My mom has always been iffy about me going to sleepovers since I was a kid. I’m 20 now, in university, but being a broke college student, still live with my parents who have never neglected to treat me like their little baby. Truth be told, I’m extremely thankful to be so loved by my parents as I infinitely love them back, but at times, it can become suffocating.
I met “Myra” last semester in my junior English class and we hit it off immediately. She was one of those people you instantly connect with and become very good friends with, very fast. She wasn’t native to my city and said she was originally from Chicago. She was beautiful and I thought she was much prettier than I was. But she disagreed, I would sometimes even catch her looking at me with this intensely focused admiration. It really did wonders to my confidence. She was sweet, very intelligent, and we shared similar tastes and hobbies. I was majoring in kinesiology, and she, in physiology. We both loved parties, dolphins, and Malaysian food. But perhaps the oddest similarity we shared was a strong, and rather secretive, penchant for Barbie dolls. My love for Barbie dolls and their pretty faces had just stuck with me since I was a child, perhaps because I still feel like a kid sometimes. For Myra, she said it was more about the design, “the perfect intricateness of the clothes, the hair and the body parts,” as she described it. It wasn’t long before we made plans to hang out outside of school, and she invited me to a sleepover on the following Saturday and encouraged me to bring all my dolls.
“I can’t wait to meet them!” she said.
I asked my mom if I could go the next day.
“You barely know this girl!” my mom said.
“You’d like her, mom, I invited her to come over next week.”
I was convinced that Myra would become a long-term friend, one that would eventually form a bond with my parents as well. My mom hesitantly agreed to let me go, but insisted I come home immediately come Sunday morning. I nodded.
Saturday couldn’t have come sooner. I packed my four favorite dolls in a duffle bag, and my sleepover gear in another. Myra came and picked me up in a blue Sentra.
As soon as I got in she smiled warmly and offered me some Grey Goose in a water bottle. It was vodka on a Saturday night… I couldn’t say no. I ended up taking a couple of shots shots on an empty stomach, and being the lightweight I am, I quickly reached the intimidating boundary between impeded consciousness and completely blacking out. We got to her place, though I couldn’t exactly pinpoint where we had driven to. I could make out that she lived in a rented, ramshackle house on the outskirts of the city. “It was cheap, and I’m broke,” she laughed.