. . .
After that Wednesday session with Gabriella
I felt so hopeful, as in, ready to take a new path in my life, a bright path. For so long I had been trapped under a grey cloud that followed me for years, wherever I went and whatever I did. People always talked about my cloud as if it was easy to escape, “two pills a day will keep the depression away” they always said. However, it was not as easy as simply taking pills and smiling. But this Wednesday, something felt different. The sun was shining through the tiny clouds that would let down a few raindrops later on and I felt that I had enough power to escape this cloud and start a new life with a new purpose, and Gabi was the person grabbing my hand and pulling me out. She, herself had pulled out herself out of this and that is why she had enough strength to help all of us in need. Gabi was the person I always aspired to be, helpful, strong, and with a heart of gold. I was fascinated by the way she overcame her trauma and depression, it is not easy being abused by the person you love, because you keep denying the fact that they chose to harm you. Although Gabi had scars on her body, she wore the stripes like a tiger, strong and majestic. We had a special connection, I wanted to know more about her, who she actually was and how she chose to be that person. I wanted to live for something else, not live to overcome a situation I never asked for.
We went out for our usual coffee time together, to the same cafe every Wednesday. Gabi always ordered pure black coffee, no creamer, no sugar, just coffee beans and hot water. I found it interesting that somebody enjoyed a bitter taste like that. Once, I ordered it when Gabi was not around because I wanted to try it out and possibly like it as well, but unfortunately I could not even finish my second sip. It sounds preposterous that I tried to be like Gabi, but it was just something I wanted to have in common with her rather than our traumatising experiences. Perhaps there was something present in her coffee that made her the person she was, maybe it contributed to her strength and energy to keep her life together. At that moment, she was the most successful woman I had ever met, that is why she enthralled me. She rose up from the ground she had sunk into, escaped the cloud that was following her, and was raising twins at the age 7, all by herself. That day, I had the hope and motivation to become like her. If she could do it then why wouldn't I be able to?
We sat for hours just talking and laughing on repeat, it was really hard keeping track of time when everything felt so outstanding. In mid laugh, Gabi’s phone started ringing and it was then I realized that she had a responsibility for her children that still were in school at 5pm. “Shit” I whispered when Gabi answered her phone with a concerned countenance, it is undoubtedly a call regarding her children. She answered my thoughts by replying “yes I will be there in 10” to the phone that was resting between her ear and hand. She hung up and told me, “we have to hurry, now!”
As she heatedly moved towards the parked car of hers, I anxiously asked, “What is going on Gabi? What is wrong? Did something happen to them?”
I did not even have to convey who them were, I already knew that she knew. Nobody else mattered as much as they did, her two lovely boys. In panic and fear she answered “I do not know, I really do not know but they said it is urgent and I could not bear hearing a serious report via phone call! Just get in the car fast!”
By this time, all I saw outside through the window pane was a grey foggy sky without any bright sunshine, not even white clouds. It almost felt that the atmosphere represented Gabi’s inner feelings in that very moment. However, I believed that there had to be some thunders and lightnings to represent her true feelings. I assured her that it would be alright and that they probably just wanted her to rush to pick up her children, because what else could it have been? If there had been an accident, they would forward her to a hospital, not the school itself. Although I tried to make her communicate with me and give me any responses to what I had been saying the last five minutes, she did not. She just kept on looking at the road and driving as if I was not even there. I got a mysterious feeling about the whole situation by the way she was acting. Why was she worried? Is there something she had not told me? Maybe her children had diseases I did not know of? Maybe their abusive father showed up in school to claim them?
As we reached the primary school, me and Gabi unbuckled our seatbelts fast and were hit by a humidity as we opened the car doors. The ground was still moist from the previous rain earlier that day. I accidently almost stepped on a buttercup in the hurry of getting out, but fortunately it survived and provided the only bright colour there was this late afternoon.While I was running after Gabi I saw a police car parked by the curve of the pavement on the street. I thought to myself “maybe this is more serious than I thought it would be...”
We were met by the principal, teachers, and a police officer waiting for our arrival... Gabi’s arrival.
“Shit” I whispered to myself once more this day, “what is actually going on?” I thought. My thoughts were answered the moment after they told us to take a seat and I saw Gabi cry, for the first time. I saw Gabi’s tears fall onto her own light grey Gabriella Gadsen shirt and I focused on how the tears turned her shirt into a darker grey shade, almost how sadness treats life. She was not happy nor anything else I thought she was… she was shattered, so shattered that she could not take care of them. She could apparently not even feed her boys properly, love them, help them, put them to bed, and get them to school in time. This became obvious that day since she also forgot to pick them up in time, however I never would have thought that they had to be taken away from her.
. . .
“So I guess that was it… and now I ended up here instead of the support groups, it is not the same without her.” I told the curious young man.
“She took her life?” he asked in the doldrums.
“Yes… I suppose she could not see any sunshine peak through the grey cloud of hers, in fact it became worse after the dreadful news, the cloud started striking lightnings as well”