The Lake

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I walked down the dirt road alone. The sun was hot above me and the heat hung in the air. All along the road, trees branched out, offering a little oasis of shade. I did not stop, no matter how inviting those trees were. A little breeze blew by, making my white dress flutter. It felt good. Only a little farther I told myself. Five minutes later I stood at the edge of the pond. Eli wasn’t there yet. I lay down at the water’s edge to wait for him. I was hidden from view by the tall grass and lilies that grew all around me. A rustle came from my left side. I sat up. It was Eli. My body relaxed and I started toward him. His face was somber. I wrapped my arms around him and lifted my head to look in his eyes.

“What’s wrong?” I whispered. I did not want to ruin the beautiful silence that surrounded us. Eli did not meet my eyes. He simply took my hands and put them back at my sides.

“I can’t. We can’t. It’s done.” He said the words quietly but forcefully. In that moment I felt my heart shatter into a million pieces, never to be picked up again. As the tears started to flow, Eli turned and walked away. I fell to the ground, unable to support myself any longer. Eli was gone. I thought about the child growing inside me, how happy I had been to share the news with him. But I never got the chance. He had left us both and now we had nothing, no options. I dragged myself down to the pond. When the water was deep enough, I started to swim. The cold water felt good on my skin. I felt my body relax and my mind clear. I knew suddenly what I had to do. I held my body still and exhaled, feeling myself sink farther and farther down. I held myself there, resisting the urge to come up for air. It was becoming more and more difficult and the need for air was more urgent. Thoughts raced through my mind. I couldn’t do this! It was a mistake!

And then, there was nothing.





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