Tracing My Life

May 26, 2011
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Before the accident, I wanted what a lot of us want: to get out. The chance to go to New York, or Los Angeles, or for many of us, just to get to Charleston. I was lucky, though. I had everything I needed. A house, even if the wallpaper was faded and the roof leaked. A car for my mama and papa to drive me around, even if it took a few grumbles and groans to make it move. And two parents with jobs, putting us barely above the poverty line, an extraordinary feat in our small town.

I’d like to say I was thankful for it all, but really I always yearned for more. Understanding-yes, content-you could say. But in my head I dreamed of luxury. I longed for grand staircase to parade down in fancy gowns that smelled of perfume, not of coal mining. The coal mining that consumed our town long ago. The stench my papa reeked of everyday after coming home from work.

Now, all I see, hear, and know is crying. Loud, uncontrollable sobs; the kind you want to hold back because you know it will start twenty more people sobbing. I can trace those sobs back just like you can trace the lines on your hand. I can feel the path with my finger: the curves, the stops, the edges, the rough patches. I can feel it all.

This is when I go to my papa. My papa, the coal miner. My papa, the West Virginian. My papa, the husband. My papa, the son. My papa, the father. My papa, the believer. My papa, the comforter. This is when I know that things are not okay. This is when I trace those lines too deeply. I feel my fingers go under my skin and I am bleeding out tears.

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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

Meme E. said...
Jun. 14, 2011 at 1:55 pm
Great job! I love it so much!
ibadancer13 said...
Jun. 9, 2011 at 1:11 pm
I love this story!! You use great word choice and I love the metaphor of tracing your tears.  Great job!!
introducingshelby replied...
Jun. 10, 2011 at 12:46 pm
J'adore, in every possible way c:
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