#1 Out of Reach
I know a little girl who’s lost her light. She might never make it home tonight. I remember how happy she’d be before. She loves to bring joy to others, she still does, but this time it’s different, it doesn’t make her as happy as it used to. Slowly, I watched her isolate herself, slowly I see this little girl I know become someone I knew. I tried to bring her back but I couldn’t. Its like one day she just started disappearing; like she’s looking for something that she can’t find. I’ve always wondered what happened? No one notices the change. She’d keep her walls up and front strong. She’d smile like nothing was wrong but I know that every time she’d be alone her walls would go down and her true feelings would show. One day I caught her off guard and then I slowly approached her, only to discover how fast she could recover – as if she never removed the mask. This was the day I’ve become curious about her. I watched her from a distance and see her interact with other people; no one sees through her walls but…. me. I wonder why? Why me?
Through the months, I slowly started to bring her back. I wanted to free her so badly from this pain. A pain which I never knew where it came from. No one deserves to be suffering through such pain alone, maybe this is the reason why I was the only one who seemed to notice. Slowly, she was coming back. She was becoming the girl I know. But one day, everything fell apart. She started avoiding me again, she stared making up excuses. I’d notice she’d stop eating and she’d be distracted….. Just like before. I started worrying again. Compared to before and now, she’s worse. She started getting thinner, then she’d always be feeling dizzy. She was pale, and the black under her eyes were prominent. This time I have to talk to her,but when?
I’ve found the perfect timing and I approached her. She was startled at my sudden appearance. Just for a second there her eyes showed panic and fright. What does that mean?
I told her “We need to talk”.
“Oh shit. I forgot I gotta cram my project. Bye.” She replied. In her rush she never noticed that a small purple notebook fell…
#2 The Notebook
I tried to catch up with her, even called after her, she kept on going. In my hand was a small purple notebook, it looked old that’s for sure. I was at war with myself, I asked myself should I open her notebook or not. I debated but in the end I chose to open and read it. This is for me to know what’s been bothering her so it’s a good thing, right?
I opened her notebook and skimmed through it. Her notebook was filled with writings, most were almost finished except for a few pages at the back. Everything was written with blank ink and sometimes there would be smudges. Tears? After minutes of skimming through her notebook something in particular caught my mind. Red! A poem in red ink:
“Everyday I dread to wake
Because I know my demons would wait.
They are there morning ’till night.
There is no peace I can find.
I know I can never tell anyone
Because what right do I have to share
My demons that haunt me there
My demons that follow me everywhere
I know I am in this alone
Because I know I need to be taught
For my fault is my fault
Yet I know I need support
I will never be able to trust someone
After what he has done
He tore me from limb to limb
And kicked me to the brim
I can never be perfect again
All I can do is write perfection with a pen
I’ve given up on reason
I am now on depletion
I am shattered to pieces
And my hope decreases
As time passes by
All I can do is sigh
Soon I know I am at my limit
Maybe that is my ticket
To the peace I’ve always wanted
To the peace that’s always been my target”
I felt my eyes well up with tears after reading her poem. And there was more poems similar to this one but she was never specific. I never knew she was going through so much pain, it was overwhelming. This made me read her notebook more, then I finally found out what her demons were…
After I read her notebook, I kept it for a few weeks. Arguing with myself, “Should I tell her I read it or not? What should I do?” Finally I got the courage to return it to her…
I returned it first thing in the morning when I first arrived in school. I remebered her reaction, shock and panic. And she said “So now you have an idea what I’m going through?”. “What? Are you saying that I read it?” I replied in panic. “Who wouldn’t read a random journal that was on the floor?” Damn, she’s right there but as usual I lied “Me?”. She said “Whatever” as she grabbed her notebook from my hands and walked heading to her next class. “I’m sorry okay, I couldn’t help it!” I screamed but she ignored it as everyone stared at me….
The rest of the day was spent with her avoiding me. I went to every class she would be in as I can, but everytime her classmates would say “I saw her rushing out first thing.” Or something similar. During lunch I couldn’t find her at all, even at places we would eat before or whatever. I don’t know how she did it but, damn, she can hide. By the end of the day I failed to find her at all; all I did was sigh and told myself there would be tomorrow. I just hope she wouldn’t blame herself….
#4 Don’t Feel Sorry
The next day I still continued my search. Finally, during lunch she showed herself. It was a humid day and the fog was everywhere, I saw her sitting on the bleachers outside, all alone staring off at the distance. Like she was waiting for me, was she ready to talk to me?
I sat down beside her and she said “People said you were looking for me.” but she just continued staring dazedly. “Yeah I just wanted to apologize for going through your notebook”
“Don’t apologize, it was my fault I was too careless.”
“It’s okay. I should’ve just been more cautious around you because I already knew that you started noticing. I should’ve just-”
“Please just stop. Why do you need to be cautious?”
“Because no one deserves to bare the weight I have.”
“So what?” I shouted.
“So what? So what! You don’t know what I’ve gone through! I’ve made a mistake on trusting someone and in the end I was left broken and alone! So shut up because you don’t know what I’ve gone through!”
That was when she finally faced me with eyes full of sorrow, regret and anger. She was breathing heavily as she finished. What have I done? I asked myself but all I said was….
“I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean-”
“I know you never did its just a natural thing we humans do. We do things majority because of curiosity and instinct. And please don’t feel sorry. Don’t ever feel sorry…”
We both stared off the distance, both of us deep in thought. No one spoke, until I broke the silence.
“What happened before?”
“You don’t need to know. It is unnecessary information.”
“But nothing. Can’t you see I’m saving you from shit that can drown you.”
“Doesn’t it drown you too?”
“Yeah it does but I know I deserve this.”
“Why do you deserve this?”
“Again I will repeat. You don’t need to know.”
“Don’t you think its time to let it out.”
She sighed heavily.
“No. I’ve learned my lesson.”
She stood up and walked away. “See you around I guess…” she said as she walked away. “Yeah. See you around.” I simply replied and was left dumb-founded. I started to wonder what happen to her past. Who was this guy she talked about…
Ever since that day we’ve hung out, you know the usually small talks and a few random moments. Maybe this was something that could bring us closer again, maybe she’d tell me eventually… Maybe, that’s all I can say. One day she asked me…
“Do you have any regrets?”
“Ummm yeah, I guess…”
“I don’t really know. Maybe like studying hard enough for a quiz and little stuff like that.”
I know my regrets may be small but it is still that, a regret. Silence deafened us. I wonder so bad what she was thinking. I tried to break the silence and asked her.
“How about you?”
“What are your regrets?”
I heard her sigh heavily. I immediately regretted saying that after it came out of my mouth. It was too personal, I knew it. Dammit, why couldn’t I just stick to the awkward silence. But then my thoughts were broken by her words.
“Well…. ummm… it all started when I gave my trust away. I was foolish to do so but I did it and I’m stuck here.”
“Why do you say it was foolish?”
“Because I was left alone and fragile. He left me.”
I saw her eyes starting to water, then the tears left her eyes streaming down her face. She wiped her tears away and all I did try and comfort her; I hugged her in attempt to comfort her. I wish it did, I really wish it did.
#7 Opening Up
I tried to be more understanding because I knew, deep down, I want to be able to help her. Slowly with a bit of pressure I was able to let her tell me. Finally she told me everything.
“Who is this guy?”
“Do you really need to know?”
“Yes because I really want to help you.”
“You do know you won’t be able to help me, right?” She said as she sighed heavily.
“But letting it out would help, you know?”
“Maybe… but who knows.”
“You’ll know once you try, right.”
I didn’t even bother to make it a question. I wanted her to know how much I wanted to help her.
“But…” She replied.
“Please just try.”
And finally she spoke what I’ve always wanted to hear. She sighed heavily as she said…
“Fine. In my old school I had a group friends. We were close, we weren’t just friends anymore, we were family. We were happy, really happy but slowly problems started to occur. Soon enough, each of us fell into the despicable world that’s hard to get out of. Some started drugs, some became anorexic, some just looked dead already. We tried our best to help out one another and relieve the pain, but I guess it was too much. Eventually everyone else disappeared. Gone from this cruel world we live in. I am the only one left…”
As those words left her mouth, she did not cry, she did not do anything but tense up. I know it was something horrifying to remember but I’m glad after all these months of bugging she finally opened up.
#8 Empty Promises
“Who is this guy?” Oh shit. It’s too early to ask her such thing since she just opened up. But , argh, I started already might as well continue. “Ummm…you know the guy you mentioned in your notebook….”
“Oh him….. Well, errr…” She said nervously.
“Oh you don’t need to answer that, just nevermind me.” I said nervously as an attempt to take what I said back.
“Nah, it’s fine. Maybe it’s time to finally get this shit over with, huh?”
“Well, his name is Jake, he used to be my best friend and my “soul-mate”. It was always me and him against the world, or at least that used to be us. When I first met him, we were both happy but the older we got, problems became over-whelming. His parents started to fight, a lot, they were drug addicts and alcoholics too. Then later everything became too much for him, he became depressed. Thank fucking god I was there to help him… or was. He even started cutting, using drugs too. I tried my best to stop him, I tried…… but it wasn’t enough. It wasn’t fucking enough. During that time all my other friends were going through almost the same thing. One by one I saw them cry, one by one I saw them hurt themselves, one by one I saw them disappear from within my grasps. Soon he followed.
We used to fantasize the future we would have together. The memories we’d make too, but everything disappeared when he did. He promised me we’d stay together, he promised me he’d stay strong, he promised me he’ll never leave me! But I guess he never did mean any of that, they were just empty promises. Do you know how hard it is to lose someone who was your one true happiness? Do you know how painful it is to see everyone close to you die? Do you know how much want I want to kill myself everyday just because I deserve it?”
“Why do you think you deserve such thing?” I had to cut her short. She doesn’t even deserve to die.
“Because I couldn’t do anything to help them, I couldn’t fucking save them! Being left alone is fucking scary, attending everyone’s funeral was so painful. I fucking miss them; their voices, their laughters, the stories they told, their faces, their touch, everything. They left me alone, to fend for myself. Everyday people before would ask me questions like “Are you okay?” No! I am not fucking okay, do you think I am?! Losing everyone whom you cared and loved for, losing everyone who was important to you, seeing their dead bodies in coffins; lifeless and cold. Why the fuck do they even ask?! Why do people have to be cruel, why does life have to be a bitch.”
She breathed heavily after saying that. I never knew it was so much, I never knew she had so much weight on her shoulders. Her tears streaked her face, it was too traumatizing for her. And now I ask the same question she asked. Why does life have to kill someone so innocent? Why does it have to be bitch?
#9 Happy Place
That was something I never forget, something I never regretted asking. That was the start of our friendship, we eventually became best friends. I hope I helped her, you know, to at least lessen the weight. But now she’s in a happy place, somewhere safe and peaceful. She’s finally reunited with her friends, they could have bonding time again. But I haven’t brought her back. Don’t worry I will soon, just wait and see.
I am in my room standing on my bed. I place the rope around my neck as I look through my window. It was midnight, everything so calm and quiet. I can even see the moon shining brightly, I knew it was her calling me. I whispered to myself “Don’t worry I’m coming.” I heard her voice at the back of my head saying “Okay, okay I will just be waiting.” I don’t want to prolong her wait because I too am impatient, I take my jump and I see my happy place.
I see her smiling at me, others behind her. They must be her friends. They all welcomed me with open arms. And, finally, I have achieved bringing her back to her happy place.
Edited by Megan. (Thank god), and Gravy (Part 1&2)