I clearly remember the day. It was the very first day when I was allowed to take the bus and go home alone, instead of one of my parents picking me up after school. The first day when I had my own keys to the apartment. And the first day when I had a friend. I was 12.
She was a cheerful girl, full of life, and suprisingly, she lived only a few blocks away. She was new in class, and for some reason, she sat next to me and started talking to me (it was a new experience for me, but I'll write later about my failures in making friends). When the schoolday ended, she still kept on talking to me, and I was happy. For the first time, I felt hope, hope that someone will be my friend.
She suggested that before taking the bus together and going home, we would walk a few blocks and have ice cream. I was more than happy. Going somewhere, even for a few blocks, on foot, unsupervised by my parents, with a friend, and eating yummy ice cream - it was Heaven. We went there, ate it, and then we went home.
I have stepped into the apartment, head still in the clouds... and what awaited me there was Hell. Pure Hell. The only thing I remember is NM screaming in my face, that they were worried about me because I didn't get home at 4PM when I told them to, but a bit later. That they have already called the police. That they, and especially she has lost all trust in me, forever. That I have done irrevocable damage to our relationship between me and my parents. That they could never ever see me as they did before. That what I have done is unforgivable.
And that the girl, my friend, she has a very bad influence on me, that I just wait and see until she will drag me down to "her level", that she is "no good" for me. That she won't be as a perfectionist in studying as I was. And that I will suffer, unbearably, if I will try to continue being friends with her. That on the very first day, NM already saw that she will be trouble for me.
EF just stood there, and said that he was also worried, and looked a bit angry.
I was confused and sad, beyond imagination. Before that, everything I did was perfect (I guess I was the Golden Child back then). And now, I was the scapegoat. I didn't understand why my first attempts at getting friends and being happy with them infuriated NM so much. I didn't understand why does happiness come with such a price. I felt that I had the obligation to choose. Between my parents' love, and my own happiness.
But I hoped. I still hoped that what NM told about my future with my new friend was not true. That NM would accept our friendship. She constantly cursed my friend behind her back, to me. And I tried to protect her.
After a while my friend got fed up that my NM constantly gave her "the looks". Then she began to mock me, just like all the others in class, for my clothes, my hair. And then she abandoned me, for another. They became friends. She left this other girl after a year also. And the "other girl" and me became close friends for several years. But this is another story. After she abandoned my friendship, I thought that after all everything NM said in the first place was true. That she somehow had the powers to predict the future. That it was a proof that she was perfect in every sense and that she was always right. Obviously after the girl left me, there was never a day, when I didn't hear these from NM. I was 13. Convinced that I should trust no-one. Convinced that NM was God. Convinced that the only friend I would ever need was NM and no-one else.
When I think back on that day, when I went home happy, and instead of getting support and shared happiness, I only got punished, I only received distrust, hate and anger... I still feel that pain.
It was the first day NM openly turned from Jekyll to Hide. Little did I know that there was more of this to come...