No one says a word. Mom looks down at her hands clasped in her lap, tears slowly sliding down her cheeks. Dad stands staring out the window. The only things to be seen are the street lamps and the occasional car. Somebody driving by, probably on their way home, not knowing what is happening only a thousand or so feet away from them. Even Peter is silent, though there is no way he can truly grasp what is going on. He sits there playing with his toy plane as quiet as a mouse. 

I sit there, gazing in front of me wondering, How could this have happened? Though I can understand how, I can’t understand why. Why is this happening? Why us? On the wall in front of me hangs a painting of yellow poppies in a red vase. I stare at it. In my classes, I study paintings like this. I study the techniques, the colors, the style. Now all I can think of is when Cory, Peter, and I drove by a field bustling with yellow poppies. We stopped to pick a bouquet for Mother’s Day. Above the painting, and to the right, is a clock. My eyes keep wandering to the clock, though almost involuntarily. I don’t want to check the time. It feels as though every time I look the hands are mocking me. 11:27, 11:28, 11:28, 11:28. I check my phone to be sure that the clock is actually working – 11:28. I feel the tears swell up behind my eyes like a dam that is about to give way. They took him into emergency surgery almost 45 minutes ago. We have yet to receive any updates.

Everything that I cared about up to this point feels inconsequential. Why did we argue so much? What did we argue about? When you’re growing up nothing seems more important than your future, you can’t wait to grow up, be an adult. But really when it all comes down to it, nothing is more important than the time you spend with your loved ones.

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Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary (@carrie-oleary)
2 months ago

Welcome to Voice.club, Anastasia. Your story leaves me wanting to know so much more. Time can be very cruel sometimes, going too quickly when you are enjoying something, but slowing down to snail’s pace when you are desperately waiting for news about what’s happening with a loved one. This comes across very well in your story. Well done

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo (@lotchie-carmelo)
2 months ago

Hello, Anastasia. Welcome to voice club. You portrayed it very well. Time can be very mocking. But what is important is the time you spend with your family. I agree when you say, “nothing is more important than the time you spend with your loved ones.” Well done. Keep writing!

Julie Harris
Julie Harris (@julie-harris)
2 months ago

This story is haunting, Anastasia. Grief can stop time and forever imprint images on the griever, such as the yellow poppy. You probed the depths of grief with the poppies and the clock that seemed to have stopped. Great writing and a memorable picture. Welcome to the Club!

Christer Norrlof
Christer Norrlof (@christer-norrlof)
2 months ago

A very well told story of a situation where time stops and only fear and uncertainty take over. Very well done, Anastasia!

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