Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The hardest time of day

Before anyone starts freaking out... This is a character I am working on for a story. Just thought I'd clear that up before the RF's of Tiffy stage an intervention. And no, I don't have a name for for her yet. I feel like I am just getting to know her.


She says that mornings are the hardest time of day. Laying alone in her bed, eyes closed, taking inventory of her surroundings and what, if anything, she can remember from the night before. Realizing she’s wearing the top half of yesterday’s outfit, complete with sweater, jacket and scarf, but nothing on the bottom sends her brain scrambling to remember those last few moments before bed. She can remember getting dressed in that outfit, but what had possessed her to remove her shoes and pants but not the heavy winter coat and scarf? And where had she discarded the remaining articles?

She stays in bed for a few moments, squinting against the glowing red numbers on her alarm clock which remind her she better get moving or she’ll be late. She tries to care. She starts to recall the evening before, filled with dread at what she might she may have done and frustrated with her lack of control. She can remember the first glass of wine clearly, and the second. Maybe a shot? Her memory gets fuzzy. She sees the rest of the evening in bits and pieces. A flash of stumbling in the bathroom, she touches the spot on her thigh and feels the soreness of a new bruise, proof. A snippet of a conversation she had with a friend, oh Lord what they must have thought of her! A disapproving look from a stranger. The moment she realized that she was out of control. Again.

She thinks about how embarrassed she is, how much she is dreading seeing the people she knows she will see again, and the ones who witness her latest debacle. Mortification is a drink best served up, with olives. She thinks about how she’s really a terrible person and wonders that anyone wants to spend time with her anyway. Maybe they don’t and she’s just been too drunk to notice. Do they seem less than enthused to see her? She groans, sheds a few worthless tears and slides out of bed to the shower. She feels like she ruined the evening, like she is ruining her life.

While she washes away the smell of cigarette smoke from her hair (had she bought her own smokes or just mooched off a friend all evening?) and tries to shake off the dull ache starting behind her eyes, she wonders how exactly she got to this place. Drinking used to be fun. A couple of cocktails with the girls after work or a glass of wine or two with dinner used to seem perfectly acceptable. When had it gotten out of control? When had she stopped drinking for fun and started drinking to forget, to dull the pain and sadness in her life? When had her life started to control her, instead of her controlling it? She tried to giver herself a pep talk, a bit of the new age side and gives up before she really can start. That garbage about choosing your destiny rings especially false when sober.

Later, walking through her home trying to clean up yet another mess left in the aftermath of a night of drinking she wonders if she should quit. Can she quit? The possibility seems unlikely. She is a drinker and many if not all the people in her life are drinkers, she doesn’t possess the will power to quit cold turkey on her own nor the money and time required to check herself into a rehab center. Besides rehab is for pop stars she thinks with a sort of ironic half smile, and AA is for alcoholics and she fancies her self a regular run of the mill drunk. The smile fades as quickly as it appeared. She rarely smiles anymore. At least not when she’s sober.

She says that mornings are the hardest.

1 comment:

Michele said...


It is wonderful you are working on your writing skills, especially since it gives us all something to read on your blog.