I lay in the dark, my blanket drawn over me until it nearly engulfed me. It was past 3:30 in the morning and I had less than three hours to sleep before getting up for school. A Sunday night that seemed like dejavu to me. A vicious cycle of staying up incredibly late at his place and causing my sleeping cycle to shift drastically. At least he didn’t always have to get up early to go to work.
My body was curled into the fetal position so tight I could feel my leg muscles already getting cramped. I wasn’t cold though. Just lonely.
My warm breath was filling up the hollow space my drawn blanket had created, the sharp metallic smell of a coin drifting up my nose. In the dark, my hands were fiddling with a dollar coin. The cool two sides now warm from my own hands.
A 1980 silver dollar coin with Susan B. Anthony’s face on it. Her stern face etched forever into place. He had given it to me in his bathroom as I was doing the final touches on my makeup. Insisting I have it, he plopped it into my hand and said it’ll bring good luck – despite merely getting it as change from the subway ticket machines. But I forgot it there on his bathroom counter, only to remember with a mental slap to the forehead after leaving his place.
I had set an alarm the next time I was over. And when it rang, “dollar coin” popped up on the screen.
“So I won’t forget to take it this time,” I had said almost proudly. But fortune didn’t take too kindly of me, as it slipped my mind again. By the door, I wheeled around to go get that silver coin from the bathroom where I had left it last time, but he was already striding toward me with an outstretched hand.
I thanked him graciously, as though he had given me a gift of wonders, and he called me silly in return for nearly forgetting again. I gripped the coin in my hand as I laughed, tucking it safe and sound in my pocket.
Fast forward a few days and I’m standing on his porch, ready to leave for home again. Snow was falling gracefully but heavily, leaving a heavy burden on my mind as I thought about my journey home. He told me to enjoy the weather – jokingly – and I sighed in return. But never fear. I turned to face him and pulled my hand out of my coat pocket. Putting my hand outstretched in front of him, i opened my fist to show the dollar coin. I still have it with me, I said in a proud manner once again. He looked down at the coin and a smile stretched across his face. And suddenly the trip home didn’t seem so bad anymore.