A peek inside of Emma's life.
|"No!" I cried out.
My eyes snapped open and I tried to take in my surroundings. I reached for the light switch because it was completely dark. Not even the moon shone tonight through my curtains like it usually did. The darkness had an eerie feeling to it and a shiver fought its way through my spine.
I flicked the light on and scanned the room. Everything was right where it was before I went to sleep. Nothing seemed to be out of place. My thudding heart began to calm once I realized that it was just another nightmare that woke me up.
I groaned out loud; breaking the silence in the room. Why did I have to always have nightmares? Is it normal to not remember when the last time you had a good dream was? Not to mention that it can't be just any nightmare like the one where you find yourself nude in class with everyone laughing at you. No, it always has to be about my sixteenth birthday; the day that ruined my life. It has plagued me for the past two years both in waking and in sleeping. I can never really get away from it.
As with any time that I think about that awful day, tears find their way to the surface and they begin to well up in my eyes. I rub furiously to stop them before they have a chance to spill over and run down my cheeks. I hate to cry. Tears solve absolutely nothing and they make you weak; and if there was anything that I hated it was to feel weak.
Getting rid of my tears, I glanced at the clock and noticed I had only been asleep for an hour. I sighed in frustration and sat up on the edge of the bed. It is only three in the morning, but I knew from experience that trying to get back to sleep any time soon would be useless. It’s been this way since I was sixteen. Two years haunted by nightmares has put an end to any sort of real sleep I’ve ever enjoyed. I can't even remember the last time that I got a full night sleep. My doctor tried me on sleeping pills for a while but they just made the nightmares even worse; very counterproductive in my opinion. Now, I just deal with the insomnia and take what comes from it. Caffeine has become a best friend of mine over these past two years.
Grabbing the edge of my chair, I pulled it closer to me and transferred into it, before making my way to the living room. TV is usually my go-to distraction. I've always appreciated how it can help you to zone out from reality for a little while. I was alone in the house, yet again, so there was no worry about keeping the volume down. I began flipping through the channels and a sigh escaped my lips when I couldn't find anything good to watch. Of course nothing good is ever on this early in the morning so I just turned it to a music channel. A thudding beat pounds throughout the room. I’m not really into this type of music, but the noise alone helps to drown out the unwanted thoughts in my head so I kept it on that channel.
Normally, I would read to occupy my mind, but I was just far too tired to throw myself into a book. I remember a time when I loathed a bedtime which forced me into hours of sleep and away from my exciting life as a social butterfly. What I wouldn't give for that again; for a time when my biggest concern was what I was going to wear to school. With the risk of sounding completely cliché, people are so naive to what they actually have until it is gone from them.
I hadn't realized how much time passed while I was lying on the couch until I heard my alarm going off in my room. I sluggishly got up from the couch and made my way back into my room.
Six-thirty… great that means I had thirty minutes left until I needed to leave for school. I went to my closet and grabbed my normal clothing- a pair of dark blue jeans, a grey tee, and a black hoodie. There was a time, which seemed like a lifetime ago, when I wouldn't be caught dead leaving my house in such dull clothing.
Things change; people change; nothing is permanent, I thought to myself. This has become my mantra of sorts and the new way I began to look at things.
Back at the night stand I grabbed my hairbrush and fixed my shoulder length blond hair until it was secure at the base of my neck. Some socks and a pair of converse make my usual outfit. There is a mirror directly in front of me which I normally tried to avoid because I did not like what I saw, but this time I took a few moments to just look at myself. What gazes back at me is someone who I don’t even really recognize. I no longer wear gorgeous and vibrant colors or perfectly applied makeup. Everything about me now is utterly plain and that’s how I prefer it.
Making sure that I have everything that I would need in my backpack, I headed out to the bus stop. Luckily for me, the bus stop was near the front of my house so there wasn't much of a way to go until I reached it to wait for the bus.
Another year of school isn't exactly what I wanted to be doing right now. If I had my choice, I wouldn't even be attending school anymore, but it is the only way to graduate. Chris would have wanted that. After the accident, I failed to complete my junior year because of the complications surrounding its aftermath. I had always been a great student before the accident; the classroom was my element, but it no longer holds that appeal for me. Before, where it was a social and academic gathering, it’s now just time wasted in hell; a purgatory of my own in some ways. Irony at its finest.
No longer was I the straight-A, all-star sport champion, golden girl. Instead I was the loner girl that everyone stares at with pity and distaste in their eyes. I figured that with time those annoyingly pitiful looks would fade, but they never did. I could still see those looks everywhere that I went and it really irritated me. Not only did I have to deal with my own demons, but I also had to deal with constant reminders of what I lost. As if my physical reminders weren't enough, I thought while my inner-self sneered.
The bus ride to the school passed in a blur, as it so often did; headphones firmly planted in my ears to drown out the thoughts that were swirling around in my head. The one thing about riding the bus to school was that my chair required the bus to have a lift and, well, we know how everyone loves to stare at the cripple. To think that most of the ones who now treat me like a leper used to be what I had considered friends. Boy, did I have an awakening once I returned to school in a wheelchair instead of on my two perfectly toned legs.
Adults always used to say how flaky teenagers could be when it came to friendship but I didn't honestly believe that until Rebecca, one of my childhood friends, spread rumors about me trying to kill myself that day instead of what really happened. Once that rumor started, many others started as well. The two most popular, besides Rebecca's, was that I did it for attention and that I caught Chris cheating on me so I flew into premeditated jealous rage. My mother, before she became nearly non-existent in my life, tried to explain to the townspeople what really happened. As if they would ever listen to the truth. Sadly, people tend to care about a good story rather than the truth.
Off of the bus and into the school as always, but this time I was brought out of my thoughts when someone hit me from the back. I turned around and saw none other than Ashley, my former best-friend.
"Watch where you wheel that thing, Crip," she sneered.
Hearing her now, you would never have guessed that she and I used to be like sisters. We were inseparable two years ago. Even though her words cut at me, I ignored her and turned back around to head for my locker. I had grabbed my schedule and locker information when I registered for school last week so I got to bypass the long lines that were centered in and around the office. Our school wasn't too large but fairly good sized with about a thousand students in all so you can imagine the lines that would create.
Locker 225A was thankfully on the bottom row since the normal sized lockers were split in half and I was able to easily get into it. I didn't really have anything to put away yet, as it was the beginning of the year, so I just left my extra folders there for now. I looked at my schedule and noticed that I had Mrs. Tokes English class first period. Unfortunately her class was on the second floor and the elevator was at the other end of the school. I really hated how crowded the hallways were in the mornings.
Sighing, I turned my chair around headed back to the front of the building, readying myself for the cluster of people ahead.
There was five minutes left until the bell would ring so I made my way into Mrs. Tokes’ class to find a good seat. Nobody liked to sit at the front, really, so I had plenty to choose from. Before the accident, I would always sit with my friends in the back, but now it wasn't as easily accessible and not to mention that I didn't have any friends that I hung out with anymore. I took the furthest seat on the right and waited for class to begin.
People were filing into the room in clusters and found seats by one another. Just as the bell rang, Mrs. Tokes, a sweet woman in her forties with red hair that reached her waist, came into the room and called attention to the class.
"Class welcome back to another year with me! This year we will be studying a variety of things but I want to try something new this year. This will be the first time I have ever attempted such a thing and I hope that it will be a success for all of us,” she said.
Mrs. Toke grabbed a box off of the floor and placed it on the empty desk next to me. She reached into the box and pulled out a stack of composition journals.
"These will be your personal journals and I want all of you to write in them daily. It can be about anything you want but I want you to express who you are in your entries. These journals will be for your eyes only although I will need to scan them every week to make sure you wrote in them. I will not read them because they are not meant for me. They are for you so that throughout the year you can remember the experiences, memories, and thoughts that have brought you to the place that you are at now. At the end of the year I would like everyone to write a short story, fictional or non-fictional, that relates to your daily entries." She gave us a smile and started passing out our journals.
Great. I could already tell that this year was really going to suck.