Broken Glass

I am sweating, panting, as if I’ve just run a ten-mile, instead of waking up in bed. I feel parched and vaguely scared. I pick up the bottle of water next to my bedside, and gulp down water. Ten seconds later, I look at the bottle – it is empty. Horrified, I swallow in nervousness. I felt nothing. The water did not even touch my throat. I touch the front of my vest – did I spill it? My vest is clammy with sweat, but not wet. I get up, I unlatch my door and make my way to the water-cooler. Someone is standing there. I don’t have patience. I run to the bathroom two steps away. I open a tap, and devour the water, my feet freezing in the cold water spilling onto my feet and pajamas. My throat still feels parched. I cannot feel water. I feel desperate. What is it that my body wants?

I tug at my hair, I am frustrated, ready to cry. As I turn out, I see it at the windowsill. That. That silver animal, that most loyal friend. It’s an old blade, rusty. So much the better. The rusty ones hurt more. I look at it, and I look at my arm. I feel a little better. I move forward, and I pick it up. I place it on my left palm. Such a small little thing, and the only thing to provide relief. I look at it, and I imagine it grinding against my wrist, making a peculiar sound that only rusted blades make. I imagine the droplets of blood, and the terror they induce. How their smell paralyses me. How it fascinates me to destroy myself a little bit, a wee little bit. How it drives away every thought, every darn memory, because there is nothing to feel but blinding pain.

I remember all of that, and I want it. I crave it from the pit of my stomach to the edges of my fingers. I look at it, and agonizingly tortuous thoughts come to me. All those memories, the ones I block, they come to me. I need it. I need it now. I hold it between my thumb and forefinger, ready to strike.

I remember my promise, and I throw it away. It’s painful, doing this. I let out a small moan. I see it making its way to the drain in the pool of the water I tried to drink. This. My body wanted this. My mind wanted this. And I threw it away.

With my back to the wall, I sit down, and I hold myself – because who will? I wrap my arms around myself, and let me be. I cry and I rage. I let my nails dig themselves deep into my palms. I let the memories overtake me, as I watch the blade fall away. Each memory hits me with the force of a tsunami, and I fall down, lying helpless on the bathroom floor.

I wake up, shaking, with tears in my eyes.

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