I’m the captain of the high school cheer leading squad, and straight A student, I’m the most popular girl in town, I have a body every girl envies and guys lust, I have good parents, and a lot of money. I do ballet, have an amazing voice, and I design cloths.
I have the perfect life. But I don’t like any of it.
I get so tired of the guys always asking me out, of the teachers saying that everyone should follow my example and get that kind of grades, of people I don’t even know coming up to me and saying they want to be as popular as me, I’m tired of my parents saying I’m the perfect little girl.
I’m not. And I’m tired of everyone thinking it.
Sometimes I just wanna be myself, and not care. But I’m afraid of what will happen.
I have a secret, a dark one that I’ll get killed for if anyone finds out about it.
And what might my secret be you may ask? I’m a lesbian.
My parents are against them, as they’re extremely with God and say gays are about the devil.
I’ll lose all my friends, become an outcast, kicked off of teams, clubs. I’ll shunned forever.
I go to a catholic school, so everyone is against me. Everything I had wont matter anymore.
Sometimes I think if I kill myself everything will be easier. Like if I die then I’ll be better off, I wont have to hide it anymore. I wont have to be the child my parents want me to be.
My twin sister, Alex is everything my parents hate.
I envy her sometimes. Everyone knows what to expect from her.
I find it to be funny too, as I’m older than she is by ten minutes. She never cared when I’d make a big deal about it. She’d roll her eyes and go on about her day ignoring me.
But she’d always be there to help me when I needed it.
I told her I was a lesbian when I found out, and I asked her what to do. She told me to tell mom and dad and hope for the best. If they didn’t accept me for who I was then whatever, and if they did I was the mirrical child.
I wasn’t too sure when she told me that. I remembered back to a few years ago when she came right out at dinner one night and told them that she found she was bi sexual. They exploded. It took them ten minutes to calm down. My dad said it really wasn’t all that surprising considering everything else she’d done.
Alex was into all the heavy metal bands, dressing punk and emo-like, she died her hair brown and got a few piercings. My parents nearly had a heart attack. She even has a tattoo, but mom and dad don’t know that. They would kill her then. She got kicked out of school for fighting and inappropriate dress. She had a fake ID too, that was she could get alcohol. She didn’t drink a lot, mainly just tequila or vodka mixed with pop every now and again. She’s never done drugs and claims she’ll kill anyone who offers them to her. She’s in Juvey right now because of behavior and graffiti to public property.
She was everything I wanted to be, uncaring to the world that judged her so violently. I think the only thing she cared about is having a good time, and possibly me. She was coming home tomorrow because she was acting well there.
I picked her up from the hall and drove her home.
“So, dad trusts you with his mustang and not me, huh?” She asked s we drove.
I rolled my eyes, “Alex, it’s me and you.”
She laughed lightly. Sometimes I think I was the only one who could get my little sister to smile. She had the same eyes and body as me. She chopped her hair off so short it was a choppy pixie cut she did by hand. I yurned to be just like her.
“Do I got something on my face or something?” She asked.
I didn’t realize I was still looking at her.
“No.” I said quickly and looked away turning the car on and pulling away from the hall.
“Can we stop off and get some vodka on the way home?” She asked.
I shook my head, “Don’t worry I kept your stash safe from mom and dad.” I told her.
She smiled grimly and stared out her window, “I think I’m rubbing off on you too much.”
“I wish.” I mumbled.
“Just tell ’em Marc.” She told me leaning forward in the passenger seat, “You’re their angel, you do nothing wrong!”
“But it is.” I insisted.
She sighed and looked out her window, it was quiet for a long time, we were almost home when she finally said to me;
“You wanna know why I am the way I am?” She almost hissed at me.
“Because you don’t care, you always wanted to go against the crowd. You never liked mom and dad and their expectations.” I told her.
She smiled and shook her head. He black hair had grown since she got in. It tossed around her head like leaves in a breeze elegantly.
“It’s because I know God can and will except me for who I am, that I’m not afraid to be me.” She said.
I stopped the car suddenly and stared at her, I got honks from the drivers behind me.
“You what?” I asked in disbelief.
She smirked and looked dead ahead at the road.
“How ’bout I tell you when we get home, so miss perfect, is still miss perfect.” She said.
I was still dazed but carried on home not saying anything.
Alex stormed through the front door yelling, “I’m home! Anyone besides my other half miss me!?”
I heard her laugh. Mom and dad were still at work. We went up to her room and she put all her stuff away.
“What do you mean?” I asked her finally snapping out of my trance.
She smiled at me. I found it scary how every time she smiled it was like she was gonna kill someone.
“I’ve memorized the bible.” She told me, “I worship God as much as anyone in this house. And it’s because of that, I know God will except me the way I am. The way he made me. So I do what I want to do, knowing I wont miss out on something that’s good for me. Marcy, I’m not afraid to be what God made me to be. I’m not afraid to say ‘no’ to what mom and dad want from us. I’m not scared ’cause I know I’m not lying to anyone, and that makes me feel good because I know God doesn’t want me too.”
I heard everything she said. I always did. But in all the years of listening to her rant and rave and debate and everything and anything she liked, hated, disagreed with, never had she made more sense.
I loved my sister. She wanted to be herself, I wanted to be her, and every other girl wants to be me. She was younger, but I realized then that she was born into the wrong family.
She should have been in a place better than this. Where she’d have parents who’d love and understand her. Where she could be herself and not get ridiculed for it. The fact that I’m just living my life according to what my parents want hurts me.
“So, you gonna tell ’em or am I?” Alex asked me.
“What?” I asked.
She sighed, “Man, girl. Get your hearing checked.” She said, “Do. You. Want. Me. To. Tell. Them. For. You?”
I stared at her and looked down.
“No.” I said after a minute, “But I do want you to be there when I tell them.”
She smiled. For once it wasn’t the evil one that looked like she was gonna kill. But it was soft and for once since we were about three or so, I saw she was my twin. The way he eyes showed a softness of love and kindness, how her lips pressed against themselves turned upright slightly, the rare softness to her I-couldn’t-care-less face she always wore.
She nodded, “What are twins for?”
I smiled, but I felt a knot build in my stomach just thinking about how I was going to tell them. But I knew Alex wouldn’t leave me like that.
She helped me with dinner and set the table. Mom and dad came home right as we put the food on the table.
“Hello, darling.” Mom sang and brought me into a hug and kissed my cheek.
Dad did the same, but it was my forehead. I felt horrible knowing what I was going to do to them.
“How was your day honey?” He asked as we sat down.
“It was alright, dad.” I said, “But there is something I want to share with you and mom.”
He and mom nodded leaning in as if what I had to say was the most important thing in the world.
I took a deep breath, “I’m a lesbian.”
Silence cut through the room like a knife. I glanced over at Alex, her face was emotionless, but I took comfort in it somehow.
“Is this true, Marcy?” Dad asked.
I nodded, “I’ve known for a few years now.” I told them, “Which is why I never had a boyfriend. I don’t like them. And while I know what I just said is against God, I heard words of wisdom today. If I be who I am, and not what someone wants me to be, God will except me for who I am no matter what.”
I knew Alex was smiling at me, I was taking that step. I was becoming like the person I wanted to be.
“You both were baptised in dirty water.” Mom exclaimed standing up. She turned her full attention to Alex. I knew this wasn’t going to end well.
“This is all your fault.” She hissed, “You ruined our perfect child! You destroyed her purity!”
“Oh would you shut up, you old hag!” Alex demanded standing up too.
“Don’t talk to your mother like that.” Dad said joining this argument.
“Why?” Alex teased, “Last time I checked you were committing adultery with your secretary!”
My, Mom’s, and dad’s jaw dropped.
“How do you know about that?” He demanded.
“It’s a small town daddy.” She said evilly, “Word gets around.”
“What?” She egged on, “I’m a whore? I’m a screw up? I’m a mistake? I’m a spawn of the devil? Is that it? Get some new material, Martha. I’ve heard it all before. And you know what. I don’t care. I’m still a virgin, you don’t like who I am. I am not sorry. And I never will be.”
“Get out of my house!” Mom yelled.
“Not until you hear me!” She screamed, “I am your daughter whether you like it or not. And whether you want to admit it or not I am who I am, I know it, and you can’t take it away from me. God knows who I am and he’s gonna take me that way too. I’m not afraid, mom.” Her voice got quiet, “I gave up trying to make you two proud when I realized I can’t walk the straight and narrow like you want me too. I’m not sorry for it. I’m not sorry for anything I’ve done. Until now.”
I was about to ask her what she meant when she walked out of the dinning room, I heard the door slam through the empty house. I finally realized what she meant.
I ran out after her.
“Alex!” I cried. But she was gone.
I searched everywhere. I couldn’t find her. I didn’t go to school the next day, or the day after that.
I was laying in her bed crying. I lied there because her room smelled like her, my hero. I flipped over from my back to my stomach and hit one of the pillows with my fist. I heard something crumple under it. I moved the pillow and saw an envelope.
I dried my eyes and picked it up.
I knew the hand writing all too well. It was Alex’s.
I tore open the envelope and read.
Hey. If you’re reading this, then I guess you told mom and dad your dirty little secret, huh? Marc, I wanna tell you I’m sorry for leaving like this, but I want you to know something. You can go places. Be yourself become whatever the hell you wanna. I don’t have very much potential. At least not with my police record. I know, okay. You always wanted to be like me, unafraid of everything around you. No, I don’t think you’ve ever been that wrong. I’m always scared, Marc. Scared I’m gonna do something stupid and get you into some mess. My fear was always you. Losing you, getting you hurt, something like that. Marc, you’re the only person in this world I can trust with anything. And I want to thank you for it. You gave me something I needed the most, a friend. And I will always look at you that way. You’re my best friend, Marc. Forever. And I hope we can meet up in heaven one day. I love you, Marc. Tell mom and dad to burn in hell for me. One more thing, don’t change just so you can be what you think is best. Don’t change at all. You’re perfect the way you are, Marc. I want you to know that. And I don’t want you to change even if your life depends on it. Maybe I’ll see you soon. -Alex
I folded the letter and put it back into the envelope. I cried, not of sadness. But because actually took the time to make this letter for me. To tell me something I needed to hear. To let me know I’ll never be alone. I too, never had a ‘friend’. Only ever people who wanted to be with or be me. I only had, Alex. Alex only had me.
She knew what to do with life, I didn’t. She was strong, I wasn’t. She was smarter than I was, I was just too scared to try anything.
My sister, will always be my best friend. She will always be in my heart.
And I needed to keep telling myself that.
Because after she walked out of the house that day so many years ago, I never saw her again.