How To Hide Your Mistakes: A Short Story
Start writing a post


Flutter your eyes open with some resistance from the sandman's handiwork. Rub your face, noticing at second glance the rusty dried blood still under your fingernails from last night. That is when it should begin to register in your head that your left bicep is in pain. It isn't at all like the aching soreness that comes the day after a flu shot though. No, this is more of a stinging pain. Stop to notice that it hurts slightly more than the time that you slammed your hand down on a bee with her stinger pointed at the sky, but at the same time, it isn't quite on the level of intolerance as when you were nine and burned your arm on that pot in your friend's kitchen. Chuckle a bit at the thought of how back then you were too embarrassed, for some reason, to say anything, so instead decided to rip off the burned skin thinking that it couldn't possibly be good if left on.

Now to actually deal with the issue at hand. First things first, lift the sleeve of your white undershirt which is now stained with specks of muddy crimson. Stay calm. You have never been caught before and aren't going to let this be the time that you slip up. Remember that you had tissues in the pocket of your jeans, which are now hanging on the closet door. Get out of bed and grab the tissues, wetting all but one of them with the water bottle you keep on your night table. Pause after you start to think that you hear someone coming. Pretend to be asleep again. Your heart begins to thump like a car with square tires going down a rocky hill as your mother walks in to put away your laundry. Wait for her to leave.

Start now by wiping your face to remove any potential tear marks that may be leftover from last night. Allow a cool breeze to come in from the slightly cracked window and mix on your face with the water. Let it refresh you, waking you up a bit more and allowing you to think a bit clearer. The shirt has to go. Take off the stained shirt, taking extra care not to drag it along the newly formed slit.

Now that you can see your arm completely, clean off the wound and any residual stains around it. Wonder why you really cut deep this time. Come to the conclusion that you were abnormally anxious last night. Put on a new shirt and ball up the old one in the pocket of your shorts. Take the one remaining dry tissue and wrap it around the cut carefully, just in case it begins seeping again. It hurts to the touch, but you know that it is necessary to wrap it if you want it to go unnoticed.

Quietly creep into the bathroom across from your bedroom, trying not to attract the attention of the dogs who will give you away immediately. The smell of coffee is in the air and you can hear the clanging together of pots and pans. Someone is in the kitchen. It is probably just your mom making herself breakfast. Work quietly now and try not to draw attention. Bury the stained shirt at the bottom of the hamper before closing the bathroom door carefully. Remove the tissue for a brief second and find the hydrogen peroxide in the medicine cabinet. Put your arm over the sink, and pour it over the valley in your flesh.

Watch as the white bubbles foam up, cleaning the cut properly. It's an almost tranquil scene, reminiscent of waves crashing on the shore, turning into seafoam and washing up over multicolored shells during low tide. Re-apply the tissue, which now should slightly stick to your dampened skin rather than resting on top of it.

Find the comb on the counter that your father runs through his hair every morning. Using one of its teeth, scrape the dried blood from under your nails, then rinse it off. Even though you do not need to actually use the bathroom, flush the toilet in case someone sees you leaving, to give the impression that you did need to. Open the door and wash your hands, going along further with your ruse.

Work up enough composure to smile, and walk into your kitchen where, as you guessed, you will find your mother. Tell her "good morning" and let out an exhausted yawn as she tells you of how she was just coming to wake you and made you breakfast. French toast and coffee. There is Mrs. Butterworth's brand syrup on the table next to the Horizon brand half-and-half. Thank her, grab some utensils, sit down at the table and start to eat.

Think about how happy she looks to see you, and how sad she would be if she knew how truly tormented you were on the inside, or if she knew what you were doing to yourself. Take note of the nearly hundred-pound dog happily gazing up at you and wagging his tail left and right like a metronome. Get up, letting him out in the yard to play with the smaller dog, which you aren't as fond of and which sticks to your mom's side at nearly all times. Sit back down and continue to eat your breakfast.

With each chew of food and sip of coffee, contemplate how bad things have gotten. Realize that this has become a common practice for you. Realize that this is unhealthy and that you need to stop. Realize that you are depressed, that you are anxious, and that you need help.

Repeat the previous steps less than a week later.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Every Track On Ariana Grande's 'Positions' Album Ranked

Ariana Grande has achieved major success with her new album and we're ranking every track.


Ariana Grande surprised fans in October, tweeting that her new album was being released. What followed was yet another number one peak on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The album's title track and lead single, "Positions," also hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

With "Positions," Grande took a much more light-hearted approach than the confessional nature of its predecessor, "Thank U, Next." It was a welcome and refreshing change of pace. Now that the album has been out for a solid month, it's the perfect time to see how the songs rank.

Keep Reading... Show less

In the four Christmas' that I have spent with my boyfriend, I have realized one thing: boys are hard to shop for. Each year I have to rack my brain for gift ideas because when I ask my boyfriend what he wants for Christmas, he always says something along the lines of "nothing," which as a girl is hard to fathom since I literally give him a list each year before Black Friday.

After hours each year scouring the internet for the perfect Christmas gifts to get my boyfriend, I have come up with a pretty long and inclusive list. To help those girlfriends going through the same thing, I decided to put together some of the best gifts I have come across.

Keep Reading... Show less

It's almost December, which means that it's almost time for the biggest holiday season to arrive! However, it doesn't mean that COVID-19 has decided to disappear. According to the CDC, 147,840 new cases of COVID have been recorded in the last seven days.

States such as Kentucky have closed all of their restaurants, schools, and businesses until December. Some governors have started to advise caution when celebrating the holidays, too. You may be thinking, 'is there any way to really enjoy Christmas during the pandemic?' In fact, there are ways to still celebrate the holiday safely. Here are 10 ways that you can still enjoy the holiday season without canceling any of your plans.

Keep Reading... Show less

The 5 Things We ALL Want For Christmas In Mariah Carey's New Special

The Queen of Christmas is back and bringing festive moments to an all-new special premiering December 4!


Mariah Carey is saving 2020 by bringing an all-new Christmas special to Apple TV+ starting December 4. It will feature guest stars, festive moments, and musical performances. The all-star cast includes Tiffany Haddish, Billy Eichner, and Snoop Dogg. Carey's twins will also make a special appearance.

A festive special is certainly what we all need right now. There are lots of information about the upcoming special that has many fans excited. Here are the five things from the special we're most looking forward to.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Things You Need From Target If You Want To Take Your Christmas Decor Game To A Whole New Level

No one wants to talk about 2020, but these decor pieces will give everyone something worth talking about.

Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

It's no secret that for a majority of people, Christmas season is the happiest time of year.

There are people that put their trees up before Halloween even begins and those that calmly wait until Thanksgiving is over. No matter which group you fall in, there's a good chance that this year has been a tough one, so why not treat yourself to a few new pieces that will spark joy in your heart every single time you catch a glimpse of them.

Keep Reading... Show less

How The 'Friends' Theme Song Is Actually Describing 2020 — And It Couldn't BE More Accurate

This isn't our day, our week, our month, and definitely not our year...


Everyone knows the iconic Friends theme song and although we may have joked in previous years how relatable it is, here's a breakdown of the lyrics and how they are so 2020, we might never be able to listen to it again after 2020.

Keep Reading... Show less

Let me just say, first and foremost, happy Thanksgiving! This holiday is known as a time for families to get together, to be thankful for the blessings in our lives, and to dig into a lot of very delicious food that you'll be having as leftovers for the next week. However, this family time is certainly not without downsides, as we are forced to confront certain family members on matters that should best be left out of Thanksgiving discussion, and in my case, this happens to be my father, who is the only republican in our family (that I know of).

(FYI: Since I still live with my dad, it's not just Thanksgiving when I'm forced to listen to him talk about politics, as I had gotten a taste of where he stands just from earlier this year alone.)

Keep Reading... Show less
Peter Truong

If you still have not figured out what you want to cook on Thanksgiving, baked macaroni and cheese is something worth considering. It is simple, affordable, and delicious. I have had many different types of baked mac and cheese and most are dry. I do not like a dry mac and cheese, it just does not seem appealing to me. If you like the creamy cheesy essence of mac and cheese, look no further, this recipe is for you.


Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments