Just like that I was on a train home. Sixteen fucking hours of nothingness to and not a damn clue as to where I was going to stay or what I was going to do with my life from there. All that mattered was getting to grandma because she needed me. I was okay with that. To my disappointment, she did need my help when I got there, and she wasn’t as healthy as I’d hoped. She was on oxygen all of the time, suffering from an infection following one of what seemed like several knee surgeries. Also, there were her never ending heart problems that had being going on since I could remember. In a moment, I was flashed back to the one time she had surgery to fix a problem with her pacemaker, and my little sober heart was crushed.

bigstock-Alcohol-addiction-Portrait-o-45287758_sTime passed slowly because I was sober and unemployed. I was able to see my kids and family that occupied some time, but I still had that itch to be drunk all the time. I was limited to the weekends, and I’d pretty much drink as much as possible with or without anyone knowing. Before I knew it, I was back to only being sober when I had the kids to take care of, and that was often only until they went to bed. Pretty soon, it was maybe June or July; I don’t remember which when I met a cousin of my good friend, his name was “Charlie”.

By now grandma was recovering well from her surgery and was back trying to play matchmaker like she always had, and when she met this Charlie fella it was no different. He was down to visit the big city of Chicago, where I’d never really been other than in passing. He wanted to get a haircut and some other stuff, so naturally Grandma volunteered me to show him around the corn maze that was Havana Illinois. I obliged of course because it was grandma, and I didn’t want to seem like an ungrateful fuck for the help she‘d given me. Next thing you know me and this dude were thick as thieves. These days I so fondly refer to him as “The Cherub” because that‘s what he looked like with his chubby face and short round body type. I of course fell for all of his bullshit, and so ensued in that pitiful thing and life lesson of a relationship. He made the 3 and a half hour drive to see me most weekends and took me to dinner and things. Before I knew what hit me, he‘d talked me into moving to Franklin Park where I quickly found a job and a little bit of hope. I also had access to money and a local pub where I’d go and wait for him to pick me up after work. I began drinking heavily again always making up excuses why I needed more money and such until the night he beat the shit out of me then had me arrested saying I attacked him. By then we were engaged, and I had a cool 3.5 Carat princess cut rock on my finger. I ultimately hawked the ring, and it paid my way for a hotel and such until I found somewhere else to live. I of course lost my job due to him making false claims that I had leaked information from my strictly confidential job downtown.

I was all of 24, and partying like young people do with what I thought were friends and such. I managed to keep a job of some sort and carried on with what I knew how to do, charm the pants, and money off of men. Charlie had kept me “pampered” in the ways of beautiful things, hair and nail appointments and nice designer clothing and things so I was set. I had all the tools I needed to keep on keeping on for as long as I needed. I charmed almost everyone I knew. I was a regular at Mike O’Donnell’s Pub on karaoke night, and every other night of the week for that matter, and I didn’t feel alone as I had made friends at work, etc.. Soon enough I was busy every night of the week, I had suitors that would indulge me in nice dinners, and outings all on their dime. My life was a blur again, and I was back to a veryno ruleskind of lifestyle, living it up in a very Aubrey Hepburn circa Breakfast at Tiffany’s way. Minus ever being in a Tiffany’s or climbing in my neighbor‘s window.