When Life is Literally Too Short
Monday was a typical day for Mary: she was going to wake up at 5am, spend the next three hours answering emails as stipulated in her virtual assistant contract, then head to the art gallery where she’d put in three hours. After that, she was free to spend the rest of the day as she pleased.
This particular Monday started with a bang. Instead of the usual sluggishness with which her week normally started, today she had the energy of a mule. Such energy was not to be wasted, she decides, and so she went out for a run.
Lately, the art enthusiast and part time student had been developing ideas. She was getting antsy and the only thing that seemed to calm her mind was the idea of packing up and roaming. These same thoughts occupied her mind as she ran that morning. She was great with people, she thought. May be she could become a Markham tutor? Or a food writer? What about an au pair? She was all bad with kids, she acknowledged and free board sounded like a good idea at the moment. So many possibilities!
Mary hadn’t had the best life, if the usual parameters of happiness are to be used. Her mother died while she was still young and while her dad loved her as best as he could, his much younger wife didn’t have a care in the world if the youngster lived or died. As a way of rebellion, Mary started drinking heavily, only to drop the habit because she couldn’t stand the taste of alcohol but then she took up smoking. That too backfired after a few attempts and so she settled on sleeping around. With anything that walked – only humans, though.
While promiscuity suited her fine an irked her dad effectively, it left her soul empty and lost. A darkness took the place of her joy and she was constantly crying behind closed doors. Quitting her habit was not as easy this time as she couldn’t stand being alone. However, one fine morning she bumped into Tim, the hedge fund manager she would be meeting later for dinner and a hook up. Against her better judgment, she would meet him again for drinks after work in what would become a habit. They would end up at his apartment and since she was already spending too much time at his house, why not move in, he reasoned.
This morning as she reminisced about the way Tim had changed her life – from urging her to get a job that didn’t involve escorting strange men to going back to school for her degree, Mary marveled that she had managed to stay in a relation for over 8 months. It was a record, she exclaimed.
Over the last few weeks she had been constantly feeling caged and wanted to be free to explore Paris – the Louvre was her favorite fantasy – and wineries in Bordeaux. Tim thought she was crazy to want to give up what they had for what he called “passing wind.” Mary gasped at the realization that her boyfriend had been manipulating her all this while, the same way she did when he saw the look on his face as he drove right into her. “He is gonna kill me,” were her last thoughts.