It was late at night and very cold outside. My mom told me we have to move out of our place by tonight or the apartment manager will call the police on us. I tried asking her where are we going to live, but she was too busy boxing things up around the apartment. I guess we have to move out because my dad lost his job about a month ago. Ever since then my parents have been arguing all the time.
Last week my mom found out that my dad lost his job because he kept calling off work, just so he could go drink and do drugs with his friends. So the next day my dad left and we haven’t heard from him since. I don’t really feel happy or sad about it. Ever since I was a baby I don’t remember my father being around. But when he was around he was drunk and always yelling. It wasn’t until these past couple of years that my dad started living with us on a regular basis.
I hate moving! I have already been to six different schools and every time I make a friend my mom tells me we’re moving. Not that I hate sharing my thoughts with you, but it would be nice to hang out with someone. I’m happy that my mom encouraged me to tell you how I’m feeling about anything. It’s like you’re my best friend I have so far.
Since we can’t afford to live anywhere, for now we have to sleep in the car, which at first was scary. My mom didn’t sleep at all because she would drive to different places, making sure that we were safe and that no strangers would bother us.
I really miss my grandma. I know she would have taken care of mom and me. My grandma and dad never got along. She hated that my father was on drugs and the way he treated my mom. One time my grandma sent us to Alaska, where she raised my mom, so we could hide from dad. But my mom was lonely, so we moved back to Nevada to go look for my dad. After that my parents got back together and I never heard from my grandma again. Later on my mom told me that grandma died.
My father always told me to never take drugs because “it will ruin your life.” I just wish he would have listen to his own advice. In four days I’ll be 11 years old. My dad was 11 years old when he started smoking pot. He always told me stories about his childhood. His father was mean to him and his four brothers. Whenever his brothers did something wrong, my dad would be the one to get hit. This is the reason why my father would never spank me. He said that, “It brings up too many bad memories.”
Finally we’re able to stay at a shelter for a few weeks. Hopefully we’ll find a home to move into, or maybe my dad will come back and help us. But for now we have to share a bunk bed.
Last night I wasn’t able to sleep, so my mom and I started talking. I asked her, “Why won’t dad stop taking drugs?” She said to me, “You have to realize Karen that we can’t stop your father from taking drugs. The only thing we can do is be there for him.”
My mom told me that when she first met my dad, before he was on drugs, he was a very kind and patient person. I wish I could have seen for myself what type of person my dad used to be before the drugs and alcohol.
She also explained that when a person’s on that stuff it’s like they become someone else, but in a bad way. I sort of understood what she was talking about, but not really. I don’t know what’s going to happen next for my mom and me. The only one thing I wish for is that someday my dad will come back a changed man.
Well, I’m kinda sleepy now so I’m going to bed. I’ll be going to a new school tomorrow. I really want to bring you with me, Lizzie. But I don’t want to get in trouble again for writing in my diary during class, so I’ll tell you all about it as soon as I get back. – Night, Night for Now, Love Karen.
Written by: Bridget Campos