At the times of my most poor mental health I withdraw into my head. I no longer see myself as attached to my material body or in fact the material world. People appear robotic and “other”. My thoughts become so loud they drown out external sounds. I get my thoughts screaming at each other. This was a piece of my A Level English Coursework in which I attempted to illustrate this utter detachment that had occurred before a previous suicide attempt. It is weird, wordy and different to my usual content but here it is….
It was the 21st of December and the darkened shop windows were lit only by the scattering of lights strung over the skinny frames of the dehydrated conifers. Laces tied, my shoes were looped around my neck and beating out of time to my stride against my chest. Though still not above ten degrees I was wearing only a cream skirt and summer blouse, the skirt of which was under constant threat of blowing up in an unexpected gust. When I reached the beach I placed my shoes down beside me and let my toes sink into the cool sand before making my way towards the water’s edge.
When I got there the white stampeding horses of earlier had calmed but the fierce burning of the cold was yet to be tamed. The now tranquil barrier at my ankles oscillated in the evening light throwing the dying sun’s rays into a frenzied dance upon my face. I looked down and noticed a woman staring back at me. Her features had been sculpted by sharp lines though they had not been drawn by laughter but by pain. Her lips had become a patchwork of scarlet fissures and the lingering remnants of a deep rouge lipstick accentuated by her permanent pursing giving her a general air of discomfort. She may have looked as if she was in preparation for a kiss or posing for a photograph but her cold eyes told a different story. I reached out to rescue her from behind the waves but as my hand touched hers she dissolved into a mess of muted colour.
I fumbled in the icy water trying in vain to retrieve her but all I found was one of my shoes. I turned to look down the beach and realised how far the sea had crept up the sands and swamped the beach and wiped away my footprints. The handful of wet sand I had found earlier inside the shoe was melting through my fingers and creating a satisfying splash as it hit the water. I followed its lead and slumped into the briny pool. With the water tenderly stroking me at the waist, at last I felt some protection from the overwhelming force of gravity and sat, wishing that the tides would take me with their next breath.
And she waited…
With her skirt now white in the moonlight billowing out around her she could have looked as if she was perched upon a cloud had it not been for the presence of a pale green carrier bag that skimmed its way along the shore. It may have been branded ‘environmentally friendly’ but someone had clearly failed to let the lonely sea-gull know as it attacked and shredded the plastic until it was wound a satisfactory number of times around its neck. Its demented shrieks would have surely been enough to warrant attention from someone had it not been for the buzz of the bass that spilled out from the busy night clubs and bars, a noise deafening enough for even the roar of the sea to be swallowed. The stars up above that should have speckled the darkness had been stolen by a layer of yellow cloud emitted from the large ominous lamp posts stood regimentally along the city’s many streets. Stripes of black interspersed the jaundiced outline, wheezed out by the factories close-by still coughing despite them sleeping.
And still she waited…
Her body was rigid with cold except for the occasional fit of shivers that engulfed her uncontrollably. The blue haze of her skin camouflaged her into the grey waters though the aura of pure clarity that surrounded her separated her from the transience of the rest of the city. Her long shadow was broken by the waves as the night drew on and the moon glided across the sky her shadow shortened and distorted into something barely recognisable. Her eyes glanced up into the dense blackness that separated the remaining stars and she wished that there was no light; nothing to torture her with her reflection in mirrors; no piercing gazes from those who she knows judge her; no shadows. Shadows turned those treasured stuffed animals into monsters and gave a sanctuary to the beasts under the bed. Shadows followed her her whole life taunting and bullying. They were always there to laugh when she fell and to push her back down when she reached for a helping hand. At the day of choosing she was assigned Lucifer as her guardian and his presence was now felt stronger than ever.
Suddenly she moved. She wandered into the waves and as she did she whispered ‘You can’t touch me now’ before she was swallowed into the watery depths.
I felt her take her final breath and I knew she was coming to be reunited.