Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Armor Plating

I'm lucky.  It seems weird, maybe even egotistical to say that.  I'm lucky because I've been surrounded by death and morbidity and sickness for a long ass time.  It's shaped me in some sick, twisted way that lets me put myself into an armored shell to protect myself.

There was only one person that could enter that armored place unannounced, because she had a key.  Not only could she walk right in, she would join me inside and close it back up.  She put up wallpaper, decorated it, and made it a nice place to be, because she knew we'd be spending a lot of time in there together.  We watched her brother die together, and somehow married four days later without so much as a tear for him.  We were already in our shelter at the altar.  We were stone faced at his funeral two days afterwards. It's like we had a video feed to the outside world, but we could go ahead and turn the monitor off and play cards while the world kept being the world outside.  She was able to leave the bunker once in awhile, and even drag me out with her, even though I didn't want to leave most of the time.  

Now, my shell is thicker than ever, and it's lonely.  It's cold, dark, and empty.  The power's out, so I can't turn the video feed on anymore.  I've boarded the window up.  There have been people that tap on the plating, trying to get my attention, and I just ignore them from inside like you ignore those travelling salesmen you see walking your neighborhood before coming and knocking on your door.  Nobody is home, at least that's what I want people to think.  I'm just quiet and I try not to move.  I've poked my head out to look around a little, and I didn't like what I saw, so I crawled back inside.  It's safe in here.  The decorations are still up, the wallpaper still looks good I'm sure, but I can't see it.  The boards on the window don't let any light in.  I'm just content in knowing that it's all still there, and it's not changing.  The only working device is a phone that a very select few people have the number to.  Sometimes though, I leave it in do-not-disturb mode, so they can't even call to catch up.

Eventually, someone will come along that found the key.  They won't have to knock and ask to be let in.  I will be sitting there in the dark, and I'll see a sliver of light as the hatch cracks open, and I'll be fucking terrified.  I'll probably grab the inside handle and try to pull it shut, because all of a sudden the entire cocoon will be illuminated.  I don't want to come out yet, and I don't want someone coming in, because what if they don't like the decorations, and they decide to change the wallpaper, or god forbid, put a window in?  This is MY shell, god dammit, don't you dare touch it!  I'll fail to defend my lair though, because secretly, I want the light in here.  I want someone to change the wallpaper, but maybe leave the pictures.  I wouldn't mind an open window once in a while so I can watch a thunderstorm roll by without going outside.  Most of all, I want some company with me behind the plating.  I don't want to venture outside and invite people in though. I'm for damn sure not putting a sign on the hatch that says where to find the key.  That's why I'll be so scared when someone finds it, because it means Megan must have given it to someone on her last trip outside, the one she never came back from. 

And you know what?  Megan wouldn't have been careless with that key. 

1 comment:

  1. God damn this really really well written. And a really powerful metaphor. Sharing with a few grief groups I am in.