Chapter 1

It was bright outside. The clear blue skies and the light breeze was just the perfect combination. You could hear the birds chirping through the window. It was eleven o’clock and Mat came running down the stairs. He was struggling to put his tie on and put his shoes on at the same time. I came running behind him.
“Don’t forget we have dinner reservations at seven.” I said to him as I adjusted his tie.
“How could I forget with you reminding me every thirty-seconds?” Mat replied to me. Then I gave him a smug look and then he grabbed his coat and ran out the door I was still following behind him. This was an everyday thing with us two.
“I love you.” Mat screamed from his car as he backed out of the drive way.m I picked up the morning paper on the steps and told him I loved him too. Then I went back inside. I put a leash on my Chocolate Lab, Laura and took her for a walk.
The place where I live is a small town named Clakewood. There are pine trees, small roads and some of the houses looked alike. Not many people have heard of Clakewood. Its one of those towns where you know everybody and everybody knows you. I walked till I got to the end of the road and turned around to return to my house. As always while I’m reading my mail I checked my answering machine. It said,
“Hey, honey. Its me just calling to say I love you and that I need to move the dinner up to eight because of a meeting. See you then.”
He always does this. There is always something but I was expecting it. Once eight o’clock rolled around I was dressed in black dress. Once I got to the restaurant I saw Mat. Before we sat down we hugged. My wavy red hair touched his cheek. He loves my hair.
“How’s work?” I asked him. With Mat’s working at a big law firm we don’t get to see much of each other.
“Good. We have a new secretary. Her name is Linda.” He said. He picked up the leather embroidered menu. I didn’t like him having girl anythings in his offices. Mat and I are not married so some people don’t know we are dating.
“Linda. So its a woman. Is she pretty? We have talked about this. No female secretaries. I’ve seen the movies and read the books, I know what happens.” I said. I chuckled and so did he. Part way through dinner Mat grabs him side pocket of his suit. He pats it a few times then he has a confused look on his face.
“Mat honey, is everything okay?” I asked.
“Yes, everything is fine.” He said but I didn’t believe him.
After dinner he paid the check and I met him at the cars. When he got there he was still patting all his pockets. It was getting late and I didn’t want to argue about it now so I let it go. I decided I would discus it once we arrive at home.
“Do you want to ride in my car and we just pick up your car later tomorrow?” I asked him. We haven’t drove in the same car in a long time.
“No, thats okay. I have to swing by work and grabbed my suit case. I will meet you home.” He told me.
“Okay.” I replied. I watched him drive off then I pulled out of the parking lot. After about ten minutes on the road I hear my phone go off. When I reach to get it it falls on the floor. So I go to grab it. When I get it I look up to see the road and a big Mac truck was heading for me. I tried to swerve but the Mac truck swerved too and we collided. My whole life flashed before my eyes. The last thing I saw was the bright lights. When I woke up there is a woman sitting next to me.
“She’s awake! She’s awake! Doctor, hurry! She’s awake!” The woman jumped up and squeezed my hand really hard. I had no clue who she was. The doctor comes in and checks my eyes.
“Whats your name?” He asks me. He shined a bright light in my eyes.
“Claire Jacks.” I answered then the woman stopped jumping and the man put the pen with the light in his pocket. The woman started to cry then the doctor put one hand on her shoulder and said it was normal. The woman approached me.
“Honey, your name is Melinda. Melinda Mur. Don’t you remember?” She said. She reached for my hand but I pulled it away. I got up and looked in the mirror. I was shocked. I slapped myself to see if I was dreaming but I wasn’t. It’s all true. It wasn’t me in that mirror. I don’t know who it is but its not me. The person who my reflection had blonde straight hair, I have red hair. She has brown eyes, I have green eyes. She was about two inches taller than me. This person was not me. The facial feature was not me. It was not me. I was starting to freak out. I calmed myself down. I looked at the woman and she looked worried.
“What is my name?” I asked her calmly.
“Melinda Jane Mur.” She told me. I had to sit down because my knees were weak. I had to get out of here. All a sudden I feel dizzy and then Its like I saw myself. Like I was floating above, watching everything. The woman's body that I was in was keeled over on the bed and the doctor and the strange woman was trying to figure out what happened. Then a woman was floating next to me.
“Hello Claire.” She said. At this point I swore I was dreaming. I’m a Christian. I don’t believe in reincarnation or anything like that.
“You know I’m Claire?” I asked.
“Yes, I’m like your guardian angel. I watch over you and if you have any questions you ask me.” She said. I was in aw. I didn’t know where to start.
“Okay. I have many questions. Like why am I in another persons body? What about heaven and hell?” I asked.
“Well, this is heaven in a sense. If you are good you get another chance but as someone else. If you were bad then you just disappear into thin air, nothing else to you.” She replied as if she had to go over this before. I paused for a moment. I was trying to process everything before I freaked out.
“Why can’t we get a second chance as ourself?” I asked. She could tell I was mad.
“Thats not the way it works. Listen I’m not the one who makes the rules, I’m the one who says them.” She said back at me.
“Okay. Why can I see this person, like I’m floating?” I asked.
“Since they cannot see me I have to come in a ghost form, were only you can see me.” She said. Then she started checking things off on her little notebook.
“What happens to my life?” I asked. I was worried. I had a good life that I worked hard for and I didn’t want all that to be for waste.
“Nothing. They all know Claire as one who has passed. This is your new life now. Your name is Melinda Jane Mur and you work at Mac Industries.” She told me. Then it hit me like a missile in the sky. Mat works at Mac Industries. He is one of there best employees. Thats a way. I can reconnect with him. Tell him I’m not dead.
“Isn’t there another way? This is crazy! I have to be dreaming! Wake me up!” I repeated over and over again. She put both her hands on my shoulders and shook me till I stopped screaming.
“Calm down.” She said in a firm voice.
“Whats your name? What happened to this Melinda girl to get in a coma?” I asked. Everything still seemed like a blur. I wanted to go to bed and not wake up. What does Mat think? They all think I’m dead. I have to tell them.
“My name is Rachel and she had a car accident just like you except she swerved to miss a dog.” Rachel said. I felt bad because you save a poor dog but you get in a coma. That doesn't seem fair to me.
“One more thing. Where is she?” I asked. I wanted to know because this woman seemed like a caring person and if I’m in her body and nobodies in mine, then where is she?
“She is in another body.” Rachel said. I was worried that she might find me and blame me.
“Why isn’t someone in my body?” I asked.
“That’s just how it works sometimes. You should be thankful. Do you really want someone else living your life?” She asked but I knew she didn’t want me to answer it.
“Thats why its so wrong. I’m living someone else's life!” Then I started to talk to myself. “What if that person finds me? What if she blames everything on me?” Before I could go on Rachel shook me again.
“Claire, you will be fine.” She told me. I calmed down and caught me breath.
“Oh. So know I have to answer to Melinda?” I asked.
“Yes, and next time I will come in human form so we can talk without floating.” She told me and I was kinda happy because being so high up was getting me nauseous.
“Who is that woman?” I asked. She was tall and thin and I had never seen her before.
“Thats Alexandria. She is Melinda’s mother. You will meet her best friend once you arrive at your new home.” Rachel said.
“One last thing. Does this mean I will never seem my family again?” I asked, my heart almost crumbled at the thought.
“No, you will never see Claire’s family again.” She corrected me. “You are now Melinda from this point on. No one can know Claire is still here. This is your life now. Be happy you have a second chanced and Claire, you have to remember not to tell anyone. You old life is gone. You can’t dwell in the past. Leave it be, please for your sake” She told me. then checked another box on her little notebook. I started to cry. How can I forget them? There is no way. This is not my new family. I have one already. I don’t need a new one. I was going to say another thing but she knew what it was. When I said part of the first word she disappeared. I felt a pulling sensation then began to move back to Melinda's body. When I came to I had to act like I was Melinda. This is my life now. Somehow I have to reconnect to those who were my friends when I was Claire but now I have to connect to Melinda’s friends, since I might be in this body for a while.
“Melinda?” Melinda’s mother asked.
“Yes.” I replied. Then she froze. She started to jump up and down and hug the doctor. Then she hugged me.
“I knew you’d remember! I knew it, I knew it!” She screamed. She was as giddy as a horse.
“Mom?” I asked if I wanted to get out of this hospital I needed the doctor to think I’m okay.
“Yes, sweet angel, my sweet sweet angel. I’m right here.” She replied while stroking my hair.
“Can I go home?” I asked her. She chuckled then said yes. It was about an hours worth of paper work I had to fill out and since I knew nothing about Melinda I had my ‘Mother’ do it. One the car ride home she was silent. I thought that it was sad because she was so close to losing her daughter and she had hope and I came back but thats not her daughter. When we arrived at her house I saw that it was so beautiful. It had blue shingles and a light blue shade and together made you so calm. The hedges and bushes were all trimmed to perfection. It looks like something out of Better Homes and Garden Magazine. When I got out of the car a man ran out of the house towards me. He was buff and he had broad shoulders. Then once he got in reach he picked me up a kissed me. I was amazed.
“Roger?” My ‘Mother’ said to the man who had lifted me and kissed me.
“Yes, Alexandria.” He replied. He was gazing into my eyes.
“She has been having some memory trouble, so everyone needs to slowly help her remember and being home around her things will help her remember.” She said. “She doesn’t recognize some people.” Then he sat me down. I wasn’t sure what to do. Then I saw my guardian angel. She was posing as a neighbor. Then my ‘Mother’ walked me into the house and sat me in my room. I looked at the walls and saw pictures of what looked like the body I’m in and other guys and girls. One person showed up in every picture and it was Roger, the guy who picked me up and kissed me. I sat on the bed. I could tell I was in my twenties so I’m guessing I moved out and now I’m staying here to get back on my feet. I heard a knock at the door that interrupted my thinking.
“Come in.” I said then Roger walked in. He sat next to me and smiled. “What?” I asked.
“Nothing. Its just so good to touch you again.” He said then hugged me again.
“Yeah. Its good to see you.” I told him. I was guessing we were friends, so I took a leap and said, “Its hard not having your best friend. I was so worried I couldn’t see you again.”
“Yeah.” He agreed then I took a breath of relief that I said the right thing. I stood up and started pacing. “Whats wrong?” He asked me.
“Nothing. Do you want to take a walk?” I asked. I was hoping he could fill me in on some things. When I walked out of the house I looked back. It was so different from where I, I mean Claire use to live. This place was like isolated by trees. I must be in the country. I was use to the suburbs. This is going to be a transformation. After a few minutes in the walk I noticed the Roger was looking at me a lot.
“Why do you keep looking at me?” I asked with a chuckle.
“Its just so good to see you. I can’t believe your back.” He told me and I drew a blank.
“Back from?” I asked.
“Work. Don’t you remember? You were in a car accident driving to your apartment.” He told me then I remembered a little bit.
“Yes, I work at,” I paused for a second, then answered. “ Mac industries? Right?”
“Yes, Melinda! I can’t believe your remembering. This causes for a celebration!” He was so giddy. He jumped up and down. Then we went to a local diner. The people were really nice. All I could think was there is someone out there missing their family, just like I’m missing mine.
“Roger?” I said as the waiter sat down our food.
“Yes, Mel.” He replied. Roger had such bright green eyes. They were mesmerizing. I snapped out of a daze.
“Could you tell me about my life before the accident?” I asked. He nodded and then began.
“Well, most people called you Mel. I was your best friend. You were really close to your family and travel home every week to see us.” Then he chuckled. “I remember this time when you were not going to make it home for Christmas so you sent a chopper for all of us to come and see you. You made us a special dinner and everything. It took all your savings but you did it for your family.” He smiled. I could tell he was remembering the moment. “You were really something special.” He said. My heart crumbled. A woman this nice has to leave her amazing family because of a stupid accident that should have never happened. I was silent for most of the walk home. When we got back to the house my ‘Mother’ was watching the news. The reporter said, “And tonights news, 24 year old Claire Fulton died in a tragic car accident. The driver of the Mac truck that hit her says they both swerved the same way and they collided.” The reported went on but she turned the volume down. A tear went down my face.
“She’s the same age as you, Mel.” She stated. I nodded.
“Turn it up.” I told her. I wiped my cheek and sat down. The reporter went on and showed a clip of Mat.
“I miss her so much. Maybe if I went home with her instead of going back to the office.” He had to pause and control himself. “Maybe she would still be here.” He broke out in tears and then my mother and father came to comfort him. They all cried, about me. I never knew I would have been so missed but then it turned back to the reported.
“Matthew said that he was returning to his work because he left his wedding ring there. He was going to propose at the dinner they had came from but never got the chance.” The reported went on but I couldn’t listen anymore.
“Turn it off.” I told her I had tears down my cheeks.
“Why?” My ‘Mother’ asked. I couldn’t tell her the truth.
“Turn it off!” I said with a louder tone and then she listened. She had a puzzled look on her face.
“Did you know those people?” She asked.
“I guess you could say that.” I replied then went to my room. I wanted my own life back. This wasn’t my life. Its not fair. I didn’t get to say goodbye. This isn’t right. I cried for hours. That was the reason why he was patting his pockets. He forgot the ring. I can’t believe I died on the day I was about to be Mrs. Matthew Fulton.

Chapter 2

I thought to myself that I needed my guardian angel and then I got that feeling like I was floating again. I saw myself below. I had fainted to the ground.
“What did you need?” She asked. I jumped because she appeared from no where. I all a sudden felt hostile.
“Why?” I asked suddenly. “Why couldn’t I just die? I would rather be dead than to have someone’s life! I hate this! Its not fair that someone worked so hard for a perfect life and its gone in a blink of an eye!” I told her. She stopped me before I could say more.
“This is how it works. It may not make sense but its how it is. If you didn’t have this you would be nothing. Make due with what you got.” She told me. That made me mad.
“No! I will not. I would rather be nothing than someone I don’t know.” I told her. I would rather be nothing. She shook her head and then I felt a pull back to my body just like before and before I knew it I came to. I suddenly had a head ace. I must have hit my head on the way down. When I opened my eyes Roger was above me. He asked if I was okay. I told him yes, I was fine. I had to find a way to get out of this body. When I got to the house I went to my room and got on the computer. I looked up stories of people dying and going into another body. Their was over sixty-thousand hits. I can’t believe that so many time this has happened and no one believed them. I didn’t know what to do. After thinking for a while I have come to the conclusion that I will live this life and try to get close to my old life while I find a way to be Claire again.
Today I decided to go to work. That way I could see Mat. When I got there I was going straight to Mat and told him I was the new secretary.
“Hi. I’m your new secretary. My name is Cla--, I mean Melinda. My name is Melinda.” I said. I felt foolish for almost saying Claire.
“I’m sorry but I don’t have female secretaries.” He said and wiped his tears. I knew what was wrong but I asked anyway.
“I don’t mean to be nosey sir, but whats wrong?” I asked.
“I was going to ask my girlfriend to marry me. I left the ring at my office, so I went to go get it and propose at our house. Before I could do so she had a car accident one day ago and died.” He started crying even more. “She hated when I had girl secretaries.” He finished.
“I think Claire would be fine with me as your secretary.” I said but when I did I wanted to take everything back. He looked up with aw. Then I panicked. He never said her name. All I could think is I blew it.
“Did you know Claire?” He asked. I panicked and quickly answered.
“You could say that.” I replied, happy I didn’t say anything stupid.
“You can keep the job.” He said and then dismissed me. It was so hard to walk out of there. All I thought of saying was,
“Its me. Don’t be sad. I’m here.” But I couldn’t. I need my life back, this is just too painful. After the day of work was over I got in the new car my ‘mom’ bought for me because my other car was total in the accident and I cried. I didn’t stop for what seemed like hours. When I stopped long enough to start the car I headed to the house. I cleaned up my make up before I went into the house. When I got there Roger was waiting for me. He ran up to me and said something weird.
“Turn around. Just walk straight out.” He told me and started to push me towards the door.
“Why?” I asked but before he got to answer and man came from the other room.
“Baby! Your okay! I was so worried.” He said and came up to me and hugged me and kissed me. I pulled away quickly. He gave me a confused look.
“Who are you?” I asked and pulled away from him and stood by Roger. Before he could answer Roger cut in.
“Go away, Luke! She doesn’t love you! You broke up a month ago! She doesn’t even remember you!” He said. He got hostile but I held him back.
“Melinda, you remember me? You got to. I use to call you Mels all the time. You remember, don’t you?” He asked me and I shook my head.
“Your no important enough to be remembered. Leave!” He said and pointed for the door.
“How can you forget someone who you were almost married to?” He asked me. I saw tears in his eyes. He left but before he shut the front door he said, “You will remember. I know you will.” Then he shut the door and got in his truck and drove away.
“What a creep.” I said to Roger, he giggled and agreed. “So who was he?”
“He was your ex fiance.” Roger said with disgust.
“What? He must have been important then.” I said.
“Didn’t you hear me? I said ex.” He said and I chuckled. “On the day before your wedding you came home early and found him in bed with some girl. Then he tried to say sorry but you knew he would do it again.” I was amazed. I know I didn’t know Melinda but from what I heard I knew Melinda didn’t deserve that.
“Now I know why you don’t like him.” I said and he nodded. Roger was so nice. Its like he knows I’m under stress but he has no idea. My ‘mother’ walked through the door and she threw her briefcase on the couch and turned on the television. That was unusual. She usually went to her room changed and then had some coffee. Its amazing what I learn in a few days.
I didn’t sleep well that night. I didn’t feel safe. With Matthew I always felt safe. It was the warmth he gave off or the smile that immediately goes on your face when he walks in the room. I didn’t know how to be me without him. Its going to be all right. I called him. At this point I didn’t care if it was a good idea. The seconds leading up to him picking up was pure torture.
He answered the same as always, “Hello.” He said but their was something different in his voice. It was softer, quieter, less happy and it broke my heart. Knowing I’m causing him so much pain and their is something I can do about it make me sick. I just sat there, listening to him breath. I felt a tear so I turned off the phone. I caught my breath then I heard a knock at the door.
“Who is it?” I asked.
“Roger.” He answered and then walked in. “We are going to a baseball game, do you want to come?” He asked. I paused for a second. “Mia will be there.” He gave me a smug look. I was confused and he knew it. “Mia, your best friend. Well, besides me of course.” I still didn’t know so I lied and acted like I knew.
“Oh, of course. Just give me a second to get ready.” He nodded his head and shut the door behind him. It took sometime having a guy live in the house thats not related to me. When I went down stairs everyone was waiting for me. We all drove there in one car. Roger drove and I was in the passenger seat. My ‘Mother’ was in the back. As he drove I looked out my window. Their was so many trees and hills. The scene was just so calming. I was amazed that I was living in a place where everything looked the same when there was a place like this. Flowers in every meadow, deer drinking in calm streams, Father and Son fishing by the docks. It looked as if it would be in a magazine. Roger looked at me a smiled. I had one hand on the arm rest. He kept smiling at me, then he put his hand on mine. His touch was so warm, so intense. I looked at him and he looked at me. My ‘Mother’ was in the back seat. She smiled like she knew this moment would happen. We held hands till we got to the baseball game. When we got out of the car and he sat next to me and put his arm around me. It was chilly out and he knew I was cold. We snuggled as he rooted for his nephew, Josh.
“Hey! Melinda, how are you?” A woman ran up to me and hugged me. I assumed it was Mia.
“Mia! I’m great. How are you?” I asked her.
“I’m fantastic.” She said then a man came up and put one arm around her. “Mel, meet Jason.” She said.
“Nice to meet you.” I shook his hand.
“Jason is my husband. You haven’t been around lately so I couldn’t tell you. I’m sorry about your accident. I visited you in the hospital.” She said.
“Thats sweet. Do you want to get a drink with me?” I asked.
“Yes, I will meet up with you two later.” Mia said to Jason and Roger. “So, you and Roger.” Mia stated once we got out of hearing range.
“No.” I said quickly. I had no idea how Melinda and Roger were before so I’m not sure wether they were more than friends or not. I ordered two Colas from the stand.
“I see how he looks at you. You can’t pull anything over on me.” She said and then laughed. I shook my head and we headed back with our drinks. We all sat together. Josh’s team won by ten. I never really got the game of baseball but it was exciting to be with Roger and do what he loves. When we got back to the house I went to bed. It had been a long day and I had work in the morning. I had read a little before going to bed. As I put my book down my ‘mother’ walked in the room.
“Hey, honey.” She said in a warm voice. That reminded me so much of my Mom. I missed my Mother, my real Mother. The one who had raised me, who called me bumble bee. Thats who my Mother was.
“Hi.” I replied trying to act tired.
“Honey, I just wanted to talk a little before you got too busy. You and Roger have been friends since Kindergarten. We decided it was best for him to move in when he was 15 because he was tossed around in Foster families. I know he is a sweet boy but Melinda, darling, please be careful. Love is a dangerous road. I love you, Mel.” Then she hugged me. “I’m so glad to have you back.”
After the next few weeks Roger and I grew more close. We took long walks and went to every one of Josh’s baseball games. Today we decided to watch a movie. He had the DVD player in his room so it was easier to watch it there. He rented the movie Law-Abiding Citizen. It was really interesting. It was about how two men came in and kill this one man’s family and the following ten years he plots revenge because the guy who killed them didn’t get punished. He even had popcorn. About half way through the movie Roger put his arm around me. I looked over and saw Mats face. I jumped and then he stood up.
“Whats wrong?” He asked. He looked so confused. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t even know what happened. I couldn’t get that picture out of my face. Mats arm around me, one more time. Then it hit me. The only reason I was enjoying Rogers company so much was because he reminded me of Matthew. I wanted my life back. I can’t live a life that someone else worked so hard to get.
“Nothing. Nothing is wrong.” I said. “I need to use the bathroom.” When I got to the bathroom Rachel was waiting for me.
“I can hear your thoughts.” She said. She scared me silly. I had no idea she was standing there, let alone could hear my thoughts.
“Stay out of my head!” I screamed.
“Are you okay? Who are you talking to?” Roger asked while standing outside the door. I felt like an idiot. He must think I’m losing it.
“I’m fine.” I screamed to Roger.
“Claire you have to leave things be. This is your life. Get use to it.” She told me. I could tell she was getting annoyed.
“Their must be a loop hole?” I asked her then I started pleading. “Please, Rachel. You have to help me.” She saw the lose of hope in my eyes. She looked away and then looked into my eyes again.
“You have to understand I’m not the bad one here. I shouldn’t but I’m going to tell you something. I have never seen it work but I guess its worth a shot. If you find Melinda Jane Mur and,” Then she paused. “and she gives up her second chance you can have your old life back but its a long process and I’m not sure if it will even work.” Joy flooded my body but even I knew that I couldn’t do this alone. I needed some help. I went back into Rogers room. When I got there he stood up.
“Everything okay?” He asked.
“Yes, everything is fine.” I replied smiling. He looked worried. When we sat back down to finish the movie he acted agitated.
“Roger, is there-,” I started to say but then he leaned in and kissed me. I tried to pull away but he hand one hand on my head to make sure I didn’t. “Roger,” I said.
“Listen Melinda,” He started to say but then it hit me. This amazing guy likes Melinda.I might be ruining the most amazing thing for her. She must have known him for years and these emotions have been bottled up and he now worked up the courage to do something, and it isn’t even her. I stood up and went to my room. I blared music so in case he tried knocking I could say I didn’t hear him.
It took days of thinking. I’ve been avoiding Roger. I didn’t want to discus what happened in his room. I didn’t know anything about our relationship before the kiss, so I had no idea what to do now. I went to work today. They keep telling me to take more time off but I need to see Matt. So I at least know he still thinks about me. When I got there I sat down at my desk. I saw Matt. He was walking my way. I instantly smiled.
“Print 30 copies of these and give them to Marshal.” He said and plopped down an envelope on my desk. My smile disappeared. He was so serious at work. I have never seen him like this. He didn’t even give me a chance to say okay. I did have any clue where the copying room was let alone who Marshal was.
“Excuse me?” I asked the woman who was sitting at the desk next to me.
“Yes.” She replied. Her name plate said Debra Cunnings.
“I’m trying to get the hang of this. Can you show me where the copy room is?” I asked.
“Yes, hold on one minute.” She looked at her boss and tapped on her watch. He nodded his head. “I just had to tell my boss I’m taking my lunch early.”
“You didn’t have to do that.” I told her as we headed down a long hallway.
“I know. Melinda?” She asked and I didn’t reply. When I noticed she was referring to me I felt silly.
“Yes.” I replied.
“Are you okay?” She asked. I wasn’t okay. I was the exact opposite. I was dying inside. I just wanted to fall down and cry, but I couldn’t
“Yes, I’m perfect.” I lied. She gave a sigh that made me know that she knew I was lying.
After that, weeks and weeks went by. Mat would say hello but I would just ignore him. I can’t be his whole life then I don’t want to be in it. I became depressed and still avoiding Roger. Every chance he tried to talk but I didn’t listen. I became increasingly transparent, as if I wasn’t even there.
“Melinda!” Screamed Rachel. She pulled off my covers and I fell out of bed. She was in human form this time. I pulled my pillow over my head. “Get up!” She screamed again but I didn’t move. Then I felt a pulling feeling. When I looked I was floating three feet off the ground. I screamed and then she dropped me.
“Ouch!!!” I said. All she did was grin. “Was that necessary?”
“Stop feeling sorry for yourself! This life that was given to you is perfect.” She told me but I didn’t want to hear it.
“But its not perfect for me. I took everything for granted. Mat, my family, my job, everything. I see it now! I understand!” I said. She looked at my and shook her head.
“No, you don’t understand. There is no way to go back. This is not a lesson, not a test. This is reality.” She helped me up. I felt tears falling from my face. She wiped them. “It will be okay.” I knelt down on my bed and prayed. I was on my knees for hours, just asking the Lord for a second chance. This will not make my faith in him weak. He will help me. I know it.

Chapter 3

For the next month or so I prayed every chance I got. In work, during lunch, on walks, everywhere. I had faith that He would help me. I decided to talk to Roger. I couldn’t ruin the friendship of him and Melinda.
“Hey.” He said as I got my coffee in the morning.
“Hi. How’s the school?” I asked.
“Good. I love teaching the children. Someone has to, right?” He said. I thought it was sweet that he spent his free time volunteering at the Children's School. It was a school for Orphans.
“Can I come with you?” I asked. He most likely thought I was crazy.
“Yes, absolutely!” He said maybe a little too excited. The ride there was quiet. When we got inside Roger introduced me to everybody. All the children were so sweet. I couldn’t help but smile. There was this one little girl in particular. Her name was Sally Johansen. She had little button nose and red bows in her blonde hair.
“Hello. I’m Sally. I’m five. When I get older I want to be a veterinarian. That way I can play with animals!” She said. She talked so fast that it was hard to understand what she said.
“Its nice to meet you Sally.” I said to her.
“Did you know my favorite color is pink? My favorite animal is a puppy. I love butterflies. Don’t you?” She asked me. I laughed at her energy.
“No, I didn’t know any of that.” I said. She was the cutest child I had ever seen. She had hope in her eyes and you could see every bit of it with every glance. I played with the puzzles with her at play time.When we left gave me a hug when we left.
“I see Little Sally took a liking to you.” Roger said to me as we headed for the car.
“She’s sweet, isn’t she?” I said. He nodded in agreement. I wondered why someone wouldn’t want her. “Roger, what is the reason she is in the Orphanage?”
“Her Father, Mother and little brother, Bobby, were driving home from Church when a fruit wagon pulled into the street. They hit head on. She was the only surviver. She has no more family anywhere.” He told me. I felt my heart crumble.
“Thats horrible!” I said. I felt terrible. When I got home I knelt by my bed and talked to the Lord.
“Dear Lord,
I want you to forgive me of my sins today. I’m sorry for what I’ve done. I pray that you give Little Sally a good home. Thank you, My Lord My Savior.”
Then I heard the door creek and I look up and saw Roger.
“You’ve done a lot of praying lately.” He stated and I agreed. “That little girl really got to you, didn’t she?” I avoided the question.
“How can you go and see those faces? The faces that show pain and hope? You know that there is no hope for them. How can you see them and just leave and go home everyday?” I asked him. My voice was shaken and sad.
“Its not easy, Mel. Its what has to be done.” He said and I knew he was right but I couldn’t help but still feel sad.
I woke up at 6:30 a.m for work. I was the second one there. The first was Mat. When he saw me come in he motioned me his way.
“Sit down.” He said and pointed to the leather chair in front of his desk. “There is just something about you. I don’t know but when I see you I see Claire. Her hair, her face, I see her. It kills me because I just want to run up to you and hug you but I know its not her. Can you imagine wanting to hug someone so bad but you know you can’t?” Matthew asked me. I got lost in his eyes. He now has bags under them. He looks like he just got hit by a bus.
“Yes, I know how that feels.” I replied and he looked up shocked.
“How?” He asked me. I couldn’t tell him. I couldn’t say I’m here. Its okay. I can’t say that. What would he do? Would he be mad, sad, happy? I don’t know. All I know if I want to be in his arms again. For me to feel safe.
“I have to go.” I said. I grabbed my jacket and ran out of the building. I didn’t know where to go so I went to the only place where I still felt safe. I went to the beach. The beach where I first met Mat. I remember it like it was yesterday.
It was a volley ball tournament. Boys against girls. People came from all over to watch. I was about to spike the ball. Kelly got on her knees and I stepped on her hands and was inches away from the win. Thats when Mat came in. He jumped up and hit the ball at the same time when I did and it flew me two feet back. I must have blacked out. When I came to people were crowding around me.
“She’s okay!” Screamed one girl.
“Give her some room.” Said Mat. He lifted my head. “Are you okay?”
“Ouch but yes.” I said and then stood up. I was a little dizzy so I stumble but he caught me. He picked me up and took me to his truck. He sat me down on the opened tail gate. He looked at my head and then put an ace wrap on my ankle, which had been twisted from the fall.
“I’m Matthew but you can call me Mat.” He said and helped me off of the tail gate.
“I’m Claire.” I said. Although we didn’t find who won the tournament we still had the party after. It was nine o’clock till midnight. Since I couldn’t do much with a bum leg Mat sat with me on the beach. We watched the sun set and the stars come up.
“The first star.” He said and pointed to the big star in the middle of the sky. “Make a wish.”
“Okay.” I said and then closed my eyes. When I opened them he was sitting closer to me. He gazed into my eyes and then kissed me. I swore I felt time stop. Then I soccer ball rolled into our laps. We both jumped. He picked it up and threw it back to the guys. We just laughed. We fell asleep on the beach. I slept in his arms. That was the first time I felt safe. We woke up to a wave covering our legs. We both jumped up because it was so cold.
“We’re already wet. What do we have to lose?” He said and then took off his sweat shirt. He already had swimming trunks.
“You’re crazy! Its freezing!” I yelled to him but he didn’t listen. He dove right in.
“Come on in!” He yelled from the water. I knew it was cold. I felt it and I could see his breath but me being an idiot and young I took my shorts off and my sweat shirt off and dived in too. It felt like I was jumping into a lake of ice. “Oh my sweet Mary! This is crazy!” I told him. His lips were blue and mine were too.
Then I snapped out of my day dream.
“I knew you would be here.” A voice said behind me. I turned around and it was Mat. He sat down beside me. “This is the place. The place where I met Claire. The best moment of my life.” Then he looked at me. “But you already know.” I was terrified that he knew. I wasn’t sure what to do. Then Roger showed up. He ran to me.
“I was so worried!” Roger screamed. I stood up.
“Worried about what?” I asked. Pushing him away from the strong hug he gave me.
“You weren’t at work. I didn’t know what to think.” Then he saw Mat. He looked at him with an evil eye. “Who is this?” He asked. Mat stood up.
“Hey. I’m Matthew.” Mat said. He held out his hand but Roger wouldn’t shake it.
“He’s my boss.” I told Roger but that didn’t look good. “Go home. I will meet you after work.” After Roger left Mat gave me a confused look.
“So you live with him?” He asked. As we walked along the shore line.
“Yes, him and my Mother.” I said. He nodded his head.
“How exactly did you know Claire?” He asked. I didn’t know how to explain it.
“Its complicated.” I told him. I wish he would drop the subject right there but knowing Mat he doesn’t
“I have time.” He said.
“I don’t.” I replied. I felt horrible for being rude so I changed the subject. “How do you cope?”
“I don’t. I just pray that it will get a little better.” He said. Then looked down. I grabbed his hand not thinking. I held it then let go but he grabbed it back. “Claire use to grab my hand like that.” He said then he started to cry. I’ve only saw him cry once before and that was when he almost lost me. He fell to the ground. I wrapped my arms around him to comfort him. He wrapped his arms around me too. It felt like home. I hated that he was crying. He looked up and stared at me.
“Claire use to hug me like that.” He said.
“I know.” I said and started to cry. We sat there and both cried. After we stopped crying. I stood up. “I have to get to work.” I said and started to walk away but he grabbed my hand. I didn’t want to turn around but I did. He pulled me close and for a moment I was Claire. He pulled me in and wrapped his arms around me and his lips touched mine. At that moment I didn’t feel like I was trapped in someone else’s body. At that moment I was Claire, I was me. I didn’t want to think. I knew what I was doing was going to have consequences. I know this. When we pulled away I didn’t want to open my eyes but I did. He looked at me. I could see regret on his face.
“Claire?” He asked. I wasn’t thinking at that moment. All I thought was that I was in his arms again. It felt so right. I didn’t want the feeling to end.
“Yes.” I replied. I knew I did something stupid because then Rachel appeared. She was in Ghost form. She was shaking her head.
“Walk away. Now. Walk away.” She was saying to me.
“No.” I told her.
“Who are you talking to?” Mat asked and turned around to find no one there.
“I’m not talking to anyone.” I told him. He probably thought I was crazy.
“Melinda, walk away before you get yourself in trouble.” Rachel warned me but I didn’t listen.
“I’m Claire. Not Melinda! I’m Claire!” I screamed to her. She disappeared. Mat took his hands off me and took two steps back.
“Are you okay?” He asked me.
“I’m fine.” I told him and tried to walk closer to him but he took another step back.
“Then who were you talking to?” He asked.
“Do you really want to know?” I asked him.
“No more lies. I don’t know whats happening. I know Claire died but every time I see you I see her face but your voice. I want Claire. I need Claire.” He corrected himself. I took a deep breath.
“I’m Claire.” I said. Before I got to say more he interrupted me.
“What?” He asked.
“Don’t interrupt me!” I said in a loud tone. “When I died, I didn’t really die. I went into another body. Which, in this case, is Melinda’s. I don’t know where Melinda is or what body she is in but I know I’m Claire. I’ve been here all along but I couldn’t tell you. The person I was talking to was Rachel she is my guardian angel. She explained everything to me.” Mat was getting a worried look on his face. “Mat honey, you have you have to believe me.” I begged him but he turned around and started to walk to his car. “Mat! I’m telling the truth!” I said then he turned around and looked at me.
“How can you? How can you lie about something so special?” He screamed and then turned back around and kept walking. He got in his car and drove away. I ran after him. “Come back!” I screamed but he kept driving. I saw tears falling from his face as he drove away. I fell to my knees screaming. How could he not believe me? When I looked up Rachel was reaching out her hand. I took in and she helped me up.
“How could he not believe me? I’m Claire!” I said. I was yelling at Rachel when she did nothing wrong. “I’m sorry.” I told her in a soft voice.
“He saw you in this body because he truly loved you. He did not believe you because it is too much for anyone to believe. Claire, I’m sorry.” She said. This was the first time I saw sorrow in Rachel’s face. Every time she came before she was serious. This is the first time I saw actual emotion. I hung my head and walked along the beach. After about an hour I sat down. I couldn’t believe I blew the secret. If someone told me that I wouldn’t believe them either so how could I ask Mat to believe me?

Chapter 4

It now felt like my whole world was crumbling down. Matthew had reassigned me as his secretary. I no longer had the luxury of looking at him anymore. When I got home Roger had been waiting for me in my room and he didn’t waste any time.
“What are you doing alone with your boss?” He asked me.
“I’m not under interrogation and its none of your business.” I told him. I was upset that he thought he had the right to tell me who I can talk to.
“I want to know!” He yelled. His hands were placed firmly on his hips.
“We were just talking. You don’t get to choose who I get to talk to!” I yelled back at him. “I think you should leave.” Roger walked out of my room. “Rachel! Rachel! Rachel, please, I need you.” I said. Then I turned around and there she was.
“What do you need?” She asked. I didn’t think saying her name was going to work but it did.
“I don’t know anymore.” I said with a sigh. “This is who I am now. I’m not going to be Claire am I?”
“No.” Rachel replied. “Claire, I have been doing this for years. I want to share a story with you. When I was ten I was walking home from school and a truck hit me. It was a hit and run. No one found who did it. They placed me in a hospital and I died two days after. Since I was a child I was innocent and the innocent get put in training to be guardian angels. It was only two years of training for me but for others it was longer. As a child I didn’t understand. It was hard for me not to go to my family. I could but I knew that its what was suppose to happen. I have been doing this for fifteen years now and I have not seen anyone more attached to their old life than you. You had such perseverance. Thats why when I saw you had given up I pushed you to get on your feet again. You know this is not right. You’re not brain washed like the rest. I say that this is your life now but I think its wrong just like you. I have to see hundreds and hundreds accept that they will never see their loved ones again and, if you ask me, I would rather die. I’ve read the Bible and I know whats suppose to happen and this is not right. I want to help you.” Rachel told me. Her wavy blonde hair covered her face as she looked down. “For the next few weeks I don’t want you to contact me. I’m going to help you, Claire. That I promise.” She said and then disappeared with the blink of an eye. I didn’t know how she could help me but something inside me told me I trusted her.
“Who was that?” Roger asked. He was standing in the door way. He must have been listening. “She disappeared out of no where. How can someone do that?” He asked. I could tell he was thinking about so many things at once that he had no where to start.
“Sit down.” I told him. I was tired of keeping secrets. This was coming out one way or another. I didn’t want to tell him like this but I had to. “I’m not Melinda. My name is Claire. I know I’m in Melinda’s body but I’m not Melinda. When I died I went into another body. I’m just as confused as you are. The woman I’m always talking to is Rachel. She’s my guardian angel. I have been trying to find a way back to my life and she’s trying to help me. I don’t know who Melinda is. I know this may sound crazy but you have to know I’m telling the truth. There is so much more I can tell you but its not important at the moment.” I said to him. He sat on my bed with no expression at all.
“I believe you.” He said.
“I’m telling the truth but how can you believe that? If I was told that I would check the person into a hospital.” I said.
“I believe you because I know how Melinda acted and your nothing like her.” He said. I didn’t care why he believed me. I’m so happy that he did. “You had to live like this for almost a year now. How did you do it?”
“Not easily. I’m miss my family terribly. I took them for granted.” I said and hung my head.
“What was your life like before?” He asked. I smiled just at the thought.
“Well, I was madly in love with this guy. He was just the perfect one. His name is Mat. He works at the same company as Melinda does. Matthew and I lived in the Suburbs. The night I died Mat went in a different car to his office because he had forgotten the ring he was going to purpose to me with. I didn’t find this out till later.” I told him.
“That must be horrible. I have to admit, I’m in love with Melinda.” He said as if I didn’t know.
“I know.” I told him. He looked up from his hands.
“How?” He asked me but the answer was simple.
“You always stare a little too long and hug a little too tight. Why didn’t you tell her?” I asked him.
“Every time I got close to her we would end up going to the beach or something and I always got butterflies and chickened out. I didn’t really realize I couldn’t live without her till she was almost gone.” Roger replied. I thought that was so sweet. It made me think of Mat and how much I miss him.
“Thats really sweet.” I told him.
“Yeah, only if she knew.” He said. Roger and I took a walk in the park. We sat at the picnic table. I heard the ice cream truck and rocked my head to the beat.
“Every time I hear that sound I think of when I was a little girl and my Father was alive. I think about when he would take me out to the park after Church on Sundays. We would have conversations that would last for hours and he would always buy me ice cream.
“Wait a second.” He said than ran across the street and got two Cotton Candy ice creams.
“How did you know Cotton Candy is my favorite?” I asked him suspiciously.
“I didn’t but it is Melinda’s favorite. You two have a lot in common.” He said and I didn’t feel like arguing so I agreed. After our ice cream was done we walked along the sidewalk. Right in front of my eyes Mat walked in front of me.
“Can we talk?” He asked.
“You didn’t believe me then, you won’t believe me now!” I said and turned around.
“Claire!” Mat said in a loud tone. I stopped dead in my tracks.
“What did you call me?” I asked. I felt tears coming so I wiped my eyes before they could fall.
“Claire. That’s who you are, isn’t it?” He asked.
“Yes.” I replied.
“Roger, can you give us a moment?” I asked. He nodded and walked towards the picnic table we first sat at.
“Why didn’t you try to find me sooner?” He asked me.
“I don’t know. There was so much going on and my Guardian angel said I wasn’t aloud to contact anyone from my life. I just couldn’t let you go.” I said.
“Oh.” He replied.
“Thats all you have to say? Oh! I’m not dead! Most people would be over joyed but all you have to say is, Oh.” I said. I noticed I was yelling so I lowered my voice.
“What do you want me to say? That I believe you. I’m a Christian. Thats my belief. That there is a God and that Heaven and Hell exist. Thats what I believe. You come in here and expect me to believe something different after twenty-five years of believe something?” He said. Now he was the one who was raising his voice.
“I’m a Christian too and there is a God but the concept of Heaven and Hell are different. Roger believes me! Why can’t you?” I yelled.
“Roger this, Roger that! Who is this guy anyway?” He asked. I was sick of being treated as if I’m a lier. I know that I’m telling the truth wether he thinks it or not.
“Thats it! Goodbye Matthew. One day you will realize that I was right and then you will be sorry.” I told him. My eyes were glistened with tears about to fall. I walked across the road to get away from him. With so much on my mind I didn’t think to look both ways. I looked to my left and the lights of the Semi covered the dimness of the evening. I heard Matthew and Rogers screams through the whole town. I was frozen in fear but I wasn’t scared. I knew death was nothing to be scared of. I tried to move my feet but it was as if my body shut down. I looked at Matthew and Roger as they ran towards me. It felt as time slowed down right before my eyes. A tear rolled down my cheek and hit the road like shattered glass. I closed my eyes because I couldn’t bear to see Mat disappear again. When I opened them I was in a hospital bed. Matthew was holding my hand asleep in the chair next to the bed. I felt my head and Mat woke up.
“Doctor!” Matthew screamed. He ran out of the room and dragged a doctor in the room by his arm. Matthew looked like he hasn’t slept in weeks. He was pacing back and forth while rubbing his head. The doctor flashed a light in my eyes.
“Whats your name?” He asked me. I didn’t want to make the same mistake but I didn’t care. I was wondering so man things like why didn’t I die and why Mat was here when he didn’t want to see me.
“My name is Claire Jacks.” I said.
“When is your birthday?” The doctor asked me.
“April 9, 1987.” I said.
“Ms. Jacks do you know what happened?” The doctor asked. I looked up surprised. He called me Ms. Jacks. That means I’m Claire, but how?
“No, I don’t.” I told him. Matthew was still pacing. The doctor was checking all my joints.
“You were in an accident. You collided with a truck. The reports show you were reaching for your phone. Does any of this sound familiar to you?” He asked me.
“Yes.” I said. Then he turned to Matthew,
“She looks good. No memory loss or function loss. She can go home in a few days.” The doctor told Mat and he jumped up and shook his hand. I was so confused. Was it all a dream?
“You don’t know how great this is. Thank you. Thank you.” Matthew said then he looked at me. I couldn’t help but smile. Seeing him happy to see me made my heart feel like its going to pop out of my chest.
“Hello my darling.” He said and sat on my bed. I could see he was so happy but he was holding it back.
“You don’t know how good it is for me to hear you say that.” I told him.
“Claire, since you have been in the coma I have really been thinking. I’ve been thinking mostly about me and you and where we are going to go from here.” I was scared to hear what he had to say next. I didn’t know if it was a sad goodbye or an opening to a new life together. “I realized that my life has no meaning without you in it. Claire, I want to spend the rest of my life with you. I want to grow old and still love you more and more as time goes on. I want a child and a life with you. You are the filling to the whole in my heart. I’m not complete without you.” He said and then got on one knee. There was nurses and doctors standing at the door watching. “Claire Bear, will you marry me?” He asked. I stood up and jumped into his arms.
“Yes! Yes! A million times yes!” I said. I heard all the nurses and doctors in the background say aw. I looked at them and they clapped. Then a woman walked into the room. She had a vase full of flowers. When she looked up I knew exactly who she was. She winked at me and left the flowers. When she left the room I read the note.

I told you I would help you. I’m sorry I didn’t do it sooner. You deserve the life you have. Congratulations on your fiance. Whenever I have doubts on my faith, I will think of you. You have change my life. You are an amazing woman and I hope you live a LONG fulfilled life.
Your Angel, Rachel

Now I know it wasn’t dreaming. It was all real. I felt horrible because right now there is someone who is dead and being put in another body and its not right but there is nothing I can do about it.
“Who is it from?” Asked Mat.
“An old friend.” I told him and ripped up the note and threw it away. Then Matthew kissed me. I know I had only been in a coma for a few weeks in reality but it was almost a year where I was. A day later after I was observed I was able to go home. When I got there the first thing I did was go to our room. I laid on the bed and Mat laid next to me. He wrapped his arms around me. I starred at the ceiling thinking that it was so good to sleep with someone again. To feel someones body through out the night. I got up and went to my bathroom. I looked in the mirror and saw my reflection. Not another woman’s that I did not know. It was mine and I didn’t take it from anyone. I went back into our room. I sat on the bed.
“Whats wrong?” Matthew asked me. He was still laying down. I wish he would sleep because he has bags under his eyes.
“Nothing. Do you want children?” I asked him. I know I asked it really fast and suddenly but I couldn’t help but think about Sally.
“Yes, are you thinking of having a child?” He asked me.
I shook my head no, “I want to adopt.”
“What? Don’t you want a child of your own that you can raise?” He asked me and the answer was yes but I wanted to help a child thats already here first.
“Yes, but why have another child so soon when there are so many who need loving parents like us?” I knew he couldn’t think of a reason. He stood up and walked around to the side of the bed I was. He stood me up and wrapped his arms around me.
“I want what ever you want.” He said. The way he said it was so soothing. His deep voice sounded smooth and so sure.
Its been a week of remodeling the house. We had been so wrapped into this project. We took out a wall in between Mat’s offices. We made one bedroom. I did all the painting and buying. She has pink walls with butterflies on them. Her blanket on her bed is pink. I know she loves animals so I bought a bunch of stuffed animals and put them in a corner with a play veterinarian set. I wanted her to have what she loves. We haven't been to the Orphanage yet. I was so worried that she wouldn’t be comfortable in our home. I have no idea how many people had come and gone and not picked her. On the car ride to the Orphanage it was quiet so Mat broke the silence.
“Have you been to this place before?” He asked me.
“Yes.” I replied quickly.
“Do you have any idea what one you want?” He asked.
“Matthew, its not shopping. You cant return them and anyway you don’t chose them, they chose you.” I told him. I was pausing through some of what I said because I wanted to say the right words. I took him a while to understand what I was saying. When we arrived Roger walked out of the building to greet us. I almost ran up to him and gave him a hug but I restrained myself.
“Hello, I’m Roger.” He said while shaking both our hands.
“Mat.” Mat replied.
“Nice to meet you. I’m Claire.” I said. Roger gave me a weird look.
“Have I met you before? There is just something about you that looks familiar.” He told me.
“I don’t believe so.” I replied.
“Anyway, right this way.” He said while pointing to the door. When I got in the doors I went straight to the area where Sally always played but she wasn’t there.
“Excuse me?” I said to Roger. “Where is the little girl who always plays here? Her name is Sally.” I asked him. I would be heart broken if she had already been adopted.
“Hold on one moment, I will ask.” He said and went into another room. He came back rather quickly. “ I was worried if it was good or bad news. “She is taking a nap. She was particularly tired because the Zoo came by early this morning so the kids could have pony rides.” I my body flooded with joy.
“Can we see her?” I asked. Mat slid his hand on mine to calm me down. I knew he saw how worried I was.
“Of course.” Roger said with a smile. He leaded us to a room with about twenty beds and a child sleeping in each one. There was probably two or three rooms with this many kids in them. I was sad that I could only take one and introduce them to a family. Roger walked over to Sally and picked her up. She was asleep in his arms. He gave her to me. She was so tiny.
“Hello.” She said as she opened one little eye. I brushed her bangs out of her face.
“Hi Sally. My name is Claire.” I told her. Then pointed to Mat, “And this is Mat.”
“Sally, these nice people want to adopt you. Do you know what that means?” Roger asked her.
“Yes, that means I get to have a home. Right?” She asked him.
“Yes, do you want to go home with these people?” He asked her and she nodded her head before he even finished the sentence. “I will go get the paper work.” Roger walked down the hallway and went back into the room he went in the first time.
“She’s beautiful.” Mat said to me. I nodded my head. I rocked her back and forth till she fell asleep. She stayed asleep till we reached our house. I carried her to her door. I left the door closed so she could open it.
“Open the door. Everything inside is yours.” Mat told her as we waited behind her. I couldn’t help but smile at the pitter patter of her feet against the floor.
“This is all mine?” She asked with excitement.
“Everything.” I said.
“How did you know my favorite color is pink?” She asked while smelling her blankets. “And that I like butterflies and animals!” She said in a higher voice.
“Thats what I liked when I was a little girl.” I told her. Mat gave me a look that said, “I know what you liked a little girl and pink was not it.” I just smiled at him. She sat on her bed and looked at us.
“I’ve never had a room to myself before.” She said. Matthew and I both chuckled.
“Come on, its lunch time.” He said and helped her onto his shoulders. I watched them go down the stairs and thought to myself, what if I miss out on this?
Today is Sally’s birthday. We decided to have a small party at our house. Since Sally doesn’t know any children from our neighbor hood we had the whole Orphanage come. She was so excited to see her friends. The first one she ran to was Karen. She was a little girl the same age as Sally. Sally didn’t interact much with the other children. I noticed that even at school Sally didn’t interact with many children. Sally made a wish and blew out her candles.
“What did you wish for?” Matthew asked her as he picked her up and sat her on his lap.
“I asked that you never leave me.” She said. The way she said it was so sweet. She slurred on some of the words and she had that innocent voice.
“I will never ever leave you.” Mat said to her and gave her a hug.
“Daddy, can I go play?” She asked him and Mats face lost all emotion. I walked over to her.
“Yes honey, you can go play.” I told her and helped her down. “Are you okay?” I asked him.
“She called me Daddy.” He stated. “I’m a Dad.”
“Yes, did this just occur to you?” I asked with a laugh. He shook his head.
“I love you.” He said and then kissed me.
“Go serve the cake, Daddy.” I told him and he walked away with a big smile and a chuckle.
Its been about three months since we adopted Sally. She is the best child anyone can ask for. Tonight I tucked her into bed and Matthew watched from the door.
“Good night.” I said after tucking her in and reading her favorite story. I was about to get up when she grabbed my hand. She leaned up and kissed my cheek.
“I love you Mommy.” She said. That was the first time she said any of those words. My eyes watered up.
“I love you too, Sally.” I told her and got up and Mat shut the door. He wiped my tears.
“Those are tears of happiness, right?” He asked. I was so over flowed with happiness I couldn’t even talk. I just nodded my head.
Every night I pray to thank God for Rachel and what she did for me, I don’t know what I would do if I miss out on this. I still wonder one thing, what happened to Melinda Jane Mur?



Tag der Veröffentlichung: 05.10.2011

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