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Autumn coloured leaves swirled around in the wind as cars try to bypass the traffic that holds them from their destination. The loud sounds of cars zooming passed me blurred into nothing but silence except for the ever so sudden crunch of leaves – a deathly silence that seemed to drain all of my energy. I wasn’t prepared for today, to be ripped of my rights and respect once again. I felt the powerful winds pull at my white, pristine dress as I trudged towards the familiar building I call school. I observed from a far as I watched students dressed so comfortably and casually, chatting amongst themselves. They were surrounded by their friends, everyone looked to be so free whereas I felt to be caged away like a bird. I knew I had to keep up the façade of being strong as I struggled to escape the haunting mask of my past that keeps me locked away in the darkest parts of my mind, away from the light. As the old, broken down building came closer and closer into my vision, I put on the infamous, fake, small smile that I had worn into and manoeuvred my way through the curious yet disgusted eyes that seemed to find me almost instantly. I could always feel their icy cold, spine-chilling glare on me, no matter how far I went… Their glare would always send involuntary shivers down my spine and force the hairs on the back of my neck to stand. 

 

Keeping my head down low, and my eyes on the filthy ground, I marched through the school doors. The chattering and laughter echoed and bounced off the walls of the hallways, but to me everything just seemed quiet and dull. With my eyes on the dirtied ground, my mind gradually tunes out all disruptions, allowing the deep thoughts to finally attack my mind. 


As dark, harsh memories begin to invade and corrupt my mind; my breathing pattern breaks from being so calm and normal to short and shallow. It feels like suffocation, as if everything inside my body was being squeezed until it’s last breath. As waves of panic come crashing into my mind at the thought of re-living my past, I started to hyperventilate; my head feels light, but my eyes feel heavy. The fresh images of what had happened repeated inside my mind, as if playing tricks on me too think it was happening once again. 


I vividly remember what happened as if it occurred yesterday… 


I was pulled from my thoughts as my delicate body was slammed into the ground, I hissed in pain from the impact of the fall. I blinked a couple times realising a group of what I would call, “the mean girls” were laughing hysterically at me, glaring down at me like demons poised to kill a fallen angel, I felt the ocean of torrential tears begging to be set free; to show them how weak I am. As I felt the salty water drops slip from my eyes, I thought back to when this all started… 


This began a while ago after I enrolled at a new school, but of course, people judged me on the colour of my skin and not for who I was. I am scared to reveal how different I truly am too what they believe. They were privileged, little princesses and princes, and this is why they think I’m a peasant, a servant to them to be exact but I knew deep down I was something much more unique then some rag doll they love to push around. It wasn’t only the abuse of being shoved to the ground, but it was the heartbreaking, traumatising insults that they would scream at me with venom dripping from their mouths like the snakes they were. They thought I was a walking disease, the plague, wanting to consume them so they avoided me like one. The insults broke me down until there was nothing left except for a young, black aboriginal girl, in a white dress and a mask hiding her true self from the world. 


But even the people that stood before me hid behind their masks. It kept them safe, they could risk it all because their masks were invincible unlike mine. I could already feel my mask starting to disperse into nothing but a speck of dust on the bottom of their shoe. 


The girls stood around me, cornering me against the wall as they started shooting insults at me like daggers drenched in acid. I didn’t want to be here anymore… I tried to get up and escape, only to be pushed back down again. My plan of escaping the cruel world of these girls backfired as their insults turned into physical abuse against my fragile body. As they kicked and tortured my body, I felt everything slowly begin to shut down, to numb the pain.


It hurt my brain, replaying the images in my mind… I shook my head to rid all of the disturbing memories… 


By now everything feels all too real, and I can’t stop myself from choking out a sob. I crawled into a ball as everything seemed to be in almost slow motion. My mind hurt… My body ached in agony… My eyes cried out… And my soul, my soul didn’t want anymore… I felt myself let go of all the hate and lies through a silent but deadly blood curdling scream. My mind felt like a tsunami had just struck it out of nowhere as I cried out in an agonising yelp for help. It was an attack from the dark memories that haunted my every day of my life. My annoying whimpering and sobbing seemed to have decreased, and had died down a bit… I couldn’t decipher what was real and what was fake, what was only a memory until… 


I felt a warm hand on the small of my back, I flinched away scared to get another beating but instead I heard the gentle, kind words that I have yearned to hear for so long. 


“You are going to be okay, just breathe, nothing is happening. You are alright”.


I opened my eyes, realising another young girl sat beside me. Her hand was rubbing my back soothingly as she smiled so brightly in my direction that I completely forgot about the monsters that ripped me to shreds every day of my school life. Her smile shined through the darkness that chained me down. She was kind. She didn’t look disgusted nor did she judge me for my skin colour in fact she looked at me in a completely different way. She looked at me like I was an actual person and not some monster from the darkest depths of an abyss. It was only a flash back… My mind tricked me into thinking I was being abused once again by racist animals. I was being pessimistic about what could happen to me because of all the abuse and corruption I had received in the past. 


As I felt my mask crumble, I felt the fake smile begin to vanish from my face as it was replaced with a fresh, happy one. My soul finally burned with the fiery flames that it deserved and not the ones that drowned it in its own world of hate and lies. This time, everything felt alive and real. I’m no longer a lost soul.  

August 14, 2019 11:27

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