After something traumatic happens it’s hard to get back into how things used to be, isn’t it?
You want everything to stay like it was before, but it can’t. It can’t because a part of you is either lost or missing and you’re trying so badly to get it back whole.
But you can’t.
It’s not coming back and even if it does it won’t be the same.
As much as you don’t want to think about that moment you can’t help but think of it, because it affects you that much.
You relive that moment over and over again whether you want to or not.
No matter what you do those feelings can’t be forgotten.
After something so terrible happens nothing is ever the same, is it?
I stayed in the hospital for nine days. They said my brain was swollen. They wanted to monitor me and put me on medications to help the swelling go down.
I think I slept a lot. Mostly because I was on my own. Mom had to work to pay off even more medical bills... Which has me feeling even more guilty since she should be taking it easy after he seizure but now she has no choice but to overwork herself again. On the other hand Skyler didn’t come to visit me at all. Not even once since that day. I even would ask the nurses if he came while I was asleep, but the answer was always no.
The first thing I did after getting out of the hospital was shower. It was the first time I had showered in those nine days. It felt amazing.
Even though it felt amazing I can’t help but feel completely dirty. I scrubbed hard at my skin until it was red and irritated, yet I couldn’t get off the imaginary filth. I could see it clinging to my skin in black dots and dashes. I had told the doctors about it. They told me that because of my brain injury I may have delusions and hallucinations.
It feels real though. It feels so real.
I’m dirty. I’m disgusting, and this disgusting filth won’t come off no matter how hard I scrubbed at it.
I stay home for a few more weeks.
By the Saturday of the third week since the incident I still haven’t heard anything from Skyler. He hasn’t come by to visit even though I'm now home and he hasn’t sent me any text messages either.
It worries me, but I’m too scared to contact him first.
I’m scared he’ll see the filth on me as well.
Or worse I’m scared to be blamed for what happened.
Maybe that’s because I blame myself as well?
I don’t know exactly what happened other than what Skyler told me before he left on that terrible day and what my mom told me the other day.
Demetri died. His friend was arrested. That much is clear to me.
I remember the police interviewing me, but I don’t remember what I said.
I feel empty and numb inside as I remember the blood. I wanted Demetri to die and he did. It’s a heavy guilt that hangs on my conscious. At first I hadn’t felt guilty about it, but now I definitely do.
Maybe I didn’t really want him to die after all?
I just wanted him to leave me alone. I wanted him to go away so I could be happy.
Now after what happened it feels like I’ll never be happy again.
I never meant for him to get hurt. I just didn’t want me or Skyler to get hurt either in the process.
It seems like because of me everyone was hurt in one way or another.
I know I shouldn’t blame myself, but I can’t help it. If it wasn’t for me...
I take a deep breath as I try to cut those thought off.
I feel stir crazy.
My mom’s working way too hard again and even though I have a job of cleaning at the SinClare house I don’t show up since the doctors advised me not to for now. That’s okay anyhow, since I’m too scared to face Skyler anyways.
My weekend moves my in a blur. I binge watch Buffy The Vampire Slayer on Netflix with captions on while I just laze around eating junk food and feeling sorry for myself.
When Monday morning comes I decide to go to school. I’m not really supposed to go back yet, but I’m going crazy to the point that I actually WANT to attend school. It’s shocking even to me.
Of course Skyler isn’t there waiting for me when I wake up in the morning. I let go of the hope to see him and his bright smile. Instead I just walk myself down towards the school. When I get to the cross walk right in front of the school my mind starts to have flash backs.
I hold onto the pole of the cross walk monitor as I start to hyperventilate my mind thinks back to what happened that day. I close my eyes as I try to make those images go away.
Several minutes seem to pass before I’m able to open my eyes again. I remind myself that I’m okay before I make my way safely across the street and onto the school’s property.
No matter how many times I say it to myself it always seems like a lie.
I make it to my first period class for the first time in which seems like forever. The teacher looks at me with surprised eyes tinged with sadness. I’m sure the school already knows about the situation... I’m sure all my classmates know too. Though none of my classmates seem to be brave enough to meet my eyes.
I make it to lunch before I feel exhausted and overwhelmed from the pain shooting through my head. I decide to skip the rest of the day. As I cut through the parking lot I see a familiar truck.
I want to see him so bad. So fucking bad.
I can’t stand it anymore.
Whether I’m scared or not doesn’t matter now. All I can do is feel my urge to see him.
Almost as if my wish is being granted I see a familiar face coming towards the truck.
I turn to take on the sight fully.
Skyler looks good. Really good. Probably better than I do since I’m a mess of blotchy skin and tangled hair.
He seems to stop in place as he sees me. He looks unsure whether to come close or keep his distance.
It hurts. It honestly does.
We were suppose to be happy. I was supposed to be his girlfriend.
Why did everything have to change?
I feel like I’m going to go crazy.
I can’t help but fast walk up to Skyler and latch myself to him. “Please don’t push me away. Please don’t ignore me. I can’t deal with this on my own. I need you. Please, Skyler. I know you’re hurting too, but I need you!” I cry as I push my face against his t-shirt.
I feel his chest move rapidly. I can feel the beating of his heart. It beats just as fast as mine does.
At first he’s still, but finally after what seems like forever he wraps his arms around me. I feel something wet hit my forehead. When I glance up I see that he’s crying too.
We just stand holding each other and crying for a while.
Afterwards he leads me to his truck where we just sit there staring at each other.
After a long moment his mouth opens and his hands move to sign. “I’m sorry I haven't come to see you.”
I bite my lip as I give a half shrug as if I don’t care even though I do.
“I was dealing with my own stuff. I didn’t think about what you’re going through. I’m sorry.” He then gestures.
I shake my head slightly. “No, I’m the one who’s sorry.” I sign back quickly. “I wasn’t thinking about how you were feeling. I was selfish, and just wanted you around to comfort me.” I added after a pause.
Skyler gives me a sad smile. “I guess we both are selfish.” He says.
I almost want to smile, but I don’t.
After another long pause of no conversation Skyler decided to pull out of the parking lot and drive off.
I don’t know where he’s taking me, but I don’t care either. I’d go anywhere as long as he’s with me.
I close my eyes and drift off.
I wake up to someone tapping my shoulders.
As I open my eyes, I catch a glimpse of Skyler leaning towards me. He unbuckles my seat belt before getting out of his side of the truck. He then coming over to help me out of the passenger side.
It’s not until we’re on the sandy shores that I realize that we’re at the beach.
The one place that isn’t tainted. Yet why do I feel like my dirty self just might taint it?
Skyler intertwines our fingers as he leads me along the sand.
“I think we need to talk... about what happened.” I read his lips, as I hear the slight, but unclear rumble that is his voice.
I nod, knowing that we do need to talk about it. If we don’t I fear things will become so distorted from what they should be.
We go to sit on the sand, a few feet back from the lapping waves.
Skyler turns to look at me, and I turn towards him as well.
Then the conversation starts with the gesturing of hands, the moving of lips, and a rainstorm of tears.
First I tell him about the text messages and Demetri’s friend grabbing me just before I could make it across the crosswalk to school. I then go into talking about what happened after that. It’s hard and I feel heavy and ashamed as I describe everything in detail for him. It’s painful to tell him, but it’s also painful to keep it in.
Afterwards he talks about the phone call he received, him going to the police, what happened right before and right after Demetri was shot, and his feelings about the whole thing.
I remember us comforting each other whenever one of us got too emotional to go on during our talk.
The movement of his hands and lips blur in and out. I remember bits and pieces, but I can’t remember the whole thing.
The one thing I remember about the conversation the most, is when he looked at me and said, “I’ll never be able to wash the blood off my body. It feels like I’m dirty.”
At that moment I oddly felt comforted that I wasn’t the only one who felt dirty.
I told him that I can relate to that the most.