The door of the school slammed shut with a quick thud. The last time she’d hear it shut ever again. She struggled with the thought of coming back. Her head hung down as she walked home. She noticed the small pebbles that made up the tar she walked upon and the newly thawed ground leaving brown stains on her white shoes. She felt an invisible weight on her shoulders. Thoughts ran through her mind like floodgates that had just opened. Saltwater stung the corners of her eyes as tears fled down her cheek. She thought of what people had said to her all over a stupid rumor.
“You don’t deserve anything.”
Those words hurt her, but not nearly as much as the two words that were said, and could never be taken back.
She stared blankly into the blue mirror that hung inside of her front door. What it reflected back, she did not recognize. She didn’t see herself. She saw pain, brokenness, and a worthless person staring back. She missed that happy, outgoing person that used to stare back at her. She quickly walked away from the mirror. She couldn’t stand to look at it anymore. The things people said hurt her to a point of which she couldn’t come back from. People didn’t know that she had a father that abused her. People didn’t know that her mother left her because she was a mistake. They didn’t know, but they thought they had the right to judge.
It wasn’t just that day. It was her whole life. Every aspect of it. She felt like she didn’t belong anywhere. Not school, not home, and not anywhere else. Words can shoot through a person just like bullets can. Once they are fired there’s no way to stop them before they hit you. Words, like bullets, can hit and wound you. But if they hit in a certain place or way, they can kill you. There’s no way to take them back. She felt like she had just gotten shot all over her body. There was nothing left now.
She sat down on the end of her bed. Everything that happened in her life started to swirl violently around in her head. The breakups, having to move, the beatings. Everything. It hit her all at once. She closed her eyes. A vivid picture came into her mind of her earlier that day. Everyone was screaming at her. Calling her names that no one would ever want to hear. Words that stung. Words that couldn’t be taken back. All over stupid lies. The rumors weren’t true. She wasn’t a cheater. She wouldn’t do that in her wildest dreams. Love is a bond that can’t be broken or took for granted. Everyone else was oblivious to that except her. He confronted her and said “How could you ever cheat on me?” He hit her hard in the face. She felt the trickled of warm blood rolling down her face. He told her he was done. She was the only one that believed herself now. She didn’t have anyone any more. Her dad didn’t care about her and neither did her mom. All of her friends that she had, got caught up in the rumors. They believed the rumors instead of her. She was alone.
Nothing could fix this for her. There was no rewind button to go back. No fast forward to skip this part of her life. The only button she had access to was the stop one. A button that no one is ever supposed to press. The touch of that button would end everything. All the pain and suffering. All the words. All the memories. They could all go away with the press of that button. Who would care?
The next day her class got news that no one knew how to break.
There was an empty seat in her classes now. Frequently people would glance at the chair. Without her in it. Life wasn’t the same for anyone now. As the teachers passed back papers they saw her name. For a moment they looked up at her seat. Expecting to see her sitting there with a smile on her face. That’s how everyone saw her. A happy young women, always with a smile on her face. A look of realization would then come over the teacher’s face, it was empty. Everything felt empty. The halls felt empty without her in them. The bus felt empty without her on it. Hearts felt empty without her there.
The next day came. The bells rang at their scheduled times, the clocks ticked at the same rate, and the world orbited the same sun. Everything was the same for people that never knew her. For the people that did know her, however; the world was stopped. There was sadness, guilt, confusion surrounding the whole school. People said things like “What a coward.” Other people said things like “It’s not the same anymore.” No one understood why her life was THAT bad. Bad enough that she’d never see her future or explore her passions. She didn’t leave very much of an explanation to anyone as to why she did what she did. She only left a small note..
“I’m saying goodbye. I’m so sorry I had to do this ,but it was the only thing that I felt like I could do. I don’t know if any one will even miss me, but I’ll miss some of you. I was screaming for help. I told people over and over again that I was ok. It got old. I never was “ok”. People knew that I wasn’t, and no one cared enough to ask.
That was it. Even though this was very tragic to a lot of people, it showed everyone how what they say, can hurt. It can hurt so bad that you can’t get away. The people that drove her to do this walked down the halls every day. They carried a weight on them that could never be lifted. The teachers met afterschool to talk. They also walked around with the same weight on them, They knew something was wrong. That they could have done something. But they didn’t. Everyone watched her slip away because no one cared.
She never saw her future. She never saw she would be an accomplished doctor helping to save other people’s lives. She never saw that she would have two kids. One boy named Noah. One girl named Jasmine. She never met her two cats, Willow and Henry. She never saw the groundbreaking medical research she would make. It wasn’t fair that she never saw these things. In the future, the things that mattered so much to make her do this, wouldn’t have mattered at all.
She said goodbye.