What She Learned

I: That dark, glittery eyes often held the deepest secrets, only one of which was that he didn’t truly care. That brutalities of life scattered across every landscape, every dream, every nightmare she’d ever had, and paying attention to that voice inside grew more difficult to do every day. Battling demons—those mostly within herself—took far more energy than keeping his negativity at bay. But, she’d tried anyway: to actively listen, to get to the source of his problem. And soon, she understood that some people (this person included), had no intention of giving up the secret, giving up the reason why they were they way they were. Reciprocation and understanding, exchange of thoughts and introspection. Those all meant nothing to some folks.

II: She was so tired of hearing him say she couldn’t do it. She could. She just had to try harder. To try more. To try at all? Was that the problem? That she wasn’t really trying? What if she put in more time during the day, more minutes, more hours. If she did that, she could figure out a way to do it. Couldn’t she? She looked at him, the furrowed brow, the lines around his mouth. The squint of his eyes. It was a dare, a challenge. When he said, “You can’t do it,” he didn’t really mean it, did he? She took one more look at him as he sat in the chair, and this time, she caught it. The hint of a laugh around his lips. He knew she could do it. He’d just been waiting for her to figure that out herself.

III: Dreams had always spoken to her. Awakened from her slumber once again, she leaned forward, hoping to catch the last snippet of the final dream in the sequence. Battered eyes and battered hands; wispy plumes of smoke and steam; the incessant red balloon against a backdrop of blue sky. She scrubbed her fingers against her eyes in the dark, trying to stop the images from appearing one after the other. But this time, just like all the others, it was no use. Her sleep had been disrupted. Her peace has been disrupted. And just like every other time, she’d get up, head to the computer, and open up a new page. She’d learned to deal with the dreams in the only way she knew how: to write about them.

Image of red balloon in blue sky by StockSnap from Pixabay.com.

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