But I’ll Try…
They say I’m doing well.
I’m doing well.
What does that even mean? I looked it up: “in a good or satisfactory way,” or “in good health; free or recovered from illness”. I don’t want to be just good or satisfactory, and I’m not.
I’m not free, and I haven’t recovered. So no, I’m not doing well.
I want to be different. I want to do things the way the books told me. I want to feel the way he does, smile like he does. I want to have the same excitement I see in his eyes when he wakes up in the middle of the night and does the things I should be doing…while I stare at the foot of the bed and wonder what I did wrong. I want to love her, and I do. I just don’t like her. I don’t like what she’s done to me, even though he says he loves me as much as he always has. It doesn’t matter. None of it matters. I’m too tired to care, too tired to fall asleep but too exhausted to do my new job. Thinking about it makes me cry. Thinking of nothing makes me cry. I cry all the time, until my eyes burn, my throat is sore and my head throbs with guilt. Sometimes I get angry and shout at him, but he’s still here. He holds me while I push him away, until I’m too tired to fight and fall into his arms. When she cries I leave the room; it hurts to be around her, and it hurts to be away from her. The world wasn’t supposed to be this dark; this wasn’t what we planned and it isn’t what we want. He’ll leave me eventually, when he realises there’s no future for us; when I can’t fix myself and can’t explain what’s wrong. Why I feel this way. Hopeless. I feel hopeless. Helpless. I feel helpless. Well. I don’t feel it. I can’t even remember a time when I didn’t feel so heavy, so lost, a stranger in my own body.
“Hey,” he says, stroking our daughter’s hair as I stare through him and let the tears fall freely.
I look down at our baby, swathed in pink and lying in the arms of the woman who can’t bring herself to be the mother she deserves. She has his eyes – big and wide and full of life. I’m glad she got them from him; they’re what I fell in love with when I first met him. Her nose is a little button, her lips full with a little pout…and she has a little patch of fair hair on the top of her head – the same colour as mine. Everything about her is little. Innocent and pure and… ours.
It’s the first time I’ve held her in a week. Since I’d last had her in my arms and thought about ending my own life because I couldn’t bear the guilt of not wanting to hold her.
I don’t want to leave them.
I don’t want to be unwell, failing to cope and unstable.
I want us to be a family.
“You’re doing well.”
I’m not. We both know that.
But I’ll try.
With the stab of indifference rippling through me, I kissed her smooth forehead, closing my eyes and whispering my wish against her skin.
“I’m doing well.”
Rebecca Sherwin © 2016
Rebecca is a London born and bred mother, writer and psychology student. She is the author of summer romance, Second Chance Hero, and the psychological romantic-suspense series, Twisted. An avid reader and lover of stories that keep you guessing, Rebecca writes tales that will challenge your perceptions and toy with your emotions. Rebecca’s stories invite you to open your mind and dig deeper into the meanings of the lives of each and every character you meet. She entices you into their world – to feel with them, to grow with them, to love with them. She asks you to become a part of them and allow them to become a part of you. Rebecca would like to express her thanks to everyone who reads her stories, and would love to hear from you!
Thank you so much for taking part Ms. Sherwin!
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