“Don’t go where the path my lead, instead, go where there is no path and leave a trail.” This is the saying etched into my mother’s old pillow that was handed down from generation to generation in my family. It started with my Great-Great-Great-Great-Grandmother.
Now it was onto me, Melody Annabel Niagra. My mother had just passed away and I was only fourteen. I hugged the purple satin pillow to my chest as tears streamed down my face. It was the day after the funeral and I was just trying to stay strong. I lay in a cot in the bedroom that was now my own, with my suitcases scattered on the ground where I had thrown them earlier.
These people—the Ross family—were very kind and loving, but they weren’t family. They had six other teenage foster kids here as well.
First, there was Miranda Thompson, a fourteen year-old drama queen with blonde hair and blue eyes. Second, there was Zachary Foster, a fifteen-year-old boy with deep brown hair and brown eyes, the self-absorbed of the bunch. Third, there was Jessica Love, a beautiful shy thirteen year-old girl with soft, thin coffee-brown hair and light blue eyes. Fourth, there was Jacob Swan, a tall seventeen-year-old boy with black hair and brown eyes and a hard, angry personality. Fifth, there was Trinity Parkman, a lonely sixteen-year-old with blonde hair and brown eyes. Sixth, there was Mark Thump, a stubborn jackass seventeen-year-old know-it-all boy with blonde hair and blue eyes. Lastly, there was me, a heartbroken fourteen-year-old with pure black hair and blue-hazel eyes that go from pale to bright depending on what I’m wearing and my mood.
I hadn’t even been here twenty four hours and I already dreaded my new home and the people in it. If only my father said he could’ve kept me, why hadn’t he just told them that? Why? Then I’d be at home crying because of my mother’s sad, tragic death instead of that and all the other changes in my life.
“Melody!” I heard Mrs. Ross call from out in the dining room, “Time for dinner, please come.” I wiped my tears away and sat up. I walked over to the mirror that the Ross’s had put up to make it seem a bit home-like along with the bed with the flower comforter, the walls painted blue, and the knick-knack shelf was filled with all sorts of little things.
I had to give these people credit; they had done their research and decorated the room with things I loved. I adored flowers, especially roses and zinnias, so the comforter worked. Blue was my favorite color, so the walls were nice. Most of all, I loved little trinkets, it was interesting to think that things that were so small could be so interesting when you took the time to appreciate them.
I stared into my own blue eyes and saw how red my face was. My black hair was messed up from lying in bed and my clothes ruffled. I didn’t even care, I just pulled down my t-shirt so it went to its full length then left the room; remembering the hallways faintly as I came to the dining room.
“‘I cry out to the Lord with my voice; with my voice to the Lord I make my supplication. I pour out my complaint before Him; I declare before Him my trouble. When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then You knew my path. In the way in which I walk, they have secretly set a snare for me. Look on my right hand and see, for there is no one who acknowledges me; refuge has failed me; no one cares for my soul. I cried out to You, O Lord; I said, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living, attend to my cry, for I am brought very low; deliver me from my persecutors, for they are stronger than I. Bring my soul out of prison, that I may praise Your name; the righteous shall surround me, for You shall deal bountifully with me”’ That was Psalms 142; A Plea for Relief from Persecutors.”
There was a moment of silence then he went on with the prayer, “O Lord, deliver us from the evil one and keep us safe always.” he gripped my hand tighter, “Keep us from temptation and make us perfect O Lord my God. Thank You for our many blessings that we have, that many do not. Thank You for our food, our clothes, our water, and for each of our lives. Thank You for our new family member—Melody—and for bringing her to us. Thank you for this food, may we eat knowing You have given us this food. In Your Son’s—Christ Jesus’—name we pray, Amen.”
Everyone there seemed to hardly acknowledge me, or the pray. They just ate, except of course Mr. And Mrs. Ross who spent a few more moments with head bowed in their own prayers. I knew that they had chosen that prayer for me, so that they could help me to understand I needed to cry out to God. Yet, I knew that. I was praying almost every second for the agony to end. Nonetheless, I knew that with every loss, there was another like. With every death, another birth. I knew that something good had come out of my mother’s death. I just didn’t know what it was.
I picked up my fork and just picked at the roast beef, pork-n’-beans, and corn. I ate nothing, for I didn’t think I would be able to eat it if I tried. My mother always used to say that when I was upset I would fast, going without food until she forced me because I was “much too thin”. Now, I was fasting, because what I wanted was a sign from God, telling me my mother was with Him.
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