Carrying Her Life

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
This prose piece is based off of an assignment I had that was based around what people carry with them day-to-day. This is a powerful piece that alludes to adult themes and actions. Reader Discretion is Advised.

Submitted: October 23, 2011

A A A | A A A

Submitted: October 23, 2011



To My Mother,

Every person carries a certain amount of weight with them at all times. The weight I’m speaking of is not just physical weight though. The weight can also take form in mental weight that makes it impossible to focus on anything but the weight itself. For example, a rich woman will have more physical weight since she would have a full stomach, billfold, and wardrobe. However, a poor woman will have more mental weight because of her children’s empty stomach, broken toys, and ragged clothing burdening their miserable existence. Every person carries weight, and everyone also has a threshold for the amount of weight they can carry. For most the balancing act pertaining to the weight is something that naturally occurs until too much is added. To say the least, too much has been added onto me.

At school is when it seems to be the worst. I have to lug around a miserable trapper keeper stuffed with my half-filled out worksheets for each of my sad excuses of Junior-level classes. This five and a half pound rock is stuffed with scrap pieces of paper that way merely an ounce by themselves, but together they weigh about a pound. The trapper keeper also contains all of my art supplies: Ink pens of different colors, colored pencils, black gel pen, run-down blending tools, pink erasers, and charcoal pencils. This collection of supplies weighs only about a pound in total, but takes up quite a bit of room in my trapper. The heaviest part of my trapper is my picture collection I’ve drawn out of boredom and frustration during school. The subject matter ranges anywhere from a couple kissing and caressing each other to a family portrait being soiled by drops of blood that happen to fall upon it. These pictures weigh nothing individually, and when compiled, barely make the half a pound mark. However, their physical existence is nothing compared to morose weight they have on my conscious.

The weight doesn’t end with the trapper keeper. There’s also the desolate wasteland that is my backpack. Depending on the day of the week and time of month, my backpack will weigh about ten pounds with my trapper keeper, four and a half pounds without. It will carry the book I’m reading at the time, more than likely a Nicholas Sparks or Wally Lamb book because of the fitting subject matters. Some days I will carry a change of clothes. I like to wear t-shirts and short skirts, but these would never be approved because they are not for someone my age, at least according to you, Mom. I also hide my nose stud and lip ring in my backpack so that I can wear them where looks matter most, and people at least to pretend to care about my individuality. Lastly I have a small photo album containing only two pictures. The first is of the last Christmas you, Dad, and I had where we huddled around the three presents under the Christmas tree and smiled as if we were happy about the results or about the people in the picture. The second is a picture of me and Kimberly hiding under the covers trying to hide from you so that you couldn’t take our picture. Why those two pictures, you ask Mother? Unlike you, I tend to care about the end result of an event, and these pictures are just a reminder of what my existence can do to those around me.

There’s also the weight of what I wear. You always tell me I wear a ton of make-up, but in actuality it’s more like a quarter of a pound. The foundation that’s slightly lighter than my actual skin tone, the dark eye shadow, and the black mascara all make up my daily mask. On occasion I will add some sort of lipstick that is slightly darker than my actual lip color, but I normally don’t just because lipstick leaves traces of where I’ve been. I always wear a black tank-top instead of a bra because they’re cheaper and easier to find in my size. On top of the tank-top I wear some sort of off-brand, strange t-shirt bought from either a yard-sale or Goodwill. The only constant with my shirts are the dark color; I never wear any color other than black. On days when I’m not sporting short shorts, I will wear red skinny jeans. Not black- those were Kimberly’s thing. I… I just can’t wear them. Shoes are rarely ever on my feet, but when they are they are flip-flops. Flip-flops are easier to take off than tennis shoes, and you never know when you need to take off your shoes.

My physical weights at school are nothing compared to my mental strains during school. I have to live with the lack of physical weight on my body. My skeletal exterior scares most people away, including myself. My classmates accuse me of starving myself, when in actuality it’s because I decide to give Timmy my portion of the food instead of eating it myself. I don’t need much food to survive on. The embarrassment that is accompanied with my skeletal appearance is nothing compared to the embarrassment that comes with my breast size. Being called a ten-year-old isn’t too bad, but having advertisements for training bras and breast enhancements products slathered on my locker makes me ache all over from anger and sadness.

I also have to carry around all the loss. First is Dad. I understand you and Dad didn’t get along, but you didn’t have to take him completely away from me. You getting full custody of Timmy and I was only good for you! All we’ve gotten is sadness and starvation. Second is Kimberly. Every single day I play the “What If?” game: What if that truck wouldn’t have pulled out at that intersection? What if Kimberly had worn a seatbelt? What if I had been driving a different car? What if I cared more about my best friend and less about my own personal life? What if I wouldn’t have gotten into that argument with you and I still had my cell phone with me? Nevertheless, Kimberly died because of me. Regardless of how many times you or anyone else says it, it is my fault. And, because of you not caring, I had no one to talk to about this because Dad was gone.

I have to carry around the hatred. I used to love my life, Mom.  Before Kevin broke my heart and took my innocence, I used to be able to do anything with any care in the world. Now, though, I can’t even think about having any fun without flashing back to those vile moments in his backseat. I can’t think about Kevin without wanting to hurt someone or myself. He’s the reason can’t wear shorts in public, Mom. Those scars I made on my legs are because of him. I hate him for doing it, and I hate the cops for driving by the car even though they had to know that something was going. Most of all, Mom, I hate myself for being so dumb to think that he would take me on just a simple date. Now I can’t have any guy touch me sensually because I’m afraid he will go too far. The sexual persona I portray is to make it so I look like a whore so all guys will stay away from me. Has it worked? Well, let’s just say I haven’t tasted a rag or seen the ceiling of a car since.

Do you see why the light has left my face? Do you understand why we don’t talk about my problems? If we tried to discuss my problems I would lose the equilibrium I have established between sanity and insanity. If we tried to dissect my life, you would find few unbroken aspects. Forget about the trapper keeper with the morbid pictures and the backpack with the lip ring; that weight can be thrown away. The embarrassment, hatred, sadness, and loss are all real weights that can’t be tossed aside or thrown away; it must be dealt with? But who wants to help a skinny, hateful victim solve her problems?

I don’t like to see you sad, and I don’t want to add more weight onto your plate. I just can no longer function with the weight of my life pressing down on me. I feel as if I am seconds away from exploding. I do feel like I have a solution to my problem though. Instead of me holding onto all of this exhausting weight, I have decided to let this rope hanging from my bedroom ceiling carry it all for me. Don’t worry, Mommy. Your little girl is going to have a chance to float for the first time in her life. I love you.


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