It starts at 2AM, after the party ends and when you have enough time to clear up. It is when you finally have time to sink down on the ground, and observe everything around you. The way strangers lay drunk on your favorite couch, where you see your roommate snogging a guy who’s not good for her. The way your classmates sprawl themselves on your floor, clutching empty bottles. Bottles you downed to enjoy and adjust to the noise and the chaos around you.
Chaos. It’s 2:30 AM and you can feel the pain and exhaustion roll your body. The room gets stuffier and you find yourself inhaling the smoke from some girl’s extinguished cigarette butt. You told yourself that it was the last time you call a bunch of people over and host a party. A tired smile stretches across your face, after all, it wasn’t a bad night. Yet a nagging feeling, which you pushed down a long time ago resurfaces…
Did you enjoy the party? Did you have fun?
Sure you did, you tell yourself. Yeah, the party was fun. You met loads of people. Hell, even the cool kids came over. This was definitely one of the rowdiest nights you’ve had in a while.
But, did you have fun?
Did you? Did you speak to someone? Anyone? A person who cared? Did you find someone who knew about you and who wanted to find out more about you? Or did they just come for the ‘fun’? Were you an extra in your own party?
You don’t like these thoughts. So you try to think of something else. You’ve settled down, you’ve found a group to like you.
You stare at the clock in front of you. It’s 3AM.
They like you. Isn’t it?
After all these nights, you know what’s coming next.
You look up to face yourself in the mirror in front of you. Broken sometime during the night, you see only jagged pieces of your face together.
Large, bloated face, with blood shot eyes. You’ve seen it all before. You’ve laughed at this face. Called this face pathetic.
Who would want to be friends with an elephant? You had no reason to have any friend. You’re loud, opinioned, stubborn and strong willed. Your friends find you brash and rude. They laugh at your mistakes. At your marks.
You can’t breathe suddenly.
It’s 3:15 AM
You step out onto the open ledge. You breathe again. Your lungs eagerly breathe in the nip in the night air. The stillness makes you aware of the loneliness the night has to offer.
Your tee shirt feels twice as tight suddenly. The ledge is dark and is a definitely more than ten feet above the ground. You feel exposed under the moonlight. The night stars offer no solution. You hate your skin.
Mosquitoes buzz around your head. The air clears any type of buzz you had. Deep breathes scratch against your throat. You feel faint hearted.
They comment about me. The time during the presentation. The time during the shoot. The time during the photo session. I was the awkward one of the pile. I was the one chosen last. I was the runt of the litter.
No one else ever needed you. You didn’t either. Did you? No you didn’t. You never do. You can survive on your own.
Your feet have a life of their own.
You find your feet at the edge of the ledge. You sit down there. Dangle your legs in the open space beneath it.
You struggle to think of anything that makes you happy. People- maybe older friends. Maybe they see beyond your flaws.
Breathing becomes heavier as you stick your hands in your pocket. Your phone, you can’t find it. It’s not where you thought you had it last. Your mind runs through the events from the night.
You hadn’t thought this through. You remember every glance and scoff thrown your way. You remember everything you thought you’d ignore. You know they noticed you conscious. You know they continued.
Where was your phone?
You don’t know if that was the past you talking in your head, desperate to ignore the unwanted attention or if it was the present you, desperately trying to ignore the party.
You find your phone next to your knee.
You release a breath you didn’t realize you were holding.
The stars look beautiful tonight.
I always wish on stars, nothing has happened yet. Am I not worth a miracle?
You’re tired. You’re just so fucking tired.
You stare straight in front of you and all you can see is a chaos of buildings together.
The hidden emotions that stayed inside for so long. That stayed hidden. That you wanted to keep in. They all come out
Your heart betrayed further.
Remember when you thought you had a chance with him? And then saw him making out with her in your room? Wasn’t she the one who had always told you that you had a shot at being with him?
Was she always with him?
Did he know too?
Was this just a game or a prank by them?
You shake your head, you know better than that. She was your best friend maybe she liked him too? Maybe she was drunk. You knew she was and so was he. Maybe they both were drunk. Both were interested in each other. That’s good, you would be happy for them.
This wasn’t the first time you were rejected for your friend anyway.
You can feel the tee shirt cut through your skin. You always loved this top. The blue always made you feel comfier. Yet now you could feel the excess fat around you.
Exhaustion eats you alive.
You can feel your mental breakdown attacking your heart. The constant beating makes it difficult to hear anything else.
You want to stand up. You do. But you sway, your legs refusing to help you, drained of any energy to give you. Tilting over the ledge-
Maybe. Just maybe. More to the left and then-
But the ground looks so nice and smooth. No bones to be too badly damaged. Just a few broken bones and pile of clothes and skin.
No more pain. No more self-doubt. No more questions. No more pressure. No more ‘eyes down hood up’.
It tempts you. All too much but you run away from there. You rush back inside the rooms. To other people. The snores and the smell. Anything to bring you out of this.
You strain to find anyone to talk to. To talk to you about regular life. To talk you out of this.
It’s 4:15 AM.
And now you find the pills.
You stand opposite the bathroom mirror.
You face looks lifeless. Sunken eyes poring back into yours.
Sleeping pills. Your roommate had insomnia. You know the procedure.
One pill and a glass of water and then to bed. If nothing happens try another pill after two hours. No more than two in a day. Otherwise it would prove to be fatal.
You know all this. You reminded her during her worse days.
The bottle opens easily, used to the regular use.
Pills fall out easily.
One. Two. Three. Four. Five. Six. Seven. Eight. Nine. Ten
Ten pills. Exactly ten. It must be a sign.
You stare hard. You remember how you screamed at your roommate, overdosed on accident.
You empty the contents on your hand back in the bottle.
You stare at the mirror for another whole minutes and begin to furiously wash and scrub your face.
It’s just 4:30AM.
You stare at toilet seat. All the alcohol and the junk you at the previous night run back to you. You taste it in your mouth before you rush to it and puke right into the bowl.
And puke again.
By the time you empty your stomach, open the windows and air out the stench, you feel a little lighter.
Maybe I can try this for another day.
You have given up trying to remind your brain of what’s right and wrong. You just face your wash again.
It’s finally past five am.
You walk back to the balcony. The early morning air hits your face. The sun hasn’t hit the skies yet but you can see light in the summer sky.
“Hey, awake already?” It’s a girl from the party. You don’t know her name, you smile her a good morning.
Suddenly the day doesn’t seem too bad and the morning stars shine a bit brighter.
“The sky looks pretty”
“Hmm. I always adore mornings. Nights are scary. Apparently 3AM is called the ghost hour. That’s when demons and ghosts come to life.” She shiver.
The smell of green tea hits you, as she offers you a sip off her cup. You hungrily take you large gulps.
She laughs and calls you a dog for almost finishing her tea. The sound hits the air and the morning birds’ chirp along with her.
You look at her and her eye smile makes you smile back.
The rising sun was better with another person to watch along with.
You’re not alone.
You overcame the ghost hour and now live to see another day.
“So why were you up all night again?”
“Oh I was facing my demons. I won.”
“Ooh! A hero!”
She winks at you.
Yup, definitely not alone.