Bitter Monday
by Princess Twilite

'Tis hard to give thee up, in one short hour,
To feel the hopes of years forever crushed,
And severed one by one, those tender cords
That round the fibers of my heart were twined,
Till with my very life they seemed to blend.
"The Dead Child," written by Fanny Crosby.

Lorelai can't see her feet anymore. This bothers her more than she'd like. Her toes wink at her when she's lying down, like far away, unpainted diamonds. But when she stands, Mount Olympus might as well be between her and those damn feet. Painting her toenails is out of the question, even though she visits the drug store often for various reasons and is always drawn to the rack of nail polish.

Ruby Red. Groovy Green Apple. Purple Passion. Violet Vixen.

Lorelai ACHES for the simple pleasure of applying them to her yellowing toenails. The doctor says the yellowing sometimes happens because the baby sucks things from her body that she's not providing it.

And this makes her wonder how exactly she's supposed to provide it when the baby isn't inside of her anymore.

She can't fit into her pants anymore, but that's a given. Sometimes Lorelai sits down in front of her closet and pulls her old clothes out, brushing the fabric across her cheek and sighing into it. Memories burn a trail up her throat, like morning sickness. Sometimes she starts crying, but usually she just holds them close to her chest and wishes.... Then remembers how dangerous wishing can be and quickly stops, shoving the clothes back into a wrinkled mound at the bottom of the closet.

Lorelai doesn't go out dancing anymore. But she does dance in her bedroom, locking the door and turning it up as loud as she dares. And she's always been very daring. Her toes dig into the carpet, and even though she can't SEE them, she can feel them just fine. God, it always feels so good to dance and supposedly it's good for the baby as well.

The baby. She has to think of a name, but can't yet bring herself to. Everything is so real that she can't stand it. It's reminiscent of the way sunlight bursts sharply against hardened snow, skating over the surface and ramming into the human eye. Volatile. Achingly beautiful. She feels that way between midnight and forever.

Mostly she feels scared. And likes her popcorn with a side of pickles.

Sometimes Lorelai wakes up at night shaking. The pillows are wet from her tears; bitten into by her mouth where she tries to muffle the sobs and all she can think about is how bad she's going to be as a mother. Cradling her stomach, she apologizes for all the things she's going to do wrong.

"Sorry baby, so sorry."

She still hasn't come up with a name. It burdens her mind - that weight. How can she NAME life? Lorelai doesn't understand the hows, but knows the need for it and that she WILL have to name her baby at some point.

But how? The decision tastes like something old in her mouth. Something as old as time and just as wrinkled.

Lorelai lives her life in a series of steps. It is twelve steps from her bed to the bathroom. She knows that one by heart, having to rely on it often as she forces herself to roll off the mattress and bolt for the toilet. Puking has subsided, and now it's only her bladder that tortures her. And her heart. Yes, her heart pains her often.

It is fourteen and a half steps from the dining room table to the refrigerator in the kitchen. This knowledge comes in handy when she has a peculiar craving and what she has on her plate just isn't cutting it. Occasionally--and the urges strike more often as her belly blossoms--she needs something with a little BITE to it. During those times, Lorelai takes the steps to her bedroom and tries to sleep the urge away. She has never counted how many steps it takes to do so. It makes her restless to try.

The mirror is NOT her friend, Lorelai realizes, as she stands naked before it. Her stomach makes it look like she's swallowed a misshaped basketball. Christopher would laugh if she told him this, but she won't. She's sent him away.

Do it alone, a part of her urges darkly. Do this alone and prove to them all that you can. But then--another dark voice. What if she CAN'T? This self-mutinous thought is like a ghost limb that throbs whenever she passes by baby toys in the department store. Lorelai will stand holding a rattle for long minutes, shaking it and trying to imagine her baby girl holding onto this very toy.


More often than not, she drops the toy back in its place. Too real again, and time is always so short. Bathroom breaks are the meaning of her life.

Lorelai's thoughts are not always so pretty. She finds her mind ever darkening as she gets heavier and her breasts fill themselves with sustenance for her coming child. What about HER life? Is it just supposed to stop when her baby comes along? Will she be a mother that lives vicariously through her child?

She doesn't WANT this child.

On her knees, she prays to God.

"Take it away. Please. I'll do anything. I'll never kiss a boy again. Just please don't DO this to me."

Lorelai feels so bitter sometimes. Like those mornings when she has to fight just to sit up in bed, her back aching, her breasts leaking and her thighs jiggling. She's a PRETTY girl. Christopher used to whisper it in her ear when he was holding her tight and things were so good between them. "Oh, Lor, you're so damn pretty."

Now people look at her and say things behind their hands. Lorelai catches broken sentences and greedy, gossipy eyes on her.

"....always knew.... whore."

"....Lorelai....Christopher's....hear he won't marry her..."

"....can't....she didn't say yes to him....easy girl."

And it HURTS though she doesn't want to let it. Why should it hurt? They've been saying bad things about her since she was old enough to wear a training bra and it wasn't going to stop any time soon. They'd be talking bad about her baby or no baby.

In times like those, Lorelai smoothes her palm over her belly, whispering secretly inside her own mouth. "You and me, kid. It's just you and me and everything's gonna be perfectly fine. I promise." Lorelai always feels so guilty when she gets bitter about this burgeoning life. It wasn't her baby's choice to be conceived. And even though Lorelai isn't sure whose choice it was, it was made and there isn't any going back.

Lorelai lives her life in a series of steps. Monday is always the hardest to scale. She thinks about school and drive-in theaters. She thinks about lunch-breaks on the lawn with Christopher acting wild in front of people and kissing her neck. Tuesday is better, because she's over the largest hill, and she's never really cared for Tuesday's anyway because Friday was always so far away.

"....wild....always knew....that Lorelai...."

"....a baby girl....I bet.... mother's angry...."

"....Christopher knocked....she's always been...."

Lorelai can say for sure that Friday is pretty easy to get over, because she remembers quite a few arguments with her parents and she's never eager to get out of bed on that day. She does of course, but she isn't bitter. Only sad. She can say for sure that she's almost back to her normal self by Sunday. She's happy and a little outrageous on Sunday.

It all comes back to Monday, Lorelai thinks, hoping the rest of the weekend can make it up to her baby for such dark thoughts that she has. Lorelai glances down and tries to peer at her feet. Can't see them.

Ruby Red. Groovy Green Apple. Purple Passion. Violet Vixen.

She's always so bitter on Monday.


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