• Magical

    The Night I Died

    It was late. I was trying to sleep. My heart beat faster. I couldn’t breathe. My heart wouldn’t stop pounding. Breath exercises didn’t help. I kept telling my heart to slow down, to stop pounding. Take a breath! Now! Do it! I couldn’t. I couldn’t will myself to breathe, to live. I needed help. My heart felt like it was leaping out of my chest. I texted my beloved, in the next room. The text was garbled, a series of meaningless letters and symbols. rj3u92/, perhaps. Texting didn’t work. I called to him. Surely he would hear me. I called and called. HELP, I said, as loud as I could.…

  • Magical

    Not alone

    The room was spare. The single bed, covered in a mauve quilt, was pushed against the wall. A gray and white stuffed dog sat atop the nearby dresser. A single, empty chair filled the space next to the bed. The woman lay on her back with eyes closed and mouth open, her body slight under the quilt. Her breaths came hard, ragged, with spaces in between. The sound of her labors filled the room. We quietly arranged ourselves on chairs we had brought for the occasion, facing the woman in the bed. She kept on with her breathing. One of us whispered. “We’re here to be with you on your…

  • Write Like You Mean It

    Transition

    A hospital bed stood in the center of the room, once a living room. Now it was a dying room, its walls covered with loved ones’ artifacts and memories. The man in the bed was tiny, shrunken, his body barely visible beneath the sheet that covered him. Only his feet and one hand created small hills in the otherwise nearly-flat landscape. His face was turned to one side and his eyes never left mine. Hold me, they said, I know everything. Hold me. The skin of the man’s face was surprisingly smooth, as if all the cells of his body had ceased their normal work and instead concentrated on making…

  • My Brain On Crack

    What do you do when you just want to die?

    Right now, in this moment, I want to die. While this isn’t purely hypothetical, please don’t freak out. Don’t refer me to a suicide hotline. Don’t tell me I need counseling. Because baby, I can guarantee you 100 percent that I am not the only person in the Universe who feels this way — at least sometimes. Momentarily. But I am one of a handful who is willing to talk about it. It wasn’t long ago that I first began really embracing this feeling when it comes up. Emotions, to me, are waves. They come, they go, they move through and around and beyond me. Ripples in a pond. Yeah,…