Empty Days

There were days when she simply wasn’t there. Entire days during which she worked on autopilot, keeping her head down and moving from one place to the next: from bed to the breakfast table and from there to the bus which took her to work and on and on until she was back in bed. She knew what was happening during those days – she was in there, somewhere, behind the dead eyes that looked out at the world – but she was stuck in some sort of conscious torpor, unable to speak a sincere word or process a complex thought.
She could never predict when this sort of day might occur. It could be a bright, sunny day in early June – then she’d miss the beauty of the hummingbirds surrounding the trees in the garden and the sweet smell of night-blooming flowers that wafted in through the windows during dinner. Sometimes it would be a blustery, rainy day in November, and she’d be immune to the blue mood that engulfed everyone else.
Whenever these days happened, she’d mark them down in her calendar when she woke up the next morning. She monitored the empty days, hoping and praying that they wouldn’t increase, but trying to find a pattern in them. Were they part of her menstrual cycle? Did they have something to do with her diet or the amount of exercise she took? She kept meticulous notes on all of her activities
She refused to believe that the empty days were absolutely random. If there were no triggers, she had no way to prevent them. If she couldn’t prevent them, then it was only a matter of time before she would walk off a bridge or in front of a speeding truck. She didn’t want to die, but the emptiness didn’t care about living.


12 thoughts on “Empty Days

  1. Erin M says:

    I hate those empty days. I tried keeping track of them for a while. Now whenever I have them I just keep telling myself to hold on because they’ll pass.

    You’ve captured the feeling really well.

    Hope you’re doing ok and that school is going well.
    Love you!

  2. Great stuff here! The fearless conviction of the girl in the story almost makes me wish I was like her. Not to have her empty days, but to have that firm belief in oneself, that refuses to back down.
    Seems like an unfinished story… I could see this becoming a book. 🙂
    Your descriptions are beautiful and not over-done.. the balance between the character and the mood was perfect.!

    • Definitely unfinished, like most of what I post here. I don’t know if I could turn it into something so long, though. But who knows, I may incorporate it into a character in a longer work! Thank you so much for the compliments and feedback, I really appreciate it :).

  3. Miss Rosemary says:

    Very chilling last line, “She didn’t want to die, but the emptiness didn’t care about living.”

    Also, I’m 100% in New York! We should find a day to meet up. I know for certain that I will be in attendance at the Brooklyn Book Festival on the 19th with some friends, but would of course be open to other ideas for a more personal meeting as well.

    • That is SO AWESOME!

      I’ll actually be hanging out with a friend in Washington Heights on the 19th so I won’t be anywhere near Brooklyn, but we should totally get together for coffee or something at a B&N or somewhere like that, since we’re both such book lovers ^_^. It’ll be so cool to finally meet one of my bloggy-friends!

  4. As miserable as this life can be, there’s no guarantee that anything exists beyond it. I wish everyone who feels that emptiness and despair could reach out for a lifeline, in some form, before it’s too late. Beautiful writing, SI, as always.

  5. Unabridged Girl says:

    Empty days. I totally get this. I really do. It’s beautifully written, Ems, but that isn’t surprising. Wonderful.

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