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The Existential Woman

Chapter Two; page 51

By Shanon NormanPublished 6 months ago 2 min read

Each day that passed in October was slow. Shanna recalled the past over and over again in her mind. Time spent with family. Time spent with her brother. Time spent with boyfriends.Time spent in school. Time spent on work. So much time, so many memories in her mind. Always the calender reminding her of the days, the weeks, the months, the years, the seasons.

She remembered that her favorite holidays were always Halloween and Christmas. When she and her brother were little kids, they enjoyed trick or treating together. He always tried to have a better costume than her, but her mother often helped her come up with something she liked. Christmas was always beautiful when their mother was alive. They would help her trim the tree, put the stockings up, wrap the gifts, and lick the bowls after the cookies were in the oven. She loved those memories. She had no proof that it had happened, no evidence of her memories, but she was glad that she could still remember. She could still smell the cookies baking, the aroma floating through the kitchen. She could still see the smile on her mother's face when Shanna has chocolate syrup smudged on her cheek. She could still hear the sound of her mother's laughter when Norman ran after their dog and slipped on the snow near the yellow puddle. 'Those were good times' Shanna thought holding the memories warmly, close to her heart.

This October was so different from those cherished memories. Still uncomfortably hot outside, yet cold inside the house. Cold, not because they kept the a/c running. Cold because the conversation was so stale and cautious just to keep the peace. Shanna didn't want to carve a pumpkin or think about candy. She wanted to melt the icicles that were dangling from the lips of siblings.

Maybe it was too late for her and Norman. Maybe she was too in the habit of escapism. She had recalled Norman talking about the "fight or flight" mentality, a way that he sorted out personality types. Shanna had been both. She had stood her ground at times, fought the good fight, and although some praised her for her courage, she felt unrewarded unless you consider bloody knuckles or pained knees a reward. More often, Shanna had chosen flight. Not Norman. It was like he was never given wings. He'd stand in front of everyone, not because he was stronger or braver. But because he was the best at silence. He could kill a crowd with silence. Most people hated his silence. But Shanna preferred it, because when he did open his mouth to speak, it was either icicles or jibberish. To Shanna, silence was better than those.


About the Creator

Shanon Norman

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  • Jay Kantor6 months ago

    Dear Shanon - 'Melt the lip icicles' - what a capturing metaphor that I've never heard before. Which ever pond you author in you are a marvelously-creative StoryTeller - J-bud

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