Still Awake and working on a short story

Since I am having a hard time going to sleep I have been revising a short short story. The title is The Unlikely Hero. I love to write… I write essays, shorty stories, articles, poems, and movie scripts. I still have more revising to do with this story.

The Unlikely Hero

The night is exceptionally dark. The clouds cover the moon and Penn Avenue is unusually quiet. Standing under a broken street light is Andre. The cherry on the end of his cigarette gives his location away. The cool Autumn wind blows his long black trench coat to reveal a pin stripe suit that hangs on his thin frame. His dreadlocks hide his face.

As he smokes his cigarette he notices a woman walking towards him clutching her purse tightly. He drops the cigarette and steps on it then starts to walk towards the woman very slowly as to be undetected.

The tall woman notices a figure walking toward her and without thinking she steps into the street to cross. When the woman reaches the other side of the street where there is a working street light Andre realizes that he knows the woman and there are guys on the corner walking toward her. So he calls out, “Faith”. The blond haired woman turns to see Andre as he steps on the curb into the light. Grabbing Faith’s arm he pulls her close to him then together they start to walk in the opposite direction of the guys standing on the corner.

“What are you doing?” screams Faith. Andre, “I’m sorry to startle but those guys behind us looked as if they were getting ready to rob you.” “Yeah and you were just hiding in the dark because you were waiting to rescue me, not because you were going to rob me as well”, Faith sarcastically replies. Continuing to walk down the street Andre whispers in Faith’s ear, “I’m gong to walk you home.”

Turning the corner Andre looks behind them to see if the guys are following them but he doesn’t see anyone. Andre, “It looks like they’re gone but we’ll go by the school just in case.” They continue around the corner and down the street scattered with people going to and coming out of a small hole in the wall bar sitting on the corner. Finally breaking the silence after a few blocks Faith asks Andre “Still haven’t found a job yet?” Bowing his head he laughs to himself. “Tell me Andre, what’s funny?” asked Faith.

Crossing a dark alley Andre stops and looks down the dark and narrow street. “Faith, we should cut through here and it’ll cut down the time.” Faith stops and walks back to Andre and looks down the long dark empty alley, then she looks at Andre as if he has just turned into a two headed monster. Faith, “I’ll walk down that alley as soon as hell freezes over.” Andre laughs to himself again. She says, “I’m glad to be so amusing to you tonight. That alley would be the worst way to go. We don’t know what’s down there.” Andre, “I thought you were fearless, not scared of anything.” Faith, “I’m fearless and smart. There’s a difference.” As they are talking there is a faint scream. They both look in the direction the scream came from then look at each other. They hear the scream again.

Andre starts to walk down the dark alley towards the direction of the scream. “I don’t think we should go that way” says Faith. Andre stops and turns around. “Mind our own business. You think we should mind our own business? Faith someone needs help. What if that was you?” Andre replies. “When did you start caring about other people? You are a robber for Christ’s sake” says Faith. After a minute of silence she rolls her eyes then walks with Andre down the dark, garbage filled ally.

With each step the sound of broken glass can faintly be heard. The screams are becoming louder as they get closer. Andre presses up against a run down building and slowly looks around the corner to see two boys standing around watching a boy on the ground forcing himself on a struggling girl. Faith moves closer to Andre and he takes out his cell phone. He lifts the phone to his ear when is starts to ring. Without hesitation he rejects the call. One of the boys looks up towards the directions of the noise. The boy yells, “If you know what’s good for you you’ll mind your business. I know you’re there, I heard you singing.” Before Andre could react Faith takes off running the way they just came from, leaving Andre to fend for himself. Slightly whisperings and slightly yelling he says, “Faith, where are you going?” Faith keeps running without looking back.

Andre covers his phone and puts it on silent. Then he dials 911. “Hello, I would like to report a crime, a woman is being rapped by an abandoned building on Autumn Way. Please hurry” Andre whispers into the phone. Andre hangs up the phone and then looks around the corner at the crime taking place. He straightens up, takes a deep breath then starts to walk slowly towards where the girls is being raped. The smell of urine stings his nostrils.

Andre can now see the girl’s shirt has been torn off and is fighting to get the boy off of her. Putting his hands out to his side he yells, “I called the police and they’re on their way. So I would suggest you guys take off and leave the girl alone.” The two boys standing turns around to see Andre walking towards them with his arms stretched out to his side. The two boys look at each other then back at Andre. They both walk towards each other and wait for Andre to approach them.

Andre calmly states, “Look I don’t want any trouble. I’m not armed. All I want to do is take the girl and leave.” Walking towards Andre an athletic looking boy with tattoos all down his right arm says, “What girl? There ain’t no girl here. So just run along and you might not get hurt.” Andre and the tattooed man comes face to face. The tattooed man takes reaches in the pocket and pulls out a knife. They circle each other. The tattooed boy reaches in his pocket and takes out a knife then lunges towards Andre. Andre steps to the side making the boy miss. Andre then grabs the boy and puts him into a choker hold. The knife falls to the ground.

The boy forcing himself on the girl notices what’s going on with the tattooed boy and gets up dragging the girl with him. The boy yells, “Hey superman let him go or the girl dies.” Andre looks up as the attacker pulls out a knife and holds it to the girl’s throat. Andre hesitates then lets the tattooed boy go. The tattooed boy picks up the knife while the boy in the background stands and looks as if he is uncomfortable. The quite boy says, “Guys I think we should get out of here. What if he called the police?” Andre replies, “You should listen to your friend and get out of here before anyone gets hurt.” The tattooed boy circle Andre and then suddenly grabs Andre’s dreadlocks and cuts his neck.

The quiet boy takes off running while the boy holding the girl stands in disbelief. The girl pulls away the takes off running in the opposite direction of the quiet boy. The blond boy yells at the tattooed boy, “What you do that for?! We have to get out of here. Lets go. Get rid of that knife.” Before they could take off running a police car pulls into the alley was at full speed. The two boys start to run in the other direction when another police car pulls into the alley. A police officer jumps out of the car with his gun pointed in the direction of the boys and yells, “Freeze. Don’t move.” Both boys drop their knives as the police move in to arrest them. As the two boys are being handcuffed one policeman calls into his radio, “Send the paramedics to Autumn Way we have a man with a slit throat.” The policeman takes off his shirt and puts it on Andres throat to try to slow down the bleeding. “Hold on man. The paramedics are on the way. You’re going to make it through this” the policeman tells Andre.

The paramedics arrive and rushes Andre into the ambulance then speeds off.


Things To NOT Do OR Say To Someone Who Suffers From Depression

I feel very fortunate to have a support group. There are people who unfortunately do not have a support group. Many of the friends I have treats me better than my own family. They have been with me through the most trying of times. They spend time with me when I am having a difficult day. They give me rides, take me to lunch or dinner among many other things. There are times that people who are my friend will say something that are things you just should not say to someone who truly suffer from depression.

1. Oh… don’t be depressed. People to truly suffer from depression DON’T want to be depressed. You telling someone to not be depressed does not help. It does not give a solution to the problem.

2. If you smile it will trick your brain into believing that you are happy, then you will smile more. Someone told me to do that but it did not work. All it did was make me frustrated. When I talked to the therapist he said that is true for someone who does NOT suffer depression.

3. Unless the person asks for advice do not give it. My friend tried to give me advice about reaching out in the future. She made the assumption that their was going to be a next time. My friend did lacked any confidence in me. That just made me feel let down by the fact she doesn’t think that I can go on with my life without wanting to kill myself.

4. Last but not least… Just think positive and you won’t be depressed anymore. That is a myth. Just because a person may think positive doesn’t mean that it will bring the person out of depression. It may help for a  moment, but if the underlying problem is not taken care of then the person will continue to suffer whether or no they have positive thoughts in their mind.

None of these comment are supportive. I understand people mean well. The most important thing to do is LISTEN and VALIDATE. You don’t have to agree with the person but we just want people to try to understand us!


Thanks for reading!

At Peace Despite Depression

I have been out of the hospital for slightly over a week. I was in a psych unit due to suicide idealization. While I was in the hospital my medication was completely changed. They work great! Since my release I have been feeling great. My friends who do not understand what I have been through but try to give me advice… unwelcome advice. I know that she means well. The way the person talks it sounds as if she is stressed for me. My decision is to keep the peace and not stress.

Due to something that I told the psychiatrist I was terminated from my job. Instead of being supportive she decided to give me advice. She mentioned that my hospital bill would be expensive. Continuing she said that for the future I should find other ways to reach out to people so that it’s not so expensive. Towards the end she asked me if I would do anything different knowing that I would be fired. I told her no. I would not do ANYTHING different. I am at peace with my life and am not thinking ahead to bills or things that I have no control over. I have decided to take things one day at a time. If I live in the past or the future then I will miss the present.

In addition to that each day I fight to not have irrational thoughts. That is something I have a hard time with. When I do have those kind of thoughts it’s because I’m either living in the past or future. An example of an irrational thought would be, me replaying a conversation I had with a friend over and over and trying to read into it. My friend J told me that she could understand why I would be tempted to do that. To me that statement lead me to think that she felt that I was capable to harm someone else instead of me having a thought to harm someone. I had to keep telling myself that it was in the past. Don’t look into it so much. Last but not least focus on today. That is something I have to tell myself often. But so far it has been helpful.


Living with Depression

My name is Autumn Burgess. I am 35 years old and I suffer from depression, which runs in my family.

In April of 2009 I moved to Salt Lake City, Utah from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania which is where I was born and raised. Technically I do  not have any sisters but I am the youngest of three girls. They are nine and ten years older than me. We do not share the same biological father. My half sister who is ten years older than me sees a therapist and takes medication for depression. When I was 16 my mother attempted to kill herself by overdosing. She passed away at the age of 54 from lung cancer. Looking back I now know that when she tried to kill herself was not the only time that my mom was depressed. Lemuel Lawson, my biological father was never around. Zachariah Taylor Walker III is the man that my mom chose the marry. He was abusive as well as an alcoholic. My mother’s twin suffered from depression as well as her son who is three years older than me.

It was at the age of 17 that my depression became noticeable. In 18 years I have had at least seven hospitalizations, at least eight suicide attempts, and too many to count suicide idealization with one homicidal idealization. Most of my adult life I have felt numb on the inside. I was not happy but I wasn’t sad either. After my last hospital stay I have been on new medication that seems to be working great.

I am writing this because there a millions of people who suffer from depression and I want those people to know they are not alone. Also, I would like people to know that there are placed to get help. Last but not least I want people to know the warning signs of someone with depression and also what depression is.

Welcome to my life with depression.