“I just have to live my life like she’s dead to me,” Melanie said with a shrug. “If she wants to treat me as such, then there is no reason I can’t do the same.”
Melanie nervously fidgeted with the clasp on her Coach purse, which was so large—she was clearly overcompensating for something.
“But pretending someone no longer exists does not allow you to heal your internal conflicts,” said Dr. Prewitt.
Suddenly agitated, Melanie jumped to her feet and shouted, “How would you know? I am doing just fine without her in my life, just as she is doing fabulous without me in hers!”
Dr. Prewitt interrupted, “Say her name.”
Melanie glared at her, “She doesn’t have a name, she’s dead to me!”
Melanie stormed out of Dr. Prewitt’s office and slammed the door behind her, rattling the windows. When Melanie stepped into the elevator, the doors closing behind her, she slumped to the floor and began crying. Melanie was a successful attorney at a prestigious law firm in New York. She left her home in Maryland to go to school. If she could have afforded to study abroad at the time, she would have. She wanted to stay as far away from Maryland as she possibly could. Melanie was raised in a small town with her mother, father, and her two younger sisters. She never went without food, she went to the best schools, and always had clothes on her back. She had a relatively good life, but Melanie hated her childhood. Her family was far from poor and they could do whatever they wanted. In that aspect, life was good, but Melanie longed for companionship from her mother, who was emotionally detached from her children—especially Melanie. In return for having an emotionally detached mother, both of Melanie’s sisters, Ramona and Aurora, stopped talking to her, as well. Melanie’s father never cared to establish a healthy relationship with anyone in their family. He was controlling and abusive. He was the reason Melanie kept her distance and no one seemed to realize that.
By the time Melanie reached the first floor, she stood up and regained her composure. Before the elevator doors opened, she looked at her reflection in the mirrored walls and touched up her makeup with a Kleenex. She took her expensive designer sunglasses from her hair and placed them over her eyes. She stepped off the elevator and hurried through the lobby. Once she stepped outside, she inhaled deeply and felt the weight on her shoulders release. For the past seven years, she was living without her family and, in her eyes, she was doing quite well for herself. Melanie climbed into the smooth and luxurious leather seats of her BMW and drove home. When she arrived home, she opened the door to her immaculate penthouse. Her house was everything she ever dreamed of, and more. She kicked off her beautiful diamond encrusted heels and went into her kitchen. She carefully selected a bottle of wine from her wine cooler. Tonight was going to be a special night, she could feel it in her heart. She selected a 2008 bottle of Leonetti Merlot and turned on some smooth jazz. She danced around her kitchen and sipped on her wine, glass after glass. As every sip touched her lips, she felt it glide down her throat, melting the stresses of the day away.
One hour passed and Melanie polished off her second bottle of wine. She was staring at herself in the mirror. Who was this sad sap of a woman staring back at her? Who had she let herself become? She was full of anger and hatred for her father. He was the reason their family was so broken. Everything fell apart because they were too scared to stand up to him. Melanie was crying and shaking with terrible anger. “This is over!” she screamed, knocking everything off her bathroom counter. She hurried out of the bathroom and grabbed her keys. She rode the elevator down to the lobby and rushed out the door. When the cold night air hit her face, she felt the adrenaline rush increase. Her bare feet stomped along the pavement as she ran to her car. Once she was in her car, she sped off to begin her mission. Speeding through the city, she was determined to make it to her parents' house. As she sped through a red light, her car was hit by a delivery truck. The driver’s side door completely smashed into her and sandwiched her car between the truck and a telephone pole. The sound of her horn blaring endlessly cut through the silence of the night. Melanie finally escaped her reality.