My 18th birthday was supposed to be a joyful day for my entire family. My older brother managed to get a three-day pass from the CDF and I managed to get a few days off from the university. We were a very close family and It had been a few months since my parents had both of their children in the house at the same time.
Everyone woke in a cheerful mood the morning of my birthday. My brother left the house early to visit his sweetheart, my father sat in his favorite chair to read the morning paper, my mother and I went into the kitchen to start breakfast. I no longer remember the exact reason, but, my mother and I started bickering about something unimportant that soon turned into an epic argument. Maybe she made a comment about the Russian boy I was dating at school, maybe I said something sarcastic in return. The fight grew in intensity as my mother said things that hurt me and, of course, being my mother's daughter, I responded in kind. You know the type of things you say you later regret, well we said them that morning.
Our voices grew so loud that my father put down his paper, got up from his favorite chair, and headed to the kitchen. Just as he was was about to intervene, my mother shouted, “You are not even our child. We couldn’t have any more children, so, we adopted you.” Then she promptly started crying and my father ran to her and wrapped her in his arms. I just stood there. I couldn’t move, I couldn’t talk, and I couldn’t breathe. I could do nothing but stand, with my mouth agape, and stare at my parents.
And then with tears in their eyes, they both turned and started walking towards me. My father and mother reached out as if to pull me into their arms. I called them liars and told them not to touch me. I ran into my room, grabbed my suitcase and began packing. But, before I could finish, I broke into tears and started to shake. I could hear my mother’s crying grow louder as they slowly walked down the hall to my room. I sat on my bed and buried my head in my hands just as my parents entered my room and my father said, “Anna we love you. We have always loved you. We are so sorry, we should have told you this a long time ago.” My mother cried so hard she couldn’t say a word.
Then my father knelt next to my bed and put one hand on my knee and, with the other, held my mother’s hand. My mother sat beside me on the bed, reached up and gently stroked my hair. We sat like that for what seemed an eternity. When we had all calmed down, they told me how I came to be their daughter.
The next day I headed back to university, but, for some reason, I couldn’t focus. By the time the term ended, I decided I needed a break. A friend of mine told me about a job in Kabanino. The next day I applied over the phone and within two weeks was working at Kovar's Market. And the rest is history.
Well, if you really want to know, I’ll give you the short story. I fell in love with the owner’s son, got married, had twins, and survived a civil war. And through it all, both families, the Kovars and the Novaks, remained close and visited each other often. And then one morning all hell broke loose.