The Girl

Once upon a blue sky, her parents loved her.
They would call her beautiful and talented and smart.
Her laugh was infectious, bringing joy to everyone she knew.
People would say she was unstoppable,
And she was.
Strangers would smile at her as she skipped down the street.
And she would smile back.
That was the year she decided to learn the piano.
And her piano teacher praised her,
And said she played beautifully.
The flowers outside her house bloomed brightly
And the grass always seemed to be green.
Her mother and father would hold hands wherever they went.
And the new boy in her class sent her a note.
Signed with a crooked heart and his name.
And she had to look at it closely to even see what he wrote.
Her parents told her “I love you” every night at 6.
And never missed a day.

Once upon a cloudy day, her parents told her they loved her.
They would call her kind and lovely and generous.
Her laugh was gentle, bringing smiles to everyone she knew.
People would say she was perceptive,
And she was.
Strangers would smile at her as she walked down the street.
And she would smile back.
That was the year she had her first recital.
And her piano teacher praised her,
And told her to practice.
The flowers outside her house bloomed
And the grass always seemed to be green.
Her mother and father would hold hands wherever they went.
And the boy in her class asked her on a date.
She said yes, and smiled when he kissed her.
And she wrote his name beside hers in her journal a hundred times.
Her parents told her “I love you”
But sometimes they would forget
And miss a day.

Once upon a gloomy day, her parents told her absolutely nothing.
They would call her worthless and useless and tiresome.
She didn’t laugh anymore, and everyone she knew had left.
People would say she was quiet,
And she was.
Strangers would walk past her on the street, and ignore her.
And she would keep walking.
That was the year she made a mistake at her recital.
And her piano teacher got angry
And told her to practice more.
The flowers outside her house drooped
And the grass seemed to turn into a crunchy brown.
Her mother and father never held hands,
And always seemed to be yelling at each other.
And the boy in her class moved away.
She cried and cried, but he promised they would stay together.
Until he wrote her a letter
Saying that he had found someone else.
She would tell herself “I love you”
And go to bed.
Her parents arguing in their bedroom.

Which is why on a gray and lifeless day, her parents told her to leave.
And she did.
And she cried, but it didn’t matter.
Because no one was there to hear her.
She stole a bottle of her mother’s sleeping pills and took them all.
And she drifted off into an endless sleep.
Because this time there was no one there
To tell her they loved her.

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