Mind traps

It sucks, to be locked inside your own head. There are no bars, no chains, nothing, really, to keep you shut away. But shut away, you are.

In my head, I scream for help, but, of course, no one hears me. In my head, I beg for help from the few visitors my body receives. My sister comes to visit every so often. Less so, now, than when I first got locked up. She tries, bless her heart, but she can’t stand to see me like this. It reminds her too much of her own troubles, I think. I want to tell her I know how she gets locked up, but I can’t. Besides, it’s not the same. Mine is my own head, hers is her husband.

My aunt and uncle come to visit, sometimes together, sometimes one or the other. My aunt sits and recounts every detail of her oh-so-perfect life, which my uncle dismisses on his visits. When they arrive together, though, it’s always tales of how much the outside world has changed, or how much it’s stayed the same. They never, on any visit, mention my parents. I suppose it’s how they try to help me.

About once a year, a reporter manages to get into the visitor’s queue, but they never last long, not once they figure out that I can’t really say anything about the accident. They always tell me they’ll be back, but they never come back. Not one.

My brother has never come to visit, though he sends flowers every week. Always daisies. They were Mom’s favorites, not mine. But he never paid attention to me, anyway. I suppose it’s sweet, the way he tries to cheer me up… and assuage his own guilt about never seeing me.

Mom and Dad are in my head with me. She chases me down, like she always has, but it’s my mind, so I know more hiding spots than she does. She’s getting closer, though. I thought I’d gotten rid of both of them a few months ago. It got really peaceful and quiet in here and I thought I might finally have a chance to break out. My sister was here, then. I think she noticed something, because she leaned forward in her chair and reached for me.

But then she called me by name. The name of my mother. And like it conjured the bitter old hag, Mom popped up, between me and my exit. So I fled back into the dark places of my mind. I heard her laughing. It echoed in my head, so loud I almost didn’t hear his whimpering. But I have to stay away from Dad, too. I can’t save him. Like he couldn’t save me.

 

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