365 Days of Instagram

There’s something intriguing about the lives we lead online. Think about it, just 15 years ago our stories didn’t exist on the global level that they do today. When I was in high school (for reference, I’m positively ancient in the eyes of my 18-year-old students) the best way to know what was going on in someone’s Letterslife was to pass a brilliantly crafted, multi-colored note in AP US History that was artfully origami-ed  into the shape of a heart.  There were no hourly status updates and no beautiful images of your last trip to Let’s Make Everyone Jealous, USA. In fact, the only place to store your most precious photos (which were most likely taken by a disposable camera and developed at the 1-hour photo counter in Target) was in a scrapbook or a photo album. You know, the tangible kind you could hold in your hand.

And when high school was over? Well, for the most part you lost touch with people, only getting the chance to hear their story during a run in at the grocery store or maybe at the ten year reunion (if you even bothered to go).

Enter Social Media. A one stop shop to making our stories go totally viral and connecting with people who used to be too far out of our reach. It has its positives and negatives, but I’d like to focus on what makes it engaging and beautiful. It gives us a medium for telling the world who we are. It gives us a unique opportunity to find our individual voices and to express ourselves in new and adventurous ways. I absolutely love that businesses and marketers are finally understanding the benefit of weaving a story to connect with their consumers. What’s even better is there is no right or wrong way to use it. Sure, people (read: marketers and SEO specialists) have their ideas of “best practices,” but the rules go out the window when a truly creative idea comes to bat. What we choose to share with our friends or our followers becomes more than a photo of a gourmet meal or an engagement ring; it becomes a device to pull people into the story we each want to tell.Instagram

As you know, I recently began an interesting project. 365 days of Instagram pictures; a photo a day for an entire year. In all honesty, it began as (what I naively assumed would be) an easy resolution for the New Year. How hard can it be to simply snap a picture a day, right? Well, I’m barely 2 days in and it’s actually a lot harder than I thought. Apparently, it’s not as simple as point, click, post. If this project goes as planned then these images, in their entirety, will be my story for 2014. They’ll capture the moment I turn thirty, my spring camping trip with my family, at least two weddings and two births, and those are just the moments I know are coming. There are still so many plot twists that are yet to be uncovered.

As I was traipsing through the shrubbery outside of my office this afternoon, trying to capture an interesting photo to represent Jan 2, I couldn’t help but think about how far I’ve come since the days of passing notes discreetly under desks. I couldn’t help but wonder what my next story will turn out to be. Wherever the year takes me, I’m thrilled to be documenting the journey in such a memorable way.

Follow my 365 days of Instagram here.

So Long, Farewell. I’m Ready For a New Year.

Dear 2013,

It’s over. I’m leaving. #sorryimnotsorry

Don’t get me wrong, there were a few absolutely amazing things that happened to us along the way. Two dream-worthy career opportunities were probably the highlight. The successful writing partnership, beautiful friends, and the many (seriously, so many) wine tasting trips were delightful.  I traveled and I grew. I loved, I lost, I learned. For all of that, I am truly grateful. Lest this anti-love note to the past 365 days take a tone that borders on bitter, let me state upfront, I am most certainly thankful for the countless blessings that have been bestowed upon me.

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Inspiration for 2014

But in the name of full disclosure, I’m over it. I’m over the fact that I’ve been neglecting this blog. I’m over the fact that I haven’t even cracked the surface on the editing notes for my novel that I received last January. I’m over the fact that I wrote only ten articles for Cinema Coma this past year. Seriously. Less than one a month. I won’t even attempt to broach the subject of my personal (read: dating) life, which has dealt me quite a few irritating (read: devastating) blows of it’s own this year. Long story short, I let myself slide on more than a few promises I made to myself this year and starting tomorrow, that changes.

I am over being over everything.

Last January, I announced confidently that I would write daily. While I did write something on the regs (yay for small accomplishments), I would like to amend it ever so slightly for the New Year. With that in mind, here is my list of (hopefully not too cliche) goals for 2014:

  1. Love. Bigger and better than ever before. Because… well, I think I finally deserve to cash in on that happily ever after that people keep telling me is coming my way.
  2. Take a picture eIMG_0634very day. I know people who did this a few years back and I have been enamored with the idea ever since. If anything, I’ll at least get a few great Instagram photos out of it (look for #instaAttitude).
  3. Work on my novel at least once a week (let’s be real, a daily goal would just be setting myself up for failure). Go ahead and keep me honest.
  4. Spend more time with friends and family. So basically, more phone calls, mid-week dinners, and 3+hour Google Hangouts with a few of my fab East Coasters.
  5. Breathe. Seems simple, but for me it isn’t.
  6. Raise my Cinema Coma monthly article average. Maybe this year, I can aim for 2. You know, reach for the stars and all.
  7. Find a Yoga instructor that I actually like. (PS… apparently, it’s harder than you’d think).
  8. Get back into Yoga. Starting off the New Year with insane back pain is not exactly my idea of a good time.
  9. Turn 30. It was already on the schedule, so why not make it a ressie, right? I’m thinking a huge beachside bungalow blowout.
  10. Start the process of buying a house. I know… that’s a big one. But I’ve decided it’s happening.
  11. Get an article published through another nationally recognized site or magazine. You know, build up my street cred.
  12. And obviously, update this blog a little more often.

So screw the drama, 2013. Things are looking up in the New Year and I’m pretty damn excited.

xoxo,

Ash

Falling in Love with Silent Movies

As an editor for an entertainment website, I’ve had the opportunity to experience so many amazing IMG_0204industry events and celebrity run-ins, in and around Los Angeles.  Over the years I’ve listened to George Clooney talk candidly about ‘The Descendants’ at the Arclight Hollywood, I’ve seen pre-screenings of amazing Oscar contenders, I’ve even run into Chris Rock in a production office hallway (literally smacked right into him while turning the corner… awkward!), but none of these big celebrity moments can compare to the satisfaction of being invited to a theater revival event and being re-introduced to a part of movie history that I had long since written off.

I must admit, I’ve never really been a fan of silent films. When forced to watch them in film school, I could most certainly appreciate them for their beauty or for what they did for the film industry, but never really understood the draw.  That being said, conveying a story without dialogue is no easy feat. Having written a dialogue-less short or two in my day, I can speak to the intensity of that craft. When it’s done right, it can be breathtaking.  When it’s done wrong… well, that’s why not everyone’s cut out for film school.

IMG_0206Thankfully, a little venue in El Segundo recently helped me see that silent films can certainly pack a stellar punch. My co-editor and I were invited down to Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo, CA for an afternoon of music and movies and I am so unbelievably glad I went. We watched an old silent comedy short and it was accompanied by a live organist. The organ was the source for the film’s music and sound effects, so we saw the film the way it was originally intended to be seen! It was stunning.  It is hands down the best way to watch silent films.  Unfortunately, there are so few places left that are able to show films in this light.

If you live nearby or are in town visiting, you have to stop by OTMH on the weekend, if only to view this amazing organ they call the Mighty Wurlitzer. Seriously, it’s a beast! The theater also specializes in jazz, ragtime and organ concerts for guests.  Film admission is $10 and concert admission is around $20 (so affordable and it’s definitely fun for the whole family). As a writer, I am thrilled to take part in getting the word out about this great theater. I can only dream that I am lucky enough to one day have my work featured in a place as fantastic as this.

You can find more of my thoughts on this amazing venue on (shameless plug alert!) Cinema Coma.

So much gratitude goes out to Stage 32 for inviting us to the event and introducing us to such a great local theater.

Storytelling in the Digital Age

Okay… admittedly, it’s been quite a while since I’ve written on this blog (and really rather sad that my last post, which I wrote nearly a year ago, started with a similar statement).  For those of you who know me well, you know it’s because my writing career has become pretty exciting over the course of the past six months and as a result my workload has increased exponentially.  And yes, I am still working the “Events” day job too.  I guess I’m making a go at this whole “Jack of All Trades” business I’ve heard so much about.

On another note, you can probably tell that I did not follow through on my “daily writing project” in 2012.  Well, I guess I should specify that I didn’t complete it here… in blog form.  I can, with much certainty, tell you that I have written every single day for the past six months.  You know, Social Media copywriting for Facbeook, Twitter and all that jazz. But I digress.story 3

I’m here today to talk about Story, a new iPhone App by Disney that allows the user to easily document “moments” via pictures, video and… wait for it… storytelling!  It’s actually kind of ingenious (and extremely user friendly.  Seriously, grandma could figure this one out).  If you’re pausing here and thinking of abandoning ship because this sounds like a sponsored post, please don’t.  I don’t work for Disney, nor have they contacted me regarding this review.  A friend of mine posted a link to the app on Facebook a few days ago and it sounded interesting, so I downloaded it and, quite frankly I kind of fell in love. What writer (and social media lover) wouldn’t want to partake in a new Disney app called Story?

My first attempt (pictured throughout this post) isn’t all that amaze, but you get the point.

Why is this so great, you ask?  Well let’s get real for a second.  Social Media, Film/TV and the invention of the text message have shortened our attention span. Dramatically.  Even I (an avid writer, reader and consumer of all things interesting) sometimes struggle to get through news articles that are just a tad too lengthy.  We’re told to keep it short… or no one will pay attention. Even this post has probably already lost a reader or two.  Admit it, a little part of you wants to click out right now.  We now live in a world where we are inundated with Social Media sites that each share bits and pieces of our individual stories, but never a true narrative. Facebook might be the closest thing, but everything there is still so piecemeal (a picture here, a status there – maybe a check-in if you’re FB crazy like me), but nothing cohesive, nothing that fully narrates a particular moment in your life. Twitter limits you to 140 characters so it’s great for sharing random thoughts, but a story? Not so much. Instagram is all about your life in images (delightful, most definitely, but oftentimes it just isn’t enough). And don’t even get me started on Pinterest, Snapchat, FourSquare, LinkedIN and any other number of platforms we use to entertain ourselves throughout the course of any given day.

‘Story’ takes all of that and does exactly what the name implies, it creates your own personal memoir in a sharable photo-book format and gives you the ability to add your own text.  Disney’s taking it back to what they do best – telling a great story, only they’re enabling you (the user/dreamer/writer/editor) to tell whatever narrative it is you want to tell. Fact or fiction (but probably fact!) your moments are now in your hands.

It’s kind of like scrapbooking for the digital age.

While my example is limited to pictures, you can even use video from your phone in these storybooks.  And what this example does not show (sorry my tech savvy skills don’t extend to breaking through WordPresses firewalls on embedded video code from non-recognized sources) the storybook is fully animated. The pictures enlarge one by one, the pages flip on their own and (in true Disney fashion) even the text has a way of coming to life!

story 2At this point in the game, your sharing options are limited to posting your story on Facebook or just emailing the link to friends and family (or apparently embedding the video on a blog… if you happen to be versed on such matters), but it looks like they’re planning on expanding to Pinterest and Twitter soon.

This app will certainly appeal to anyone who’s tired of simply taking pictures for the sake of taking pictures and will likely explode among the mom set (and rightfully so… can you imagine all of the adorable baby “moments” that could be documented using this tool?).

I’ve always been a huge fan of Disney for one main reason… they know how to tell a damn good story.  And thankfully, it translates into everything they do.  From the movies, to the theme parks and even down to their apps (have I mentioned this one is free?) they always know how to weave a rather enchanted tale.

Download it. Try it. Tell me what you think!

New Horizons

I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve been absent lately.  Luckily, it’s all for a very good reason.  Over the past few weeks, my writing partner and I have been working on launching an exciting new business venture together.  Now we have finally launched and I am ready to share this news with all my friends on Write Attitude!  I would like to introduce Cinema Coma – a website to revive your entertainment addiction. We take on entertainment news, gossip and most importantly, movie reviews!  It’s a site and project that is very close to my heart and I would love for everyone to take a look.  If you like what you see, feel free to like us, follow us or just check in from time to time and read up on all the latest entertainment news!

Find us at:

Cinema Coma Website

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Thanks friends!  All my best, and I promise to be back and updating this site regularly soon.  Entertainment news only fulfills a small portion of my writing addiction.  Poetry and prose will always be the core of my eternal love.

Ashley

The Writer’s Retreat

Those of you who know me (and know my writing style) probably know that I am slightly obsessed with the ocean.  It’s almost borderline unhealthy, considering how often it shows up in my writing.  The funny thing is, I can’t exactly put my finger on what about it provides me with so much inspiration.  Maybe it was my San Diego upbringing, my love of all things blue, or my surfboard toting father.  Who knows where it came from, all I can say is I truly love everything about it (except Sea World…I hate Sea World with an unbridled passion).  In fact, I probably have about four pending, half written stories about the ocean in my draft folder right now waiting to make their way onto the blog.

Sunset from the balcony.

I may live mere blocks from the Los Angeles shoreline, but I was jumping up and down (literally) when the opportunity to spend a weekend in Laguna Beach crossed my desk.  Three days and two nights in an oceanfront resort with nothing but my thoughts, my half finished novel and the sound of crashing waves to lull me to sleep.  A finer opportunity there is not, my friends.  There is nothing more relaxing than the sound of crashing waves, the sight of the setting sun and the smell of salt in the air.  My fingers are itching to type just thinking about it.

Morning coffee served with a side of inspiration, please! Lucky for me, that’s exactly what I received this past weekend at my self-proclaimed writer’s retreat at the Pacific Edge Hotel, in Laguna Beach.

It was the perfect place to relax, alone with my thoughts and my laptop – ready to tackle the half finished novel that has been haunting me for the past year and a half.  Every few weeks, I find myself pulling out the trusty hard copy of my novel that I keep next to my bed (lest I find myself in the throws of total inspiration in the middle of the night).  I never get very far, to be honest.  My inspiration has been lackluster (at best) as of late, but rather than dwelling on how I am lacking in inspiration these days, I thought I would make a list of things that have inspired me most.

The Ocean…duh.

View from my room in Laguna Beach.

Music: Every note, every word. A heartbreaking chord or a breathtaking lyric, music so aptly defines the human condition.  It expresses emotion, but it also keeps time for us (literally and metaphorically, I guess).  It documents our history and tells a story that is simply inexpressible in any other format.  My friends make fun of me because I love to listen to sad music.  Trust me, it’s not because I’m depressed.  It’s because I am so deeply humbled and awed by the raw power and creativity behind a piece that can move me emotionally in just three minutes and forty seconds. I can only hope that one day, people will relate to my work the way I have related to the many musicians who have inspired me along the way.

People Watching: An amazing professor once told me that every writer is kind of crazy.  I fully relate.  What other profession requires that you put yourself into the mind of multiple characters at the same time?  When else do you have occasion to fully immerse yourself in someone else’s life?  The stories we tell may stem from our creativity, or our own personal experience, but the characters we portray come from the world we see.  I love sitting at a cafe and just watching people.  Yes, I will admit I even listen in on conversations from time to time.  It’s too easy and way too much fun.  Plus, over the years I’ve learned a lot of very valuable lessons on how different people react in different situations.  I like to believe I’ve even learned how some minds think, process and feel.  We’re all different.  Put ten people into one situation and you will probably have ten different outcomes (or at the very least ten different versions of what happened).  It’s why eye witness accounts are so unreliable.  It’s why stories pack such a punch.  We are all different, but we’re all striving for a shared human existence and experience.  We just want to relate to one another.

In the car:  It’s another one I can’t explain.  I get all of my best ideas when I’m on the freeway, most likely because I have so much time to think.

That’s the thing about inspiration… it can be a total ass.  It’ll show up when you least expect it and will almost never answer your strained and desperate calls.

*For more pictures from my fabulous weekend getaway, follow me on Instagram at ashalafaly

Dreams Change But Never Die

© Simon Lawrence | Dreamstime Stock Photos

Okay, so I’m not going to lie to you – this blog is not my day job.  I know, I know…it’s crazy, right?  Trust me, if I had my way I would write novels for a living, get paid an obnoxious amount of money for said novels, have a beautiful house overlooking a sparkling ocean and be able to share it all with my family (those I already know and those I have yet to meet). Instead I have a day job in event planning, a weekend job in freelance copywriting, a writing partner and two open (read unfinished) scripts, and a blog I barely have time to update.  The blog is what drives me, but everything else pays the bills.

If you  had asked me three years ago if I thought I would end up as a freelance copywriter for a major international company I would have laughed at you.  I’m creative.  Corporations don’t foster creativity, they stifle it, right?  Fast forward to today.  Now I AM a freelance copywriter for a major international corporation and our Facebook page just hit one million fans! Two years ago I started as the social media freelance writer for this brand’s Facebook page and now we have hit one million fans, expanded to Twitter, Tumblr and YouTube and sold out product on every major store shelf we’re carried in. Not only that, but this brand is ethically balanced, deeply story driven and wonderfully creative.

Just to recap – this all means that one million people read my work on a daily basis.  I’ll allow you to stay skeptical for one moment (but don’t even think about lingering in skepticism longer than that). True, it’s just Facebook.  People read my work while they stalk people they “know” but don’t really know. But who cares?  My creative flair is being broadcast to one million people on a daily basis.  True, nobody knows it’s me…but I do, and that’s all that really matters.  What’s funny is how much I have actually found myself loving the whole thing.  Nine years ago, I didn’t even have a personal Facebook page.  In fact, I only have a personal Facebook page because my college roommate made mine for me.  I didn’t even use it for the first few months.  Now here I am, writing copy that’s viewed by over one million people daily.  It’s almost mind-blowing.

I guess what intrigues me the most is how different my career path has turned out from what I originally intended.  I never would have thought I would find myself enjoying what is basically a marketing position, but here I am absolutely relishing every moment, every post, and dare I say every tweet!

Next goal: one million writeattitude blog followers? Okay, maybe that’s a pretty big dream, but let’s face it…I’m also pretty damn determined.

Perils of Online Dating

© Carsten Erler | Dreamstime Stock Photos

It was entertaining to see what kind of men would respond to my mother’s attempt at matchmaking.

Please let the record show that I did not expect to find love online.  The internet is for Facebook stalking your ex or getting a killer deal on books by bundling them with socks on Amazon. I don’t buy clothes online for the same reason I don’t find men there – you just never know if they’ll fit. Unlike shoes, men and clothes are never what they appear to be on their online profile.  Some are too baggy, some are too small, some are way too boxy and others don’t even link to the right photo.  A picture is worth a thousand words, but in this case – it’s also worth a second thought before purchase.

Nothing good would come from online dating, I knew that, but she was desperate and I was tired of hearing that I might die alone, so I decided to feign interest if only to appease her:

Have you ever been married before?  Definitely not.  Do you have children?  Absolutely not.  Do you want children?  Probably not.  Do you smoke?  No.  Well, yes, but if my mother asks, then no.  Do you drink?  I used to, before the taste of vodka reminded me of vomit.  Ever since then, no.  How important is intelligence in a potential mate?  This is a stupid question.  Would you describe yourself as active?  I am a swimmer.  Do you like outdoor activities?  Yes, anything involving the pool; like I said, avid swimmer.  On average, how often do you exercise?  Everyday.  What is your annual income?  I don’t have a job and I live with my parents.  Do you have any pets?  Dad’s allergic.  What ethnicity best describes you?  Caucasian with an alleged sprinkling of Native American.  What is your faith?  Not applicable.  Is religion important to you?  No.  Should religion be important to your potential mate?  No.  What languages do you speak?  English and conversational Spanish.  Occasionally I can also summon a Hopi word or two.  What’s your education level?  High School.  Barely.  Describe your political views.  I don’t have any.  Do you come from a large family?  Only child.

If you could go anywhere in the world for a two week vacation, where would it be?  A deserted beachside cabana. By myself.

I know what you’re thinking.  I’m so desirable, it’s intimidating.

I can’t possibly fathom why I’m not getting any hits.

Her Eyes

© Kurt | Dreamstime Stock Photos

She always did have a way of lingering in a room long after she had left.  Now it’s her eyes that hover menacingly in the darkest, furthest corners of the empty bedroom she abandoned.  They stare out, emotionless.  She’s searching for the baby she couldn’t be bothered with, or maybe the boyfriend she struggled to love.  No, she’s not searching for him.  She never cared enough to search for him.  She’s probably just keeping watch, keeping guard.  She always did have the hardest time letting go.

Her eyes stare out from the innocent face of her son, who kicks and thrashes at night when she isn’t there to rock him to sleep.  He inherited her eyes and her hair, that soft mahogany, beautiful hair that she had before she bleached it blonde and quit her job and disappeared into the desert for two weeks.   He didn’t even recognize her when she wandered back, bruised, bloody and dirty.  Nobody who loves her recognized her then.

Her eyes are everywhere.  In the blinking clock on the nightstand and the red light on the smoke detector that beeps incessantly when the battery dies.  She used to hate that smoke detector.  It woke her up in the middle of the night once, battery nearly drained and screaming to be changed.  It never stood a chance against her fiery temper and massive hangover.  She slammed a shoe against it until it unhinged from the wall then sobbed into her hands for ten minutes when it wouldn’t stop beeping, even as it lay broken on the floor.  There’s still a wound on the wall where the paint chipped away from the force of her sneaker.

Her eyes are the lights and her hands are the sheets that wrap her growing son and keep him warm at night.

He will never see it.  He will never know the sound of her voice, never know the way she bites her lip when she’s nervous.  He will never see her pick at her fingernails and will never hear her sing a song of nothingness when she’s bored. She’s everywhere and nowhere all at once.

The Trophy

© Simon Lawrence | Dreamstime Stock Photos

She sat, shifting impatiently, in the waiting room of Dr. Brian McAdams.  He hardly looked old enough to know how to use a stethoscope, but she had heard he was the best and these days she needed all of the help she could get.  She picked at her already shredded cuticles while contemplating her reaction to the news she was about to receive.  It’s going to be the same as always, she thought.  He’s going to tell me that it didn’t work. He’s going to look at me through those awful wire rimmed glasses, the ones that made him look like a used librarian, and he’s going to tell me no.

Her eyes shifted to the posters filled with smiling happy families that lined each of the four walls in the rustic, cabin-like doctor’s suite.  They mocked her.  A fertility doctor should know better than to burden his patients with the pitying faces of those lucky enough to have what they want.  She resisted the urge to grab the Sharpie from the medical assistant’s desk and deface each and every one of them.  “Liar,” she would scrawl. “No hope.”  She would surely be asked to leave, but the part of her that hated every last one of her nosy small-town neighbors, almost didn’t care.  Almost.

She tried to flip through a six month old copy of “Home and Garden,” but her mind couldn’t latch on to anything she was reading. It didn’t matter, she thought. Rose gardens were for rich people and she and Rick were barely getting by these days.  With rent already one week past due, she’d be lucky if she had four walls to call a home in the next month.  But none of it mattered.  The only thing that meant anything anymore was having this baby.  A quick, frustrated turn of a fragile page and she’d ruined yet another doctor’s rag.  She tossed it aside, suddenly aware that she’d flipped through that exact issue at least four other times in the past few weeks.

She thought about how rare it was to have a specialist like Dr. McAdams in a place like Whistle Creek County.  The optimist in Gale was grateful to have him there, even if the procedures never seemed to do anything.  Rick always thought that it was a waste of their money, but Gale insisted.  Their dream family was worth the seemingly endless doctors appointments, the mountain of frustration and the thousands of dollars already invested. Maybe this time, she thought.  Maybe this time if I think really positively he will say something different.  Maybe this time will finally be different.

Her jumbled thoughts followed her all the way into the doctor’s “gentlemen’s lounge” office.  The walls of his inner sanctuary were covered with stuffed trophies of past hunting excursions.  Forget having enough mileage to operate a stethoscope, she thought, was he even old enough to own a gun? She physically shook the thought from her head as she tried to relax back into the deep, cool leather chair.  Relaxation was difficult these days.  Nothing seemed to slow her heart beat down to anything near tolerable.  A bead of sweat that had been forming on her palm suddenly broke free of her clammy skin and dropped to the floor.  The bearskin rug it landed on had always given her the creeps, but she tried not to think about it for fear of vomiting up the half of an apple she managed to choke down during lunch.

“Maybe we should just get started,” she said.

Dr. McAdams smiled at her warmly, but she could feel his pity.  She knew what his answer would be.

“Are you sure you don’t want to wait for Rick?”  He asked.  “It might be best to have him here for this.”

She couldn’t stop them.  Before he even had the chance to sigh in awkward frustration, they flooded down her face – a steady stream from an angry river.  She gasped as she doubled over in the chair, the pain in her chest making it difficult to breathe.  Dr. McAdams joined her on her side of the desk, crouched down beside her and patted her back, a forced sign of comfort.  A soft, inconsolable growl started from deep within her, rolled through her chest and finally roared out of her throat.  She didn’t even bother trying to stop it like she had in the past.  It wasn’t worth pretending anymore.

“There are other options you know.”

She mumbled something even she couldn’t understand through her sobs.  She wanted to tell him that nothing short of her own biological child would be acceptable.  Adoption was not an option.  She could feel his hands running across her back.  Over and over again his hands rose and fell in a half-hearted caress and it made her want to slap him.  Life is not an inspirational poster, she thought.  Everything will not always be okay.

“You need to calm down.  This stress that you are putting on yourself is not healthy for you.”

She looked at him, but the image was blurred.  That must be how he saw her, she thought.  Messy, lacking stability, falling apart.  She was a failure.  What is this woman who cannot bare a child?  He would never understand her. Even she didn’t understand her.  She knew that she was nothing.

Just one more trophy in the room.  One more life taken, wasted and mounted on the wall.