Monsoon

I wanted the wind before the storm, it was always my favorite,

So I created the wind.

I let it rage and let it roam through each part, picking up dust and throwing it through the old lead windows.

How easy I think as it moves effortlessly through and out of the house I swore I would never revisit.

Just as I secure my weak thought a monsoon travels back in and the windows slam shut.

For hours I pace, I cough, I crawl, I beg for fresh air until I finally close my eyes and surrender.

The circulation stops and the dirt settles lightly to my concede and I can’t remember the last time I felt this calm.

House Call

⁣“What the fuck are you doing here?”⁣

I must have blacked out or something. I guess not completely out of character but when I came to I was standing in the middle of a hollowed out tree and it was dark and freezing. I shivered and wrapped my arms around my body feeling bare skin, wondering why I didn’t have a jacket.⁣

“Are you gonna answer me, what the fuck are you doing here?”⁣

Her voice startled me and I squinted my eyes trying to make sense of the dark figure plastered up against the other side of the tree. I felt as though my thoughts were being run through thick glue and when they finally began to thin out, I gasped.⁣

I recognized her voice and my eyes immediately filled with tears and I could feel that familiar stress and tightening in my throat. I hadn’t felt that feeling since I was a teenager. I reached my hand up to my neck and began to massage it lightly.⁣


I shivered again this time not from the cold surrounding me, but from the cold creeping inside of my body.⁣

She laughed sarcastically and shifted her feet against the dirt, creating a cavernous echo. “Just fuckin’ run like you always do.”⁣ Her voice was deep and convincing.⁣

She stepped closer to me and my eyes began to adjust. She had on the same clothes as the last time I saw her. A blue zip up sweater with two stars on the front, baggy jeans that her frail frame was swimming in and converse shoes. My body froze in complete horror and my fingers began to curl inwards tight and painful.⁣

She took another step closer and I could see her familiar face. Her detached, torpid eyes staring straight into mine. Nothing. All signs of life were long gone, her spirit fled and old cigarette burns punctured through where her broken heart used to subsist. ⁣

It felt like every piece of my insides were being strangled and I thought to myself that this must be what it feels like right when you get tased or have a seizure. ⁣
I thought to myself that I’d felt this feeling before. ⁣
WE’VE felt this feeling before. ⁣
Her eyebrows slightly lifted to my thought, our thought and she nodded at me.⁣

I closed my soaked eyes and began to count my breath, four seconds in and four seconds out. ⁣

Memory. Body shaking.⁣
Memory. Body tightening.⁣
Memory. Throat closing.⁣
Memory. Deep fucking breaths.⁣

Eyes, still closed, I cleared my throat and my voice trembled, “I wasn’t expecting you.”⁣

She grabbed both of my frozen arms tightly and my eyes shot open to meet hers.⁣

“Of course you weren’t expecting me, your usually too busy trying to play with that feral child.”⁣

The swallow of my spit reverberated against the walls of the hollow tree and I began to count my breathe again.⁣
Four seconds in, four seconds out.⁣

Sliding Scale Therapy

“I wasn’t sure you were coming today,”  she was startled at the site of me when she rushed past with a bowl full of chili.  Smelt good.

“Margaret, just ring me when she’s done paying and we can get started,” she winked at me.

I missed my last appointment and I don’t blame her for being surprised to see me.  I thought about not showing up.

I appreciated the cheap sessions and her fresh university face.  The truth is, I need a bad, old heinous bitch to put me in my fucked up place, not some sympathetic college student.  And that’s exactly what she was, Rachel.

She was too young, too inexperienced.  She seemed to feel too much for me, the exact opposite of what I needed from a therapist, which is why I won’t be signing up with her again.  When I explained my life to her at times the only thing that would run through my head was, “Jesus, get a hold of yourself,” as she would fight back her own tears.  She was too fresh, too sympathetic, like I said, she felt too much for me.

Margaret, oh Margaret, front desk woman with way too many sweets on her desk for just broken hearted fucks like me.  I knew they were mainly for her.

Margaret swiveled around in her overly comfortable chair, “Did she say she’d come get you sweetheart?”

“No, she told you to ring her once I was done paying.”

She reached for my credit card while shoving a mini snickers in her mouth.

The credit card machine beeped and I knew she didn’t hear a word I had said or the beep.

————————

Every week the same thing.  I walk in, tell Margaret my name and my therapist as loud and slow as possible.  She fumbles looks through the files, pulls out the wrong file, and begins to scribble on it as I interrupt, telling her I’m not Melissa Moravitz.

I wonder if Melissa Moravitz has to deal with the same shit.  I also wonder if she knows that I am as “clinically depressed” as much as I know she is “anorexic.”

Margaret finally finds my file, reaches for the credit card I’ve already given her and complains about how slow the machine is being today…Everyday.

Then, I stand there like an idiot with my hand out, while the machine continuously beeps, until she finally notices me with a squeal and hands me back my credit card.

I sit down and watch her forget to call Rachel.  Ten minutes later either Rachel comes out wondering what’s taking so long or some other sappy therapist notices me and sends me back.  Meanwhile, Margaret continues stuffing her face with chocolate and absolutely no recollection of me or our painfully recent interaction.  I wonder if she gets free therapy, I think.  She should.

————————

Same thing happens today. Rachel comes out ten minutes later while I’m still waiting patiently, or so it seems.

“Come on back Melissa.  Sorry Margaret didn’t let me know you were ready.”

“She never does,” I responded.

Her room smelt of chili and all I could think of was her slamming her food right before our session. I snickered a little.

“Usually when people skip a session they never come back, that’s why I wasn’t expecting you.”

Girl you don’t have to explain lunch to me, I thought.

“Well I tried calling (lie), but the phone is always busy (truth) and there’s no answering machine (truth).”

“I’m just glad to see you here now Melissa.  How are things? It’s been a couple of weeks since we last met.”

“I’m ok.  Just working a lot.” Jesus, it’s like talking to a complete stranger.

“Have you been in contact with your ex?”

“No (truth).  I have been just focusing on working and getting used to being alone.”

“How are you feeling about being alone?”

“Um, I guess how everyone feels about being alone…Bored.  Seeking attention in all the wrong types of men, or boys, I don’t know.”

She put her pen in her mouth, “What do you mean by the wrong types of men?”

“Oh, you know, the kinds with girlfriends, or wives, or emotional problems.”

She seemed excited, “What types of emotional problems?”  Fucking therapists.

“Not entirely sure what kind of emotional problems, but the kind that wrap their palms around your throat while orgasming and finally let go once they see your turning blue and begin to cry in your groin…Those types.”

She looked uncomfortable and stayed silent, so I continued, “I think I’m over that though, I was just lonely.”

She shifted in her seat gathering courage, “M-Melissa, that’s extremely aggressive behavior, I’m glad you are okay.  Did you report him? He could have hurt you.”

“Since when do cops give a shit about protecting women?  So no,  I didn’t report him,  I didn’t even get his name.”  She continued to stare at me in horror, so I continued again, “Don’t worry I won’t be seeing him again.”

She finally took a breath, relieved of my loose epiphany, “Well it sounds like you won’t do that again.  How is everything else?”

I rolled my eyes, “Ok I guess, I laugh still so that’s good.  I’m lonely, like I said, but I think I’m just processing.  It’ll go away or I’ll just become accustomed to the loneliness.”

When I think about it, I’m pretty sure I’m already accustomed to loneliness.  Me and lonely have been friends for a long time, too long.  An old childhood friend that I’ve never been able to shake.  The friend that you clean up bleeding outside the bar because of their own stupidity.  An old childhood friend that you know, if you had met as an adult, you would have never given the time.  But because lonely and I have been friends for so long and know each other like the back of our own hands, we keep each other around.  Bad choice as an early childhood friend, lonely.  I wonder why I still get shocked with being alone, I guess there’s different levels.

“Have you been having any thoughts about hurting yourself lately?

Annoyed, I snapped back into our session,”I told you before, I’ve always had thoughts of suicide but I’m not going to do it, pretty sure those days are over.”

I’m too numb to kill myself.  I actually prefer feeling it.  I can feel comfort in loneliness sometimes, it is just more in gray scale rather than color.  Like I’ve accepted this destiny, like the calm right before drowning after all the pathetic flailing.

“Have you been wanting to contact your ex?”

Again, I snapped back to our session, “No (lie).  I just know that I can’t (truth).  It has been years of us torturing each other.  These two and a half months are the longest we’ve gone without speaking.  I’m okay with it, I understand that our relationship will never work and I forgive myself (truth).  Being lonely is worth it, if it means I don’t have to be with him.  I know what I need out of a lover and I know he’s not it and so does he.  There’s no point for us to be in contact, when in the past I didn’t think that.  I always thought there was a reason we should stay in contact.”

She looked proud, “Well you certainly seem more confident about this than the last time I saw you.  You were still upset with the outcome and with yourself.”

“Oh, I’m still upset with the outcome but not with myself.  I know neither of us did anything wrong, we just aren’t right for each other.”

“This is a very healthy realization and step for you Melissa. This is our last session, so what now for you?

She thinks she’s accomplished something, this simple bitch, “Hmm, well I guess just keep going as usual, trusting myself and my intuition.  Not letting relationships dictate my happiness. I feel stronger, lonely but strong.  I don’t regret my decisions and my progress in the last three months.”

She smiled, “Well I think you will do just fine in life Melissa.”

I fake smiled at her, “Well I think you will do just fine in your life as well Rachel.”

She stood up, “I have a survey that I’d love for you to fill out and you can begin sessions with me again in January if you like.”

I gathered my things, “For sure I will check it out after the holidays (lie), good luck in your career (truth).

I walked out of my last session feeling relieved and lonely, yet confident in my decisions to move forward in my new life.

When I got back in my car I turned my phone back on.

A text from my ex…”This might sound crazy, but I really want to have sex with you.”

“Come over,” I replied.

Tarot Bully

It was New Year’s Eve.

“Mom, just pick a card!”

She looked terrified.

“It’s just tarot, you can make whatever you want of it.”

She looked away from me, nose high, “I don’t want to, it’s just not my thing.”

“Well it’s kinda my thing. Don’t you want to step out of your box for a moment and try something different?”

“Mel, I don’t know why you stopped coming to mass, you know you can be forgiven.”

I sighed, ” I don’t need to be forgiven.”

“I’m just saying with all the men and the drinking, it’s not healthy for a girl your age. You should be finding a good husband, planning children. You don’t have as much time as you might think.”

“What about me screams husband and children? Besides, I’m a lesbian!”

Her mouth dropped, “Are you a lesbian?”

“Mom, no, I’m not! But what if I was? You could have really offended me.  That was fucked up how far your mouth just hit the floor.”

She relaxed a bit in her seat, “You know I would love you no matter what, right?”

“I know. Now just pick a damn card.”

“I told you I don’t like to play with this dark stuff.”

“It’s not dark. You do realize there are different forms and avenues for spirituality don’t you? Now, you spent my whole life shoving yours down my throat. It’s time for you to take a crack at mine.”

She hesitated and pulled a card. The devil. God damnit of course. The absolute worst card a god fearing woman could pull. She gasped and I began laughing hysterically. I couldn’t help it.

“I told you I didn’t want to pick a card Mel! Why did you have to push me so hard? This does not align with my faith!”

She stormed out and I still couldn’t stop laughing as I reached my hand for hers.

“Mom, you really think your god is that petty? Let me explain the card!”

The bedroom door slammed and I heard a muffled, “Fuck off!”

“Well that certainly didn’t go as I planned,” I mumbled to myself while pouring us two glasses of wine. Still giggling, I sheepishly snuck into her room.

She accepted the wine and we both shared a good laugh. Nothing more satisfying than hearing your mom awkwardly say “fuck.”

“Leave your Wife”

“Hey Mel.”  

You whispered in my ear from behind, I was alone at the bar writing.

I didn’t turn around.  

I shut my eyes and all our memories flashed quickly,  emotions tagged along.  

Excitement, fear, despair, resentment, longing.

I opened my eyes and reached for your hand over my shoulder.

Your touch, a wave of thick honey running through my body.

I rested my head over our bound hands.

Still.  I hadn’t turned around.

I almost didn’t want to, I almost couldn’t.

Years waiting, my eyes began to water and tears ran down my knuckles onto yours.

You immediately reacted and hugged me from behind.

I was dreaming,  I had to be dreaming.  I’ve seen this one before.  

Surely, all of this time living with lingering lost love was a reverie of my imagination.

I didn’t wake from this dream, it wasn’t a dream.

Still I hadn’t turned around.

Where have you been?  You hugged me tighter.

We met by chance as adolescents. You instantly illuminated the pieces of myself that were the hardest to see, especially at that age.  

I adored you.

I was always codependent with those that never seemed to fit the bill and as we grew we saw each other in passing with other lovers.  

The last time we saw each other you demanded that I tell you to leave your wife.

We had spent the summer together while she was away and fell in love again.

Once, you pleaded, only once

I couldn’t.  

I needed you to make that jump for yourself. 

You didn’t

and you resented me for not telling you those seemingly simple words,

“Leave your wife. I want to be with you.”

I’d spent years trying to ward you out of my heart.  

Sage, meditation, writing, drinking, begging,

it never worked.  

Some months easier than others

but still always had you floating in my dreams, my awake, my everything.

I touched my mouth to your hand and inhaled.  

You smelled the same as you always did, even when we first met.

Soaked with tears, I gripped your hand tighter

Still, I hadn’t turned around.

I almost didn’t want to, I almost couldn’t.

Years of reserving this abject space in my heart for you, I took a deep breath and began to turn around.

I woke up.  

Silence.

Dawn.

Birds chirping and I could still smell you and without a thought I said aloud,

“Leave your wife.  I want to be with you.”

My husband rolled over, eyes wide, “What did you just say?”

Scotch

My head pounded from the scotch when he called me at dawn.

I wished it were one of those mornings that I woke still drunk, thinking I’d fooled the booze.

Not today.

“I’ve fallen in love with someone,” his voice was deep and stern.

As if this hangover couldn’t get worse.

I thought about rather than hearing him say anything about love, especially when it didn’t include me, I’d rather feel his humming between my legs.

That might really cure this slicing pain in my brain.

There’s almost nothing a little head can’t fix when a man eats pussy like a lesbian.

I moaned to the thought.

“Come over and get in my bed,” I responded.

After all, it was my last chance of swaying this lover from making the biggest mistake of his life; never getting to sleep with me again.

He took a deep breath, “I just told you, I’m in love.”

“Yes and I just told you to come over and get in my fucking bed.”

He hung up the phone and I knew he was on his way.

I didn’t even get up to wash the scotch seeping through my pores.

I wanted him to ingest my exact state.

He always did love the most disgusting parts of me.

When he arrived, I sat up on my knees and began to undress him touching my mouth to every part I exposed to air.

I inhaled, he smiled.

He grabbed my knees and flipped me over while running his hand up my back and tongue down my ass.

I’ve never been the emotional type during sex, but thinking about this particular tongue belonging to another woman made my eyes burn.

After all, it had been three years of being blessed with his mouth when mine wasn’t on someone else’s.

The others never compared.

He lifted his head from between my legs, “I’m getting married.”

I leaned over the side of my bed and threw up.  He wiped the vile from my cheek and I smiled, “She’s a lucky woman.”

“She’s no you.” He smirked and continued until I orgasmed.

 

 

Crystal Store Tyrant

We grew up catholic for a chunk of my childhood which fortunately ended after my mom slept with our priest. Due to guilt and some loose traditions that still have their ways with my family, a few of my siblings still baptize their children in the catholic church.

My oldest brother called and asked me to be my niece’s godmother. Being the atheist shit head that I am, I accepted out of honor and pure irony.

Traditionally, godparents assume responsibility for the child’s religious education.

Traditionally, godparents are to care for the child if something tragic were to happen to the parents.

If either tradition still resonated with my brother, I highly doubt I would’ve been his first choice or any choice for that matter.

A day before the baptism, I went on a venture to find my niece a suitable gift.

Traditionally, the gift should symbolize the child’s dedication to the catholic faith, such as a bible or hideous cross necklace.

Because there was no chance I was going to buy any of that religious shit, I decided to visit the other side of the spiritual spectrum, the crystal store.

When I walked in, the witchy girl with smeared eye makeup behind the counter twitched her eye at me, “Hi.”

I hated this store already.

As I looked around, the clerks stare followed me as if I were to steal something. Her intuitions not too far off from my usual tendencies.

An old homeless man walked into the store shortly after, where she focused all of her shitty attention, “Sir, you need to leave.”

He walked up to the register, “I was just coming in to see if I could get some water for my jug, it’s really hot outside.” He placed an empty gallon jug on the table.

She stared at the jug in disgust, as if he’d placed a steaming pile of shit before her eyes.

“Sir, you need to leave or I’m going to call the cops. You’re making me feel threatened in my sacred space and I need you to respect that.”

He looked at her confused and grabbed his bottle, “I’m sorry, I don’t mean to make you feel threatened, I’m just really thirsty. I’ll ask another store.”

I grabbed the man’s arm as he was walking away and turned to the girl, “Wait a minute. Seriously? I don’t know shit about spirituality but this should be that place and you should be that person. It’s a hundred fucking degrees out there. Is it that big of a deal to just go grab him some water from the faucet?”

She whipped her head back at me, eye twitching again, “No! I cannot just go get him some water! I’m the only one here and I can’t just walk in the back with you two up here.”

I laughed, “Okay well I have an idea. How about we walk outside, you lock up and we’ll wait while you grab him some water. Just so you can be sure that we don’t steal anything from your store.”

Annoyed, she reached her two dainty fingers out for his water jug, “Fine.”

The man and I walked outside the store. I reached in my purse and pulled out two cigarettes, lit both and handed him one, “Hey man, I’m sorry about this chick. I mean I’m sure you have to deal with assholes like this all the time, I’m just sorry about that.”

He nodded his head taking a drag from the cigarette, “It’s not your fault, I can see why women feel threatened by me. Men don’t necessarily have the best track records when it comes to violence against women and I’m sorry about that.”

I nudged his arm and we smiled at each other, “It’s not your fault either.”

Carefully making sure not to touch the man, the girl awkwardly handed him back his jug “Let’s not make a habit of this.”

He nodded at me, “Thank you ladies very much.”

I nodded back.

I was ready to get my gift and get the hell out of the store. To be honest, I didn’t even want to spend my money in such a place, but I was running short on time.

“Do you have any type of prayer beads similar to a Rosary?”

She rolled her eyes, “We have mala beads. Rosaries were actually stolen from the Hindus.”

I laughed, “ ‘Stolen’? That’s an interesting choice in word. Not adapted or inspired. So many words in this world and you choose ‘stolen’. Are you trying to sell items in this store or do you just enjoy insulting your customers?”

She shifted her shoulders. “Well I don’t expect you to know where mala beads originate from but yes, the ‘rosary’ was adapted from the Hindu prayer beads.”

I laughed again, “That’s much better. Now you know, I despise organized religion, and if I happened to be a die-hard catholic, I might’ve been offended by your poor choice of words, but I’m not, just your shitty attitude. Now please direct me to these ‘mala’ beads’.”

She pointed.

I saw a huge amethyst from the corner of my eye, “How much for that beast of a rock?”

She snickered at the thought of me buying the rock, “That ‘rock’ is expensive. That ‘rock’ is an amethyst geode and it’s $800.”

Not breaking eye contact, I walked over, grabbed the amethyst, and slammed it on the table, “Fuck the mala beads, I’ll take the rock instead.”

—————

Around three in the morning, I put the rock in my passenger seat, buckled it tightly, and headed back to the crystal store.

I parked my car a few blocks away near the creek and launched the $800 “amethyst” through the front window of the store.

No alarm.
Fucking hippies.

I jumped through the window and opened the register with the key that was left in the drawer.
Fucking hippies.

I grabbed exactly $866 out of the register for the rock, $200 for the hell of it, and stole their most expensive “mala” beads.

When I was heading back to my car I saw the same homeless man from earlier watching me from the river.

I ran over with a huge smile and handed him the $200. We shared a quick laugh and by the time I got back to my car, he was gone.

My niece looked adorable the next morning at the ceremony wearing her brand new “mala” beads.

Lord, hear our prayer.

Xanax Mom

I wasn’t surprised when I heard she burnt down the house.  She’s been on Xanax for as long as I can remember.  I sat in the waiting room while they looked up her room number, she only suffered minor injuries.  My neighbor saw smoke and carried her out of the house before it completely went up in flames.  I rubbed my finger along the scar on my shoulder. One of the few visible battle scars from being on the front lines of her addiction.

My mom, typical baby boomer, believed to her core that her and my dad would stay together forever.  Same old story, she gained some weight after having us and couldn’t seem to get back to her once slim, childless body.  They grew apart while raising kids and he chose a woman that was twenty years younger and untainted by the stress that comes with children.  She was completely devastated. She had devoted her life to being his housewife and raising the kids and he had made up his mind.  All my brothers and sisters had fortunately escaped and it was just me and my mom for about four years.

Shortly after he left, she started having trouble breathing and the doctor prescribed her Xanax for anxiety and that was how it all started.

When I was twelve I tried to flip my body around an iron bar of an old trailer while playing outside.  The bar snapped and crashed down onto my mouth, smashing my head against the concrete and knocking  me unconscious.

I woke up choking on my own vomit. I  stumbled back to my house with ears buzzing and blurred vision.  I could see blood splashing across the leaves along my path.

When I got home all the doors were locked.  I banged on it a couple of times, nothing.  I leaned and looked through the living room window and saw my mom, face down on the couch.   I banged on the window, still nothing.  Xanax, you son of a bitch.

Annoyed and extremely concussed, I grabbed the rock bunny statue sitting by the stairs and launched it through the window.  Not to my surprise, and yours as well if you are familiar with Xanax, she still didn’t wake up.

I climbed through the broken window catching my shoulder on a sharp piece of glass.  Hence the scar.

I shook her as hard as I could, dripping blood all over the couch and onto her clothes. “Mom!  Wake up!”

Her eyes rolled behind her skull a few times before finally focusing on my face.  She screamed and jumped up off the couch and rushed me into the bathroom.  She grabbed a few tiny pieces of toilet paper and put it over my mouth and shoulder.  They both soaked immediately. “Mom, I’m bleeding like crazy alright!  I need a little more than a fucking cotton ball?”  I was beginning to panic after seeing how much blood was pouring down the back of my neck, mouth and now, shoulder.

She swayed against the wall, “Honey, wha–wha happened?  We have to get you to the hospital.” She was nodding off again.  She caught a glimpse of the back of my head and fainted as soon as she saw the blood spilling out.  Probably from shock, but mostly from the Xanax.

I ran into the kitchen, filled a pot full of ice water and threw it on her face. As always, worked like a charm.  She sloppily grabbed the sink and raised herself up.  I was starting to feel even more light headed and I threw up again on the bathroom floor. I wrapped my arm and head with a few shirts I found, they soaked immediately.

“Mom, please, we have to go to the doctor, I don’t know how to stop the bleeding.”

Nodding off, she murmured, “Okay honey, juss needa find my keys.”

I smacked her back awake, “Mom, wake the fuck up, you need to drive!”

She stumbled into the hallway and dumped her purse all over the floor and began laughing.  “I know they are ssomewhere in here.”

I grabbed the keys off the table and threw them at her.

She gulped and brushed her hair out of her face pretending, and failing completely, to look sober, “Okkay, good yea thas was what I was saying, les go.”

I somehow managed to get her in the drivers seat and before I had a chance to get to the other side, she backed down the driveway and into the neighbor’s mailbox.

I ran down to the car and pushed her over to the passengers seat and climbed into the drivers seat.  She laughed, “Whoah how did that happen,” and passed out again.

I had never driven before and I could barely see over the steering wheel but felt confident I could get there.

Remarkably, we made it to the hospital, which was only a few miles away and I parked in the drop off area.  I saw a wheelchair by the door and figured I would use to get my mom inside without falling all over the place.  Right when I reached for the wheelchair, the earth flipped upside down and I hit the floor.

I don’t remember much between fainting and the stitches.  They made me stay in the hospital over night.  The hospital assumed my mom was responsible for my injuries and put her in jail after she attacked a nurse over the accusations.  I cringe thinking about how the events might have unfolded after I fainted.

The next morning they had a piteous counselor come talk to me about what happened.  I assured her that it was all an accident and that my mother was having a hard time.  I called my neighbor, whose mailbox my mom had hit, to pick me up from the hospital.   Same neighbor that saved my mom from the fire.  What a fucking Saint this guy.

I ate peanut butter and jellies for a week until they released my mom from jail and then I ate peanut butter and jellies for 3 more years until I reluctantly moved out.  I couldn’t take it anymore.

Like I said, I wasn’t surprised she burnt down the house. She’s been on Xanax for as long as I can remember.  Ever since my dad left.  Fuck a partner that leaves you for someone twenty years younger.  Fuck a man that leaves a good woman that sacrificed her career and body for a family.  I guess thats why you should never put all of your eggs in someone else’s basket. Hide a few in your fucking underwear drawer or something.  Better yet, weave your own damn basket.

 

 

 

“Pro-Life” Crack Head

“Rae are you listening?  It’s procedure that we have an answer to this question.” Her hair was tight, she looked exhausted in her wrinkled scrubs.  Crocks, she was wearing crocks.  Nurses choice for comfort.  Nurses need as much comfort as possible I thought, they have hard jobs.

I had completely zoned out.  I snapped back to the question and shook my head yes.

She began writing in her notes.  “Very well, that is what we needed.  You’re strong sweetie, strongest sixteen-year-old I’ve seen.  I understand you don’t have your parents consent.  Do you have a signature from the judge?”

I looked at my oldest sister Ann.  She took it out of her purse.  She was always the most responsible out of all of us girls.

“Alright, the procedure you have chosen is dilation and extraction due to you being around 26 weeks….”

I faded out again. I figured my sisters would nudge me if there was anything important I needed to answer.

Four weeks ago I was told in Texas that I was too far along to have an abortion.

“Honey, we do not facilitate abortions past twenty weeks in this state.”

“Fuck,” I bit my lip hard and tasted blood, “Wait, in THIS state? What’s the closest state that will?”

The lovely Little Rock, Arkansas. I’m being sarcastic.  Abortions past twenty weeks were legal there I just had to plead my case to a judge.

I called Ann once, twice, she finally picked up the third time.

“This better be good Rae.  I am in the middle of a shift and—“

“I’m pregnant.  I need to get an abortion and I am too far along to get one in Texas.  Arkansas is the closest place.”

Not skipping a beat, she sighed, “Alright, I’ll pull out a credit card.  We can put everything on there and you can make payments to me.  Sound good?  I have to get back to work I’m drowning in patients.”

All three of my sisters stopped whatever they were doing that week and picked me up from the small town I was living in and drove me to Arkansas.

“She doesn’t even look pregnant.”  Ann, driving, turned around to look at my stomach.

“Ann watch the fucking road!”  Lynn had a fear of car accidents since she was a kid.  Fear of a lot of things actually.

“Yea but look at her tits!  Mine are still bigger.” Marie grabbed her own while visually comparing them to mine.

Ann looked at her in disgust. “Marie why does everything have to be a competition to you? Your pregnant sister? Jesus, we all know you have the biggest tits and the best body.  Everyone agree? Yes?  Let’s move on.”

Marie smiled and winked back at me from the front seat.

Ann and Marie were the oldest and closest in age and completely different in every way imaginable.  Ann followed the straight path and Marie liked to fuck the straight out of anything she could find.  They are both stubborn, actually all four of us are really stubborn, so there’s that.

Ann looked at me through the review mirror.  “Seriously though, how did you not know that you were pregnant?  Did you feel sick?  I mean you don’t look pregnant but you definitely look like you’ve  gained some weight.”

“Mainly in her tits!”  Marie started to laugh and slapped my other sister Lynn on the knees.

Lynn rolled her eyes, “Will you bitches just shut the fuck up before I jump out of this moving car.  She didn’t know she was pregnant alright? Leave her alone!”

My sister Lynn was always trying to protect me.  I once watched her take a beer bottle to a guy’s head for grabbing my ass at a party.  She is also just naturally emotional and feisty.  We shared a room most of our childhood.  I usually don’t allow her to do so much talking for me but I didn’t mind this time.  I was exhausted.

We went straight to the clinic when we arrived.  There was a group of religious protesters standing outside of the facility screaming. Disgusting photos, bibles, megaphones, you name it these fucking scum bags had it.  I felt nauseous and threw up a little in my mouth.  My sisters grabbed my arms, rushing me past the group.  I swallowed the vomit.

One women, ex meth addict, face covered in scabs and black teeth seething at my existence got in my face, “God will forgive a slut little girl, but he won’t forgive a murderer!”  I didn’t break eye contact.  She was spitting all over my face, I didn’t wipe it.

Lynn pushed the woman out of my face.  “Bitch, I will kill you if you get close to my sister again, I promise you that!”

The woman began laughing hysterically and Lynn began walking towards the woman.  Marie hooked Lynn’s arm and yanked her back towards us.

Ann shoved Lynn towards the clinic, “Lynn chill out.  The last thing we need right now is you fighting with some useless drug addict.  Let’s go.”

“Ugh fucking crack head,” Marie patted Lynn on the back and they smiled at each other. Ann smacked both of their arms.

The door was metal with bullet holes all over it.  It was locked which made sense considering the bullet holes.

Ann pressed the doorbell.

“Do you have an appointment?”

Ann got close to the speaker, “Yes, for our sister Rae.”

“Ok, I will buzz you in.  Keep your hands in the air as you walk in and the security guard will search you.”

Lynn lifted her pant leg and showed us her knife, “What?  I always carry this bad boy.”

Ann looked annoyed, “Go put it in the car you idiot.”

I looked back at the protester woman while she paced back and forth on the street yelling something I didn’t feel like understanding.  The door opened abruptly and the guard shuffled us in quickly.  He searched our waste belts but not our legs.  Lynn smiled.

It was a two-day long procedure.  After the first appointment we headed to the court house to see the judge.  She was a strong southern woman with a stern disposition.  She sat at a large wooden desk that towered over my tiny seat.

She gave me a quick scan and sighed, “Why are you here?”

Lynn in a sassy tone answered for me, “She needs an abortion and she doesn’t have permission from our mom and we don’t talk to our dad.”

She put her hand up at Lynn, leaned in and looked at me closer, “Have you thought this through young lady?  I mean as much as a girl your age possibly could?”

I could feel Lynn’s rage, she has always hated authority, she uncomfortably shifted her shoulders. Ann gave her a strong nudge.

I nodded at the judge.

She looked confused, “Why didn’t you just get this done in Texas?”

Ann, respectfully butted in, “Ma’am she is too far along to have it in Texas.”

The judge looked my sisters up and down irritated, “Can you ladies step outside for a moment.  I want to talk to her alone.”

My sisters distrustfully shuffled out of the room and closed the door.

She leaned back in, “What’s really going on?  How did you not know you were over twenty weeks pregnant?  You should be ashamed of yourself.”

I took a deep breath, “I have been in bed for months. My boyfriend doesn’t let me leave the house.  That is why I didn’t realize I was pregnant, I thought I was getting fat.  When I try to leave he threatens to kill himself and he has tried a few times.  He’s abusive, he’s a sex addict, he’s a piece of shit and I can’t be connected to him for the rest of my life. I was also taking a lot of pills so who even knows if the baby is healthy. Honestly, It’s this or I jump off a fucking cliff.”

She signed the paper, I got up and walked out.

My sisters jumped up from their seats as I walked past.

Marie grabbed my arm, “Did she sign?”

I handed Ann the paper.  They all let out a gasp of relief.

As we walked up to the clinic the next day, the same protester stood in front of the door screaming, “God will punish you for the rest of your life.  God will hate you and you will pay for your sins.  God does not forgive murders!”

Ann under her breathe coached everyone, “Just keep walking, she is mentally unstable, Lynn don’t do anything stupid.  Marie just slide past her and press the button.”

Lynn put her head down and squeezed the shit out of my hand.  It was taking everything in her to not beat the shit out of this woman.  Marie stepped in front and casually bumped the woman out of the way of the door bell, “Outta my way cunt.”  When the door opened the guard looked annoyed, “Kaylee you know you are not supposed to be on this side of the street.  Get back over there before I call back up.”

She backed up a bit, tripping over the curb, “Tommy, YOU know you are not spose to be protectin these satan lovers!  Gramma taught you better!”

He slammed the door. Of course they are related, I thought.

The rest of the details after I don’t feel to be too important. The drugs helped a ton.  When I awoke from surgery Lynn was asleep next to me and Marie was reading me passages from a conspiracy theory book about the reptilian race.

Ann interrupted, “Marie, give it a rest.  She doesn’t need to wake up to that bull shit.”

“Bullshit?  You want to know what’s some bullshit?  The fact that we had to drive this far for our sister to get a fucking abortion because some world order reptiles want to be able to control us like sheep.” She put the book on my lap and walked out of the room.

Ann sat down next to me, “They gave me instructions for your recovery.  I already paid.  They said you are free to go when you are ready and they waived the counseling.  They didn’t think it was necessary.”

We heard screaming coming from the lobby.  Lynn jumped up.  Marie came running back in, “That fucking meth head got in and she has a gun.”

I slowly got up from my bed and began walking toward the lobby.  As they tried to stop me, the woman met us in the hallway, gun pointed at my head.  Her hands were shaking.  My sisters stopped and all of the screaming went silent as I continued walking towards her until my head was touching the barrel.

“Do it you fucking pussy.”  I stared into her pathetic, confused eyes.  She looked away.

Time sped back up and Lynn tackled me out of the way to the ground.  The woman lowered and dropped the gun to the ground.  Lynn and Marie helped me up.  I looked at Ann looking at the gun on the ground.  Ann picked up the gun and emptied the bullets.

The clinic including the guard, all watching at that moment, sighed in relief.  I didn’t because I had never seen this look in Ann’s eyes and I knew she wasn’t done. Fuck.  Sweet, smart, well put together Ann turned the gun around and cracked the woman on the nose with the handle once, twice and the third time the woman hit the ground. Ann jumped on top of her and continued hitting her with the base of the gun as blood sprayed out of her face and onto Ann’s.  She stopped for a minute and looked up at Lynn. Lynn smiled, bent over and tossed Ann the knife from her pant leg.  Ann pressed it to the woman’s neck, “Where’s your god now?” The woman gasped for air, spitting and drooling blood and broken teeth.

Everyone in shock, watched and waited.  Marie touched Ann’s back, Ann jumped.

“Ann, no.  That’s enough fun for today.”

Ann looked at me and I nodded.  She tossed the knife back at Lynn and wiped the blood from her face with her sleeve, “This bitch better not have any bloodborne pathogens.”

No one said a word as we walked out of the clinic and to the car.  Lynn, pleased, skipped past Ann and jumped in the driver seat, “I think I’ll drive psycho.”

We sat in the car for a second until we all collectively broke the silence.  It was the first time I’d laughed in months.