Emily: Chapter Twenty

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CHANGE

Emily hated being alone in the still, silent house that should have been full of laughter and baby babble so she spent long hours in the park, trying to walk her sadness away. The fresh air did her good and some nights when she got home, she felt more like the old Emily. One evening, she bumped into someone she was least expecting.

“Oh my God, Emily! It’s been years!! Look what’s become of me!”, Leanne, now with hair as black as it was the day she was born, pointed at the small, spit-bubble blowing, baby boy she held in her arms.

Emily swallowed.

“I heard you were pregnant too? Already out and about without the baby? I wish I could get this one, off of me! Wish I was you!” Leanne continued giggling.

Emily looked at her for a long minute, her hands on her sagging belly. “I lost her…” she whispered. “Still wish you were me?” She was unfairly enraged with the happy woman standing in front of her.

“Oh! Oh my God! Emily, I had no…I’m so sorry. I…Emily, I’m…” Leanne stammered.

Emily dismissed her and turned the other way. The conversation had made her so uncomfortable, she was sick in a trash can on the way out of the park. She couldn’t handle another chance meeting like that. She wasn’t strong enough yet. She wondered if she ever would be. So, she gave up her walks in the park and remained within the confines of the house once more.

Emily had finally reached a stage when she felt ready to share her heavy load with Ethan, but it seemed as though she was too late. It appeared that he had found consolation in his research and didn’t need to talk to her anymore. He had thrown himself into his work and was spending long hours at his lab. He was hardly ever at home and whenever Emily tried to talk about their loss, he would quickly change the subject.

Emily made several attempts to bridge the gap that had come up between Ethan and her. Out of character, she initiated physical intimacy with him. If Ethan seemed like a man who didn’t think sex was important before, now, whenever she gave it a shot, Ethan would say he was too tired and head off to their bedroom to sleep leaving Emily alone with her thoughts again. His complete lack of interest in her made her feel worse about everything that had happened and finally one evening, frustrated and spiralling deeper into depression, she shouted, “I need a change. I think I’ll go to my parents’ place. Not sure for how long. I need to go.”

Ethan who had been on his way to the bedroom whipped around and said, “That’s a good idea. I think the change will do you good. You should leave as soon as you can. Do you need me to book your tickets?”

Emily shook her head and clenched her fists. She would not let him see how much his apparent indifference was affecting her. She watched him walk into the bedroom and cried softly as he closed the door. She thought about staying where she was and wondered whether Ethan would be forced to talk to her eventually if she remained in their flat. On the other hand, if she wasn’t there Ethan would possibly miss her and want her again.

There was no other way. She didn’t want to go. She needed to go. She had to get out of the house that had once held so many happy dreams.

The next day, she packed the few clothes that still fit her in a duffel bag and took the bus home.

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Another chapter today. If you’re new here and what to know what’s going on, please click here.

UBC: Post 24

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Of love, loss and peace

Once, you were so desperately in love you were willing to fight even the army of the Gods if they tried to keep you apart. Once there was a happiness in your life that truly knew no bounds. Once you couldn’t wait for night to pass so that you could gaze upon that face again. Once you could spend hours listening to that voice and you truly began to believe it had the soothing quality of angels. Once every touch sent a current down your being. Once you believed that together, life would be a dream. Once…

Now, nearly a decade later, you wake up feeling nothing for the person lying in bed next to you, except perhaps a strong distaste…the kind that no known product made by man can change. Now, you feel lost in a darkness so deep that to you, it seems like even if you spent an entire lifetime trying to claw your way back to the light, you would still not be able to escape it. Now, that face has become one you would give anything to avoid seeing for it never smiles at you. Now, that voice sets your teeth on edge for the only words that are heard are fighting words. Now, that touch makes you recoil, for there exists no true affection in it. Now, the dream that once seemed so certainly the only reality has been lost for a long time and turned into a nightmare from which there seems no awakening. Now…

You wonder how the love just disappeared and on really bad days, you question whether it was ever there at all. You wonder if it was the little things that you stopped doing for each other. If it was just you who changed so much. If there was something you could have done differently or if you would do things the same way if you were given a second chance. You can’t really understand how you have gone from being near inseparable to just two individual entities in space and time with nothing keeping you together except a piece of paper that you once signed so joyously together in front of witnesses to seal your union.

You sit. You hold your head in your hands. You shed tears. You let them fall till all you feel is emptiness. In that emptiness you realize that you have to make a hard decision. One of the most difficult in your life. One that will change everything. But you know that although change is not always easy and can be so hard it can break you, it needs to be made. Change must come. Without this change you will never be able to pick up the pieces and rebuild a stronger you. A better you. A wiser you. So, you make the decision and you know this change…this choice…it’s for the best in the end.

Yes, you are alone now…but at least you’re no longer lonely. You’re by yourself today…but at least you’re finally at peace.

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Written in response to “Start a New Life” #StartANewLife for housing.com. Please have a look at their video:

To the Men…

paper-535969_1280Dear Men,

It’s international women’s day today. A day when the world acknowledges women and their pivotal role in society. A day when we can stand up and proudly say that we are strong, brave, independent, competitive and fierce – not the weaker sex but equals with you! But, as we celebrate what should be the turn of the tide, why are you doing your absolute best to crush our spirit?

Men, in your seats of power, you pass laws that offer more protection to cows than women and still think you are fit to talk of progress. You do not dole out punishment to those of your gender guilty of marital rape. Would you force such “duty” on your own wives and daughters? There is no place of refuge or solace for women who have been tortured, physically and mentally, by other men like you. Do you not remember that you made a vow to protect your wife when the two of you made your way around the sacred fire? How can you not see that the weeping woman could be her? There is no justice for women who are victims of heinous crimes but, if that wasn’t bad enough, you give her no sympathy either, finding ways to pin the blame on her instead! Like the way she is dressed or how late in the evening she is out or that she is with a male friend should make a difference when it comes to her safety… Are you not afraid that one day that nameless faceless woman could easily be your daughter? Things have deteriorated so much that it is now unsafe even for our children to play outside because there are those of your “superior” gender with an insatiable hunger for the unthinkable. How do you sleep at night?

Men, will you ever see us as your equals or will we forever be just objects that you can use and discard?

Men, do you not see that because of acts so brutal, so cruel and so barbaric committed by some of your gender, all of you are looked at with suspicion and distrust? That unless you change your attitude, more incidents like the ones that have already shocked the world will continue to take place? That we must teach our sons to treat our women respectfully? Do you not see that the drastic, immediate change should have taken place yesterday?

Dear Men, I was angry…once. Now,  I am just disappointed.

Thank you for giving us so much to celebrate this women’s day…

Change

Sleep eludes her for,
Sunrise brings with it much change.
She tries to be brave
Knowing that even the worm
Must face the unknown to fly.

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Written based on the prompt in The One Minute Writer – Tanka Tuesday. The prompt was “Change” To learn more about the style of writing. Please check out the original post on TOMW here.