Here is a piece of fiction I made up on the spot and wrote in about 10 minutes for The Lightning And The Lightning Bug:
Lost And Found
My Mum lost herself when her unborn baby, Katy, died. I was 16 at the time and I didn’t fully understand what was happening. She hid away in her room from the rest of the world for years. She forgot about me, her only son, and that she already had a family. It was as if Katy had been her sole purpose in life and without any purpose, she had no reason to live.
She didn’t have the courage to actually stop living. She just pretended she wasn’t alive. She sulked a lot and ate a lot of toast, dropping crumbs everywhere or she curled up in her bed and Dad had to sleep on the sofa.
We phoned up Grandma for help but even she couldn’t do anything. Dad then invested in a sofa bed and from then on, it was as if life had been paused for them.
But my life was changing all the time. My future was moulding itself and they didn’t have a place in it. I moved out and went to live with my best friend, Charlie. My parents didn’t say anything.
Grandma decided it was time to do something. So she sent her away to some sort of hospital for mentally unstable patients.
Without a family, I became the independent one in my friendship group. I got a full-time job in a local cafe after I left College, then bought myself a small flat in a tall building in London.
It was thirty years later when I saw my Mum again. I regularly met up with Dad and he gave me updates on her stability but I hadn’t actually seen her for 30 years!
At last, she came back home again – a very different person.
And do you know what made her find herself again? Ducks.
Yes, ducks. See, she’d fallen in love with Dad when they were sitting together feeding ducks. Although she hadn’t found what she used to be and would never be herself again, she did find her sanity. She found what she had turned into. It was like she had woken from a coma.
The ducks were in a small pond outside one the countless hospitals she went to. All she needed was something to jog her memory, like an electric current lighting up all the memories in her life. Dad had gone to visit her and she had been no better than she had been the week before but she was slowly getting better. He took her outside to the ducks and said the same words he had said to her the day she fell in love with him.
Isn’t it funny how one small thing can be so big to someone else?
Isn’t it funny that we always think of the many ways we could help, but we never actually consider whether they would actually help or not?
Isn’t it funny how one small gesture can fix so much?
This should be a lesson to us all.