My Autobiographical Short Story
Leia woke up late as usual. Her stringy blonde hair was matted in the back due to a forgotten barrette she was wearing from the day before. She wore her pajamas until she took her shower which wasn't until nightfall. She ate the same things for lunch and dinner (breakfast never existed in her world): a scrambled omelet, orange juice, mint Oreos, and Starbursts. Describing her to a stranger, one might think she was five - she was 25.
Leia never really cared about how she looked; the two things that concerned her were hiding her blemishes and making sure not too much of her pale skin was exposed. She wasn't concerned about appearing immodest, or anything. She wasn't even concerned about the suns harsh rays burning her fair complexion. Rather, she didn't want to blind people's sight with her whiteness. "When is pale going to be the new tan?" she always asked.
On this particular morning (technically it was morning because she was awake just before 12:00 p.m.), she decided to structure her day with activities. The day's events consisted of the following: shower, dress, look for a job, pay one of her bills online, call mom, go outside once - even if it's just for a walk or to do laundry – and make a new stranger a new friend. That's it. It didn't matter if two of the items on the list involved grooming, because to Leia, that was a feat in and of itself. When making her checklist, she made sure to balance it with things she could actually accomplish, such as calling her mom, along with the more difficult things, such as taking her resume to a temp agency (not to mention updating her resume). This way, she wouldn't feel like a failure at the end of the day if she didn't complete any of the more difficult tasks, like looking for a job or doing laundry.
Once she made her list, she decided she needed a break or a temporary distraction from thinking about the day’s events. She was glad she didn't have a television because she knew from past experience that watching hours of television was a wasted addiction. She spent about five minutes considering what to do, and then she realized she could always clean. But Leia knew once she started cleaning, that would consume her whole day (as it does with most undiagnosed cases of obsessive compulsive cleaners). However, the thought of a clean apartment was so enticing and also something that always needed to be done. She was so tempted to reorganize the checklist to include - well actually center around - cleaning and not job searching. She debated over and over in her mind about what to do.
One voice argued, "Just clean. It's a task to be accomplished, you know you're capable of doing it, and you'll feel so much more relieved once all the door handles are polished and the grout in the bathroom is bleached. It's something you can do, and do well, and feel good about it once it’s completed."
Another voice argued, "You need to do these other things more. Yes, you clean well, but you won't have a good job if you keep putting off searching. AND, you won't have anything to clean if you get evicted from your apartment."
"True that," Leia thought. By this point, Leia was exhausted from all of the critical thinking taking place in her head so she decided to take a nap. "Yes, I need to clear my mind and rest my body." Leia was feeling like she was running on empty and needed to recharge in some way.
"No, you need to conjure up all the strength you have and get to work. And rest? Rest from what?" voice number two said.
"I don't know, I just feel tired," she answered.
Leia soon discovered she was talking to herself. Somewhere in her mind were two voices telling her what she should do, not to mention her own voice was crammed in there somewhere. She became even more tired because her head was now crowded with voices.
"Great, not only am I lazy, slightly OCD, but now I have Dissociative Identity Disorder as well. Wonderful. How will I ever get anything done in addition to solving these problems?"
Just as Leia was analyzing the psychological state of her mind, she began to hear more voices. Real voices - a woman's voice, then a man's, and back to the woman's. She began to get a little nervous because she knew the only other person in her apartment was her roommate Reegan who had just come home from dance class.
"I really do have multiple personalities or schizophrenia," she worried. She kept hearing the voices over and over again. She listened carefully but they were slightly muffled. She couldn't decipher what they were saying to her. They weren't as clear as the arguing voices from earlier. Every once in a while, though, she could hear cheering and clapping. She wondered what they were saying to her. What kind of message did they want to send her? Was it one of hope, something to be afraid of? Were aliens sending her signals? What could it be and whose voices were these? “Please don’t probe me!” she exclaimed.
Lexia - I mean Leia - decided she had to leave her room. She'd been cooped up in there far too long. She quickly got up, ran out of her room (which only took three steps), and slammed the door shut. Tired from the frenzied run, her body slowly slid down the back of the door. She sat there on the warm wooden floor, put her hands to her head, and began to sweat profusely (and not anxiously or nervously, but because she was in 101 degree weather on the sixth floor of an un-airconditioned apartment). A voice called from Reegan's room. It was Reegan.
She unnecessarily yelled, "Hey Leia, come here!" (because the apartment was only 600 square feet total).
"I can't get up," Leia thought to herself, or someone in her head thought to herself. "I think I'm going crazy," she whispered.
"I have a surprise!" Reegan continually yelled.
Leia mustered up all of her strength, stood up, and wiped some sweat off her forhead. She walked to Reegan's room. Inside Reegan's room was the solution to all of Leia’s psychological problems. There on Reegan's desk lay a small 13" x 13" color television.
"I found a television on the street! Great, huh? I'm watching Oprah, she has a Debt Diet series where she helps people manage their finances."
All of a sudden, Leia had flashes in her mind from 2 and a half minutes earlier: the woman's voice, the man's voice. They were not voices in her head. They were voices alright, but those of Oprah and some guy who was $70,000 in debt. How wonderful! What relief! "I'M NOT CRAZY!" I shouted - I mean, Leia exclaimed.
"What?" Reegan inquired.
"Nothing," Leia said with a smile on her face and a bead of sweat dripping down her neck.
"Do you want to watch it with me?"
Leia was so tempted to just plop on Reegan's bed and learn how to better manage her own debt. "This is good for me to see," she thought. "Maybe I should talk myself into watching it. It could be my long awaited distraction."
Then that other voice came into her mind; not the one that told her she should clean, but the one that said she could be evicted if she didn't look for a job. "This isn't a good idea, there are more productive distractions than this."
Leia stood there in Reegan's doorway. Then took one step backwards and said, "No Reegan. I'm going to blog. I have a great idea for a story."
Leia went rushing to her room (again, only three steps away from Reegan's doorway). She sat in her not-so-cheap K-mart chair and noticed a rip in it.
"I should try and fix that right now - NO! I'm blogging."