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Dying

I am dying.

No, I don’t have cancer, or some other terminal disease that is slowly killing me. My doctor says that I am a picture of health, vital signs normal, blood work fine, no problems at all. I do not stand out in a crowd. I am your average kid.

But I am still dying.

No one notices me walking on the sidewalk, in an aqua-blue Aéropostale tank top and my favorite blue denim skirt. Why would they? I am just like them, no different from the next person they lay eyes on. They all have places to go, people to see, just like I do. We are all exactly alike.

Except for the fact that I am dying.

I wait for the school bus, just like all the other kids my age in this neighborhood. They are all talking in their normal cliques, ranging from groups of two to parties of five. I used to be upset that I was the only loner, but now I don’t mind as much. I take out my phone, and pretend to laugh at a text someone sent me. No one questions it, they don’t even notice me. But I notice them. I notice them, every minute of every day, trying to take in as much as I can, since I won’t be able to much longer. Why?

Because I am dying.

I sit on the bus, in a seat all by myself, waiting for a friend to come on at the next stop. I read while I wait for them, trying to lose myself in the pages of the book instead of the meaningless chatter around me. Yes. It is meaningless chatter. That’s how I describe it. A conversation that will be forgotten by second period. I can remember it better than they can, and I’m not even part of it. But soon I will be. I will be the one on everyone’s minds, all of them with a different version of the same story.

Once they discover that I am dying.

Homeroom. More meaningless chatter. We could have learned the Pythagorean Theorem by now. Doesn’t anyone else realize that we’ve wasted yet another good thirty minutes of precious learning time? Though I would never say this. It will make me look like just more of a geek. But that label doesn’t bother me anymore. I have more important things to think about.

Like how I am dying.

Lunch. Oh, how exciting. I hear my three tablemates talking about something or other, but I can’t really make out the words. I am too busy, lost in my own thoughts, having my own conversations in my head. Sound weird? Maybe to someone who doesn’t truly understand. But I do.

I understand that I am dying.

Three o’clock. Is the day gone already? My last day. Wow. The one day I would like to stretch out a little time, and the day’s gone faster than I can blink. Oh well. It would have ended sometime or other. And then it would be time.

Time to finish dying.

I am not taking the school bus home today, nor will I ever again. I no longer need it anymore, to take me home, to take me to school, to take me anywhere. Instead, I take the city bus, which will take me to my final destination. The George Washington Bridge.

Where I will finish dying.

My heart is beating furiously as I step on the footpath. One foot in front of the other, I have to tell myself, over and over, as I continue to walk. My head is down, for I cannot bear to look into the eyes of my fellow pedestrians. I know that they are not looking at me anyway, but I can’t bear to know that they soon will be.

Once I finish dying.

I stop moving my feet. Here I am. The middle of the bridge. I walk closer to the edge, and I stare down. The water is dark; there is no way I will be found once I jump. I slip off my navy blue flip-flops, old and worn, and kick the right one over the edge. I hold my breath as it falls, and count the seconds. It takes fourteen. What a coincidence. That’s how old I am.

Fourteen years I have been dying.

Only my left shoe remains of the pair. I bend down at my knees, and undo the clasp of my anklet. I place it on top of my shoe, and on top of that I put my gold necklace. Next comes my bracelet, and, finally, my ring. I leave my earrings in; I do not want to part with them, even though I know that they will rust from the water. I stand up again. This is it.

Time to die.

I hear someone scream, and footsteps coming towards me. I know that they have noticed me, and figured out what I am about to do. I have to do it quickly now, before they reach me. I look out at the water once more, and take my final breath. I step up to the very edge, my toes hanging over. I continue to creep up this way, not able to do it any faster. Finally, I just force myself to lean over, and I jump.

And I die.





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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

introducingshelby said...
Jun. 24, 2011 at 6:04 pm
I feel lucky to be the first to comment on this.. God, I loved it. I don't want to keep saying, "I can relate," but.. really, I can. I've written poems of feeling like this, and I've had the same thoughts that you wrote here.. Really, I like it. You've got this special talent for writing the stuff people stay away from. It's borderline, and deep. Not everybody understands it.. I'm really glad that I found this.
 
Healing_Angel This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 31, 2011 at 1:59 am
Deep and well written.
 
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