Where my story takes shape

May 26, 2010

Dramatic reactions to traumatic events

Filed under: Uncategorized — Mrs. Smith @ 4:55 pm

I put the heavy, wet clothes on the toilet seat, then looked around for a pair of scissors through all the drawers. I found a man’s electric beard cutter and set it out. I turned my back to the mirror, dried off, and put on Bruce’s sweats and shirt. They forgot undies and a bra, but it was better than nothing, I suppose. When I was dressed I turned around and faced the mirror. I looked insane. My hair was so ratted and torn, my skin was so pale with an undertone of blue, and my eyes didn’t look normal. I shut my eyes, then turned on the clipper and it was quieter than I thought it would be. My possessed hands grabbed a wet lock of hair and let the clipper slice it off to be at level with my ear.  They gripped another knotted lock and put the buzzing clipper on the nape of my neck. I didn’t feel a tug, but more of a relief. I turned my head to see the long pile on the ground. I pulled and tugged handful after handful, but the sharp blade cut through it like a spoon through soup. I swallowed whatever overwhelming feeling I was going to have, and turned off the clipper, and the whole world became silent. My shaky hand ran through my scalp. It was short, a few inches, if that. It was so short. My head was light, like it would just float away. One smooth, hot tear ran down my cheek. I had to purposely breathe every breath or my body would try to faint, and it hurts when you know you should be gone, but you’re still here. My palms were littered with little fresh-cut hairs. I held them in front of me, then looked up at the mirror as though I was offering the discards to the new woman who looked back at me with fear and ugliness.

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