Thursday, August 26, 2010

She, the Nobody Girl

"She Needs Butterflies"

She collects ticket stubs at the theatre in which she works. She pins them up on her personal bulletin board at home. She smiles, and tentatively runs her fingers across the strips of recycled paper, marveling at the memories each one possibly entails. She taps the newest one twice in a petty act of self-reassurance. She tells herself that, although she hasn't seen it, it is probably a good movie.

She slips into the warm water. She glides her fingers across the bubbles, watching as the foam makes light crinkly noises against the water's surface. She smiles. She tells herself she won't be alone forever. She tells herself that, one day, she'll have someone to share this bath tub with. She slides into the foam and closes her eyes. She's lost in thoughts. She almost forgets to hold her breath.

She stretches in her cold bed and pulls the covers over her. She feels cold, but not because it's winter. She feels cold because inside she's empty. She thinks to herself, loneliness is a disease, so she hugs her pillow. She waits for a cure. She pretends it was a boy she liked back in high school. She pretends that he's hugging back. She pretends he's telling her how much he loves her. She pretends she's pretty. She smiles, then frowns. She furrows her eyebrows and then digs her face into the soft comforter. She wraps herself in a cocoon, and sleeps.

Maybe tomorrow.


  1. Wow. I really loved this piece because it touched upon the insecurities and needs that every girl has. Every girl wants to be loved--no, needs to be loved. She wants that one man in her life who will pick her up when she's falling, guide her when she's lost; save her when she's doomed.

    Call it cliched if you will, but every girl waits for her knight in shining armor.

    That particular line, "loneliness is a disease" ignited a cold, black flame within me. I felt a sudden rush of nostalgia and my heart trembled thinking about all those lonely nights where I believed that nobody would ever love me. That one line captivated me and snatched the humanity from my soul.

    It hurt so much, thinking... that maybe no one would ever come and save me. That the missing void in me would never be filled. That I was so undesired by men everywhere... who could possibly love me? Who was I to be loved?

    I was so moved by this. I'm crying inside. I feel weak yet strengthed by this post. Because now looking at my life, I realize that all I needed was to give my knight more time and he did indeed come. Now I have found someone who will be my knight. So it shows that there's always hope for everyone if you just give it time.

    The girl in this post represents every girl who has ever made a wish. Every girl who has ever dreamed for their one, true love but continues to feed off the empty loneliness inside of her until there's nothing left.

    You're doing a great thing--writing this. Many girls are afraid to be alone. But by writing this blog post, I'm sure they'll come to the realization that they're not alone.

    They have someone like you to sympathize or empathize with them. They have someone like you who will be the voice of every girl out there who is too afraid to admit this to herself.

    This will be their lullaby.

  2. Those insecurities and needs aren't held solely by women. Men, too, look for love and companionship. Humans are social creatures. We all try to find someone to be with, someone who understands us and cares for us and, in contrast, we want to understand and care about them.

    "Maybe tomorrow" is correct. One should never think their situation will remain the same forever. Everything changes. "Good things happen quickly. Great things happen even faster." Before i knew it, i found an amazing girl and that void i had started filling up.

    So, great post. You're awesome, Shantay! Can't wait for the next one!

  3. Hi Shantay. I'm here via your friend, Vachte.

    He said on his blog that we'd enjoy our writing and he's right. I enjoy it for its simplicity, authenticity and directness. Writing like this stirs up resonances in others.

    I've been married for a long time now. My children are most likely your age or thereabouts, they range in years from 16 to 28, which gives a rough idea of my age.

    I remember the day I stood in the laundromat alone after the break up of my second, or was it my third boyfriend, and I thought to myself, there must be someone out there in the world who will like me. Someone who will find me attractive, worthwhile, someone whom I too might feel this way about.

    I folded my clothes from the dryer and wondered who it might be.

    The aloneness need not last.

  4. This is so beautiful. Everyone feels this at some point, if we're honest enough to admit it. You've captured the essence of loneliness so well....

    Vatche sent me, btw. Nice to meet you. Now following...

  5. I come on recommendation from Vatche.

    I remember having many of these same insecurities/worries/fears as a young man. You captured it well. It is a timeless feeling that is shared by both genders.

    Tossing It Out

  6. Oh yes! Love this piece. You are a writer after my own heart.
    I was this girl. I am this girl. Alone is a place I am a lot. Increasingly I dip my big toe into the waters of togetherness. Sometimes... :)

  7. Lovely piece. I write about loneliness too, so it's nice that I've been able to find a like-minded soul. :]

    And thank you for following me!

  8. First off - WOW. You are all full of awesome for so many reasons, but this piece? You blow me away.

    Second, how small is the blog world? I promised to "stretch" this weekend and meet new people. One blog led to another and I end up on Shantay's blog. My Shantay. Who has several of the same blogger friends that one of my besties in TEXAS has. It's just such a small, small world.

    You are destined for greatness.

  9. There is always a twist, a particular insight to your writing Shantay. I love when a writer does something unexpected, yet totally true. That is what separates your work from every other writer of teenage angst. The twist of the knife, the turn of the phrase. Keep it up.