A World of Hurt
I'm writing this letter because I need you to know something that I can't
tell you to your face. This.. you and me. is not going to work. We both
have our own commitments to other people. we both have other lives. and no
matter how much its going to hurt us, its what is right. And its what needs
to be done.
Cate looked at herself in the mirror, shaking her head, resisting the urge
to crumple up the letter and throw it out the window, out of her life. She
stared back at herself through the mirror. It seemed as if she was shaking
her head at herself in shame. In pity. Because she saw herself a pitiful
person. She saw the lie she was, the truth of what she was.
"I'm not a bad person." she murmured and she hated the sound of the sadness
in her voice. It made her feel weak. But you have let everyone see you as a
bad person, Cate.
She looked back down at the letter, the words becoming blurred with her
tears and she blinked them away, thinking about how easy it was to just
blink and have her tears be gone. If only it was that easy to blink away
life. All she ever wanted was to have a friend that liked her for who she
was, saw passed the uptight, defensive girl and into who she really was. a
kind and meaningful person. What was it about her that made every single
person she could consider a friend like her for just a little while and
then. leave? Walk out of her life?
This comes as very awkward for the both of us. I have no idea how on earth
these feelings grew in to what they are now, but you and I both know that
we have to put them behind us. We need to focus on our school, on our
grades. Graduation is nearing, Cate. We can't let this be what we are going
to become. Neither of us will get anywhere if we let this go on. We'll just
be hurting ourselves.
"Graduation." she whispered. How the hell did she let this get out of hand,
the way it had? There were so many directions she could have gone in, so
many things she could have done in preparation for the future, and she
threw it away. She chose the darkest path. It wasn't like she had anything
to look forward to. College was out of the question. She was walking down
the road to working in a grocery store. Why? Because it was the easy way
out. Because she was surrounded by darkness and it was so much easier to
just fall into it instead of seeking that tiny speck of light that served
as her only beacon. And when he walked away, the shadows closed in.
I know you've been hurting since Sean left, but face it Cate, this is not
the way to ease your pain and lonliness. You're just making it worse for
yourself. I mean. maybe for a while it was. Maybe for the few stolen
moments we spent together at the beach, but God, Cate, not for always. This
will never heal your heart.
"And what the fuck makes you think I need my heart healed?" she hissed to
Who was she kidding?
"I can't do this!" She tossed the letter on to the floor and grasped the
hair on her head tightly, clamping her eyes shut and pulling her legs in to
a little ball, hiding from the truth. "I can't go to school tomorrow with
all of those assholes and pretend everything is all right anymore!"
She couldn't. She just couldn't, it was inevitable. Every fiber in her
being told her that she could not remove herself from her house, more
importantly her bedroom, and walk in to the school with 'The Catherine
Groupies,' her so-called best friends, the monster she helped create. the
monster that ate away at her so slowly and painfully, so as to not give her
a quick, merciful death. Her life just loved to see her suffer.
"I can never come back from this, from who I am now," she whispered, gazing
back in to the mirror at her own obsessed eyes. "I've ruined myself."
She sat there on her bed, numb inside and oblivious outside and empty all
over, and looked over the edge of her bed at the crumpled up letter on the
floor. She leaned forward and snatched it up, ready to read again, although
she had already read it over and over until her heart bled.
I have a girlfriend and a pregnant mother to help out, you know that. And
you have your own twin boys, Cate. You have obligations now. I can no
longer help you with what Sean is supposed to be helping you with. And I
can no longer be with you, either. And as people, we have other obligations
as well. I don't mean the group of blond rats you flounce around with
because I know they mean nothing to you, I know they have just tangled you
up in to a web that is now impossible to escape from.
He was the only one who ever understood. and now he was gone like a whisper
in the wind. Just like the rest of them.
I mean the other obligations you owe to yourself. Like college. You need to
get in to a good college, Catherine. For your sons. Your mother can not
help you with those boys forever. She's not always going to be there. You
need to go to college so you have a chance at the future and get a good
job. Remember. you wanted to be a lawyer? Go for it, Cate. Because that
way, you'll know for sure that you have a chance for giving your boys a
good life. At the rate your going. and even at the rate I'm going... as
long as you and I are together, none of that is going to happen for you or
for me. You know in your heart that you need to break away before this
kills you. I will only hold you here.
Break away? How was she supposed to break away? She was tied down, her soul
had melted and glued her to her popularity and badassed attitude and
rebellious reputation. She could never break away. She was locked tight.
Locked tight in this concrete aura.
I know you are stronger than the rest of them. I know you are strong enough
to make the right decision. That's one of the reasons why I fell in love
with you in the first place.
Decisions. decisions. Cate looked around the room until her eyes met the
bottle of extra strength prescription painkillers on top of her bureau,
prescribed for her frequent migraines and muscle spasms, but lately, she
had been taking them for every little ache and pain, even the inner aches
and pains that no pill of any magnitude would ever take away.
There were at least 15 pills left in the bottle.
This has to end. Right here and right now. It's the only way out. I will go
on and do the things I do and live my life and you will have to do the
same. We both know this. We both have to accept it. It's our life.
"I damn well do not have to accept it," Cate whispered, tears in her
throat. "And certainly not this life."
She whipped the paper aside and got up. She walked over to her bureau and
picked up the bottle of pills and shook it. Little pieces of peace. Little
capsules of get-away. But would she have the guts? Like so many other
things in her life, she was afraid of it.
"No one will miss you," she muttered to herself. "Certainly not your
friends and peers. Especially not your teachers. And you won't have to
listen to them call home every night and tell your mother that your not
living up to your potential, in fact your not living up to any potential at
all. It can all go away. Just. like. that."
She sighed and bent down, picking up the letter. She continued reading the
Don't gaze at me like you love me anymore. especially not in school. I see
you everywhere and you look at me like you just want to fall in to my arms
and die. We can't do that anymore, for both of our sakes. I'm so sorry
about all this. I'm so sorry about how I have hurt you. Just know this. a
part of me will always care about you and love you and will cherish what we
had forever. You're in for a world of hurt, Cate. But you're strong enough
to get out.
She crumpled up the letter again, not wanting to read the signature. It
would pain her too much to see the name she loved and trusted and relied on
for support. Maybe she could just pretend it wasn't from him. Maybe she
could just make it go away.
God damn. But she couldn't.
Don't gaze at me like you love me anymore.
"I'll never gaze at you again." she whispered. And she dropped the paper on
the floor once again and opened the bottle of painkillers with trembling
Hesitation. Staring down at the little white capsules. and then she dumped
them into her hand, her mind whirling, focusing on her killers.
Rachel, Kylie, Andrea. the Catherine Groupies. Did it matter? No. Not
She poured the white pills out in to her hand and brought them to her
mouth, her heart racing like a newborn puppy's.
A knock at the door stopped her in her tracks.
"Catherine! Get up, its time for school!" her mother's voice called.
She stopped, holding the pills close to her lips, just a breath away from
peace-even with her mother standing out there, she could still do it.
But she didn't.
Because she was Catherine Greene. the biggest badass in school. with twin
And she was scared to die. And she was scared to live.
And so she just left her room, her blue jeans clutching her legs and dark
blue tank top covering her torso. She listened to her boys crying in their
bedroom, and to her siblings downstairs arguing over the toy in the cereal
box, and to her savior angel of a mother, shouting for her siblings to be
quiet and calming her daughter's sons.
Once upon a time, she enjoyed being the bad girl. the rebel. She enjoyed
being called a slut and she enjoyed having sons, even at the age of 17. It
was fun. it was cool, it was a laugh and it was a relief. But now it just
She entered her school and looked at all the faces of her peers. Some
looked back, some whispered, some said hi to her. And she couldn't help but
think. none of them realize what I almost just did.
As in on cue, Kyle came in to her view, walking in her direction. She
stared at him, holding back tears and she stopped walking right in the
middle of the busy hallway. She was seeing him, as if no one else was
there. And he was seeing her too.
Don't gaze at me like you love me anymore.
So she didn't. Even though Kyle was the only one who ever really
I will do what is best for both of us, she thought as she looked up at him.
But I pray I have the strength tonight to leave this life-one way or
Your in for a world of hurt, she recalled on the letter.
"Oh, yes I am."