I wrote this story for a class and thought I’d share. Enjoy!
I’d love to read your side of the story from a different perspective!
I quickly scroll down the blue and white themes of Facebook and find the white space covered with new mothers with happy marriages. Old friends have met new friends as they mockingly post each picture of their happy and fulfilled lives. They mock me as they pose, hugging each other with big, careless smiles covering their faces. They mock me as they recover from surgery surrounded by family and friends that envelop their hospital bed and flood their comment section with encouraging messages. I dare not post a negative comment for if I am unhappy, why should everyone else be? Instead, I keep scrolling and continue to watch others live their life while envy sprawls up in me. I quickly shut off the app before it can go any further. God would not approve of my envy; He would want me to be happy and content with what I have. Why can’t I make anyone happy?
“Oh well, Patricia, you’ve no time to think of that now” I hear myself say.
I quickly slip out of my sheets and begin to get ready for my day. I shower. On goes my clothes, my face, and my personality as I prepare for work. “I am great!” I lie in response to a strangers “how are you?” Reality says that I have never been worse. Reality says that I am angry, broken, and barely hanging on by a thread. I continue to ring out each customer’s order before clocking out of another meaningless day.
“Hello?” I say, answering my phone.
“Um, hi Patricia, this is Christie.”
“I was just calling to check in on you since we haven’t seen you at Bible Study for the past four weeks.”
“Oh, well I’m fine. I’ve just been a little busy. Thanks for asking!” I say quickly.
“Okay, well if you need anything, call me.”
“Will do! Thanks, bye.”
I’m not fooled by these calls. They always make it seem like they miss you but in actuality they look on the attendance sheet, see that numbers are dropping, and start calling. I am not fooled. If they really cared, they would call more often without leading in with the obvious “I didn’t see you at my ‘spiritual awakenings.’” If they really cared, they would ask me how I was doing but they don’t care. No one truly does.
Pills. Pills sound like a good way to go out. It’s painless and it doesn’t take a genius to do it. What would happen if I were to die? Who would care? No one.
My face is wet. I check for a leak in the ceiling above me. It’s dry. I ponder the source of the water before finding that my eyes are beginning to sting and itch as the water runs down my face. I get up from my bed and slowly walk to mildly lit bathroom mirror to discover a puffy, red faced girl looking back at me.
Great, I am crying. Now I have to find a way to stop this madness. I pick up my black smartphone and click on the blue and white “f.” They mock me again.
This time, their mockery brings me comfort. I see happy faces, happy mothers, and happy marriages. I grin at the fact that one can find so much happiness in life and for a moment, I forgive their brutal mockery. With each scroll, I find an oddly satisfying mix of jealousy and happiness. Their harmonious smiles are captivating with the occasional interruption of a hostile political post. These interruptions are minor, though.
It worked. My face is dry now, so I can finally click off. I hop back into bed.
“God, please help me…”
“God, do you hear me? I am lonely. I am tired. I want to give up. I am done.” I say all these things but despite everything, I know that I am not done. So, I turn over and fall asleep.
“Another day, another dollar” I say as I wake up to another day and prepare for work. I shower, on goes my clothes, my face, and my personality. “I am great!” I repeat this until I think that it is said in a way that others can believe and head off to another meaningless day at work.
How can a store be so crowded yet be so empty? Four white walls enclose what seems to be hundreds of people, yet, it is as if the store is has no people and no merchandise. I find these aliens perplexing. How do they manage to be so carefree? They have goofy smiles on their face and the corners of each mouth has the wrinkles to prove it.
I try to push this out of my head and focus on ringing each item of clothing. “Beep. Beep.
Do you have a rewards card?”
“Beep. Beep. Beep. That’ll be forty-nine dollars.”
“Have a nice day!”
If I do this correctly, I can’t think about the terrifying thoughts in my head.
Pills. Death. Loneliness.
“Focus Patricia, focus.”
Finally, it’s time to clock out and I am exhausted. It seems that I constantly find myself in this state no matter how much or how little labor I accomplish.
“Oh well” I say before pressing the white “f” while hopping into bed.
Apparently there is presidential election coming up and people are pretty heated. However, even that does not stop their mockery. They are together, they are smiling. They always smile like nothing is ever wrong. They are always mocking me. Why are they so mean?
I am tired of this constant bullying.
Out of the corner of my eye, I see a tall, erect, orange bottle full of newly prescribed medicine that enables me sleep peacefully.
“I can’t” I say but as always, I know I am lying.
“Someone cares you just don’t see them” I say. Another lie.
I see a shaky hand reaching for the bottle and uncapping it. I can’t help myself, I start with one pill before increasing in intensity. Pretty soon I am choking them down as if my life depends on it because it does.
I lay my head down and wait for it to kick in. I am oddly calm and relaxed. I feel myself drifting off to the sleep of the unknown and welcome it with open arms.
I welcome a future with no more mockery, no more fear, no more white and blue, and no more lying. I smile as my breathing slows. I smile a harmonious, carefree smile. My smile is full of blatant mockery.