Dear Lizzie

September 21, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

Everyone says you’re gone. The whole school was buzzing about it, whispering to each other that Lizzie Summers wasn’t coming back. But it can’t be true—you’re Lizzie. You can’t be gone. You just can’t.

But you really are, aren’t you?

 

 

September 22, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

Why? Why did you do it? Why did you leave? Why did you leave me?

 

 

September 23, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

The school held an assembly for you today. It made the evening news. They played your favourite song and everyone cried and said how much they loved you.

I guess you’re famous now, Lizzie. Wasn’t that what you always wanted?

 

 

September 24, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been three days. I still wake up and think you’re here. It hurts every single time.

 

 

September 25, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

I saw Jase at the mall today. He didn’t seem to notice me; his eyes just slid right past me, empty and glazed over. I heard he’s been skipping class and getting high instead. He really loved you, you know. You could’ve built something beautiful with him, Lizzie. But you just wrecked him instead.

 

 

 

September 26, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

The ceremony was yesterday, in that big church we’d pass on our way to the market. It took three hours, and each minute was torture.

I watched your little sister toddle around happily, too young to understand that you were gone. But your mother knew. She looked so destroyed. Have you ever seen a zombie, Lizzie? Do you know what they look like? Because your mother looks like one when she’s not crying. I’ve never seen anyone scream-sob like her before, broken on hands and knees. She screamed herself hoarse saying your name over and over and over again: LIZZIE LIZZIE LIZZIE!

You broke her to pieces, Lizzie. How could you do that to her? How could you do it to me? God, Lizzie, how could you be so selfish?


 

September 28, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been a week. I walk by your house on the way to school, and it’s so silent. When you were there, everything about your house was so bright and welcoming. Now it’s just empty. I heard your family’s moving, too. Maybe they just can’t stand walking past your bedroom and knowing what happened in there. I know I wouldn’t be able to.

 

 

October 2, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

The school set up a memorial for you. It’s in that big glass cabinet—the empty one right near the main office. It’s full of messages people have left for you, and in the middle, there’s a big framed picture of you smiling. I took that picture last Christmas. You were so happy back then, remember? I do. It’s the only thing I remember when I walk past it.

 

 

October 24, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been a month. I hate you sometimes, Lizzie, I really do. I’m just so angry. How could you do that to everyone? Did you even think about how we’d feel? Do you know what that kind of guilt does to someone?

But most of the time, I just miss you like crazy.

 

 

November 10, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

I can’t go anywhere without seeing you anymore. Everything reminds me of you, from the classrooms to the market to the tree you carved your initials in by our houses. Even staying inside doesn’t help, because you’re there too, beside me like when we’d have sleepovers, sitting in my desk chair and painting your nails, giggling by the window. My room used to be my safe haven, Lizzie. Now I don’t even have that anymore.

 

 

November 21, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been two months since you left, Lizzie. Your family moved out today; I watched them pack up and leave. Your sister kept saying, “but we gotta stay, Mommy. We gotta stay so Wissie can find us,” and I could see your mom cracking. She looks so old now, Lizzie. There are cracks everywhere in her. But she didn’t break until they started moving stuff from your room. She just crumpled down to the ground halfway to the van and started sobbing. It took your dad half an hour to put her back together again.

Now they’re gone. Maybe a new family will move into your house. I don’t know which is worse—the house staying empty, or a new family moving in and obliterating the last traces of you I have left.

 

 

December 5, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

Why did you leave? I thought you were happy. I thought you were okay. God, Lizzie, why didn’t you tell me you were anything but okay?

 

 

December 18, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

I thought I saw you at the mall today, by the Christmas decorations. You always loved Christmas ornaments, didn’t you? You’d decorated your family’s Christmas tree ever since you could walk.

But then I blinked and you were gone, and I felt worse than ever.

 

 

December 25, 2014

Dear Lizzie,

Merry Christmas, I guess.

January 24, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been four months. I still miss you so much it hurts. You ripped a hole through me when you left, and I can’t seem to patch myself back together.

 

 

February 11, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

My parents are making me see a shrink tomorrow. They think something’s wrong with me; they say it’s not normal to be acting like this so long after you left. They say I should move on. But I can’t move on, Lizzie. You were my best friend. I thought I was yours, too, but maybe I wasn’t. Because it doesn’t seem like I knew you at all.

 

 

February 12, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

The psychologist lady asked me a lot of questions today. Most of them were about you, but one of the ones about me was if I had any suicidal thoughts.

And for the first time, I had to think about it before I said ‘no’.

 

 

March 21, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been six months.

A new family moved in to your house today, this couple with twin boys and a girl about a year older than us. I saw the girl unpacking in your old room. I don’t think she knows what happened in there. But maybe she does. Maybe she just doesn’t care. I wish I didn’t.

 

 

March 26, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

The people that moved into your house are redoing your room completely. In a few more days, there’ll no trace of you left.

 

 

 

April 1, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

God, how I wish my life was an April Fools’ Joke. Or that I didn’t exist.

 

 

April 19, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been almost eight months. My shrink says I’m depressed. She put me on these little blue pills that make me numb.

 

 

April 30, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I barely recognised my reflection today, I’ve lost so much weight. But I can’t eat. I’m just not hungry anymore. I think the pills are making me worse.

 

 

May 3, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

You would’ve been seventeen today. We’d have ridden to the market on our bikes and gotten that red velvet cake from the bakery that you loved.

I tried going to get it for you, but I didn’t even make it past the door.

 

 

 

May 16, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

Is this what you felt like? Is this why you did it?

I’m sorry, Lizzie. I’m so sorry. I never knew.

 

 

May 23, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

It’s been nine months. I’m failing all my classes now. Yesterday, I skipped and got high with Jase. We talked about you a lot. He really did love you, Lizzie. Why didn’t you give him a chance? Maybe things would’ve been different then. Maybe you’d still be alive…

 

 

 

May 29, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

Today I nicked myself on the side of the cupboard. The pain surprised me—I haven’t felt anything lately except this dull ache inside me. That’s all the pills let through.

 

 

June 3, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I stole my brother’s pencil sharpener today and used a screwdriver to get the blade out. Then I sat on the floor in my bathroom with the blade hovering over my wrist, trying to get myself to push down. Part of me didn’t want to do it, because I don’t want to be like you, Lizzie, not like that. But part of me did, really did, and in the end, that was the side that won.

 

 

June 7, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I’ve stopped taking my pills. When my mom gives them to me in the morning, I tuck them under my tongue and wait until she’s gone to spit them out. I draw lines across my wrist every day now. I’m not numb anymore, but I feel even worse.

 

 

June 11, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

My mom found a bloody towel in my room. It was so easy to tell her I’d had a nosebleed, and even easier for her to believe me. I’ve moved to making the lines on my stomach, anyways.

 

 

June 19, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

My mother found my stash of spit-out pills. She watches me take them now, then makes me open my mouth so she can check that I’ve swallowed them.

 

 

June 27, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

My brother asked me if I was crazy today. I told him I think I am. Because that’s what this is, isn’t it? I’m losing my mind. I see you in my sleep. I hear voices in my head telling me I’m worthless. I’m going crazy.

 

 

July 26, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I think I understand you a lot better now.

 

 

August 16, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

Jase disappeared. No one’s seen him for a week. I don’t think he’s coming back.

 

 

September 8, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

Today would’ve been your first day of senior year.

It’s been almost a year now. I don’t think I’m even alive anymore.

 

 

September 20, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

How many pills did you take? Ten? Twenty? Fifty? Did you think about it? Did you hesitate before you swallowed them?

 

 

October 9, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I can’t do this anymore. I’m so exhausted.

 

 

October 12, 2015

Dear Lizzie,

I’ll see you soon.

 

 

 

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