Chapter 1

Thump-thump, thump-thump, thump-thump. The sound of the heartbeat was the only thing that Lisa could hear while she lay on the floor in a fetal position. She thought about how strong it sounded. How healthy it was. And the only thing that she wanted was to stop it from beating!

When Ted decided to leave because he was in love with another woman and wanted to spend his life with her, it was all that Lisa could bare. But when she found out who the woman was, something snapped deep inside of her. She would never be the same again. She would never speak to another human being or feel any thing but deep seated depression. She would never return to the world of the normal.

This is not what life is suppose to be. It is suppose to be full. It is suppose to be happy most of the time. But Lisa’s wasn’t. It was deep misery every moment of every day. She felt empty and worthless. She felt dirty and shame. She couldn’t go outside her door and into town. She couldn’t talk to anyone on the phone. Infact, the light on her answering machine blinked continuously and the volume turned down so she couldn’t hear what anyone was saying because she didn’t want to hear that someone out there had anything that resembled a normal life.

She slowly stood up and stumbled from the weakness. She went into the bathroom and drew a bath. Her body ached and a warm bath always seemed to help. As she undressed, she looked into the mirror. She did not recognize the image . She had lost over sixty pounds in the last three months. Her eyes were swollen and red from crying. Big dark circles underneath them indicated that it had been some time since she had last slept. They looked dead inside. Her face was sunken and drawn. Bones protruded from her body from lack of nourishment. She couldn’t remember the last meal that she ate or even the last time that she felt hunger. When she did try to eat something, she would become ill and vomit.

It seems that the only constant thing that Lisa Brown could count on, was there seemed to be no lack of depression. It consumed every part of her day and night. There was no beginning and there was no end to it. “I just want to die,” she thought to herself. She did not want to exist any more. There was no reason for her to go on. She pled with God on a nightly basis to not let her wake in the morning, and when she did, she was angry. “Why do you let me go on day after day? Why can’t you just end my misery and take me,” she would shout when she did wake.

Then she would think of her children, Amanda and Kevin. How would they react to their mother’s death? Then again, how do they react to their mother’s life? They of course are concerned for her, but they have their own lives. And they live so far away. Amanda is married to Terry and they are about to have their first child any day. They live in Arizona. Kevin is in college in California. He is going to become an architect. He then can carry on with his father’s business. Work with him until one day it becomes his company.

They do call once a week, and Lisa tries to hide her depression from them. They know that she is upset about her pending divorce from their father. They know that he is involved with another woman. And they know that the other woman is Dana Miller.

Dana and Lisa were best friend’s since kindergarten. They were friends through every phase of their lives. They knew each others deepest, darkest secrets. And they did know that their mother was having trouble dealing with it, but they didn’t know how deep her depression ran.

Dana was there when they were seniors in high school. She was there when Lisa met Ted. She was the maid of honor in their wedding. She was with Lisa when both Amanda and Kevin were born and she became their God Mother when they both were baptized. She was there for every birthday, every holiday, every special event. She was even there when nothing special was going on. She was a part of their lives. There is nothing that she doesn’t know about Lisa or her family. People in town would joke when they saw Ted and ask him how his wives were doing. Ted would snicker and say, “They are fine.” 

Dana was a big part of Lisa’s life and she was confused as to why Dana would do this to her. But when she found out that Dana and Ted had been having an affair for the last ten years, it destroyed her.

The anger that she felt for both of them was very deep. It seemed to come from everywhere. It was an anger that she did not recognize. It scared her at first. But eventually it did consume her totally and she fell into a very deep depression. She could not get out of it no matter what she tried. Her life was over. So why should she try to live out another day? Why put herself through it again. Tonight would be the end of it. She would not suffer tomorrow.

Somehow, that seemed to lift her spirit’s a little. She stepped out of the tub and put on her nightgown. She decided to tidy things up a bit and then when she went to bed for the evening, she would be sure that she did not wake in the morning. She checked the medicine cabinet and sure enough, Ted had left his sleeping pills behind. She was grateful that he had not gotten all of his things out of the house yet. He would get so stressed out at work that he would get bouts of insomnia. The doctor wrote out prescriptions for very strong sleeping pills to get him through. And there was a brand new bottle in the cabinet. And now, they would become her salvation. “This is how I will sleep now,” she thought to herself. For the first time in months, Lisa smiled.

She did just as she had planned. She hurried around the house that she had inherited when her parents passed and cleaned everything up. She dusted, sorted, swept and mopped the floors. Since she was the only one living in the house, it didn’t take long.

She poured a cup of coffee and sat in the living room and got out the photo albums. Tears streamed down her cheeks as she looked at the pictures of her children and every memory that they held. The baby pictures from the moment that they were born, their first steps, their first birthday, their first everything! Amanda’s wedding, Kevin’s graduation. The only pictures that didn’t exist yet was the baby that was about to come. The baby that she would never see. This bothered her, but, what good could she be for a grandchild. Grandmothers are suppose to be happy and cheerful. You are suppose to bake cookies and be there for everything.

But Lisa couldn’t even get through the day without crying and vomiting. She couldn’t even walk outside or do anything normal. This is the first time in the last several months that she felt any life at all. And that was because she was about to end it. She would never feel anything again!

She then got her stationary and wrote a few lines asking everyone to forgive her for what she was about to do. She did not want them to be mad at her for leaving them but she did want them to understand that she just couldn’t take another day of this. She couldn’t. And it wouldn’t be fair for them to expect her to. She told them that she didn’t feel that this was a selfish thing to do, what was selfish is that they expected her to live a life of misery. She tried many times to pull out of this but was unsuccessful in doing it.

She tried to take herself into town and shop or have lunch on but, she couldn’t get out of the driveway on most days. But, on the very rare occasion that she was successful in getting herself to the supermarket, she really didn’t want to be there, she didn’t want anyone to see her and she certainly didn’t want to talk to anyone. The last thing she wanted to do was answer any questions from anyone about the divorce. How could she, Lisa had not yet accepted it yet herself. She couldn’t be angry yet, only pain that is all that she could feel. Pain and misery. It seemed that it oozed from every pore and cell of her being. She did not want people to see her. She did not want to see anyone either. Lisa constantly looked around and if she did indeed see anyone that she knew, she would simply change course so that they would not see her. She was afraid of running into Dana or Ted or even worse, both of them together. She would not get through that at all!

The worst part was buying groceries. Buying for one person was to say the least hard to do. One pork chop, one steak, small portions of vegetables. As trivial as it seemed, it was very hard to do. Very depressing. She didn’t eat much these days anyway. Why bother she would think to herself.

She tried to focus on the new baby. She wanted to knit booties and make a quilt, but she couldn’t get into actually starting the project. She tried to imagine what it would be like when the grandchild arrived and what life would hold for it. She just couldn’t manage to get excited about it. Nothing would pull her out of this depression. Now it was time to do the only thing that she could think of to not feel that pain any longer. Tonight would be her last. Everything that she looked at would be the last time she seen that, the last time that she felt that, the last time she thought that. Tonight would definitely be the last.

Finally, Lisa thought that it was time. She went into the bathroom and took the bottle of pills from the cabinet. She went in to the kitchen and poured them out on the table. She poured a ice cold glass of water from the pitcher in the refrigerator. She sat down at the table and lit a cigarette. She stared at the pills and counted them over and over to make sure that there were indeed, thirty pills. She slowly smoked the cigarette and enjoyed each draw on it. After all, as with everything else, this would be her last. Finally, she crushed the cigarette butt in the ashtray and laughed out loud after thinking about how many times that Ted and the kids begged her to quit smoking. “Well, I just quit,” she said out loud.

She picked up the first pill and looked at it just before she swallowed it, then another and another, finally she started swallowing three at a time. She cried as she did. The harder she cried, the faster she swallowed them. After the last pill was swallowed she put her head in her hands and sobbed. Since it had been awhile since she had anything to eat, the pills started to react very quickly. She was startled at how fast it was. She tried to get up from the chair but fell to the floor. She tried to get up but couldn’t. She started to crawl across the floor and head down to her bedroom. It was all that she could do. She kept falling but would manage to get back up to her hands and knees and continue. By the time she got to her room, the pills were overpowering her. She crawled to the side of her bed but could not pull herself up. The blankets slid off the side of the bed from the weight of her trying to climb up. They fell to the floor. She did not make it into her bed before she fell into a deep sleep.

The curtains danced in the warm summer breeze of this June night. The sound of the waves gently hitting the shore was almost comforting. There was nothing that seemed out of the ordinary for the resident’s of the small town of Ruby Harbor. No one would ever guess that Lisa was lying on the floor dying.

The grandfather clock in the living room that once belonged to Lisa’s grandmother ticked down the minutes as it had done for so many years. Everything was as it should be and had been for so many years. Except for one thing. Lisa’s breathing was almost non-existent. The end was coming closer and closer by the second. Lisa laid on the floor and life was ending. It wouldn’t be long. Just as the clock’s chimes announced that it was three o’clock in the morning, Lisa took her last breath.

Her face suddenly looked peaceful. The tense stance that she had acquired was suddenly relaxed. There was no trace of what she had been going through for so long. It was indeed, finally over. She would now finally rest in peace. She would have no more pain or confusion. She would no longer exist. The grandfather clock chimed twelve times announcing the beginning of a new day. But this would not be an ordinary day. There would be something very different about it.

Suddenly, Lisa sat up. She was confused. It was very cold. Dazed, she stood up trying to figure out what was going on. She was suppose to be dead. She felt anger once again. She took about three steps and something seemed different. She did not hear the ocean. She did not hear the clock. She did not hear anything. It was very dark. She took another step and kicked something with her foot.

A soft light began to fill the room. She looked down to see what she had just stumbled on and screamed when she realized that it was her body. She stood and looked down at it. She was startled at the sight of her lying on the floor, lifeless.

As the room filled with light, a mist started to form, like a thick fog. She was very cold. The mist grew thicker and thicker by the second. Terror filled her as she stood there not knowing what was happening. She was frozen in place. “Now what do I do,” she thought to herself.

“Lisa,” a male voice whispered. Lisa just stood in place frozen with fear. “Lisa,” the voice repeated. “Come this way.” She hesitated for a moment but then took a step forward. There in the middle of the room was a very bright beam of light. The voice continued to guide her toward the light. Telling her not to be afraid. Timidly, Lisa followed the voice until she got to the light. Now the voice seemed to be coming from inside of it. She was afraid to go any farther. Suddenly she seen someone move inside the bright beam.

“Lisa, do not be afraid. Come in to the light with me and I will take you where you need to go,” whispered the voice. She did not recognize the voice. But something seemed to put her at ease. The voice continued to whisper, “it is alright Lisa. This is just a step that you have to follow. Come with me.” At that a hand reached out to her. She reached out and took the hand. She looked back once again at the room she was leaving. At herself lying on the floor. Even though she did not know who he was, she felt safe and was at ease when the spirit smiled at her.

“Do not be afraid my child. Trust in me.” Lisa nodded her head in agreement. What else could she do at this point. She had to trust someone. She did not know where she was or where she was going. But she did trust him.

Still holding his hand, they began to rise into the tunnel of light. She was startled but he squeezed her had and nodded to her. She knew that it was alright. It felt as though she was in an elevator. As they rose together, she began to look up. There seemed to be colors swirling around. They were beautiful. As they rose through each band of color, she was amazed at the beauty of it. Each color looked different as she remembered it to be. Red, yellow, blue, green, white, each band that they rose through seemed more brilliant than the last. She also noticed that she felt warm and safe inside the color. She wondered if this is what heaven was like.

She looked down the tunnel and she could see inside of her bedroom. Her lifeless body laying on the floor. She felt sad when she looked at it. Tears fell down her cheeks at the sight of it. But then she felt glad that she was leaving it all behind her. It was over. All the pain and suffering that she had encountered all of her life was back there below her feet. She couldn’t help to be glad about what was to come. She suddenly felt free!

She looked up again at what was ahead of her. She wondered how long this would go on. How long it would be before she reached her destination. Finally they stopped. He then led her to a park. It was unlike anything that she had ever seen. He turned to her and gently cupped her face in his hand.

“Lisa, I leave you now. In a little while, someone will come and take you to the next area. I bless you my child.” And then he was gone.













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Novel / Novella
writing larnda08
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