Copyright © 2012 by Christopher Stocking
The doctor told me I’d be fine. As long as I took the pills, I’d never hurt anyone; at least, not again. But even as I sit in this chair, surrounded by people who are supposedly just like me, I can feel it.
It’s a strange, funny-looking name, isn’t it? Schizophrenia. It’s almost a beautiful word. But there’s no beauty behind it. There’s no beauty in what I did. There’s only shame.
There’s only shame in the way I carried the knife into their room. I do love them, mom and dad. And they’re okay, I promise. They tell me I’ll be okay, too. But they’re just playing along with the doctor. How can I be okay? Really okay? It doesn’t make any sense.
It’s all just words. Words mashed up in my head. Words that take the shape of one so called person. Words that take the shape of a voice. How can they tell me I’ll be okay when this voice tells me I’m not? I can’t be okay, it just can’t be true.
Even now, as I sit here with these people. Their name tags all the same as mine. They put me in a group with these people. How can I sit here with them? They’re not like me. No, not at all.
I’ll bet the doctor told them they’re okay, too. Maybe these people are all okay. I’m the one who isn’t okay. It’s just me. I’m so alone. Well, I’m not always alone. There was… her
Even she told me I was okay. I was so blind. How could she lie to me? I told her I loved her. Or did I? Did I tell her I loved her? Or was it the voice that told her? Maybe that damned voice was the one that ruined everything. She never did tell me she loved me, though. Maybe she never did. It’s all my fault, anyway.
I guess I’m not really alone. Not completely, anyway. I’ve still got my voice. Well, both of them. He’s friendly sometimes. But, most of the time I can’t stand him. Even when he yells at me he tells me I’m okay, but I know what he really means. He tells me. He tells me he’s lying. He tells me about what he wishes he could do to me.
To be honest, I haven’t taken my pills in several days. I’ve been feeling better lately. I think. One day I almost felt okay. And then I woke up. I woke up feeling worse than ever. My head pounded as he screamed at me. He told me I’d never be okay. I wish I could make him stop. I don’t know what to do. I don’t even know who he is. But, he thinks he can stay here with me. I don’t want him to stay, please don’t make him stay. I can’t take it.
I think I can handle it. I’m feeling better now. He’s not here today. No. I sent him away for a while. It’s amazing what substances can do to make you feel better. This bottle is all mine, and now it’s empty. I sure do feel good. I almost feel like I’m floating. I think. Wait, no. Something isn’t right here.
Where am I? Oh no, he’s back. What happened to my chair? Where are the others? I miss their name tags. I wish I could look at them one more time. Is that a siren I hear? What’s this in my hand? How did this get here? Its edge is so sharp. How did I get this? When did I get home? I’m starting to get scared.
The voice is talking again. He’s such a menace. I don’t like him. I really don’t like him. I wish I could use this to make him go away. It’s so sharp. I’ll bet it would cut right through him. No, no wait. He’s a part of me. How could I do that to a part of me? It’s who I am, right? Who am I? I don’t know if I know. I don’t know if even he knows who I am.
The voice is gone again. My bottle is empty, still. I wish I had a new one. A new bottle, even a new voice. Maybe a nicer voice. Maybe a voice that doesn’t lie to me. A voice that doesn’t tell me I’m okay. A voice that doesn’t lie to me.
Now I’m back again. Back in the chair. I wonder how I got back here. When did I leave? Did I ever leave? I’ll bet if I was okay I’d know when I left. The name tags are here again. Good, I missed them more that I thought. I’ll bet everyone is jealous of my name tag. I’ll bet they think theirs is okay. Theirs isn’t okay. Mine is better. Oh, the voice is back.
Welcome back voice, I can’t say I’ve missed you.
I’m okay, but I’m really not. This voice is so annoying. I don’t know how much longer I can take the voice. It’s always bearing down on me. I don’t know if I can take it.
Such wonderful name tags. They all read the same, too. Hello, My Name is. Hello, My Name is. Hello, My Name is. What is my name? Does my voice have a name? He’s come back again. I’m okay, I’m okay, I’m okay?
Hello, My Name Is? And I’m not okay.