A few seconds pass with me lying there trying to focus in the silence. Then I feel the sound of it rounding the corner of the bed. The sound in my head of her nails clicking over the floor boards. A flash of her decaying body, her rotting hair laying in wait on the floor beneath me.
No, I tell myself, which means "that is not real and you know it".
I know what is causing this.
What is pulling back into the choppy water of my sister's death. Part of it is that I am standing too close to a friend who reminds me of my sister. I am wading in the water with her because she is struggling. Because there are children innocently playing in the surf of these quick-turn waters. Children I can't leave behind.
Part of it is my reaction to this is to run. And to run means pushing myself. Laying there in the dark I can feel the soreness from chasing a Boot Camp workout with a 6 mile run.
But just in case I'm wrong and her hand is about to reach up over the side of the bed I tunnel my way through the blankets over to BC. I lay with him for a few minutes but I can't fall back asleep.
I'll make coffee, I think. Reminding myself we are skiing today and we should both already be up.
I pause considering my options before choosing to roll over BC to avoid getting out on my side of the bed- the side where I imagine my dead sister's body is lying. Where I know it is not...but just in case it is.....
BC groans,"There you are."
"What?" I ask my barefoot touching the ground.
He repeats himself, "I said there you are."
"Yeah, sorry about that my side of the bed has issues this morning."
I make my way down stairs. Stand at the sink. A hundred memories of the time I spent under the murky waters of her death running out. BC has slowly ripped open and gutted the house. The landmarks are gone. Leaving the house looking like the belly of a giant whale. It is all gone, I tell myself. All of it....
I know I will never go all the way back there....but just in case I step back from the cupboard... just in case she is trying to reach out from under the sink and grab me.
I make coffee thinking about what a friend said last night.
"Stay in your own lane," he said over the phone. "Like swimming. If you don't stay in your own lane you're going to get kicked in the face. Stay in your own lane and take care of yourself."
Sometimes I think I didn't do a good job introducing myself to him when we met 7 or so years ago. There is a lot he doesn't know about me and my past.
One would be, I used to swim.
Years ago when I was trying to rebuild the muscles in my shoulder that were destroyed in a blunt force trauma. Ripped and torn from the bone when I thrown into a door frame with a enough force to do permeant damage to my right shoulder and knock me unconscious.
I stopped going to the pool because it was too hard to get and keep my own lane. The women at the pool were mean. Flat out aggressive bullies. They would jump into your lane and swim over you as if it was nothing. Working in pain and very little hope to for recovery, I never stood a chance against them.
I left the pool one morning never to return with a half used punch pass card and a shoulder that would never be right.
There are a lot of things about me that will never be right. But there are also a lot of things I wouldn't change.
Taming Venus, mlb
By November (2006), other small lapses in my mental state being to show. I had somehow come to believe her finger was in our vacuum and refused to change the vacuum bags. I could no longer sleep on my side of the bed. I had nightmares every night. I couldn’t walk through the house in the dark without worrying I walk into her rotting body. I thought I might wet the bed if I had to use the bathroom at night because I was convinced she was standing outside the bathroom window.
She was everywhere and I was nowhere to be found.
What truly lies beneath the grass of November? Below the dirt double bagged in a cheap coffin?