STOP THE HEARTACHE

As soon as I pressed the “print” button, I got a little thrill. This is the 400th story I’ve written for my site sine I began writing in 2017. That is a great accomplishment for me and I thank each and every one of you for making that possible. I hope you enjoy #400 as you read this latest ink. 😎

β€œMr. Bennett, we did everything in our power but the injuries were too extensive. I’m sorry. Your wife did not survive the surgery … the surgery … the surgery … your wife did not survive …”

My eyes flew open and I gasped for air like a drowning man. My fisted hands clutched the disheveled sheets on my bed. I was soaked in sweat, my heart racing. The recurring dream came back last night. Gradually my heartrate slowed down and my fists unclenched. Laying on my back, I stared up at the softly whirring ceiling fan. I closed my eyes for five seconds and the tears started. It never gets better; it never gets easier.

Three years ago my darling Olivia, my life-force, my soulmate, my wife of two ineffably brief weeks died in a ghastly motorcycle accident while on our honeymoon in Barcelona. Frozen in place, I stared at her broken body; my brain told me she was dead but my heart and soul refused to listen.  

I remembered the ambulance and police arriving, the excruciatingly long ride to the hospital, the lonely wait in the eerily quiet emergency room and the surgeon’s words … those words that haunted me day after day after day. My wife was dead, my brief marriage erased and my heart crushed. We hadn’t even opened our wedding gifts.

I dragged myself to the shower, trying to wash away the dream. It didn’t work. It was time for me to leave here, escape the memories and the sadness. Our friends stopped calling long ago and there was nothing left for me. My parents were dead; Olivia’s parents wished they were dead instead of her. In this huge world I was utterly alone. It was time for me to go.

A loud thunderclap announced it was not a good day to take out the bike. I’d been sleepwalking for three years and I’d had enough; I needed to do this. For the first time in forever I removed my wedding ring and placed it on the dresser next to my phone and wallet.

β€œWill the bike start up?” I wondered β€œOr has it died, too?” I grabbed my helmet and walked to the garage. The bike was plugged in; when did I do that? In one of my rare moments of clarity? I slipped on my gloves, opened the garage door and climbed on my bike. It was pouring and I had no idea where I was going. It didn’t matter; I stopped caring. Now I needed to stop the heartache.

NAR Β© 2023

34 thoughts on “STOP THE HEARTACHE”

    1. Thank you for your very kinds words, KK! It’s difficult for me to believe I’ve written 400 stories. I hope I don’t run out of words any time soon! Thanks for taking the time to read my stories; I’m glad you enjoyed them. πŸ’« πŸ•ŠοΈ

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Always welcome, Nancy! You have not written 400 stories, but written 400 amazing and captivating stories. I’m sure you will write another 400 any time soon.

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    1. Thank you, Michele! Who knew I had that much to say? Certainly not me! The last five years of writing have been a joy for me; I hope it continues for a long time to come. Thanks for being one of my readers; I appreciate all of you! πŸ’« πŸ•ŠοΈ

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are welcome! It is amazing, isn’t it? The words keep coming. What a gift! I am sure your words and inspiration will continue well into the future. Best to you! 😊

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    1. Thanks for your congrats, Layla. I was quite surprised myself to see that I had published 400 stories; when you’re doing something you love, it doesn’t feel like drudgery! So glad you enjoyed the story and the music. I truly appreciate you and your comments! πŸ’«πŸ•ŠοΈ

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    1. Thanks for your congrats, D! Truly appreciate them. That’s a very interesting observation you made and I’ll take it as a compliment. As you may have already figured out, I love an open-ended story. I believe there are many possibilities for this one but I’ll never tell! πŸ’« πŸ•ŠοΈ

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  1. For some reason I didn’t read the 400th note …
    Milestone as this one is no small accomplishment!
    To keep on keeping on!
    Brava, Nancy!
    May you continue to gift us with your enchanting storytelling and occasional curve balls! ( haha, still I am traumatized from the …cigar infoπŸ˜†)

    πŸ‘πŸ₯‚πŸ’

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  2. Eerily close to reality your story, Nancy.
    You could not be more spot on every facet you described with an aching precision.

    “…my brain told me she was dead but my heart and soul refused to listen. Β “…everything happens so incredibly fast that you can’t help but to think “Ok, that was a shitty dream- time to wake up! ”

    Now…this could have an open, soft ending…but…if those two weeks were after such a time, enough to cement their bond as deeply as you describe it…then, all it takes to stop the heartache is rest the helmet on the tank, find a sharp right turn and open the throttle…

    🏍πŸ₯€

    You start 2023 with a deafening silence of a story, cara.

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