When Clouds Turn Gray

November 20, 2016
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The clouds loomed gray and heavy over my head. The sun disappeared and I was uncertain of when it would return. The sound of thunder rolled but the lightning flashed fast and fierce. Then the rain came. At first it was soft and slow but then it began to rage tearing down branches and wrecking homes in its wrath. It’s anger continued the entire week, it would calm down just to be summoned up again and again. The sky’s tears matched my own, it mourned with me over the loss of a friend and with every terrifying burst of light came a surge of the equally electrifying memories that were engraved in my heart and my mind.

With each shock from the past I shivered as the nightmare repeated itself in my head, like a video on loop it played over, entwining my screams of horror and screeching wheels into its sick melody. How I’d run that day, fast enough to see the terror unfold before my unbelieving eyes but not fast enough to stop it. I’d seen her just begin to run across the lifeless gray cement road and then suddenly the weapon was flying through the air and striking her. The eruption of power was absorbed by her body flipping three times through the air,  She rolled slowly to a stop on the ground. Just then I had realized that a sound was coming out of my mouth. Deep from within my chest it was drawn, something almost unrecognizable that pushed me to my knees onto the cold cement just a few feet away from her. Flashing forward I see her in the back of the car, her chest barely moving up and down, struggling to breathe; to stay alive.

Another bolt of lightning and I’m back to my reality now. My heart pounds and I feel little beads of sweat build themselves up along my hairline. The stress of remembering hurts but I force myself to, for if I don’t remember then I can never move past the event and my storm will never end. A rumble of thunder drags me kicking and screaming back into my flashback, running into the hospital doors that open slow and frustrate me, following her gurney back until I was prohibited to enter by the nurses. Water mixing with stiff mascara results in two black rivers that flow down my face and stain my cheeks making people give me looks that can only mean they wonder if I’m actually Alice Cooper and I stare back at them, letting them know that my emergency was more important than their curiosity and disgust of my display of emotion.

“Stop, you’re making a scene” My sister reprimands me with a stern whisper, “Go wash your face you look ridiculous.”

My eyes widen at her ignorance but then my indignation sets in and I snap at her. “Who cares about what I look like right now? What’s ridiculous is that my dog that was a better friend than you just died. So I’m not really concerned about my appearance right now.” She slowly backs up, shocked at my sudden outburst, wondering if I’d have another. I pace lividly stabbing my feet down on the cold, impersonal tile with each step. Back and forth a combination of remorse, anger, disbelief, and nerves crowd my emotions until they let me into her room.

Then they wheeled her into the room with a blanket covering her chest and abdomen where the wine red continued to flood out of her staining the covering that lay on her chest.

“I’m sorry” the nurse in the black scrubs told me. I nodded a silent thank you for it felt as if I’d suddenly forgotten the english language. I had known what was coming but it still didn’t make sense. Now I knew that she was gone and it was if my eyes were leaden clouds that finally broke out into a storm, one that evaporated so much emotion and memory that when I eventually let it loose everything spilled out uncontrollably. Raindrops and tears making puddles on the ground that turned into lakes and then oceans. The lack of noise outside caused me to pull away from my thoughts and glance out the window. It had stopped raining and storming but the clouds were still a little gray. Something told me they would be for awhile. The storm was necessary though, I needed to let it all out to be able to let it all go.

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