Can I do this anymore...

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is a little piece I wrote about 6 months ago. I haven't looked at it again, so I can get fresh criticism. It's really short due to a word-limit so it may feel rushed. Feel free to drop me a comment! Enjoy! xox

Submitted: September 06, 2012

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Submitted: September 06, 2012

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A A A


 

You hear people talk about change all the time. Turning over a new leaf. Making a fresh start. All sayings remarked before embarking on a ‘great new journey.’ In fact it’s considered an integral mechanism of life, with it embroiled in every aspect of our lives. The idea of change is established at the very beginning of mankind itself with the theory of evolution. Yet again it is heralded as though something to be proud of. The theory of survival of the fittest. But even in that; most seem to completely miss the maligned air in this. What happens if you aren’t? What happens if you just can’t cope with the sudden upheaval? What if it’s just too much, too quickly? The answer to that; you wither and die.

 

That’s what happened to me about two hours ago. Actually not true, this horrible process began exactly a year, 2 months, 3 days ago. 18th February 2011. That day is forever etched on my brain. I walked home alone, music blaring from my headphones and texting my mates paying little attention to anything. Turning into my drive, fumbling in my pockets I looked up and noticed the first of a series of deviances; the front door was open. I walked in tentatively, my mind racing with a number of scenarios included a burglar had broken in and now I would be the one to apprehend him and ultimately be applauded as a hero. I grinned widely to myself already thinking of the glory when I was greeted with an unwelcome scene. Looking back I cringe with disdain, life was so easy. I strutted in to find myself face to face with a figure lying facedown in the hall. Panic reigned within me. I stood staring at the figure; a strangled cry coming from somewhere. With mild shock I realized the origin of the sound was me. Breaking my stance I rushed over to the figure and turned her over. Her beautiful hair fell over her face and tears ran mercilessly. Mum. Mum! Shaking I tried to reign my common sense and clumsily searched my pockets while comforting mum. Dialing ‘999’ I gently told her unconscious body that ‘it would all be alright.’ Ironic, that it turned out to be anything but.

 

Nothing could compare to the moment when doctors tell you your mum had a maligned aneurysm that erupted and would now remain in a comatose state. Horror, pain, sympathy, sadness and guilt, to name a few, hit me like a boulder. I couldn’t explain the pain I felt. My life seemed to fall apart at that moment. My mum was in a coma. She had a tumour. I stood silently crying next to my mums’ hospital bed; loneliness aching inside me. Dad was stuck in traffic. I crushed my eyes to try and repress snippets of the heartbreaking conversation when I had to tell Dad that his wife could be on the verge of disappearing forever. At that moment a cry exploded out of me, vibrations shaking my body to the core from shock and the pain reverberated through me.

 

After that pinnacle moment everything else seemed to fall apart at the seams. Everything seemed worthless. School seemed futile. What was the point? No amount of qualifications can shield you from life’s horrors. Mum had passed hers and yet she was still lying in a strangers’ bed, covered in foreign covers and in an alien world. My body seemed to give up, withering to a shadow of my former self and depressions seemed to be the only emotion I could feel. I became nothing but a shell; hollowness echoed within me. Everyone seemed to give up on me too; accepting me to my lonely pit. Teachers, who seemed concerned for me, gave up trying to coax me out of my shell. I had given up on life and now it seemed to give up on me too. Even mum seemed to do the same. Her condition deteriorated rapidly. The doctors weren’t sure if she was ever going to wake up. In a way, I envied her; to be so free from hurt and pain- life couldn’t hurt you if you were asleep. It seemed nothing could get worse during that year. I held a clouded pessimistic view that no child should ever have at 14. I woke up every morning thinking ‘at least you can’t hurt me more now.’

 

I drifted through life rather than experienced it. I did my usual rituals but with the semblance to an automated machine carrying out orders. Everything carried on the same, but it was completely unfamiliar territory and every day seemed to creep up on me, though I begged it not to. That’s why when I came home from school as usual at 4:30pm, I dreaded the feeling of a cold, empty house where I would be left alone for hours with torturous, agonizing thoughts. That’s when they seemed to attack with the most fervor, when I was alone. At once I knew something was wrong, my dad’s car was in the drive when it should have been outside his office in central London. My now always on-guard conscious prickled and warning bells began ringing which I pushed to the depths of my mind. Dad home before 11 was about as likely as Great Britain taking home the gold in the Olympic Games. Since the ‘illness’ night shifts had gone later and later and ‘big projects that needed immediate attention’ starting popping up all the time. I pushed the warning alarms to the depths of my mind solely out of happiness for having Dad around- maybe for the first time in months we’d be able to hang out or at least have a conversation that consisted of more than three uniform sentences. I quickened my pace towards the front door and rang the bell twice in quick succession.  Maybe ‘the project’ was done and he’d come to spend the afternoon with me. I glanced at the car, something that may have been classed as a smile in my former life creeped onto my face and a deep feeling of warmth nestling inside me for the first time in a year. Staring at the slim, streamlined body of the Mercedes SL, I blinked to make it was really there- and yet it was. Resplendent in its’ maroon body paint grinned happily. But like every other time in my life that was slashed away from me the moment I saw the dozens of duffel bags filled its’ spacious insides. Cases and bags filled every inch of space in view. Suddenly the warning bells weren’t so easy to ignore. They rang and buzzed louder than life and my chest seemed to be miraculous feat and collapsing within itself. Slowly I dragged crumbling self towards the car, legs accurately resembling those filled with lead.  Each step was laborious and required all the energy reserves within me. I don’t why I went towards the door; I knew what I would see. I knew what was next. Yet I punished myself just to confirm the worst. Tentatively I approached the car and peered in adjusting to the dim light. Case preceded case. Bag followed by bag filled the seats. With every bag the pinch in my heart got tighter. I felt constricted though I was out in the open. Shell-shocked, I backed away from the vehicle; at first slowly before breaking into a run and thumping the front door. Tears fell effortlessly out of my eyes. Even now after all the hurt, pain and turmoil it seemed my eyes just never stopped giving. At this point I was screaming for him, banging on the door. I want for him to come out, smile and tell me I’d got it all wrong. That I let my stupid thoughts run away and everything would be okay- or as okay as it could be when my mum was in hospital. More than anything I wanted him to hug me like he used to. With all the energy I could muster I pounded that door to within an inch of its life, crying and closely resembling a sociopath. Finally the door seemed to swing open in slow motion and my worst fears were confirmed. Dad’s face was grimmer, hard and perhaps worst of all resolute, stood face to face with me. All hope was gone and silence ensued as he looked at me remorseful eyes. Two simple yet devastating words were the last I ever heard from him.

 

Life continued around me with a renewed sense of numbness. If what I was experiencing before was grief then this feeling excelled every level of it. My life stopped. I had no purpose and the only family I had now was lying on a hospital bed like a slab. Or had been. Hours later I got the heartbreaking call. ‘Mum’s condition had fully deteriorated and although the doctors had done all they could, they hadn’t been able to save her.’ Jabs of searing pain plunged into my heart and sobs that could probably have been heard around the world left me. Pain and misery was rife within me. Anguish seemed my destiny. And it was all I felt as my subconscious left my body. Lying on the bathroom floor, I remember my ‘former life’ in high definition. Filed away under ‘Happy, innocent days’ or ‘stupidity’ they seemed to flow out of my mind and into the room with me. I saw all the mornings when I grumbled about going to school and having to get pestered by teachers for late homework or bad test scores. I saw my attempts to rebel when I used to try and sneak out to my waiting friends every morning with being harassed about having breakfast that lay accusingly on the kitchen table. I almost felt all those presents that I had complained about, throwing tantrums when I didn’t get the Doctor Who or Sherlock box set. A paroxysm took over my heart as I recalled the days when I was so naïve and ungrateful. I had taken everything for granted. Life had been a rosy garden without all the prickling, formidable thorns to drain every last drop of blood and life out of you. Oh, how I would to do anything spend a moment of my former life again. To feel loved and wanted. To have someone there to make me breakfast and nag me to eat it. To have a teacher who actually cared whether I achieved anything. To experience the sensation receiving a gift, knowing someone loved you enough to buy you something. I would do anything to feel anything other than pain. ‘Dad’ had apologized. “I’m sorry.” He’d mumbled. What was he apologizing for? Abandoning me? Mum’s illness? My entire life?

 

Change is horrible. Imagine everything you know and love wrenched away from you. Being forced away from everything you know and being thrown headfirst into the murky waters of the unknown. Change is suffering. A constant struggle. Trying to keep your head above the water. Trying to keep your life the same while everything else around you is different. As I sat on that cold, punishing surface, with a waterfall cascading down my cheeks. Only one thought played in my mind; I want the pain to stop. With a deep final breath I brandished the sharp blade, closed my eyes and took the

 

plunge…

 


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