I fell off the wagon again, but that’s not the point.
Do you know what it’s like, to struggle with addiction? It’s not easy. It’s so easy as someone on the outside to point fingers, to say that addiction is not really addiction, that it’s not a disease – that the problem drunks like me have is not the drinking itself but a weakness of character.
I fell off the wagon again and there was nothing to catch me.
“Susie,” I stammered, standing on the concrete stair of her building’s doorstep as the cold rain poured down around me. “I love you.” The cold wet of the rain trickled down my cheeks, around my mouth, mixing with the salt of my tears. “I love you. I love you more than anything and I haven’t stopped thinking about you since you told me I had to go.” I felt stupid now. I felt stupid standing here on the stoop of her building and pouring my heart out to her as the rain poured down around me.
“Thomas!” She was upset, livid. “Why are you doing this to me?! You can’t do this! You can’t show up like this and say these things after all those horrible things you did to me. Get out of my life! You need to go. Go! Now!”
I knew she was right. I knew that the past was the past and I needed to get on with my life. But that didn’t stop me from swinging the bat I’d hidden in my jacket hard towards her head, and hearing the sickening crack it made when the aluminum connected with her skull. I watched her crumple onto the steps of the stoop.
The rain poured down all around us and I dragged her limp body back to the car. I drove on into the night, far outside of town, far away from the city lights and all the claustrophobia they induced.
My shovel bit into the wet earth, and made a scraping sound. Still the rain poured. I noticed, almost in passing, that I was soaked to the skin and cold. I looked at her crumpled body next to me, laying in a heap. I thought about all the feelings I had over the years, about all the things I’d wanted to tell her but never could, until that moment the aluminum bat connected with the bone of her skull, but by then it was too late.
My shovel bit into the earth again. Some feelings are best left where they belong, buried far beneath the surface. I pitched a clod of wet earth aside.
Some things are better left buried.