“I’m too awake. I can’t go back.”
Penny shook her head, “But you have to. You can’t stay this way.” I heard her speak, but understood her to say, “You have to fit into society. Everyone has to fit in.” She didn’t have to speak for me to hear her say, “So you will resist. As you always have. And our society will beat you into your place.”
I understood her perspective. To her, I’d lost everything. My career. My salary. The respect of those around me. The trust of everyone. To her, I’d crashed and burned. And then I’d stayed broken, staring at the ashes of the life I’d had. I knew that disturbed her.
She gave me that pleading look that says, “Please, explain this to me! I want to understand.” I’d seen that look on her a thousand times. And any time I’d tried to explain, she always tried to convert me to her way of thinking, her view of the world.
“I know.” I took her hand. “You believe I’m still angry about what happened.” I wished I could explain everything. I knew the words. I also knew she would not understand them. I could not return to the life I’d had. That artificial creation that made me normal. That made me fit in to our society.
Penny withdrew her hand. I wished, as she walked away, she would wake up someday. My heart ached, for I knew she never would.
I wrote this for Siobhan Muir‘s #ThursThreads, Week 83. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are good reading.