“This is my room in my house,
and I’m holding the gun that killed me.”
How did it get to this point? When did I become a stranger in my own life and why didn’t I see any signs? It’s best if we start in the beginning when I discover I did not belong.
As I open my eyes, a sense of sadness creeps over me, like I lost something that I can’t remember.
“Damn, another morning, I swear I’m only happy when I’m sleeping.” I say aloud.
The memory of it lingers on, I like my head, there is peace, a quiet solitude. In this two-story family home with its lifeless, monotone white walls, quiet doesn’t exist. My youngest Erin will start screaming the moment she wakes up, whining about something she needs and doesn’t have. Jake, my oldest usually starts his day by reminding me why he hates me. Today was because I am weak and ordinary, and my sullen mood depresses him. In the past hearing this would hurt me, but lately, I have been questioning everything, I’m not really sure if Erin and Eric are even mine. Neither of them looks anything like me. Eric has blue eyes, a pale complexion, and dirty blonde hair. Erin has burnt sun-red hair color, brown eyes, and a creamy beige complexion. Nothing even close to my amber eyes and mahogany brown russet color in my hair. It would be possible if the kids got their looks from Seth, but if they did, they would have a darker complexion. I don’t even have memories of being pregnant or raising kids.
Then HE walked into our house with HER, acting like it was ok to be arriving home at 8:30 in the morning. HE was gone all night, leaving me with the responsibility of making sure these children were taken care of. The nerve, but it’s not like he hasn’t done this before. Still, he knows how the kids feel, obviously I don’t really care what he does, but I had hoped he would care about their feelings so I would not have to hear any complaints after he left. Still the son will run to his dad like nothing is wrong, and remind me daily why he hates me, what the fuck is that about? I just want to say kid I didn’t do anything wrong to you.
HE waltzes in giggling with HER talking about the life they plan to build. HE thought we would all be gone by the time they arrived, but no, we got to see the show, their nauseating four-play, and all during breakfast, the eggs tasted rubbery, and the bacon was like biting into brittle flakes of ash. We got to see the whole show in full Technicolor detail while trying to shove the awful breakfast down our throats before starting the day.
The strange part though, was how I was not affected, I didn’t care that my husband, the supposed father of my children was showing up at our home with his girlfriend. I should’ve felt something, even when he was flirting with her, and Seth is a good-looking guy, he has dark hair, dark almost black eyes, and a dark ash skin tone. So why do I feel nothing? Shouldn’t a wife be affected when their husband dates someone else? The kids weren’t happy that’s for sure, they felt that I should be blamed for their father showing up to the house with HER in tow. They’re right though, maybe everyone will be better off if I just don’t exist anymore. I know I could use the break and what’s better than a permanent nap? As I sit on the bed with the soft green duvet wrapping around me, I look around at this haunted room, the off-beige walls stare at me begging for color. The wedding photo on the chest that laughs at me, the family portrait that lies. As I examine each photo, I wonder why can’t I remember being there, what was the day like? Am I so withdrawn from my life that I forgot any good moments?
I wrap my hand around the cool metal and think of the best way to go about ending what’s left of my pathetic life, I read somewhere the temple was not the best place to aim, apparently, it can cause serious damage, but you may live, no thank you, I do not want that, there would be no one around willing to take care of their vegetable mother. I grasp the handle tightly and place the barrel on my lip, trying to get the right angle, trying to get my mouth wrapped all the way around it.
“Funny, this is the biggest thing I ever had in my mouth.”
I take one final look around, there’s nothing here for me, I know that and as I release my breath, pull the trigger.
“Please, please help her!”
“It’s going to be ok, take deep breaths.”
“Sacred ones I call to thee, I beg of you, please don’t let her die!”
Where am I, why can’t I see, what are those noises, sacred ones, who said that, is someone praying? Who in this house would care? I doubt anyone would even check on me. Why is it so hot, what is this faint glow coming through? What? Is that fire, what the hell!
What is this, is this what I see before I die, huh… Where are my memories, I thought my life would flash before my eyes, but I don’t know where I am or what I’m looking at.
“Sacred ones, I call to thee, please save her, save my mother.”
Sacred ones, who are these people praying to? What is happening here, the whole city is cast in bright orange flames, the black smoke is so thick it plumes up and permeates the whole sky and I hear the screams and cries all around me as the city burns away. Shit, who did I piss off? Is this the price I pay for ending my life with my own hands? Am I being punished? I can’t take it if this is my doing why must others suffer for my choices? What they need is water, water heals, they need rain! I do not see any fire trucks; how do these people get water? The ground is made of dirt, each home resembles those clay huts. Did I go back in time? I’m starting to think the only way these people are getting any water is by praying for rain. I will just say what I hear.
“Sacred ones, if you exist, please give these people rain!” I shouted.
The stillness shocked me, after all that noise I did not expect such a tranquil quietness, but when the first soft drop landed on my cheek, it was cool and made me feel replenished. Yes, let the rain fall, let the rain heal. As I stood there silently enjoying the restoring drops falling from the sky, I noticed the people around me staring right at me. I worried they would be upset, but they smiled, turned around, and chanted. I can’t believe that worked, if I can make changes when I want, this afterlife might not be too bad after all.
“Thank you sacred one, thank you!” I whispered.
Saying that out loud gives me a sense of nostalgia. The moment of serene peace, something I had not experienced in a long time, but before I could bask in the sensations, I felt a rush come over me, this excruciating sting in my head suddenly enveloped me and I needed to close my eyes for a second.
The deathly silence startled me, as I lifted my head up off the bed, I looked over, and there was the gun lying next to me. I picked it up and pulled the magazine out. A bullet was missing, but I don’t see any injuries. What…I don’t get it, is my reflection lying to me?
“This is my room in my house, and I am holding the gun that killed me.”
I looked around the room, lay the gun down. Blood is flung over the walls and bed creating a trail that looks like streaks of paint in crimson red making the off-beige walls less plain. I should paint this room; a pop of color gives it new life.
“Hmm, so this is the part where I should be dead right now. So why the hell am I still here?” I screamed!
Now what the crap do I do? With a feeling of disappointment, I glanced down at the gun again and back up at the wall, trailing down to the soiled bedding, it looks like a fucked-up crime scene, and yet I am still fucking breathing.
“Seriously, why can’t I catch a damn break!”
I take one last look at the massacre surrounding me, I am destined to be miserable, is this my afterlife? Then what was the city burning about? Ok, well if this is all I get to look forward to, then I better clean this mess up.