I’m sitting in the chair but my mind is far away. Its family night; every night is family night and as usual, as we do every day, we’re watching the news even though dad is the only one who likes watching the news. Mum pretends to like it so dad can be pleased. Not happy, but pleased. She tries to do everything to please him. We’re not allowed our phones either and so we’re forced to just sit there and watch the news.
I don’t like the news but I don’t have a choice, we’re not allowed to leave. One time, I tried to leave and dad shouted so loudly, I’m sure the walls shook. He called me every bad name under the sun. Now, instead of protesting, I just sit there and pretend to watch the news. Instead, I disappear into my mind. You don’t know what that means, I’ll explain. I am there physically, but I’m not there. I see things, I feel things and I can hear things but my vision is blurry and I might as well not be there. It’s like a state of paralysis and no matter how I try to will my mind to get out of it, I can’t move until my mind lets me go; I’ve learnt to get used to it and even like it. I don’t even blink.
Dad doesn’t like me talking to myself, he says it makes me look mad but I don’t mind. I want to be mad sometimes. I want to be mad so at least I will finally be able to leave. I’ve heard several tales of how they’ll cast me out. Dad told me. After the news, we’re allowed to leave and so we all thank dad and go to our rooms. My friend knows nothing of this and so I find my phone full of messages about her love life and how tired of life she is. I try to help but as usual, I don’t. She never needs my help anyway, she just needs someone to talk to.
‘Lmao!’ I type in response to messages my numerous friends send to me. ‘Lol’ I type like I can’t seem to stop laughing. I even say it in conversation. They all love me even though I can’t seem so stay in touch. They all love me, I have the perfect life.
My mind soon demands it’s due. It wants to pull me in again. It wants to take me away. I try to fight it but I’m powerless. From the first few times I let it take control till now, it has become stronger. It pulls me in and I am powerless to stop it. It takes me to the place it always takes me. The river in the middle of nowhere; the one I always try to get out of but always fail to. I’m drowning again, just like I drown in front of the TV, like I drown while I talk and laugh with people, like I drown when I tell that boy I like him and know in my mind that he will never like me, like I’m drowning right now. I’m drowning but I know it won’t pull me down. My mind needs me alive but it doesn’t need me sane.
My head is below the water. I don’t realise how deep I’ve gotten, I’ve never gotten this deep before. I flail my arms but it does me no good. I can faintly hear the ping from my phone as messages come in. I try to swim out, to get to them, to scream help me but no words come out. I am helpless, my mind has taken me hostage. Until it has had its fill, it will not let me go and if it never does, I will be stuck here, forever a prisoner to my mind.
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