As a child mermaids dominated my young imagination. I was Ariel for Halloween for four years in a row. I wore out my VHS tape of The Little Mermaid with my incessant watching. As I got older, my love for them stayed it had just evolved, grew into something so big my mind couldn’t contain it. I decorated my skin with colorful and permanent underwater murals and grew my hair into a long, wavy style. I dreamed often of how it would feel to be weightless all the time, to feel ethereal and beautiful like the merpeople. One with nature, free to explore the ocean floor. Finding sunken treasures, befriending the sea life.
Only, that wasn’t my life. Not at all. It never would be, not after the incident.
I was stuck in a prison with no water, told time and time again that I was crazy.
The pills were meant to take away the delusions, as they called them. The obsessive behaviors I apparently had needed to be contained, dealt with. My dreams were now nightmares to the people who supposedly loved me. But, if they loved me…they would have understood that I had to do what I had done. It was my one dream, my one hope to become who I knew I was inside. I didn’t mean to hurt anyone. The ocean was beautiful and powerful, only dangerous to those who didn’t respect it. I had the utmost respect, but I guess she didn’t, as it swallowed my sister whole.
They cut off the long mane of hair I’d grown, made me wear sleeves to cover the dreams I’d inked into my skin. I was devastated. Night after night, I’d awaken, gasping for breath. The once calming effects of the sea become suffocating.
My doctor told me that was guilt.
But I knew better. It wasn’t guilt, it was anger. Blood boiling anger.
This wasn’t who I was supposed to be, where I was supposed to be. I had a higher purpose.
So under the cover of night, I made my way out of my tomb. Silly, silly guards. A little skin and their lips were loose. You know how the saying goes, loose lips, sink ships. And oh would their ship sink and the captain would go down with it.