As usual, I was lying in my bed, when my entire family (sans my brother, who is at school), entered the room. Mom, Dad, and Michelle all walked in. They all looked happy, but Michelle had a huge grin on her face.
“What's going on?” I asked suspiciously. It felt like an intervention was about to take place.
“We have a surprise for you!” squealed Michelle. A surprise? What the hell? I knew my family had been avoiding me for the past couple days, but I had assumed that it was because they didn't want to deal with me. No one wants to deal with me when I'm in wallowing mode – which I had been since Deryck had left. Me with a broken heart is a really, really ugly sight.
I was going to ask what the surprise was, but Michelle grabbed my hand and tried to tug me out of my bed. My little sister is such a cute kid.
“We thought that doing something for you might make you feel better about Deryck leaving,” said Dad gently. Funny. Dad seems to have a much more friendly attitude about Deryck when the guy is out of the country and away from me.
“Yeah, now come on, Av!” urged Michelle. She tugged on my arm again a few times to try and get me up. I couldn't help laughing and pretending to resist her a few seconds longer. Eventually, I did stand up. I had to stretch before I started walking, since I had been in bed all day. When I was missing Deryck, I really couldn't think of anything to do besides stay in bed.
Before taking me out of my room, Michelle tried to blindfold me. They really do want to surprise me, don't they? But Mom made her stop. My parents didn't think it would be safe for a seventh months pregnant woman to walk around not being able to see, and they were probably right.
“Okay, follow us to the guest room,” squealed Michelle. The girl was so excited, she was practically jumping up and down. I tried to remember when I was 14, wondering if I had ever been that hyperactive or easily excitable. And as much as I didn't want to believe it, I think I may have been. Damn, I wish I still had energy like that. Seventeen and I'm already bitching about my age giving me problems. Won't it be great when I have a kid to make that worse?
I was jolted from my thought process when Michelle asked me, “Ready?” Her whole face was lit up, and my parents were both smiling, too. (They may have been excited for the same reason as Michelle, or they may have just thought she was cute, like I did.)
“Yeah, sure,” I said with a shrug. I wasn't quite sure what I should be expecting, but I was too tired to be excited with anticipation today. A small grin went across Michelle's lips, and she pushed open the room to our guest bedroom.
“Ta-dah!” she cried.
I couldn't say anything. I might have said “oh my God,” but it really felt like I was speechless. My mouth had dropped open in shock. All the old furniture had been moved out of the room (to where, I had no idea). And it had all been replaced by the cutest set of nursery furniture I had ever seen.
“Well, honey? Do you like it?” my mom asked me with a smile.
“It's...incredible,” I breathed. My parents and sister had picked out an entire nursery theme made up of guitars and rock band instruments – and they had done it without me noticing. Oh, my God, Deryck is going to love this room. For a minute, my heart ached when I realized that he wouldn't be able to even see the nursery until right before the baby was born. But I pushed that to the back of my head.
I looked around and saw that there was a crib, a changing table, and even bedding in the crib. Cutest of all was the mobile with plastic guitars hanging above the crib. I smiled a little, knowing that Colin would just have to grow up to be a musician. How could he not, with it in his genetics and having it being shoved in his face from the time he got home to his nursery?
“This is so perfect!” I cried. “Thank you, guys.”
“Thank Michelle,” laughed my dad. “It was her idea, and she found the furniture set.”
“Yeah, but Mom and Dad paid for it,” Michelle smirked. “And they helped me move it without you noticing. Which, by the way, wasn't very hard to do with you sulking in your room all the time.” Have I been sulking? I thought I was wallowing. Ah, well, either way. Maybe I should stop...
I couldn't help feeling guilty that my parents had paid for the nursery. They had also taken Deryck in, which was something that was tough for everyone (except me, since I live to have Deryck around). My parents were doing so much more than they needed to for me. After all, I could have just been kicked out of the house.
“Thank you,” I said again, softly. I knew I had complicated my parents' lives so much, and I was honestly surprised that they would do anything nice for me at this point. “Thank you. I love this so much.”
“We love you too, Avril,” said Mom, giving me a loving pat on the back.
I looked around the room. It slowly dawned on me that in just a few months, I would be sitting here, rocking a baby to sleep every night. And then having it wake up and needing to put it to sleep again...and so on and so on.
“I just hope Deryck will be able to see this room,” I murmured. “He might not be back in time.”
Michelle pouted at me. “Avril, you need to stop being sad about Deryck. You talk to him all the time!” She was right. I was constantly either talking to or texting Deryck. My cell phone bill was probably going to triple for the next few months. “You seriously need to be happy. That's why we did this for you.”
I looked at my sister and smiled. She was sticking out her lower lip and looked just like I know I used to. “Alright,” I laughed lightly. “I'll try to be happy...but just for you.” Michelle is right. I have to accept that Deryck is going to be away for a long time.
It felt like a load had been lifted off my shoulders. As much as I missed Deryck, it felt good to not be dependent on him – to not need him to function. Just to thank her for everything she had done for me, I reached out and pulled my little sister in a huge hug.