Helen was a sucker for rules, a stickler for schedules. She had the same routine, always insisted that her family follow suit. Her sixteen year old teenage daughter was a model student, the kind of kid parents liked to show off sometimes. Her makeup would be perfect, hair brushed to perfection, teeth in perfectly straight lines. But she had a secret, one that wasn’t hers to keep. It was almost like she had an alter ego, the pain this other girl felt was far too deep.
You see, beneath all her perfection and all her perfect scores and all her med school aspirations, she had a different dream. The one she couldn’t talk to Helen about, the one that made her let out s million silent screams. The pressure had gotten too much, and it stared to build and build. She couldn’t do it anymore, her alter ego wasn’t strong-willed. And so one day, when her mother was out, and she was home alone, pretty little girl did what had to be done, and then there was nothing – Demons, begone.
Helen came home with husband in tow, fussing over the state of the kitchen floor. And she saw her baby there, supine, lifeless, stone-cold. What seemed like ages had passed by, when, taped to the the fridge, she saw…
I didn’t want you to know. I was so ashamed. I’m sorry Mama, I tried. I’ve been living under your shadow for so long, trying to be you for so long, that I’d forgotten what it was like to be myself. Between school and music lessons and debate club and your anatomy lessons, I didn’t have a second to myself. I wanted to write, Mama. I managed to still finish a book and I couldn’t get it published because you’d never let me go out alone. And you never understood what I wanted and what I actually lived for. I’m depressed, Mama, truly. I’ve always been. I can’t keep up the appearances anymore. I’m sorry I was selfish, but Mimi took over and ended it. It’s always been Mimi and I, since you never let me have friends. I met her in play-school, in the mirror, a spitting image of me and we have been inseparable ever since. Mimi told me things – that she knew you had a licensed gun, for example, in your bedside drawer. That you turned into an overachiever because you had your own mommy issues. I don’t want to turn into you, Mama. I can’t be a control freak like you. Mimi is everything to me. She draws and I write and we will be okay. We love you, Mama. No matter what you did to me and how much you put me through, the truth is I still love you. Will always do.