My Mistakes Kill Me

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
Grandma has a disease that prohibits her from moving at all, so she just sits in her rocking chair all day long wishing for death. McKenna, on the other hand, loves her life parties, drinking, sex. What more could you ask for? When Grandma has to "babysit" for a night, will McKenna be a good girl? Or will she let her mistakes kill her?

Submitted: November 19, 2011

A A A | A A A

Submitted: November 19, 2011



My Mistakes Kill Me


I sit unmoving in my wooden rocking chair. Below me, the floor vibrates, pulsing from a loud, overplayed pop hit. My white hair falls in wisps down my neck, occasionally brushing against my fragile shoulder blades. Deep wrinkles cover my body, each one bringing me closer and closer to my inevitable despise. My long bony fingers clutch on the arms of the stiff chair. I cannot do anything but sit in this chair and listen.

Below me, a wild party ensues. My teenage granddaughter is no longer an innocent little girl. She now wears risqué clothing and kisses bad boys. And she throws parties. I close my eyes and try to imagine what is happening so very close to me. Drinks tainted with alcohol, Teenagers shooting heroin in our quaint bathroom, a tongue down a too-willing girl’s throat, or worse. I long to jump out of this chair, to escape the prison that is my own body, to save young people from doing things they will forever regret.

But I just can’t. I have a rare disease called cerebromedullospinal disconnection, or locked-in syndrome. I can move my eyes, but everything else is frozen. I’m like those baby dolls girls play with when they are young. Their bodies are unmoving, but their eyelids can move freely. One day I just woke up and was like this. Well, not quite. In my sleep I had a severe stroke and when I woke up I was stuck. That is the day my body died.

Now, I “babysit” McKenna, my 17 year old rebel of a granddaughter. The imbeciles that are her parents believe that if I’m here, McKenna will not do anything but, they are wrong. I’ve now gotten to know her in ways a grandma should not know. Grandmothers should be able to believe that their grandchildren are perfect. Everything they are told should have a glaze of happiness and perfection over it. But, I’m not that lucky. I’ve been stripped of everything good, why not my family too?

I hear a crash from down below. It’s probably the china table that belonged to my grandmother. I should be sad, or mad, or something, but what’s the use? I don’t bother with emotions anymore, I can’t express them anyways. I shut my eyelids over my old, baby blue eyes and wish God would just take me out of my misery.



I am officially the coolest person on this planet. 32 parties and counting. I’m aiming for 50, or 100 if I don’t get caught. Upstairs, I imagine my sickly grandmother unmoving, emotionless, and stuck. I shake the thought out of my head though. I am having too much fun to have her ruin it for me.

I walk over to the couch, or the “hook-up spot” as I call it and climb on the nearest person I see. The beer makes my vision hazy and everything spins so, I don’t notice that it’s a girl. Vicky? Or maybe it was a Valerie. I’m not sure. We make out, my fingers trace her every outline. Don’t get me wrong. I am NO lesbian, just a girl looking for some love in a world where I can find none.  I pull away, her saliva all over my face and stagger over to the kitchen. The music pumps through me like a pulse, an electric heartbeat.

“I’m gonna cook some fine ass fooooood!” I yell, clearly the alcohol talking. I cannot cook to save my life, especially not intoxicated. I turn the burner up as high as it’ll go, until the blue flames lick at my sleeves and any other way to spread. Then, I feel large hands envelop my waist.

“Hey babe.” My boyfriend, David slurs, barely able to stand on his feet. “I’m so high right now. Let’s make out.” Turning around, my lips meet his and we kiss passionately. He pushes me back, a forceful kisser. Such a hot, burning kiss. Like it was on fire. Screams and shouts surround me and he pulls away. His glassy green eyes widen in surprise.

“Ken. You’re on fire!”

I freeze. The fire works its way through my sweatshirt and on my tee. Then its reaches my pale flesh. I scream. My voice fills the two story house, and everyone goes silent. Quickly, I make rip off my sweatshirt and my tee shirt and throw the burning articles of clothing onto the island in our kitchen. Then I’m left in my pink, lacy bra. I exhale in relief and walk up to Dave.

“That was close.” He manages. “I’m done with this party. Let’s take it back to my place, sexy.” Like the dumb , teenager I am I follow. Like I’m a lost puppy and he’s the only one who’ll take me in.



Suddenly, I awaken from sleep to a loud beeping sound. The sound enters my eardrums and for a second, I couldn’t recall it. But then, it hits me. A fire alarm. If a fire were to spread in this house I would be a goner. Perhaps it is just a glitch, or the smoke from a cigarette spread to the alarm. No. It isn’t that. When you’re about to die, you know. And I knew something. No matter how much I wanted death to come, now that it’s staring me in the face, I am not ready. I should be ready. Children die every day, and I have lived a full life but, I don’t think anyone is ready not even if you know it’s coming.

I close my eyes and pray. I pray that it’s just a misunderstanding, a glitch in the system. I pray for one more day, an hour, a minute if it can be spared. Even if it’s in this broken body of mine, I just want more time. I guess that is what everyone wants though more time.  It is the one thing that no one can get more of. It’s not like getting seconds at the cafeteria, or more tops at the clothing store. Everyone is giving an allotted time on this Earth and it cannot be bargained with.

Before I know it, the temperature is rising and dark smoke is filling the room. I wish to be able to cough or do something but it’s impossible. I think of McKenna. The girl who was once my pride and joy would also be the one to kill me. I do hope she’s okay though. Such a good girl she used to be, such a good girl.

As the smoke gets heavier and heavier, every breath is like a bullet. Hurting me, but it won’t kill me until it reaches my heart. Then, my body is practically empty of oxygen. I close my eyes tight as they’ll go. I take a deep breath.

I am flying, Soaring high above the clouds. And, I can move. My limbs work freely and the muscles in my face turn upwards into a warm smile. Finally. This is what I had waited for. The freedom is what I had missed. The ability to do what I wish and nothing less. I could go on forever and ever. And that is what I plan to do.

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