Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Moments To Live For

The memorable ones, right? Those are the moments we should live for. The ones that leave you breathless. Literally.

Like the moment I held my little brother as he tried to writhe his way out of his skin. I had watched just seconds before, in slow motion, as he stood on tiny shaking legs reaching for a pot of coffee that had just been boiled. I dove for him, but it felt like my body turned to lead, and the scalding liquid seared his baby face, neck, and chest. Mom reached him first, and as she tore off the little red onsie, his skin peeled off with it. And then she handed him to me, and he clung to me as he shrieked. I held him that way, all the way to the emergency room. All the way through three morphine injections. That moment is burned into my mind for life.

The moment I heard the words that hadn't even entered my mind. I was wondering why my friend had abruptly stopped responding to my texts. I'd jokingly emailed him, 'Are you still alive? Call me!', cause he usually called every night, even if for just five minutes. When my buddy James called, I was blown over by the news he had. "Mando died, honey... Are you okay?" I was not. But the moment came a day later, when his mom called with details. "drove into a tree... burned alive... texting while driving..." all the air left my lungs. When the phone dropped to the floor and I followed it, the shock sending numbing warmth throughout my body. That moment in time is imprinted on my heart.

The moment I stared at my mom in disbelief as she begged me to understand. I had just been released from two months in the hospital, and in the most fragile state of my life, I depended on my mother's support to keep me alive. And she knew that I needed her, and that my step dad had abused me, for years. But she still said it. "You have to go. I need to be there for him," I didn't hear anything else she said. Just felt like I was standing still, the world moving around me. I felt the tingling on my skin where wounds were still healing. I heard the distant beeping of the machines that had been taped to me for weeks. And the feeling of a razorblade on my heart ripped through me, leaving nothing but a complete loss of faith in mankind. That moment scarred itself all over my body, over and over again, throughout time.

The day my best friend held me as tightly as he could, pulling me back into reality as I trembled in rage and grief. Two suicides in a row, a family divorce, and now a betrayal that pulled the last inch of fight out of me. He found me, curled into a ball on the bathroom floor, unable to respond when he called my name. The feeling of a boulder on my lungs, pulling me down into a dizzy realm of darkness. A ringing in my ears reminded my body that it was deprived of oxygen. He told me that I had to keep going, that he loved me so much, and I tried to love him back but I couldn't, because there was nothing inside me but a horrible pain. That moment is graven in my soul, and I still feel it sometimes.

I mean, there are definitely happy moments that make life fun. Friendships can lull you into a false sense of security and give you a warm, happy gush of affection. Laughter spreads that warmth into a giddy mess that lets you sprint towards whatever light is. A hug is like a topical aniseptic on your skinned knee. And love, drugs and sex give you a temporary burst of blinding euphoria. But in the end, we all return to those moments we remember, the split seconds we can never forget. That's what life is about.


Anonymous said...

It wasn't a pot, even I remember that it was a cup of freshly brewed coffee. Not boiled, come on nobody makes coffee on a stove, its called a coffee maker.

Angel Renee said...

That's kind of a dumb point to bring up. I think you missed the point of the post. But kudos for being original, I guess.