For as long as I can remember, the blinds in this house have never been open. The windows remain covered and untouched, collecting dust. The only light that I have been exposed to was artificial. The sun has never been welcomed into my home.
However, there was this one window that sometimes I’d like to look at. The only one with just a crack of sunlight shining through. I admired the shadow it created against the wall. I was trapped in my own thoughts. I could only venture outside when the sun was past set. Though I had so many things to do in my house, it was nothing like experiencing the sun hitting your back, and actually getting a real tan!
I have seen so many photos, so many videos, so many memories. The times that my brain cannot recall. The times that I was too young to retain anything. The times that the sun was a part of my childhood. The sun, like the many old stuffed animals I used to love, was something that got left behind. For so long I was in a state of sorrow, trying to bring back those memories to only make me feel worse about the life I live. I have not grown out of the wonders of different life would be, if mine turned out differently. I haven’t yet learned to accept that this is who I am.
I stood to the side of the room with the gleam of light standing out bright. The blinds did not have to stay closed as long as I was aware and careful of where I was. But just looking at the kids playing in the street, the sun shining down on them, sometimes brings my attention to believe I am under different circumstances. My mind completely forgets all that I should be careful about. The image I see, leads me to gently placing my hand on the doorknob, slowly bringing myself to twist it, just a little bit, until I realize what I am doing.
There were children, that I could see, who were let outside the house and could enjoy everything that the daylight had to offer. The neighborhood was full of color, while I remained in a dreary room of gray and white.
My name is Lily, and just like the flower, I need sunlight to grow. I am sixteen. For sixteen years, the only memory of my days in the sun were those I could not remember without the help of a camera. I took a glance at myself through the mirror that sat above me. My skin, pale as ever, seemed to glow in the unilluminated room, against my dark brown hair. In hopes to take the place of the sun, my own room was filled with brightness, compared to the rest that filled the house, but I lived in my own world of darkness.
I do have my best friend. She and I are inseparable. Elaine’s my connection to the outside world. I don’t go to a public school like she does. As if I couldn’t do more in this house, I get homeschooled three times a week by my mom. I know it’s probably every kid’s dream to have three days of school, but I’d do anything to live a normal life. A life that was not mine.
I was born an only child. I could tell that my parents did not want to repeat the error that they made with me. As I grew up, I was happy I got my parents to myself, experiencing all their love and attention. More recently, however, I perceive that my parents and I live in different parts of the world. They would often be out during the day, where I would be out at night, we were almost living in different time zones.
Sometimes I feel nocturnal. I avoid the day, staying awake for the night. The city never sleeps, the lights just brighten up the darkness, painting a beautiful picture that stays in my mind.
Something that always kept me going was reading. I had too many books to count. I have lived over a thousand lives and have experienced in my own imagination of what a sunny day at the beach, an afternoon adventure in the park, and a beautiful day to be outside would feel like.
The sun was going down and I could see it through the crack of the window. The clock just struck six and it was almost dusk. I could see the light through the crack of the window getting darker.
Every night, Elaine and I would spend it together and little by little, we found our parts of this big city, getting more and more familiar with all to do and see. Like the normal teenagers that we definitely are not, we spend our energy continuously laughing, crying, and enjoying each other’s company. Night after night, we would plan unforgettable adventures. And so I realized it was okay to live this way.
We walked until our feet could not continue anymore. We talked until our throats hurt and we got ready to do it all over again tomorrow. It was almost 6:42 a.m. and the sun was about to rise, time to go home.
For being allergic to the sun, I think I knew more about it than those who soaked up all the love and light from it.