(You are reading this story in progress. To start at the beginning, please click here. To view the Table of Contents, click here. This story is being written live, daily, and with some audience participation in October 2013)
I have to pee.
Normally it isn’t something I’d write about, but at least if I’m writing about it, then maybe I’m doing something about it. There’s nowhere to go here. It’s just a floor, the crazy scary walls, the light that seems to come from the whole ceiling, yet from nowhere.
I decided we can’t be dead if I have to pee. You’re supposed to stop needing food and restrooms when you’re dead. And I really need a restroom.
And when the kids wake up, they are going to need restrooms, too.
Maybe I should stop writing about it. I’m not sure if it’s helping, but I am sure it’s making me spitting mad to think about it.
I mean, who kidnaps someone, puts them in this mind-bending cell, and then doesn’t let them go to the bathroom?
I hear things in this cell.
It doesn’t make me feel any more sane, believe me. I hear shuffling sounds, like there’s someone just outside the cell. Since yelling didn’t work earlier, when we first got here, I’m guessing it still won’t work now. But I hear them.
Like they are walking by this cell, not caring at all that a woman and six children are being held prisoner in this cell.
Without a toilet.
I didn’t mean to write that. I didn’t even mean to think it. But it hurts. I keep playing games with myself, breathing, making the periods at the ends of my sentences bigger and bigger (if you hadn’t noticed). Trying to breathe through the ache in my bladder. I can say, with certainty, I’ve never done a longer or more intense session of Kegels. I will never leak when I sneeze ever again.
Oh, my God, it hurts to laugh. Note to self: don’t make me laugh at myself.
It occurs to me that I need to do something.
Sorry, maybe I should have put more spaces. You don’t have the sense of time that I have, journal. Here:
It occurs to me that I need to do something about this imprisonment.
I can’t just lie here, watching the children sleep. I have nowhere for them to go to the bathroom, no food. My milk dried up months ago, and while it could probably come back, it would take a few days. By then, we’ll have died of dehydration. I have no diapers for Juliette.
I have no way to care for these children, and they very well could die if I don’t do something.
Therefore, I must do something.
I dumped out my purse, to see what I’m working with. I’m hoping that there was a reason I grabbed it so tightly to myself, other than preserving you, journal, to help me with my sanity. Sanity is great, but it’s not going to do much for me if I’m dead.
And yes, it is strange that I’m writing down every step of what I’m doing. But I’m in a crazy prison, so strange is the order of the day. If it helps me focus, journal, then I’m going to do it, and I don’t need any flak from you or some future reader (which will never happen, because I’ll either be stuck in this prison forever, sold into some kind of weird slavery, wake up, or I’ll get home and burn this journal and all of the evidence of my crazy in it).
I’m going to take inventory. And like I read in that creativity article last week, instead of just writing down what the objects are, I’m going to write down their components in the most general form I can
So, this is what I have:
- Four used tissues (used for blotting lipstick, not snot).
- Two pens (ball-point, medium, blue), one stick-pen, one clicky pen.
- A journal (blue butterflies, holographic).
- The wire in the binding of the journal.
- The spring inside one of the pens.
- A very fine wire from the spring inside one of the pens.
- Two plastic tubes (pens).
- Three pieces of butterscotch candy.
- Three small pieces of plastic (candy wrappings).
- Leather wallet:
- Snaps, a clasp, one 7” zipper.
- Five rectangles of very hard plastic.
- One rectangle of clear, flexible plastic.
- Paper US bills: $57.00
- Change in the change-purse:
- Loose change: three quarters, eight pennies, a dime, and three nickels.
- Two tampons and three overnight maxi pads (it never hurts to be protected).
- Cardboard tubes (tampons), string, cotton?, stickers (maxi pads).
- A lipstick
- Eye liner
- Compact (powder, small terrycloth pad, mirror, snapping round case)
- A small brush (mascara).
- Five receipts.
- One pearl earring.
That’s it. I’m not sure what that was supposed to accomplish, except to prove that I’m no MacGyver. I have no idea what to do with any of this stuff.
I suppose I could see if the lipstick or the powder stuck to the walls. I could see if the wire bent, like if there was a deflecting force, or if it just stopped, like it was trapped (and bent by my fingers, maybe).
I could whistle Dixie, too. I don’t see what any of these things would accomplish. Let’s face it, I’m not built for this. Give me a thirty-item “to-do” list, a minivan, and cell phone and I’m dangerous, but . . .
No, it’s not here. My cell phone. I just patted myself down, checked my purse, and even checked in my bra for it, but it’s not here. I’m not sure it would have worked in here, but it would have been nice to try.
There’s no point to any of this. I’m in prison, and I haven’t done anything wrong since I was 17. I pay my bills, take the kids to practice, go to the school on parent’s night. I do everything I’m supposed to do, except maybe enough yoga. I don’t deserve prison.
Hey, this is interesting: when I flick a coin at the wall, it sticks there for a minute, and sparkles, like the field is electric or something. Then it sparks a little drops the coin. Just lets it go. It doesn’t make any noise, either, not even when the coin hits the floor (I hadn’t noticed that the floor is this weird plastic-foam-skin stuff). The sparks don’t make any noise, but I could swear that while the coin is there, I can see a little through the wall. Like it ripples, and in the bottoms of the ripples, I can see shapes, like hallways and doors and things.
Maybe there is something outside this cell, after all. Maybe I can get someone’s attention.