Seven Days.

by

Hello everyone.

If you’re reading this, then thanks for caring enough about me and this blog to be here. I am genuinely honored to have you reading this.

Click through if you want to read the first in a series on the most fucked up week of my life.

Thursday

Around seven days ago, I was at school. I’d just gotten out of the most boring class I have, and thus was smoking my daily cigarette. It made the stupidity burn less. I was sitting around lazily, thinking about what my next AT post would be. I dunno what was up with the gods/goddesses thing that week, but the idea floating around in my head was something about forgotten gods, written from the perspective of an ancient sea goddess. Just as I was pulling out my notebook to scribble down the good bits of prose I’d come up with, there it was, that oh-so-familiar sensation. The first ring, you idly wonder if someone’s calling you, and your hand goes down to your pocket, and then, yes, someone is calling you, and–

I checked the caller ID. It was my mom.

“Hey, mom.”

From the other end– breathless sobs. “Oh my God, oh my God….”

My heart skipped a beat and my guts turned to ice. “What’s wrong? Where are you?” Did you have a heart attack? Did you fall?

“Get to the car, I left it in the parking lot where I dropped you off… oh my God–” and she hung up.

The thoughts that went through my head at that moment were calm and curious ones. This is a real emergency, I thought. This is a real opportunity for me to see how I deal with terrible situations. Little did I know. It fucking sucks to run with a backpack. Well, it did. Shit, I’ve still got cigarette on my breath. I started licking my fingers and rubbing them on my pants legs, hoping I could get enough of the smell off me to mask it somewhat from my mother. Do I have to run the whole way to the car? Yes, dipshit. It’s an emergency of some kind.

I got within sight of the car, and to be honest, when I saw my mom wasn’t there yet, I let myself drop into a fast walk. I wasn’t in great shape, and I’d just run across half the campus wearing a backpack.

Button, click, backpack goes in back. Climb into driver’s seat. 

I barely got the engine started when my mom came rushing over, tears streaming down her face. I reached over and opened the passenger door for her.

“What’s going on?!”

Chris– shot Jessica!”

That didn’t sink in. Not a syllable, not a single centimeter. It didn’t make sense. It didn’t parse. Chris was my brother-in-law, my 18-year-old niece Jessica’s adopted father. They had the perfect family, and my sister often bragged about it. Hell, my sister had an entire blog devoted to how perfect her family was, how wealthy they were, how far she had come…

“Why the f- why would he do that?!” She was on drugs. She came at him with a knife or something. It was an accident. Or if he did it on purpose it was totally nonlethal and he’s rushing her to the emergency room. We’ll rush over to Maryland and there will be lots of paperwork but ultimately she will have a story about how she got shot, in the leg or in the stomach or in the arm and she can always pull that trump card, she can be all “OH YEAH WELL I GOT SHOT,” we’ll be laughing about this in a few months-

I don’t know.” She was panicked, so I put an arm around her and used the other one to steer. 

“It’s gonna be okay… it’s gonna be okay…” 

I kept on going over scenarios in my head, trying to think what could possibly have happened. Mom made phone calls, told my dad that she needed to fly to Maryland within the hour. She got a phone call. It was my aunt Janet.

A few seconds of muddled conversation. My mom asked, “How is Jessica doing?”

The reply was loud and clear, so that I could hear it from the driver’s seat. “They’re both gone.”

What color was still in my mom’s face vanished. I will never forget the supreme act of denial that I witnessed at that point. I hope never to see such naked self-deception again. She said, “They’re both in critical condition?”

The moment lasted less than a moment. Janet mercifully clarified immediately. “Kathy… they’re both dead.”

I hope never to witness a more heartbreaking display of emotion, from anyone, anywhere. In a single wail, in a single sobbing cry, reality shattered through, cold, unforgiving, unchanging, irreparable.

In that moment I made my decision. I put emotion aside, for the sake of my family, for the sake of myself. I decided I would not give in to pain, or anger, or the bullshit steps of coping. I would simply make it through the week.

The week I was in for would be the most fucked up of my life… so fucked up, in fact, that it would compel me to do the single most insane thing that I (or anyone I know, for that matter) have done in my life.

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3 Responses to “Seven Days.”

  1. aricollins Says:

    Hells.

  2. Sebatinsky Says:

    guh.

  3. deathbychiasmus Says:

    Whug.

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