The baby cried...it was red and plumpy. It continued to cry and cry..so I had no choice but to pick it up.
"Hello?" I ask around. If the babies here..then there should be a mother. Hopefully. The mother couldn't have gone out in this storm right? So she should be here.
"Um, your child- HELLO!" I yell looking around again. Why am I making excuses for this child. Its already clear. Abandoned.
I wrap the lose cloth that seems so familiar to me around the baby. It cries louder, so I pull it closer to my chest. It suddenly stops, the crying stops..and I- it feels like we are connected.
No, stop it..'connecting' is the last thing I need. Especially for a child who I am most likely going to give to the adoption center after this. But what cruel mother would leave her child in a supermarket in this blizzard? This childs mother..thats who.
I breathe in, and surprisingly the baby does the same right after. I smile at her..and giggle just a little.
"Its just you and me..okay?" I ask her..as if she can hear me. I touch her huge cheeks, its incredibly soft. This baby shouldn't be the one suffering for her mothers selfish choices. I feel my chest pang with hate. Desire is a beautiful thing..but too many people in this world cannot control themselves, and soon they have themselves a baby, and that baby suffers for their stupid actions. This baby will grow up and hate that woman who used the chance of a storm to abandon her child on the cold tiles of a supermarket. And I will hate her too.
I notice a smudge of dirt on the babies face. I suddenly get up grabbing paper towels from aisle 4. I hold the sleeping baby in my chest as she sleeps softly. Shes freezing..I bite my lip going over to the baby section. I grab a bunch of clothes..and I find the bathroom. The light flicker as I enter.
I pour water on the paper towel, I try finding some hot water but it doesn't work. This dumb super market is too cheap for even warm water. Guess cold will have to do..I gently tap the dirt of the sleeping babies face. She wakes up wailing loudly.
"I'm sorry baby...this is the only water they have.." I whisper. She continues to cry..louder and louder. I slap the water off and throw the towels away. I try the other faucets, they are all cold. I walk into the boys bathroom, determined.
I turn on the faucet, the faucet brings out warmish water. So I wait a little more and the water turns hotter. I snatch off the blanket on the baby revealing its soft, but dirty skin. I breathe in.."I'm sorry but you need a bathe" I run out of the bathroom grabbing some baby soap..and some real napkins. I return to the boys bathroom, how didn't I notice the stench in here before.
I scoop up water in my palm, pouring it on the baby. She cries even louder. "Sorry" I muttered every second. I rub the soap on her..it smells amazing. It smells familiar.
After that I wash off the soap, the baby has stopped crying..for now. She seems to actually enjoy the water on her skin. I sigh as I wipe the trailing water, I dry her off. I put on baby lotion rubbing it in my hands then onto the baby. The lotion is pink, and I just realized I'm using the stores items without paying. Well whatever.
I grab the baby in my hands once more, I can't stand the smell in here. I grab all the other supplies I had taken from the store. I put them in the bag.
"Come on..I'll dress you outside.." I whisper to the baby like she can hear me. I hold her little tiny head lightly..on my shoulder. She has little tiny curls, I wouldn't say she has a full head of hair but she has some hair..just some. We walk out of the bathroom and cool air smacks my face. The baby shivers a little. Dang it I should have dressed her in there.. I place her softly on a shelf and take out the blue body suit..that I believe is supposed to be for a boy. Oh well..this will just have to do.
I put it on her..softly. Her little fists wiggle..and her face scrunches up. "Not again..." I mutter. She starts crying, just as I thought.
"I'm sorry..but I'm not the best with babies. Okay?" I say to her as I button down her outfit. In big dark blue letters, the body suit says. 'MOMMY AND DADDY LOVE YOU'. Ironic.
I lift the baby up. "No, baby..they don't. Your parents had a spur of the moment, they couldn't wait till they got married. They left you on the ground for you to die...and thats the truth." I say sadly going to the little baby coat sections. I get a pink one just for her. Once again I put her on a shelf..I snatch the tag off the jacket..and I slowly put the her in it..I button it up, the jacket is a tad to big so it covers her legs. I lift her again..and pat her on the back. I sit near the window of the store. The doors were locked when I tried to leave earlier so they won't magically be open now. I stare outside the snow falls so beautifully, so fast. Its beautiful yet..deadly. Even if the doors of the store were open..and I decide to leave with this baby, most likely we would both die.
"I'm sorry...you've suffered so much in your little life, but you don't want my pity now, do you?" I say touching her cheek lightly. she's fast asleep. "I hope you don't grow up hating this world, because the world does not care either way..so its best to live happy okay?" she grabs my loose finger with her little fist.
"I know right now..it seems like no one wants you..or even loves you..but I don't want you to grow up thinking like that" I say. "There is always going to be someone who loves you..even though you do not see them.. God loves you, and..... I do too." I bite my lip. Ive always wondered how people can love baby's without even knowing them, I mean they haven't even grown up yet. But now I see, babies are innocent, the world hasn't corrupted them just yet so our hearts feel so much love without even knowing it ourselves. We feel the need to try to protect them with our whole might, because we see so many things, so many opportunities and things this baby could grow up to be.
"I love you" I say. "I love you so much" I say once more. A smile appears on the babies lips..and she opens her eyes, and laughs a cute baby laugh..my eyes fill with tears. I look up so that they won't drop..and when I look back down..the baby is gone, the only thing that remains are the supermarket clothes I stole. I get up quickly.
"What?" I yell panicking. "Baby? she was right here.. right here"
Whats happening..I say grabbing my head..I look outside, but there is no outside, no snow, no world. I gasp..and before I know it. The only place that is here is the floor I am standing on. I grab the babies clothes to my chest. This smell....its familiar. Why do I-?
"BABY?" I scream. "STOP WHATS HAPPENING? Help me!" the floor I stand on crumbles and soon there is no ground..and I am the only thing here.
I start to fall and fall...and fall....I try to scream but there are no words. No voice. And soon I land on the floor. I hear that laugh, that laugh that I know and love so well. I turn around and there she is..the baby. But she can walk now.
"Omg..I thought I lost you" I say bending down so that she can climb into my arms. As she walks unsteadily but she doesn't go to my hands, she walks right through me. I gasp and turn back around. "What is happening?" I say to myself looking at my hands. The babies laughter soon trails away.. I turn around..and there is a girl shes maybe three, she's that baby. She's growing. She smiles as she plays with her toys, she has some bruises on her cheeks and her arms. When she looks up, its like she stares right through me. I close my eyes and when I open them the girl is gone. I gasp..
There is another girl..she is wearing her school uniform. That uniform looks so- The girl is wearing long sleeves...a bandage on her face. And she has a frown on. It takes me a minute to figure out that baby is the girl.
"Wait! what are you trying to tell me? I- I don't understand..is this a dream?"
"You don't understand?" a voice says. This voice..sounds familiar.
I look up..all of them...all these faces. From the baby...to...to.....
"Do you understand now?" the face says. This face looks familiar..who is she? I mean I know shes the baby...but who is she?
"Who are you?" I ask her.
"I'm the baby" she says pointing down to line of children below her.
"So you grew up?" I ask looking her up and down. "Yes.." she says.
"Did I-..." I take a breath. "I gave you away..after the storm..didn't I?" I ask.
"Did you..?" she asks me.
"I- I..don't remember..." I say grabbing my hand..I can't remember.. why can't I remember.
"Of course you don't" the voice sounds cold and sad. "You hate me?" I ask her with a crack in my voice.
"No...you hate me" she says with a sigh.
"No I don't! I would never hate you..! Your..You were the first person I ever loved!" I say trying my hardest to convince her.
"Oh? then why did you stop?" she asks me..her eyes piercing right through mine.
"I- I would never.." I say looking at the baby in the far left. The baby I found in a supermarket.
"Your lying.." she says turning my face to hers. "Please look a little closer...AT ME!" she yells.
I stare into her eyes..and I see it. The hate..the sadness, the loneliness. But that's not all. I see...me.
Its me, I'm her, I'm that baby..and she was right. I did lie...I hate myself. Tears fall down my face. "Oh? then why did you stop?"
When did I stop? Why?
"Seems like you remember now. That baby..you loved so much..is you. That child that smiled at you..is you! and this woman who stands in front of you! Is you! All these people are you!" she says pointing down at the line of children
"No..." I say falling to the floor. I cross my legs..and rub my head.
"Our mother..abandoned us when we were three months.." she/I says.
"I know" I say rubbing my head even harder.
"Unlike that 'vision'..you saw, nobody came for us. Nobody got us clothes, or bathed us" she/I say.
"I know..." I say as tears fall down my cheeks.
"And last of all-" she/I say.
"I said-" I start to say..
"No one told us they loved us-" she/I says.
"I said I KNOW!" I scream.
"-But you" she/I finishes. My tears stop..I did say that. I look up at her- at me. She touches my cheek with one finger like I did to the baby.
"I hope you don't grow up hating this world, because the world does not care either way..so its best to live happy okay? I know right now..it seems like no one wants you..or even loves you..but I don't want you to grow up thinking like that. There is always going to be someone who loves you..even though you do not see them.. God loves you, and..... YOU do too." she says with a bright smile. As the other me's suck into her. I reach out my hand..and I place my hand on the mirror the reflects me. And I hear the babies laughter again..but its grown up.
"Its time for you to wake up. Find your laughter again..for us. For you" the reflection says. I nod with a smile on my lips. Then it disappears.
*Beep* *Beep* *Beep*
I open my eyes..slowly..what is that noise? What happened?..was that a dream?
No, it wasn't a dream. I don't know what it was but I do know I have woken up.
"Shes awake Doctor!" a soft voice yells.
"Its a miracle!" a manly voice says. Someone shines something in my eye. Someone sticks something in my throat. I cough it out grabbing it and throwing it across the room.
"Amazing! Muscles are clearly fine" the doctor says.
"Her heart rate is normal.." the soft voice says. "its almost as if she was merely asleep for 9 months"
"Don't speak to soon newbie...people who are in a coma for that long usually can't remember a thing."
"Coma? 9 months?" I ask slowly.
"Yes honey..Tell me your name sweetie.." the doctor says.
I push him off of me.. scratching my head. I have been asleep for that long? How?
"Your name? Tell us your name?" The doctor asks me again..holding onto my back so I won't fall over.
"Joy" I say. "Joy" I say again with a smile creeping to my lips. "My name is Joy and I remember everything!"