Monday, March 20, 2006

Shay's Reflection

This is the newest addition to the Creative Writing class project. I had to write another interpretation of my previous story "Britton Road" and include a reflection scene. So here you go, "Shay's Reflection".

I am sitting in a place I never thought I’d be. I am sitting alone, in a room full of people, listening to mindless chatter. The room is swimming with people who love me. Who loved my husband. I can still hear the preacher’s voice resound in my head like deafening bells, tolling their dirge. “Alexander was a wonderful man who devoted his life to his family.” Was. That’s the operative word here. He is gone. There is no bringing him back. No matter how hard I pray, or how many prayers I send up, he will never come back. I am lost without him. My mind continues to swim as I think of the most ridiculous things. Did he pay the cable bill? Did I tell him I loved him before he left that day? A single tear slides down my cheek as I ponder that last question and I lack the energy to wipe it away. I stand robotically and begin wiping crumbs from the table nearest me. Each movement I make is heavy, pained and forced. I walk, one foot in front of the other, into the kitchen where for a moment, I am truly alone. I welcome the silence and breathe in the peace.
Since the moment I found out Alex had been killed by a drunk driver, I have had but one person by my side. My dear friend Katherine has been there to hold me up, and to push me forward, and she has taken over the organization of my life. There is no way I could possibly begin to express my gratitude for her undying love and friendship. At this very moment, she is sitting in my daughter’s room, holding her and telling her how much I love her. I should be doing that, but at this moment, Katherine knows I am truly not capable. I want my daughter to feel strength. I don’t have it. I want her to feel faith. I am lacking. I want her to feel me. I am numb. I take another deep breath and make my way to Britton’s bedroom. I stand outside her door and press my ear against the cool wood. I hear a faint melody. Katherine’s voice wafts its way to the cracked door and I can make out the words she sings. “I hear babies cry…I watch them grow…they’ll learn much more…than I’ll ever know. And I think to myself…what a wonderful world…” Her words take me to a place I remember ever so fondly. I squeeze my eyes together tightly and tears force their way through my lashes. My hand finds its way to my mouth as I fight so hard to stifle the cries. My chest caves and rises with each deep sob and I shake uncontrollably. I steady myself against the door jam and slide my way to the floor.
The grass is green and lush and the sun sparkles in a way I never could have imagined. Alex is sitting to my left on the park bench with Britton cradled in his arms. She looks up at him with her big, hopeful brown eyes and I know that she can see can see herself in his. I have never seen a man so happy as he is this day. “Do you want to push her for awhile?” I ask. “No,” he says quietly as he places his hand on my knee, “my girls and I are going to sit for a minute.” He begins to hum an old Louis Armstrong tune; his voice is deep, warm and comforting. My left hand finds its way to the nape of his neck, where I gently stroke his dark hair. I lay my head on his shoulder and peer into the pale pink bundle he holds. This is the moment I have been waiting for all my life. The moment where I could sit in complete silence and feel utterly fulfilled with life and love. “I love you,” I whispered. “I love you more.” We both giggle as we realize how cheesy we sound. Its funny what love will make you do and say; the person it will make you become.
“Shay? Shay darling. Where are the napkins?”
I am shaken from my daydream and am slammed smack dab in the middle of my reality. I look up into the face of a woman I barely know. Mrs. Fletch I believe. “I don’t know,” I whispered. The wall acts as my guide as I stand and head towards the bathroom leaving her there to answer her own questions. I hear her wrap on the door and ask Katherine to get the napkins. That’s my Katherine. Always to the rescue.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i love it!!

nobody loves me like you do