I’m lying on the ground thinking about just how much I hate everyone and everything. When I am trying to sneak off to the dorms or just getting an hour alone for self-pity and a few muffled sobs, the guards are everywhere. Not today. Not on this bright Saturday just before tea.
I have not thought this through. The plan had been to injure myself but not too critically. Enough to get the administration off my back, enough to scare my mother. This had become a matter of pride, in that all of mine had been chipped away to nothing.
It spiraled out of control after the soap. The soap would work because it had to but it did not. I just got a sore throat and the runs for a whole night. So Saturday morning I leave class because just the sound of my classmates breathing is driving me insane. I head to the dorms still not sure I am going to do anything. The senior balcony is too high. If I want the last laugh I will need a working jaw.
The junior balcony is only two floors high but it will have to do. I jump, nothing breaks, dislocates, or even sprains. I could do better but I content myself with lying there and acting like I did do better. I’ve done it before and I was ten then. Oh the levels middle children will stoop to for attention.
The concrete is uneven and hard. Above is the balcony. The dorm wall on one side, flowers on the other. The flowers used to be pretty but are now gray and sick from dirty water coming down the drains. I’m waiting to be found. They will not call mom, not unless I am deemed mentally unstable. It’s too late when a guard finds me. The bells rings and everyone will know. Doesn’t matter, I have nothing left.
I was abandoned here. I am completely alone. Even my friends think I am a drama queen, it occurs to me that they may be right as I am loaded into the school van. The girl who comes with me sleeps in the bunk below mine. I want to hate her. She’s up at 3, loved by teachers and matrons alike, condescending to myself and the two other lazy bunk mates who share the cell with us. Two years from now she will be awarded ‘most helpful’ which rightly belonged to one of my friends.
I do not care that they find nothing wrong. I am breathing outside air. If I had anywhere to go I would run. I will live to try another day. The bitch does not even call me into her office to explain.
What is so special about high school that it has to be ‘toughed out’? I am in pain. How can she just toss that aside and live her life as though everything is fine? And what is wrong with these girls? There is so little good here but they find it in themselves to soldier on. I exist only for Friday. There is nothing but humiliation and bitterness. She is not coming. I will show her, I will show all of them.
I say I hate the school and they laugh. I know that it is not the same. They survive, I tuned it all out. Things are simpler now. My heart broke and then turned cold.
Wake up, comb my hair, on comes the uniform, last on are the shoes. I make my bed, go to class. Sit until it is over and do it again. Mom will never hear me scream or beg for anything ever again.
I lost something in that school. There isn’t a single article of clothing in my wardrobe that is red. I am always alone now. I am not over it, they lied every time they said that. If I had to do it again, I would burn it to the ground.