a/n- Just a small reflection of thought that eventually became the small story of a lifeā€¦ hence- the title. Simple, clean, and hopefully retrospective for all.

A Life

At age 5 she is shiny and new. She, like the other kids, has no idea what's planned for her. She will grow taller, become heavier, and go through changes. There will be times when her body with ache. Other times her mind will ache, because she can not always comprehend the world around her. And times will come when her heart will ache; it's likely to break a few times. But fortunately her mind is by this time, smart enough to make some backup copies. Because at age 15 she learns that you can't mend a broken heart and that is why spares are handy. A broken heart simply won't do.

When she turns 6 she has a party. She invites the kids that are loud and make her excited. Because she doesn't like being around the quiet ones, they require thinking. She would much rather ease the strain on her brain and simply be. Thinking about different types of kids is complicated and no fun. So at her sixth birthday party, surrounded by all the easy-to-comprehend kids, she's just a kid It's blissful ignorance that makes her life fun. Her mind and heart take a breath.

Mother allows her to pierce her ears as a gift. So that day they go to a boutique in the shopping centre. The ceiling is high, and the lights are bright; shelves are stocked with beauty-in-a-bottle. She's in a store full of things promised to keep women young.

She is in an adults place, and she is feeling proud. The small gun pushes the stud through the flesh of her lobe and she winces. The mind is put to frantic work. Not understanding why trying to be a pretty grown woman is hurting so much, she cries. Reluctantly, she lets the other stud puncture her ear, and leaves the shop happily unaware of the drying tears around her eyes. The mind is done its growing for the day.

At the age of 10 she's having trouble understanding why her mind is aching. It is the first time she has seen a dead animal, and she's not quite sure what to think. The ginger mop lay stationary by the curb, mangled and soaked. She remembered seeing the cat before, but not in a gory pile. Mrs. Jacksons' cat usually slept on the porch. Suddenly wondering if Mrs. Jackson would get a new cat, she stopped short. A small thumping made itself known against her ribs, and she soon associated it with the full out pull of her heart-strings. She tightened her throat, in an effort to choke down whatever the constriction was. Her mind was aching again. And this time it had convinced the heart to ache too. She taught herself to recognize death as something negative, and something that would hurt. She decided to leave death alone, and hopefully not find anymore. Lesson learned, the aching waned, and she swore she grew another inch.

At 13 her body is long and starting to round. She isn't sure weather she should listen to the ache in her head anymore; because, as of late, they have been false alarms. Her mind seems to enjoy playing with her heart. And the body is only too happy to play host to this game. Simon says be happy, Simon says be depressed, be angsty, all in the period of a few hours. And she loses this game time after time, because she feels that way regardless of weather she was told 'Simon says'.

And a year later at 14 she learns about the world, she learns about her friends, she learns about herself; that is the hardest. She's not sure she's ready to accept what she learns. She's not certain she completely likes, nor trusts this person. But she sees her everyday of her life. And the brain tells her it is what she has become. The heart is put to use and she decides this girl isn't so bad; untrustworthy, but not so terribly bad. She came to that decision after a long scrutiny in front of her mirror.

At 16 she hates the mirror. She hates the reflection and what it does and doesn't represent. She sees the lacking, the mistakes, and the bad choices. This image is her best friend, and her worst enemy. She knows everything about this person. This is her. And she hates what she sees in that mirror. Maybe because the mirror won't spoil her like she does herself. The mirror doesn't show her what she wants to see. It just shows her what's actually there. She is 16 and wishing she were 6. She is tired of hearing about the self-destructive nature of the world outside, sick of knowing she gladly ignores it, and sick of feeling responsible. Because she remembers the talks about bullying in 3rd Grade and the teacher clearly said that 'if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.' She hates the way she gripes about school. But the way that she feels hard done by is what drives her to shatter herself. Because she would much rather ease the guilt she is feeling by being blamed. The female youth hates the newspaper. At 16, it adds to her guilt, every morning, in fresh black, white and red print. But because the heart is selfish it creates a blissful block. She will block the World News for an ignorant moment before she comes undone. The mental block only dulls the ache of knowledge for a while, until the line between fact and fiction becomes unblurred again; temporary relief only. And she'll kid herself until she unravels in front of the mirror like a ribbon. And ribbons aren't so pretty when not in a bow.

At 17 she's found a bit of clarity. She still dislikes the naive girl in staring back from the mirror, but they are making amends. She is brash and spurred by the promise of simply living. At age 6 she knew nothing of the world, and she didn't have to care. Because that is what adults were for, and she wasn't to be bothered with it. The irony of her want to be an adult back then smacked her rudely in the face. She eyes the earrings in the mirror, a symbol of something taken for granted? But she is comfortable with the way her life is; everything with a cup of salt. In comparison to the world as a whole, she's small and insignificant, but she knows better. To the few people she shares her life with on the earth she knows she has an impact on something. And she's happy to stay in her own little niche. She only lives to die smiling. That was decided at age 10, because the neighbors cat hadn't looked too happy during his final hour, and that was a shame. Mind, she wasn't sure whether anything could die happy at the wheels of a Toyota. But she would try, in the unfortunate event.

And by 18 she thinks she may have figured it out. The days mean nothing but more opportunities to make people smile, and the newspaper is her morning read. Deciding to inflict changes in her own section of the world, the guilt somehow isn't there anymore. She's learned to live with the girl in the mirror, and the girls' big nose. One might say they've reconciled their differences. The aches are less frequent and somewhat of a nice learning experience. There's alacrity to move ahead in her life, and be unleashed into the world, and see what she can do with it. She knows it's a silly, hopeless thing, but she'll see what she's given to work with.

The morning of her graduation, a woman enters her room. Her mother, radiant at 53, gives her a gift along the same lines as one given 12 years previous. The earrings however, can't be worn. Most earrings, this pair included required holes to go through. At 6 she'd had them done, at 16 she decided they meant something she didn't want. And at 18 she's let them grow over. She'd decided she was tired of trying to be something, and was happy to just be someone.