Lonesome Suffering: Happy Endings

You want to know the difference between fairy tales and reality? Well, for one, no one wants to hear about reality. Reality is cold and hard; fairy tales are all just lies, mocking us by telling us the perfect stories that always end with happy endings…but this is reality…in reality, there is no such thing as a happy ending! What awaits us at the end is only death! I've always hated fairy tales, and really, the entire concept of 'a happy ending.' The funny thing is… even though I hated these happy endings, I always went quiet when my mother told me a story before bed. I knew they were lies, but even still, hearing such a story gave me a little hope… I enjoyed them…and I hated the fact that I did…

My mother would always tell me a story, every night. You see, the life I had was terrible, and this was her trying to cheer me up…trying to help me, show me that she cares, that she's sorry. They were her way of comforted me. My father was an abusive drunk who beat my mother and me for sport. Honestly, it was horrible. It was normal for me to go to school all bruised. It only got worse once the teachers at school got the CPS involved. My mother vouched for that man…that monster…and everything was left as it was. Because of that incident, the beatings got harder, more aggressive, where before, it was obvious that he didn't care for me and her, that he wanted to hurt us, but after that incident…there was red in his eyes. Those were the eyes of a man ready to kill… That night, my mother held me and cried .She kept repeating, "I'm sorry, I'm so, so sorry!" in a hushed voice, not wanting for that man to hear her. She did what she could do to comfort me, and just the same, I tried to comfort her. I told her that it wasn't her fault.

By the time I entered high school, my body was already so used to pain that I honestly felt numb. My body was scarred from that man, from the lashes he gave me with his belt, and from the burns he applied for me having spoken out of line to him. I was alone most of time, didn't have any friends to hang out with, so that made me an easy target for bullying. I was poor, I was abused, and I was alone… I was, essentially, wounded prey. Now, I was beaten, not only at home, but at school. I was so used to it all that I didn't bother even trying to defend myself… My life was already so sad and pathetic, but, I didn't want to be like him, I didn't want to hurt people, no matter who they were! So…I endured…

In my senior year, I stopped. I bottled up my pain and rage for so long that when it happened…I snapped. My father practically destroyed his liver, had to get a transplant and everything, and much like everything else, it pissed him off. And who did he take all of his anger out on? Us. My mother and I! I was practically an adult in my own right, yet still, he saw me as a useless kid and just wailed on me! On us! That was it for my mother…on that night, she laid with me, much like how she did when I was little, and held me, and cried to me. She said that she was sorry…she said, that night would be her last. She told me one last story, only this time, it wasn't a fairy tale. It was her reality. Why she stayed with that man. She stayed with me until I fell asleep…I awoke to sirens blaring outside my window…my father was crying, actually crying… There were police cars and an ambulance and…a coroner's car… My mother had committed suicide by slitting her throat… After they all left… that man, my father, looked at me before just walking inside, not so much as saying a single word… He drank himself to sleep that night… I, on the other hand, didn't sleep at all.

The next morning, I attended school. Word had spread about what had happened and it seemed almost as if everyone was just looking at me. I was stopped in the hallway by those ass holes, those bullies who tortured me when I had already been tortured enough, and, you know what they did? They laughed. They were picking on me, once again, this time, using my mother's suicide as they're weapon. That. That is when I snapped. After everything that happened, I finally had enough of it… It took three teachers to pry me from him, from the guy who thought it was so funny to hurt me! I looked at the mess…a bloody pulp where his face should be, not even recognizable to the person from before… Now, I became the person that they feared, I became the man I so deeply hated. No one dared to look me in the eye after that.

The Sunday after my mother's death, we held a proper funeral. Turns out, even the sky was mournful. Dark clouds blocked out the sun and openly let loose their tears. Not many people were there. My mother, like me, had no friends, so the only people attending were a few of her acquaintances, some family, my father, and me. The ceremony itself was rather small, so it only lasted so long…

After the funeral, my father and I stayed, not yet ready to go. That low, pathetic man wept openly on her grave, sobbing like a child, like I had so many times before. He kept apologizing to her, wanting so much for her forgiveness… He turned to me and did the same. He fell to his knees and just kept asking for my forgiveness…and I just stood, not a single tear in my eye… My mom was tired and did what she thought she had to do. Of course I was sad, but, I understood the reason why she did it, and that reason was weeping before me. I told him, coldly, "You don't deserve forgiveness. You are a pathetic, waste of a man." I could tell he didn't like that… He rose and yelled at me, calling me a monster, an unemotional bastard. He, of all people, calling me a monster! I couldn't hold it in anymore. I dropped him with a hard punch. I walked away, just done with this…with everything…

I was done… That night, I swallowed an entire bottle of sleeping pills in a desperate attempt to just end it all. I cried myself to sleep, ready to accept the coldness of death…

Now, the story should've ended there, but, obviously, it didn't. What happened next caught me entirely off guard… I woke up in a hospital, apparently, a few weeks after my attempted suicide. I fell into a coma. By my bed was my father, but honestly, I couldn't care less… It took a bit for me to be discharged, but once I was, I had no intention of trying something so stupid like that again. I lived through it once, I survived death, and I took that as a sign. Clearly, it wasn't my time. Life just seemed to continue. My story wasn't over yet.

After graduating from high school, I started attending community college, and even got myself a part time job. After everything I went through, nothing would ever bring me down. Actually, life got a hell of a lot better. I met the girl of my dreams, fell madly in love, and even got married. Now, I had a successful career, an amazing wife, and I even had two wonderful children… My life was always so terrible, so horrible…and now, that all seemed so long ago. I was finally happy. I cherished my wife and loved her deeply, and every night, I would lay with my kids and tell them stories…stories with happy endings. It was ironic, really. How much I hated fairy tales and happy endings, and now, I was practically living one…but as I said before, in life, there is no happy endings…only death. Only now do I see that there is something far more worse than death…

At this point, I was nearing thirty-five years old. Not only did I have my own family, but, I was also part of another family. My wife's parents, at first, did not approve of me, but in time, I guess I just grew on them. They learned that I wasn't a bad person, I just had a bad upbringing, and they accepted me with open arms, much like they're daughter did with me. Even now, I felt so indebted to them. We were on our way back from going to visit them. They lived a fair bit away, but even still, we loved to visit them, especially the kids… Anyway, on our way back home, the moon hung high in the dark sky and both of the kids, as well as my wife, were asleep. As you can guess, I was the one driving, although now, I really do regret that. I could feel my eyes getting heavy. I was tired, but, I kept on driving down the mountain pass highway that we were on. All I remember was blinking, but, I couldn't open my eyes. Next I knew, when I did open my eyes, we were hurdling down the mountain.

Honestly, I wish I just died there…

Again, I woke up in a hospital. The bright lights seemed so much more blinding now than they did way back then. This time, there was no one by my bedside. I began to panic. Eventually, a couple nurses came in, trying to calm me while another went to fetch my doctor. All I really remember coming out of that long sleep was yelling "Where are they! Is my wife safe! What about my children!" The doctor just looked at me with a confused expression… He finally spoke… "Sir, what are you talking about?"

At first, I didn't know what he meant. I asked a simple and straightforward question and expected an answer, but…then he started to talk, started to tell me what happened…

I had been in a coma due to overdosing on sleeping pills…but, the coma lasted for years… I was now thirty-five, waking up for the first time since my mother's death so many years ago… They tried to tell me that I had no family…no wife or kids… I didn't believe them! I had a family! They were real! They were real…but…I couldn't find them… No one knew them… Like that, they were just gone, and it seemed like no one knew them…like they didn't exist…

I didn't believe them… I still don't, but… It's so hard. It's been nearly a year since I woke up, and it just seems like…like they were right...like they didn't exist. I try so hard to remember them, to hold onto them for as long as I can, but now I'm starting to forget… I can't even remember my children's faces anymore. Many night's I'd just cry and weep, hoping that all of this was just a dream, that the people that were in my life were still here. Now, I can't even remember their names…

How had it gotten like this… I said that there was something far more worse than death, and that's life! This isn't a fairy tale! There are no happy endings! This is reality! This is not a story where everything will be alright! This will only end when I die! When I die…when I die…I will finally see them once more… I am done. I am tired. I just want them back…