Goodbye Sunshine

June 22, 2011
Now

Crystals form on the surface of the deep treacherous waters. The night makes the lake appear as dark tears. I’ve been here since dawn to watch the day go by, light to dark, day to night. Crying the whole time, but trying to hold back the tears all the same.

On the last day of fall, the trees are bare and I’m shivering, still trying to convince myself. “It’s not like anybody needs me.” I strip down to my light blue, worn out one piece bathing suit. I’m so cold; the nightly breeze hits my tear stained face and I shiver violently. On my count to three, I jump from the edge and dive out into the water.

After

“Chelsy, it’s ok to cry, honey; oh honey come here.” My mom wraps her arms around me; I drink in her motherly sent, sweet vanilla and lavender.

“It’s not ok mom, and I’m not going to cry. I’m going to be strong. I need to clear my head.” I get up and slink silently away, almost as if I have no soul to hold me upright. I want to go into a closet and hide, forever.

From the far corner I see my mother and grandmother and hear them talking.

“My daughter is in such pain, I wish there was something more I could do to help her.” My mother said in a state of depression.

“What Chelsea needs is some tough love, tell her to get off her butt and move on, do what any good parent would do,” my grandmother yells. She is such an old hag, just saying. Plus she has always hated how close my mom and I have always been and she is the only person I know that call me Chelsea.

“MOTHER! Chelsy needs me. She needs comfort and…..” Before my mother can defend herself anymore my grandma starts to yell again, louder this time. I start to go find that closet, no matter how rude it is to the dead. I’ve paid my respects, I just want to go home and get out of this new black dress and curl up nice and warm under the my covers.

When I find that closet, it’s only big enough for me to stand. I slither down the side into a half crouch, holding back a scream. I start to cry, I promised myself this morning not to cry in front of anyone, especially in front of the lifeless body, I never said anything about in the bottom of a closet. My lifeless screams get louder as I feel myself clutching my stomach in pain. No one understands me, not my mother, or my grandmother, but especially not me.

They said I did everything I could; I don’t believe the people who say that.

Before

“Truth or dare?” Eric encourages.

For some reason this has always been his favorite game since we were kids, I never mind playing since it always makes him happy. He has always loved to make people uncomfortable, and especially to take risks.

“Truth.” I say. You learn just to go with his flow and just trudge along like a good little trooper.

“Nooo,” He whines, “You pick dare for once, please?” I nod unwillingly. “How about tomorrow night, on the last day of fall, when the night is at its darkest…… Hmmm let me think….” So I let him think. “You will jump into the lake in your bathing suit. And I’ll be there, no matter what, I will be there.” It seemed like he was trying to convince himself as much as me.

“Ahh, but I could die from hyperthermia.” I knew this was a valid point, this is why I never pick dare. It’s always dangerous.

“I would never do anything that would hurt you, come on, this will be epic. You need to be more adventurous. Like I said, I’ll be there the whole time and we will be prepared.” I though about what Eric said.

We were only thirteen; we should be able to be a little dumb, right? I hope that’s what my mom would think if we were ever caught, but I doubt it, I would more likely be grounded within the first second. Not to mention what she would do to Eric, daring her daughter to jump into Lake Michigan at the beginning of fall. I’m still scared though; I’m not the adventurous type, in our little group that person is always Eric and I was the reasonable type that always talked us out of trouble after one of his stupid stunts.

When I’m running home from our secret place on the peer, right underneath the hotdog guy, all I can think about is how much I love life, mine is perfect. A great mother I’m really close with, no father to tell me what to do and a perfect, ok almost perfect best friend. He always has my back, ever since we were born on the same day, Eric will never leave my side, ever.

After

“CHELSY, how dare you speak to me like that?”

“Well usually through my mouth, Oops unless that’s not allowed mother.”

“UGGH!! GO TO YOUR ROOM YOUNG LADY!!” She bellows over the already shaky connection.

“Actually that’s where I was headed. Do you feel the need to give me directions too? Oh, but you wouldn’t even know them since I am currently in solitary confinement, and no visitors are allows, but its not like you would visit anyway, even if you could. What was your excuse last time?-” Before I can finish my grandmother, who is standing directly behind me, steals the phone and hangs up.

See solitary confinement, or as they call it “Isolation for the ones in need”, means that I can’t talk to my mother without a person supervising. It’s usually my grandmother, I guess last time I talked to mother alone she went into a break down or something.

But seriously, mother still thinks she can send me to my room, over the phone. I wanted to hear what my mother had to say to my snotty remark that I was about to say, but my grandma always hangs up right before my awesome ending; it always leaves them with their mouths hanging wide open. I can’t wait until she sees the grades that I’m pulling here.

Its not like she can take anything else away, I currently don’t have a phone, TV, computer, dressers, or a regular bed. I also have to see a counselor everyday. Boarding school or my grandma’s is so boring, absolutely nothing to do to pass the time. My grandmother owns the “California National Academy for Young Girls In Need Of Assistance in Their Journey of Life” or in my own words “A stupid place that bad parents send their perfectly normal kids, that have gone through a disaster and whose ridiculously long name, puts old people into cardiac arrest from lack of oxygen, boarding school.”

Before

“Just do it, jump!” Eric screams.

“No, you do it!” I screech back.

“No I dared you, and you have to do it because you used all of your chicken outs to get out of doing a dare, a long time ago if I might add.” He says with a huge grin on his face. I only smile back because you can’t resist it with his lopsided grin, it’s contagious.

When I’m about to emerge my body deep within the cold water passed the thin layer of ice, my phone starts to ring, saved by the bell.

“It was my mom. I have to go home and help with dinner, maybe next year?” I say with a hopeful smirk plastered on my face, all I get is a disapproving shake of his head, making his caramel hair shake side to side. I sigh. “Ok, tomorrow then.” Before he can answer or even agree, I run like the wind all the way home.

After

I’ve been home from boarding school for five minutes on spring break and already my mother is practically knocking down my door bellowing, “Let’s have some family time Chelsy.” Since I love my door and hate seeing it abused like this, I come out ready for the fight that is probably waiting for me downstairs.

Just in time for my feet to hit the level of the first floor the doorbell rings, but my mother makes no movement to get the door. It’s not like I’m going to so I sit down on the modern blue suede sofa. We sit down and get this, I get tied up with the threats she makes if I move. She gets up as if to see if I will make a run for it. I would but this is getting more interesting by the second. She creeps to the door never turning her back to me as she opens the door saying, “I’m sorry Chelsy, but you need help, more help than I can provide.”

She opens the front door to reveal a shrink. “I am NOT talking to a shrink, how could you mom,” and with that I unravel myself from her words that were binding me to the sofa with ease, and start running up the creaking stair case two steps at a time. I slam my door, this time it’s me abusing it.


Before

“Hey momma, could you do my hair tonight?” My hair magically calms down and behaves whenever my moms’ hands touch my head. She says, “Of course.” Like I knew she would and she asks me if I would go shopping with her first. I love going shopping with my mom. We play games on the way over in the car. Also we get done twice as fast because we split up the list. Plus we always sing to the radio with all the windows down, no matter how cold. It’s Friday, which means I have plenty of time to do my homework later.

When we get back we watch old movies together. With me wrapped in her safe arms, I fall fast asleep in those homey, snug, soft arms that I call home whenever I’m sad or mad. When I woke up later that night, I had a text message on my phone from Eric. “cm 2 da lake 9.30p.m” I look at the clock, I had to hurry if I was going to make it.

When I got there Eric is sitting on the edge of the water, his feet almost touching the thin layer of ice that covers the lake and everything else in sight. Everything happened really fast after that.
Eric said he was going to show me that it was ok to jump into the water, by example. I told him no, begged him not to. I started babbling saying that it was winter; it was too late into the cold season. I pleaded with him saying I would do it next year, I wouldn’t complain once. He kept shaking his head over and over, messing up his now darker hair; he promised he’d be fine. He promised.

Eric finally convinced me, “Do you trust me, Chelsy?”

“Of course,” I said without hesitation.

“Then trust me when I promise you that I won’t get hurt,” I give him a disapproving stare. “Fine, I pinky swear.” He holds out his pinky finger. I take his pinky in my own to form a perfect promise for life.

It was colder than it was the night before, the weather giving off a winter vibe. He jumped in the water without a second glance in my direction. Not even to see my shocked face as I started to come around and realize that he wasn’t joking, he was actually going to jump. Before he hit the water with a big splash, he yelled, “Make sure to get me out fast!”

As soon as he hit the water I was hovering over the water like a, smashing and thrashing my hand, searching for his own. My own hand and forearm went numb, how was Eric surviving? I felt a grasp at my frozen hand, with all my strength I pulled him out.

When he got out I wrapped him in a warm blanket. That’s when the shaking started. At first it was small little shivers, hardly noticeable. But then he started thrashing around like a fish out of water. I pulled him into my arms trying to get him warmer. He wasn’t talking; maybe he didn’t know I was there with him, so I started speaking my thoughts out loud. All the thoughts that were running though my head were, “He promised. He promised. He…..,” over and over again. I reached for my phone.

I soon hung up after I heard the police cars in the distance. I tried to get him talking but realized that he was limp in my arms. I wrapped my protective arms around him tighter, as I was getting colder.

I distantly remember people trying to pull me off Eric’s cold, limp body. I screamed, “NO!” Not letting the paramedics take him away from me. I heard a distant cry of desperation.

‘OH MY GOD, WHERE IS MY ERIC! ERIC, SWEETIE. WHY ISN’T HE MOVING!!” I faintly realized the voice as Eric’s mother.

I remember my mom trying to comforted me by whispering calmly in my ear to let go and that everything would be ok. Let go? Then I remember that I’m still grasping with the life of me to Eric. Why is everyone upset? Eric is going to be fine, he promised me.

Then it dawned on me, he’s not coming back, he’s dead. Dead. That’s when I started shaking from all the tears staining my cheeks. The paramedics take his departed body from my death grip. My mother tries to cover Eric's dead body with her arms. NO! This, this can’t be happening. I sprint up and onto the street. Not caring where I was running or why. Maybe I was running from something.

Does it matter?

They say I did everything I could; but I don’t believe the people who say that.


Now

I’m sitting there in a preheated blanket, staring into the night. Staring deep into my reflection that seem to be set in solid stone from not moving for so long, against the bitter, arctic waters below my feet. I jumped.

I ask myself, where the light was, and the golden gates? Why aren’t I DEAD!? I feel the piercing feeling of frostbite in my toes, fingers and nose.

“Chelsy!” My mother’s call surrounds me.

She can’t find me, not like this. I’m not done. I promised. I make a split second decision, about to jump back into the arctic waters, someone grasps my arm.

I hardly remember being transferred to the hospital.

I promised. It wasn’t supposed to be Eric; it was suppose to be me.

Death can really change a person.





Join the Discussion

This article has 6 comments. Post your own now!

Megan K. said...
Aug. 19, 2011 at 11:05 pm
thanks 
 
IAMKATEH said...
Jul. 12, 2011 at 1:49 pm
I don't know you or anything but, this is goood (:
 
Nicky said...
Jul. 8, 2011 at 5:15 pm
I truly enjoyed reading your story. Every bit of it. You have a unique style of writing. I think you're very talented!
 
Megan K. replied...
Jul. 9, 2011 at 12:42 pm
Thank you for reading and enjoying my story, it means a lot to me.
 
freeflow23 said...
Jul. 4, 2011 at 9:25 pm
WOW! This is really good. I liked the use of "before", "now", and "after". It helped the story flow very nicely. you're an amazing writer.
 
Megan K. replied...
Jul. 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm
Thank you so much :)
 
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