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My Coping Plan
“…and God please bless my family, make sure to keep them safe and happy, and lastly send my love to the one who loves me. I know he is out there and I know I’ll meet him soon. I love you, goodnight.”
I slowly get off my knees and lift myself onto my bed. I pull the covers up to my chin, smooth my hair, and gaze out my window into the dreary night sky. Its nights like these that make you think. The moon is round and plump, the dimmed stars are barely visible beyond the constant fall of young rain drops and whistling wind. I turn to my IPod and flip through my songs to find my usual, “Goodnight my Angel” by Billy Joel. I stick my ear buds snug into my ears and silently listen. It’s amazing even through the rain and clouds; I can always find my star. The star that has always stuck out from the rest, a bright bold white star, a star that signifies all the hope and love that still lives. As I intently gaze at my star, I can feel that somewhere, however far and wide, that one person is gazing at that same star at that same moment. That one person who loves me and will listen to me more than anyone else.
“Goodnight my angel.” I whisper, and close my eyes, lulled to sleep by the soft patter of raindrops. Pat,pat,pat…
Loneliness is hard. No that’s an understatement. Loneliness is devastating. It can paralyze you, and turn every word into a sad song. I first experienced loneliness when I was just a small third grader.
No one should have to worry about being loved as young as eight, all a kid wants is to play, explore, and to love and be loved back, but the world forbids such simplicity. I was a chubby little girl who cared no more about her appearance than a dog cares to put on pants. I didn’t braid my hair like all the rest or tuck in my shirt; I was more interested in being a kid. I guess my priorities bit me in the butt. At the time I had two friends, Cameron and Alyssa. I was always a third wheel or a play toy so to speak, but I didn’t care, they acknowledged my presence and occasionally invited me for play-dates. I didn’t know that the cruel games they would play with me would affect me in the long term.
On most days at recess I would leave class and meet up with Cameron and Alyssa at the big tree. I spotted them in the distance and made my way over, as I got closer I could see them pointing at me and laughing. I was going to see what they were laughing at, I liked jokes, but when I got closer they ran off. I ran after them trying to keep up, but whenever I got somewhat close they would run in a different direction. When I finally got into talking distance I asked what they were doing, and before they fled again I heard them say, “Haha, its run away from Ariel Day”. I shouted, “Stop! Please I want to play with you guys! Please!” They hid in the jungle gym, the small patch of forest, and even the bathrooms. After a while I gave up and retreated to a nearby bench and sat. It was days like this that I would occupy myself by singing. I created whole songs, as the people I knew walked past looking forward, not acknowledging me.” I’ll make friends soon.” They had better and more interesting things to do. Better and more interesting.
Sometimes you don’t need to be bullied to be lonely. The worst bullying is not physical or verbal; the worst can just be being forgotten. Middle School didn’t get any better. I spent most of my time alone for the rest of my elementary experience; it gave me time to plan. Plan for the future, when things would get better. I went into Middle School with goals, aspirations and a plan. A coping plan. I would stick to my schoolwork, and my acting, if I worked hard and achieved my goals, things were sure to get better. So I did just that. I thought my plan would protect me from pain and loneliness but there’s only so much hope a person can hold with so little improvement. Middle School was the beginning of a new stage of loneliness, being ignored. I walked the halls, smiled at people, waved, did things polite people do, but everyone always stared ahead at better and more interesting things. Better and more interesting. I ignored them in return, I did my work in silence, walked in silence, and lived in silence. But at times I couldn’t help but think why am I so invisible? Am I not pretty? Am I not engaging? Why am I so forgettable? Can’t people be different, but still fit into society? The answer was No. I grew to like solitude, and occupied myself by writing poetry, a pen and paper was a friend to tell my deepest concerns and desires. Years past as I sat in silence watching people walk with better and more interesting things in mind. Better and more interesting.
Loneliness is devastating. I adjusted my plan, I figured that in this vast façade of a world, there had to be one person, just one, who cared, and I would talk to him every night, and he would hear me. He would be looking at that same star thinking of me, just as much as I was thinking of him. This is my coping plan.
“…and God please forgive me and my family of our sins and keep us safe. Please help us love and live, and finally, Please tell him hi, and that I can’t wait to meet him, I know he will be here soon. I love you, goodnight.”
The sky is clear, the moon is crisp, and the hearty laugh of the wind is bouncing off the bare branches of shedding trees. I find our song, “Goodnight my Angel”, and locate the brightest star in the sky. At that moment I know he is thinking of me. Of only me.
“Goodnight my angel” I whisper. And let my eyes slowly fall closed.
Whatever heartaches, ignorance’s, or let downs cross my path, I will always have someone to look to, someone who does care, someone just for me. And he’s coming soon I can feel it.
This is my coping plan.