In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Connect the Dots.”
I understand what she meant. She meant to come up to me and say some off handed remark that everyone always makes in these types of situations. She thought that as I stared at the wall and tried to force myself to breathe that I was actually looking at her. That by looking at her I was insisting that she come over here and say those stupid words. She was feeling guilty I suppose. I don’t know what she was feeling. I don’t care what she was feeling. I don’t care about anything. I am however angry. No, I am not angry, I am furious! I am furious and I am in pain, and I don’t want to be here. I don’t want to be standing in this room, surrounded by flowers and pictures and stupid people who say stupid things. Someone else catches my and looks as if they are about to come toward me. I can’t bear it, I can’t stand through one more conversation and see the pity in someone else’s eyes. I quickly duck my head and begin walking toward the back of the building. That is where the bathrooms are, so no one will suspect that that isn’t my actual destination.
I burst through the back door, practically running, and thank all the stars in the universe that no one is out back having a smoke break. I quickly make my way to my car and pop the trunk. I open the suit case inside and rummage around until I find them. The old gray sweats are holey from love and use. I pull them on, one leg then the other, mechanically I go through the motions. I pull them as tight as they can go and tie them, still they hang loosely around my hips. Desperately I claw for the zipper on the back of my dress. I finally grasp it and yank it down. I hear teeth breaking and seams ripping as I go, but I don’t care. I will never wear this dress again. I ball it up and throw it to the ground. I slip the old t-shirt over my head and the worn cotton is soothing on my skin. I take off my heels and place them in the trunk, I may be inconsolably angry, but I am still me, and shoes are shoes. I slip on an old pair of flip flops, slam the trunk, get in my car and turn the engine.
As I back out of the parking spot I do my best to do as much harm to that dress as possible. I finally turn to the parking lot and see an attendant coming toward me. I wish that he was chasing after me to demand money. Surely I haven’t paid him yet, and he wont let me leave without what is due him. I know the truth though, he is concerned and he wants to make sure I’m alright. Well screw him. Screw them all. Of course I’m not alright. Nobody in the history of the world that has been through what I have been through is alright. I pray there is no karmic retribution as I practically run him over in my escape to freedom.
It takes 7 minutes going 40 mph to see my town, my home, in the rearview mirror. Once I hit the city limits I gas it. I’m driving 75 mph on the highway to my future. Snuggly wrapped in the warmth of my past I refuse to look back. People will talk, maybe that stupid woman will think, “Was it something I said?” I don’t care. I can’t be there anymore. My world is over, it is shattered into tiny pieces of glass, and I am bare foot. I can’t bear the thought of bending to pick up each and every sliver. So I walk away, my feet bleeding more with every cut. The scars will never heal, but I will survive. I will survive.
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Oasis.”
The wind whips through my hair, the ocean seems angry today. Choppy and violent with a menacing look, the ocean is reflecting my mood. I walk toward my secret hideout and think about the people making me angry. The kids at school are torturous as usual, my parents don’t understand and seem to be more frustrated with me than them. I know I am different, but differences make you unique, and parents are supposed to celebrate what makes us unique not quash our dreams. Ugh!
I reach the outcrop of rocks where my throne is located. There is a perfectly smooth stone right in the middle of the outcrop. From this seat you can see miles into the vast blue water, you can also see people approaching, though they can’t see you. It is the perfect getaway. I come here almost daily, to read, meditate, do my school work, or to think. This is the place where I find peace.
I climb onto the stone and curl my toes beneath me , wrapping my thick shawl around my shoulders I lay my head against the side of the rock and stare out into the abyss. My vision is clouded as the tears begin to flow. I am tired of the arguments, the fear, and the looks that I get. Why must everyone look at me as if I am a freak? The wind picks a tear up from off my cheek and blows it into the ocean. One little drop of salt water joining the rest. The waves welcome it home with splashing and dancing at the shore.
Just as I am pondering the beautiful irony in that moment a crash is heard on the horizon. I quickly lift my gaze and begin looking feverishly. There. Just to my left, not very far out at all. One, two, three bodies crash out the water seconds apart. I can see more just under the surface. The entire family is here today! Eight majestic creatures continue to swim and play just before the horizon. I am on my feet now, waving, yelling, and laughing. I begin to call to them and after a moment they respond. I imagine they are telling me about their recent trip. The whales have been off fishing for almost a month. I knew they would return though. They are always there when I need them.
I long to run to them, the swim isn’t far, and I would love nothing more than to be in the ocean dancing and singing with them. I know I cannot go. The water is far too fearsome, and my parents have made it clear that they will send me straight to the mainland if I attempt another swim. I know they worry about me, and my safety, but they don’t understand. The whales, they are family, they would never hurt me. Every time they come home to me they beg and plead for me to come to them. Soon baby sister won’t be a calf anymore, and I want to go enjoy her childhood with her.
I stand on my stone and watch the beauty and the majesty of their interaction. The joy I have seeing my beloved whales drowns out the bitterness of not being able to go to them. I stay until it is dark and my toes have gone numb from the chill in the air. I have to go or my parents will send out another search party. I whisper goodbye to my dear friends knowing that the wind will carry the message to them. I climb down from my outcrop and back toward civilization. Half way up the beach they begin their goodnight song. All of their voices mingling together, sending me love and wishes for a good nights sleep. I pause once more looking out toward the horizon, where my family, my oasis awaits.