The Curse

May 24, 2008
By Stephanie Stotler, Waynesville, MO

I have become detached from the world-no more of me left to give. I hide in a small corner of this huge room, waiting for the paramedics to find me. Some call me a basket-case; some tell me it’s all in my head. But then there are those who believe in life after death; they tell me my ideas have meanings. They did test and analyze me till their hearts content, but I just can’t help to wonder if they have even begun to find a cure for my illness. They labeled me a hazard to society and locked me in my room, but never told my why. They hid me in big rooms with lots of books and padded walls and studied my behavior-Still they gave me no medications and told me nothing. On Tuesday, I had family come to tell me that they love me, and even then, I could see the lies hiding in their eyes. They knew something I didn’t. But what? What is it that they know that noone here will tell me? I wonder if my life will ever be like it was.

About four years ago, when I was fourteen my life took a turn for the worse with no hope for the better. I couldn’t even begin to tell you what grade I was in or where I was. The mood swings were like crazy monkeys let loose. They would pop up out of no where. When my mom finally took me to the doctor, he said it was normal for a pre-teen to have those kinds of episodes’, he said that I was coming into womanhood. I couldn’t wait to get over them, then he told me that it would happen every month. I was so confused on what to do that I turned to the one thing I knew would end it. No, it wasn’t drugs or alcohol or my faith in God. It was what the school tried to prevent kids from doing. I went into the kitchen late at night and grabbed the sharpest knife I could find, I went into my room, sat in my corner and cried. I told my family good-bye and then performed a swift once over on both wrists. The pain was quickly eased when I saw the blood rushing from my veins. I lay down and said, “this is it, the pain is going I will never feel it again.”
Much to my surprise that when I was unconscious some one happened to come looking for me found me there and quickly slowed the blood flow, and called 911. “Damn what kind of hell is this?”
I woke the next morning with needles in me and a headache from hell. I slowly came to when I noticed the white room and the people in the white coats talking about my condition. What was I to do but listen?
“She’s crazy, one said.”
“No she is depressed, said the other.”
“I chimed in with a “NO”, I wanted it to stop.”
“They look at me with an amazement wondering if I was awake or talking in my sleep.”
“JOY”, he said, “can you hear me.”
Yes I can and stop screaming. Joy I am not screaming. Sorry my head hurts.
“Well that will happen from time to time.”
“Do you remember what happened?”
“Yes I said I tried leaving this world and someone stopped me from doing so.”
“You are luck they did.”
“LUCKY, how am I Lucky? I wanted to leave this awful place with this curse it has given me.”
I was becoming angry at these people for nothing but at that moment it was the curse that came over me. “I yelled at them and screamed I wish you would just die all of you. You didn’t help me; you only fed the curse.”
My life as I knew it was over I could on longer control this beast that was within me. All I could do was sit idly by while the curse took control. It yelled and moved toward the needles, and one by one ripped them out. I don’t want to live in this world if this is how I am to live. They contained me and gave me a shot that made me pass out, but when I came to I felt like me-only a little out of it.
Sitting by my bed was my mother reading out of her bible. I leaned to face her and asked her to read my favorite verse. She read (Mark 8:23-25 So He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him, He asked him if he saw anything. And he looked up and said, "I see men like trees, walking." Then He put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. And he was restored and saw everyone clearly.)
I believe that it is true what they say that if you believe He will heal. The only problem was I had begun to think there was no cure for me. I had tried to think of reasons why this could be happening to me, but I came up with no answers. I hadn’t done anything wrong enough to be punished this bad. I mean ok, I have back talked before and didn’t always wait my turn but I was still an ok kid. I worked hard in school got good grades, and I was on the debate team. Which I was the best. I could argue like no other. Maybe that was my problem on why I couldn’t get a guy, because if you had a brain and wanted to get your points across in my school, you must be male. Of course being the person I am, I never let that stop me I took control and lead my own life. I just didn’t know I was going to end up here, contained by four walls that wouldn’t let me breathe.
The day I tried to break out of my prison, was a day I will never forget. I felt so alive and I started running and I didn’t look back. I just kept going. I ran from one town to the next. I was not even sure where I was but I kept up on the running. I finally stopped in a small town in Brookview, Washington. It seemed like a nice quiet town, not a lot of traffic and very little screams. I saw only one hospital and there was no “psycho” ward. Still, something was odd about this place it was oddly quiet and very still. I began to walk the town and watch the town people. I slowly observed them watching their every move. I began to understand that these people are who I needed to be around. As I wandered the streets by day and slept in the alley at night, I never became afraid.

One day however, I did meet a strange face. He was kind and loving looking, but new to the town. He offered me a place away from the cold and talk of the strange girl in the alleyway. I seemed to warm up to him quiet nicely and him to me, but there was that little shred of me that said don’t trust him. I kept my safe distance because I know they will come looking for me. As the weeks past and no one came to find me I became a little off -balance. The mood swings were getting worse and I was not sure what to do. I found random pills in his cabinet and began taking them like crazy. I was paranoid as I walked down the street and kept looking over my shoulder. I knew people were watching me saying that they knew who I was- where I came from. I had to leave but where would I go for almost four months I made a home here. I see there lurking eyes they are all on me.
“STOP LOOKING AT ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I screamed this out loud to nothing thin air; I swear there were people here a minute ago. I saw nothing a black sky the rain purring down and suddenly everything began to melt. I smelled the air it was acid rain poring out of the sky like a pack of wild monkeys escaping from the zoo. I saw him off in the distant running toward me, I yelled for him to take cover, but it didn’t work He started to melt in the rain. Soon he was gone and so was the town. There was nothing left, It was as if the painter didn’t like his picture on his canvas and washed it clean. I blacked out and thought I finally feel that I was free.
I woke, slowly emerged from my hell-waiting to just die but this time I felt oddly better. “Joy” I heard a voice say.
“God is that you.”
“NO Joy it’s me Doctor Bistro.”
“But how did I get back here I was in a different town in a different city.”
“NO Joy you have been right here for several years now. You have acute schizophrenia. All of your dreams and feelings, that’s all in your head nothing ever happened.”
‘We gave you medication to stabilize your condition and we have set up sessions for you with a counselor. I am sorry Joy but this is how your life is going to be for the rest of your life. There is no cure, the medication that can keep you who you are, but you have to make sure that you will stay on the medication so that you will never do something you will regret.”

Over the next years, I was able to control the dangerous curse and the sessions with my counselor still stand. I have learned how to make it in the real world with my curse and the deathly rule it will one day bring on me. Until that day, however, I shall go back to the world with that town that is wellness and find that face that don’t judge me and that is when I am free. I learned a valuable thing over the years and that was that death is not the answer, it is the question the answer however is whether or not you choose to take the question and leave or stand up and fight the question to the end. I chose to stand and fight and for that reason I can surrender to that world when I feel the curse. I stay there and then come to feeling like me again. Oh and the monkeys, they are all back in their cages.

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