The soft sound of blood dripping onto the floor had my entirely body paralyzed in fear of the implications of that terrible metallic tang that filled the air. My eyes refused to leave the small pool that had formed at the bottom of the tub. I did not – could not – raise my eyes to the source. My body shrieked in horror as I raised my eyes against my will.
It was her!
She had done this to herself. Paralysis turned to panic as my eyes passed over the still figure – too, still, she was far too still – and I dove into action. My mouth opened to scream for help even as my hands reached towards my pocket to get my phone.
I could smell it more than I could see it, and I didn’t think the smell would ever leave me alone.
I blinked owlishly at my mother from the hospital bed.
The shock of being alive hadn’t yet left me. After all the effort that had gone into ensuring I would depart this world into the next, I didn’t quite expect to wake up, at least not in this world. Truth was, apart from a minuscule part that feared waking up in the burning flames of hell, I’d thought I’d be erased from existence. No afterlife, with no consciousness to accompany any eternal fate.
Little did I know that I’d be found out before I could fully accomplish what I’d hoped to be my last task.
As I regained consciousness and heard the slight mumbling of voices around me, I had known. This was to be my fate now. I had made a decision expecting it go my way, and when it hadn’t…well, it was time face to face the music. Only, it made my ears hurt to the extent I lethargically raised my hand to them, checking to see if they were bleeding.
With a jolting realization, I looked down at the arm that was raised. It was covered with a pesky white bandage, and that was when I regained most of my senses. So, I really had done that. Then again, if I hadn’t would any of us be here?
“How could you, how could you do that to me, to your father!” I couldn’t detect any concern there. Anger, yes, quite a bit of disgust, mixed in with a little…fear?
She was afraid, but of what? With another bout of realization, I understood that it must have been her who found me. It made sense: she was always the first to come home after me. Absently, I thought of her reaction, then shook it away. Her shrieking had increased in both volume and pitch.
“How could you!” She repeated.
This time, I met her eyes. She had opened her mouth to say something but stopped mid breath when she looked at me.
“It wasn’t that hard,” I answered her, “On Thursday, I wrote all the letters. On Friday morning, I bought the blades. They were expensive, and sharp, mother, did you see how sharp they were?” she had always emphasized honesty, so it was all she would get today, “ I hope you didn’t throw them away, they could come in handy, especially now…” I trailed off in thought.
She gasped again, and got in my face, “Are you in your senses?”
The feeling of numbness left me, as bitterness took its place.
“I wish I weren’t,” I articulated each word with precision, slowly and carefully so she’d know I mean it, “I don’t want to be in my senses mother. I don’t want to be here, yet here I am! Do you think, that for one second I wasn’t serious about trying to –
I was interrupted, “Do you know what the rest of the family thinks? They’re all thinking why someone would go to such lengths merely for the sake of attention!”
My body shook from the ensuing laughter of that statement.
“Attention!” I gasped out amidst the fit of giggles, “You’d really think that of me?”
She didn’t say anything, but I watched her purse her lips as she always did when she tried to stop herself from saying something.
“Do you really think that someone would slit their goddamned wrists for attention?” I bellowed, “I don’t want to live anymore, mom! I don’t want to exist, and the last thing I want is attention! I don’t want to be alive, I want to die!”
I kept saying it so she would get it into her head, but instead, she turned around and came back with doctors.
“It’s safe to sedate her before we move her to the psych ward,” I heard them say through the sound of my chanting, and I instantly stopped.
“No, no sedation, no psych wards,” it was the closest I would get to begging, “I don’t want any of that, please!”
A nurse came towards me, and I tried to get away, but I was still weak. They easily subdued me, and I felt a prick on my arm. It took a few seconds for the drugs to take effect. The doctor left, writing on the charts. The nurse stayed behind with my mother, standing over me.
As my eyes got heavy, I could feel someone caressing my hair.
“You’re just sick…we’ll fix you. I swear we’ll fix you.”
I can recall going in and out of consciousness, lights moving overhead and…more movement before darkness consumed me.