The door barely closes behind me before the tears fall straight down to the floor. And I slide down into the puddle of my sorrow. And I sit there heaving and clutching at the part of my chest where my heart used to be. The swirling despair and utter disappointment of all that could be and never was has nibbled it all away.
Somehow I pull myself up and I shuffle around the house. Pretending to care about feeding the fish. Pretending to care about the bills that are stacked up on the counter. Pretending not to notice the picture frame. The frame that could have been filled with memories and dreams. But instead it is, just like me – empty.
Nothing happened differently today. And that’s the problem. Nothing changes. I hope. I try. I believe. And still, it is just me. In this house. With the fish. The bills. The frame of empty dreams.
I look out the window and glance up and down the street. At the warm glow that spills out from the neighboring houses. And I wonder how many of them are laughing and smiling. How many of them even know I exist. How many would notice if I didn’t.
Twirling my wine glass, I watch the dark red liquid swirl and dance. Even this wine is prettier than me. And suddenly I can’t bear to drink it. So I let it fall and crash below. And I slide down to the floor and wallow in the river of my insecurities.
I sit there for several moments. Blinking. Breathing. Trying to hold on. But, the truth is. I’m tired… of everything. And overwhelmed… by nothing. The soft moonlight filters in through the skylight above and breaks my trance and I glance up and smile. Not at the light. Not at anything other than the beam that I never thought of before.
Somehow I pull myself up and I shuffle around the house. To the dining room where I retrieve a chair. To the closet where I retrieve the rope. To the living room where I retrieve that empty frame.
I climb up on the chair and throw the rope around the beam. And then around my neck. And for the first time in a long time, something holds me close. Something comforts me. I close my eyes and feel its scratchiness against my delicate flesh. But it doesn’t hurt. It warms me and makes me believe that today will be different.
Looking around I say goodbye to the house, the fish, the stack of bills, and I hold the frame close. My foot teases the edge and I bite down on my lip and take a deep breath. And I leap toward my dreams, hearing the crash of the forgotten ones hit the floor below. And this time, I don’t slide down into a puddle or river of despair, I close my eyes and let my body just swim in the sea of darkness. And as the last of my life shakes its way out of me, I realize I was right. No one came to find me. No one noticed I was here. And as the last of my tears fall straight down to the floor, I still wonder…
Will anyone miss me when I’m gone?
I guess I’ll never know.