15. you should be sneaking out, going to the 7-11 and buying nachos and getting that horrible slurpie stuff in a mop bucket when they have the ‘fill up anything’ promotion. you should be hanging out in the rec room in the basement with your friends talking about the girls with big tits and who told off what teacher that day. you should be learning to do laundry, a pro at mowing the lawn, getting stupid excited that you’re going to be driving soon! you and your buddies talk about getting your first jobs and maybe even the people you like.
have you had your first kiss? did you like a girl enough that you went from friends to something more? did you hold hands with someone you really liked and who really liked you too? you’re batman pj bottoms are crumpled up on the floor beside your bed. you’re rooms a mess. your school backpack smells like sour food and dirty socks with crunched up papers at the bottom. clearly something spilled in there. you were too busy socializing, laughing, always laughing, to clean it up.
your clean laundry is in the washer. how do i take it out? how do i touch it. if i touch it, i might break. shatter. it doesn’t smell like you anymore because i washed it. i washed away the scent of who you were. and now i want it back. and so i curl up in your bed. smell your sheets. clutch your pillow against my chest. my chest where my black heart is crushed and purifying inside of my soulless body. i wish i was dead. dead. i want to be dead. i can’t do this. can’t feel this. this isn’t a feeling. this is torment, torture, violent hurting and pain beyond pain that i can’t endure.
your birthday card is in my calendar. i already wrote in it. i bought it 2 months ago and it cracked me up and i knew you’d laugh and so i bough it. a white envelope. unsealed. addressed and written in. just laying there. tormenting me with it’s presence. mocking me. screaming at me. i took it for granted. your birthday. i assumed that i’d give you this card and you’d laugh and i’d laugh because you’d laugh. i was waiting to laugh with you. and now you never will. the card is garbage. ruined. a perfectly good card i presumed i had enough time to give you. and i don’t. you’ll never laugh with me again. and i stupidly waited to give it to you when i could have had that moment stored in my memory already.
you died. you died laughing with your friends and showing off. doing stupid shit that you’d done 100 times before. boy shit. look at me i’m doing semi dangerous things shit. shit that makes a mother cringe and a father say he’s just doing boy shit. yes, well now it doesn’t matter anymore, does it? arguing what is and what isn’t an appropriate risk? a right of passage? a boy thing? a normal fucking boy thing. other than the dying part. that’s not normal. how can dying when you’re 15 be normal.
your broken body. naked on a cold metal slab shared by 1000 other dead bodies, separated only by the chemical bleach used to clean the gore away, once a stranger dissects your once perfect and beautiful body. this stupid fragile shell of a human body. worthless without the soul of who you were inside of it. animating it. giving me the heat and joy of who you were. the animation of everything silly and funny and amazing of who you were. gone. forever. ended in a fraction of a second because of a stupid decision that you don’t get to take back. no do overs. no resets.
you died hearing the sounds of your friends laughing and cheering you on. it’s the last thing you heard. i should be grateful for that. but i’m not. i hate them. i hate them for not protecting you and for encouraging you. i hate you for not listening to your inner voice that said don’t do it. i don’t hate you. i hate this. this is too much to bare. too much to understand. too much to process. too much to live through. i’m tight with the contained violence. the rage, the sorrow. the despair. the void of nothingness. i need to hurt myself physically to release the pressure. to equalize on my body what’s happening in my mind or i’ll die from it.
i want to. i need to see you again. your rumpled hair as you flopped down the stairs and into the kitchen, grabbing the milk and telling me you were going out with your friends swimming. how can such a casual every day conversation be the last time we’ll ever talk? it was normal. nothing indicating that you would die today. i could have stopped you. i could have asked you to do some stupid chore. i could have needed your help cleaning the garage. i could have ruined your life by asking if you had gotten to that science project and demanding it be finished before you went anywhere. instead i told you to have fun. have fun. yeah. you had fun until you died.
and now i have to live through this. ‘this’ what is ‘this’ called? what do you call a mother who has a dead child? you know why there is no word? it’s because its not natural and it takes at least a sentence to convey the message that you are talking to a woman who is living because they are waiting to die and who is nothing but pain and sorrow, ground and butchered, rotting meat. hollow. nothing will ever be good again. or right. or pure.
don’t talk to me. don’t offer platitudes or condolences. don’t you dare try and comfort me. the only thing i want is to be stabbed by a thousand knives until i die and your soft and gentle words make me want to kill you instead. i just want to lay in his bed, holding onto the clothes that once touched him and I want to die.
(ps. this is not me or my situation – but a friends child)