The Wishing Tree

10 October 2016

February 27, 2013 It was the beginning of fall and the wind carried the aroma of fresh fallen leaves. The day was calm; children were playing outside, bikers were riding in the wind and homes were content with fall joy. Things seemed to be going well for everyone, everyone except Samantha Lewinski and her mother. Even the most amazing weather in the world couldn’t stop them from arguing. Samantha was growing into a young woman and she felt she knew everything she needed to know to take care of herself. Samantha had an idea of who she wanted to be and what she wanted to do.

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Her mother had a different idea. Her mother knew that Samantha was growing into a little woman but she was concerned with Samantha’s safety. These two different perspectives caused a whirlwind of confusion which in result caused many disputes. Samantha and her mother were known for their disruptive arguments throughout the neighborhood and this was the tenth argument this week for them. In their anger they were unaware of the changes to come. Maybe they should have enjoyed the beautiful evening. “No Sam! That party is going to run until 3:30am and if you don’t want to come home earlier than that, you’re not going at all! Samantha’s mother yelled so loud and hard the veins bulged out of the sides of her face. “You never let me do anything! Samantha’s heart was beating furiously. She quickly ran out the back door; tears wildly flying out the corners of her eyes.

She hated her mother and all she wanted to do was get away. Into the woods she ran. She ran until she could feel her thighs and ankles burning from exhaustion. She sat on the ground, leaning against a large tree breathing violent, harsh breaths. Looking around she realized she had reached a calm, quiet, open spot in the woods. She had never seen this place before. The grass peeking through the fallen leaves was green and soft. The branches from the tree she leaned on reached across a small creek in front of her and the sun glittered off of the water like sprinkles of pixie dust. Samantha sat there in the silence thinking out loud. I’m so sick of my mom, she doesn’t understand me”, Samantha spoke out loud between breaths. Suddenly she heard a voice say, “I can remove your troubles. Three wishes I’ll provide you with and your problems will drift away. ” Samantha, frightened yet curious turned around to see who was speaking to her up in the tree.

Only no one was there. Soon she realized it was the tree that was speaking to her but her fear slid away as she pondered on the offer from the tree. Samantha looked at the tree with a sly grin saying, “I wish I belonged to a different family where the mom will let me do anything I want. The wishing tree shifted its branches and said, “Your wish has come true. ” Samantha smiled with a grin from ear to ear, thanked the tree and immediately ran back home. Minutes later, Samantha arrived home. Bursting through the door with excitement and expectation, she ran into the living room. Samantha was very disappointed. Everyone in her family was the same, nothing had changed. Then she came up with an idea to ask her mother about the party again. This time when she asked, her mother looked at her with blank eyes and simply said, “Yes, you may. Samantha ran to her room to get dressed, called a ride and was shortly prancing out the front door. The party was a sweet 16 for Samantha’s’ close friend Julie. It was supposed to be pure innocent fun; Samantha had no knowledge of the events to come. Deeper into the party around 1am Samantha’s crush since elementary, Shawn Roberts entered into the party with a large cooler. Eventually it became obvious to Samantha and Julie that the cooler contained alcohol. Everyone drank except Samantha. People began to argue and things got out of control.

Consequently, the cops were called by a neighbor and everyone in the party was taken to the police station. Samantha was terrified and wondered if she had made a mistake by asking the wishing tree for a new family. Moments later at the police station everyone was only given a warning and had their parents called. Samantha’s mother pulled in last. She entered the police station with an expression that showed no emotion or anger. Her mother stayed calm throughout the whole drive and even when they arrived home. Samantha kind of wanted to get in trouble for the first time in her life.

She realized that her mother was right that day during the argument in the kitchen. If her mother was normal she would have never been in that situation. Now Samantha regretted her wish but she didn’t want to waste a wish to get her real mother back. The next morning Samantha woke up extra early so she could go back to the wishing tree to get her next wish. She ran as fast as she could, the wind blowing through her hair as she dodged twigs and branches. Swiftly, she had once again reached the calm spot in the woods. It seemed even more beautiful than before.

It was a little warmer than before and the sun glistened on the water so bright it hurt to look at it. The wind blew roughly, whistling as it passed through the tall strong trees. The wishing tree sat very still in its dramatically stretched pose, looking as though it was trying to touch the water beneath it. Samantha was so excited to get her wish she felt like she was going to burst. As she approached the tree it spoke slowly saying, “Now child, there is one thing I have forgotten to tell you. Once you have made a wish it can never be taken back”. “Ok, yea, whatever just hurry before my mom comes looking for me”, said Samantha. Alright, young lady please state your second wish”, said the wishing tree. Samantha looked at the tree with the brightest eyes “I wish I could be beautiful forever and never grow old”, she told the wishing tree. “Your wish has come true,” said the tree. Without hesitation Samantha pivoted on her toes and proudly trotted back home. The following day Samantha’s mother left to go shopping. She decided to leave without bothering Samantha because she figured Samantha wouldn’t want to go anyway. Samantha’s mother arrived at the store slowly searching the racks for a new button up for work.

She wasn’t having any luck so she looked up and strolled away from the area she was when suddenly she saw the most stunning blouse. It was a deep red button up with ruffles along the center. As she studied the shirt she noticed the face on the mannequin resembled her daughters’, almost exactly. The mannequins close resemblance began to gross her out so she backed away. “The eyes look so real”, thought Samantha’s mother as she turned around and walked off to find a different shirt. A tear ran out of the mannequins’ eye and down its plastic cheek as it watched the woman walk away.

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