Can You Tell Me?

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Can you tell I’m dying inside? Or do I hide it much too well? This false smile of mine has been plastered on my face for as long as I can remember. And remember I do, even though I try so hard to forget. Isn’t it cruel how the memories that we desperately want to erase are the ones that we can never shake?

These memories haunt me every waking moment of my life…and sometimes follow me into the land of dreams. As if watching them constantly replay in my head during the day isn’t enough! Sometimes they are nothing more than a fragment; a single word, hateful eyes boring holes into the back of my head, mouths moving languidly behind flattened palms. And other times, I replay entire scenes in my head, reliving those moments that still, after all this time, bring me to my knees.

One such memory, that I remember vividly, is what I have labeled in my mind as The Incident.

That dreadful day was the chilliest we had seen for quite awhile. The frigid wind shook the trees bare, howling and moaning, sending snow flying through the air. By the time I had walked ten feet I was chilled to the bone. My breath came in short puffs as I watched parents pick up their kids. My eyes lingered on the beautiful smiles lighting up their faces, smiles so genuine they hurt.

I willed one of my parents to come get me, but knew that my mom was busy and my dad was out of town.

Finally, everyone had been picked up but me and a couple of others; all of us freezing our sorry butts off. Hearing raucous
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