forest which was sure to be more caring than the foster home from where I had run away. I was alone. I had always been alone, but for some reason in the dark, wild forest, I didn't feel afraid. I walked further and after consoling myself that I had reached the heart of the forest, I stopped. I looked around as if someone would still manage to reach me. I had been so frustrated from the ill-treatment of the daughter of my foster parents that I could not help but run away from the dreadful place I was brought up in.
Their daughter would pull my hair, snatch my chocolates from me and take away all my favourite things to her room without even asking. And what would my foster mother do? With would laugh and say her daughter was becoming clever!
I had packed my bag with my books, clothes, some of my stuff, and a photo of my parents which I had managed to steal from the foster people’s room. Why did I take their photograph with me? I didn’t know myself but I just felt I should and so I did. I sat on the wet damp grass and wept a little, not because I was afraid but because I dreadfully missed my parents. I was only four when my parents died, but I still remembered the little memories I had collected. They used to feed me, play with me, taught me and we had happy times. I didn't remember how they died. I didn't know whether they had died at all. My foster mom had told me they had died in a car accident.
I never believed it was true but I had no proof to prove the cruel woman wrong.
The walls of the room seemed to be restless the last night. I wanted to scream or wail or anything but my voice had gone. Why? I don’t know but it was just gone. And to this day, I remember how many tears I had shed, fighting the world with my back to the wall. I had always wanted a family. House, job, money, or anything can not satisfy the needs of a family. After having such a family as that of my past foster parents, I had always wondered what a home with real parents felt like. The emptiness of a family was still fresh in my heart, even if many years had passed. I had no friends, never made any. I was scared they would make fun of me if I told them about my past or they asked me about my parents. I hated to tell anyone that I was an orphan.
I reluctantly pushed away the covers and walked to the window. Fresh air and sunlight entered the room as I drew away the curtains and opened the window. I looked down at the garden which was blooming with lovely flowers but it didn't make me smile as it used to every day.
I realized I had to get to my work. I was a designer in a textile company. It was near the seaside and the view from the window gave a pleasant scenery to look at and I always started my work after looking at it. It was Sunday, and an off. I was a part-time writer too, not only because I loved writing but also because I wanted to earn more money. I freshened myself up and got ready. After having a light breakfast, I sat at the desk beside the window. My diary was kept in front of me and I took a pen from my pen holder. I wrote the heading on the page:
I stared at the blank page, waiting for an idea of a story to strike me but nothing came. I fell in the chair and sighed. Suddenly, I remembered the photograph I had kept of them in the drawer. I rarely looked at their picture as it only made me more gloomy and I missed them, even more, when I saw them. I still picked it up and looked at it to get something to write.
"My parents," I whispered. "I wish you were alive."
I ran my hand on the photograph and faintly smiled back at the two smiling faces. I looked at them, not feeling like taking my eyes off them but my diary looked at me in a way that I kept it back and picked up my pen, determined to write something.
"I will write something about my own life," I said decidedly.
Though I haven't seen my mom since she died when I was 4 years old, I am sure she is the most beautiful woman. She has…
I lifted up my eyes to the photograph to see my mom's eye color but looked at something else. The photograph was peeling out of the frame. I picked up the frame. I pressed the photo to make it stick back but it remained the same. I tried again and again but it started coming out more.
"It won't stick back," I said. In order to make it look better, I started to take the photograph off from the frame so at least I would be able to keep it safe somewhere. I took it off carefully, centimeter by centimeter, and when it was completely out, I looked at it with a satisfied smile. I opened a drawer to keep it in when a strong wind blew and it flew from my hand and landed face-down on the floor.
It revealed something I never would have expected in a place I never would have looked before; on the back of the photograph was a worn-out note, the ink almost erased. Perhaps I never saw the note because the back of the photo was stuck to the frame and hence, covered the note.
Shivers rippled down my spine, the hairs on my arms rose when I read the note. It said:
Leaving you in the hands of foster care people was our greatest regret, but if only we had any other option… We were poor when you were born and could not afford to bring you up as you should have. We hope you could find it in your heart to forgive us, and we will be glad to have you again, for we hope with all our might that we will afford to have you in years to come. If you find this note, know that we deeply care for you. Below is our address and rush to us whenever you choose, it would make us the happiest parents in the world…
I had struggled to find information about my parents before. But the foster people had said they had lost contact with them and weren’t sure where I could find them. They suspected they could be dead. Now I was sure they were alive and waiting for me to get to them.
My eyes welled with tears. I read it again a few times and checked the address to see whether it was real. I believed it was and with new hope, I rose from the floor. I cleared away my tears and walked to the window. The sun seemed to shine brighter than ever as if it too was happy from the incident which had come upon me. I looked at the garden below, knowing I would leave it soon to return to the home I was meant to be in!