Fiera Johnson starred down the long stair case. She could just start sprinting down and “trip”, but would she end her pain or just have some broken bones? She looked outside. Outside was her garden which she had called garden of despair. The first summer nothing grew, except the roses. Every summer since when they bloomed she would clip them and put them in a vase in her room. They made her happy. They kept her alive.
As if anyone cared. Her Mom was working crazy trying to pay of her credit card debt. She was always thinking about herself. She never thought about her depressed, suicidal daughter.
When she saw Fieral cutting herself she just said, “Make sure that knife is clean when you’re done!” No,” Oh honey, stop! Stop hurting yourself!” Her Dad was never home. He came back every week or so to use the shower and to borrow money that would never be returned. Her parents had never cared about her really. She cooked her own food, washed her own clothes, paid her own phone bills. Her parents had put her in an all-girls school to prevent “any boy drama.”
Like that would happen. She wasn’t even pretty. She had shoulder length hair that was brown and brown eyes. Everything about her was plain. She got straight A’s only because school came easy. But she didn’t enjoy school. She had no friend to tell her she was pretty or smart. Nobody’s shoulder to lean on. Even the teachers didn’t say anything to her about her work. They just gave her the grades. Fiera was a lone wolf who was deeply scared.
Fiera was still standing there when she noticed a blue bird in her garden. She met its eyes. They were filled with joy and happiness. It sang a little tune and then flew away. She wanted to be that free. She wanted to fly away from the pain. But nobody would care even then. She would be another story on the news. Her parents wouldn’t care they would just play an act. She walked down the gray stairs. She opened the door that lead outside and was overwhelmed with the smell of lilacs.
She walked over to the rose bush and sat down with her head in her knees. The rose buds had just started forming. She lay down on the sweet, green grass and fell asleep dreaming about what would happen when the roses bloomed.
Fiera woke up the next morning the same as always. But this morning was different. She could hear screaming and laughing from her apartment. But why would she care. She got up and sulked to her room. It was a Tuesday, but nobody would miss her. Perhaps she would get a detention or two but she didn’t care. She would just sleep in class anyway.
Through the weeks Fiera thought about how she would fly free. Would use a knife? Too bloody and painful. A gun? That was illegal.
This was not the first time she had considered suicide. It started in fourth grade when her Mom had told her she was fat. It went downhill from there. In fifth grade she was bulimic. In sixth grade she was anorexic. She had been able to bounce back from these habits. But it in seventh grade she started cutting herself. Now in ninth grade, the habit lived on.
“Water.” Fiera all a sudden said out loud.
“That’s it.” She thought. All she had to do was fill up the tub and plunge under the water! It would only take a matter of seconds to fill up her lungs. It might be a bit painful but the pain would be insignificant to the pain inside. It would be a few months ‘til the roses bloomed. She had to wait just a bit longer. June would come soon enough.
Three months later
The last three months were hard for Fiera. She just wanted to fly away. Life went on as usual. She researched how much water and time it took to drown a girl. Her Mom began experimenting different hair colors. And Fiera was always the judge. She would say “good”, “okay”, “bad”, or “great.” She said that so much that she actually had a script. Of course her Mom didn’t care. She just wanted an admirer.
Fiera’s life got slower and slower until one day when Fiera went down to water her garden. The smell of roses filled the air. She moved her eyes in the direction of the roses. They had bloomed.
Fiera carefully clipped each colorful, elegant rose. She held them in her hands not minding the thorns, wondering if they would live. She put them in their vase in her room and starred at them for five minutes admiring their beauty and color. Her room filled with the smell of roses and she was ready.
She got the hot water running. She said a prayer to God asking him to turn her into a bird and relieve her from her pain. She then placed a note she had wrote explaining her reasons of her departure in the sink counter. Stripping her clothes she said one last prayer, and slipped in the tub. Exhaling a breath she plunged under.
Fiera woke up in a white room. She heard a beeping noise. She was in a scratchy night gown made of this fabric that smelled like antibiotics. “Am I in heaven?” she had to be. But wouldn’t God put her in a better place like a garden? No. She was in a hospital room. She noticed an IV running down her arm.
Fiera heard a gasp from the other side of the room. Her Mom ran over.
“Fiera! You’re awake! Oh my darling you’re awake!” her Mom cried. She looked terrible. Her clothes were dirty. Her make-up was all over her face.
“What?” Fiera quietly said. Wasn’t she dead? Wait, she wasn’t in a hospital in heaven. She was still alive.
“Fiera I’m sorry. I was so selfish and cruel until now! I never realized how serious this was! Why did you never tell me?” she knew her Mom wanted an answer. But what could she say?
“You never cared.” She tried to put emphasis in to the word never to make her Mom feel guiltier. Why did she have to answer all these questions? They were all answered in the note. But deep down she knew she loved her Mom and her life. She needed help. And soon.
“Mom, I need help. And get me my roses.” Her Mom made an instant connection.
“Okay! We’ll get you help and I’ll go and get your roses now!” her Mom was ecstatic. But “we?” Who else was here? Her Dad probably was somewhere in Mexico and the rest of her family was too far away to even reach by phone.
“We?” Fiera asked very confused.
“Your father and I.” Her Mom pointed out the ring on her finger.
Fiera nodded and for the first time in her life her mother kissed her cheek. Fiera for the first time in a long time smiled.
With two years of rehab and consulting, Fiera is now a healthy happy girl. Her dark days are forgotten and with a new baby on the way she will be a great big sister. She is now in 12th grade and going to a local college where she wants to major in psychology. She no longer feels left behind and not once tried to kill herself again.