When was the last time you really scared yourself? When was the last time you let yourself fall down the rabbit hole, fall so far down that you didn’t tell anyone about it? You share everything, you tweet everything, you Facebook everything, but this was kept secret. This behavior was so frightening that you wouldn’t dare acknowledge it to anyone. This self-destruction was only meant for you. No one else. How romantic.
Last summer, someone told me that the world was going to end. It was the Rapture, we were all going to fry on this chosen day at the end of May. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, we all fall down. In order to prepare for this inevitable end, I let myself slowly dissolve into mush. Open the bottle caps and swallow it all down. The bitterness is going to coat the back of my throat but I won’t mind because it means I’m going to be somewhere soon that’s different from where I am now. I hate it here. I like it there. Please, get me there faster.
Are you around? Can you meet up? C’mere.
I woke up on the day of the supposed Rapture already dying. I had been chipping away at my body for the past month, killing its survival instincts, and replacing it with a warm expectancy that the end was near. I was planning on going to Brooklyn to meet up with some girls who had been preparing to die, just like me. I felt a comfort when I was with them, a sense of ease that came from me knowing that they were hurting just as bad as I was.
It was suffocatingly warm out that day. My hands were trembling. I went to the Lower East Side to meet up with a man who would give me the tools necessary to perish, but he wasn’t there so I went to a movie theatre on Houston and sat inside a bathroom stall.
Buzz buzz, my phone vibrates.
I’m in Brooklyn. C’mere.
I went. I gave him money. I swallowed his medicine. (Why am I giving him money so I can die?) The stuff wasn’t lethal but it gave me a nice push toward the end. My hands were still shaking. I went inside a restaurant and asked to use their bathroom. I threw up in there and I’m not sure why.
(Who am I kidding? I always knew why.)
Leaving the bathroom, I somehow cut my finger on the door and blood started going everywhere. I walked out to the entrance and tried to act calm, like I wasn’t the kind of person who uses a public restroom to puke and bleed all over myself. It worked. They bandaged me up. They gave me a free iced tea. I think they were scared for me, I think they could see that I had been half-asleep for the past month.
I left the restaurant. It was still so hot out. I met up with the dying girls with their bulging eyes and emaciated tummies and felt immediately at home. We lay out on the rooftop eagerly awaiting the moment when it all would go PLOP and we could just go to sleep for real.
They were so far gone. Were they even there? Was I there? I always prided myself on being the one who was most with it but now I was starting to question if that was still true.
We couldn’t poison our bodies fast enough. I watched a tiny girl take too much in. How is she still here?
The sun was going down. My limbs felt like they were detaching, my brain was being hit with pleasurable waves. I imagined myself being at the beach with a boy suntanning and listening to some fuzzy music. I had to pretend because my realty was so far away from this image. I was so far away from experiencing any real euphoria or human connection, it was pathetic.
The end was near. The end was here. The end never happened.
Waking up, we realized that the Earth was just how we left it: taunting us, daring us to do something other than fall asleep.
The Rapture ended up not happening but deep down, I knew a shift had occurred inside of me. It was the beginning of the end. This day would mark my own personal descent into a Rapture, a Rapture of my own design and control. If it wasn’t going to come naturally, I was going to do it myself, force it out, bring it to the surface.
I was going to make it come.