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30 Seconds and 1 Day
Who knew that it only takes thirty seconds to break a heart? I didn't – none of my friends did, either. Now I do.
During band camp, the flutes are the favorites – of the band directors, that is. We were constantly given tasks like stapling papers, handing out parts, making posters, and copying music. That's exactly what we were doing that day – the day that we learned that it only takes thirty seconds to tear a girl apart.
I'd missed two calls from my boyfriend of almost five months, so while we were supposed to be copying music, I called him back. The only words I really remember were these:
"We haven't seen each other in a while, and I just want to be single right now, okay?"
Stupidly, not understanding his words – or what they really meant – I responded with an upbeat, "Okay." Then while he mumbled his excuse to hang up – some baseball crap – it hit me.
I hung up and kept my phone in my suddenly shaking hand. I was so confused, but with wide eyes, I met Kristin's gaze. I was startled by the small, weak shudder of a voice that passed through my lips and made me realize how empty and cold I suddenly felt. I started to shake as if I was freezing cold, and I was – inside. "H-he br-broke up wi-wi-with me…"
And while everyone else in the room – including me – remained immobile, Kristin jumped forward and wrapped me in her arms. "Everything'll be okay, Boo," she whispered, as she squeezed me tightly, "It'll be okay."
It was the day after he dumped me. I was at taekwondo for my brother's class, and I was sitting over where we keep our bags. I was drawing in a sharpie, just lines and broken hearts. I was completely unable to write.
Chad came, and he sat next to me. After watching my mindless scribbling for a few seconds, he asked why I was so depressed. I told him that Dallas dumped me, and he assured me that it only meant Dallas wasn't good enough, but that he still didn't understand why I was so upset. I shook my head, and a tear fell onto my journal, making the blue stripes run.
He reached out, but I pulled away, an inch past his reach. His arm fell to the ground. "Why are you so sad?" He asked, disbelief lacing the concern in his voice. As the tears threatened to pour, I whispered, "Because it was yesterday…" He almost jumped up out of shock. "Yesterday? No wonder you're…" But he trailed off as my body began to tremble violently. "Ella…" he said, but I just shook my head again. "Be strong," I told myself. "You have to be strong. Prove that you'll be okay. Prove Kristin right." So I went back to drawing morbid doodles, avoiding the tear mark, and my shaking calmed.
Thirty minutes or so later, I heard Chad mutter under his breath, "Oh, crap." Then as I started to look up, I heard him warning, saying, "Ella, don't…" But it was too late. My body convulsed and I shook so hard that an earthquake would have been ashamed. Why had I looked up? I'd known somewhere in a deep corner of my mind that it was him, but I'd looked up before I could stop myself.
It was too late to look away. I couldn't take back the choking feeling, or the way I knew I'd never be the same. I couldn't stop the few stubborn tears from leaking out the corners of my eyes. I turned away, and a few splashed onto the page. Chad saw, and knew how embarrassed I'd be, how humiliated I'd feel.
He quickly jumped up and hurried Dallas away, out of my sight. That didn't stop the tears, the tremors, or the choked sobs. I pulled my knees in close to my chest and hugged them tight, laying my head down and letting the tears take over me.
What had I done to deserve this? How would I ever move on with my life? How long would it be before this choking feeling left me, so I could remember how to breathe?
Why had he done this to me? Why?