Cold Showers

I needed a saving grace after a torturous day. An asylum from the shrill bells ringing in my head.
I stepped out of my car and shut the door.
Then I locked the car and began walking towards the elevator.
It felt like a pendulum banging against the walls of my skull
Voices, mumbles, screams…
My mother’s rants, my boss’s constant words of condescension, the petulant and endless office cacophony still echoing in my head.
I stepped inside the elevator and the doors slowly begin to close.
Plates falling off the shelves of my mind,
cling, clang.
And bells…
Nails scratching against a blackboard,
A brief moment of silence, I sighed in relief.
The pendulum struck again, this time almost cracking my skull.
The stress began to convert into a migraine, forcing me to take the elevator. A practice I never followed ever since I became a victim of claustrophobia, which I developed when I was nine.
The memories of which came flooding back to me.
“Not now, please not now” I thought ineffectively trying to push the thoughts away as I recalled a chubby nine year old me walking back from the grocer’s with milk and eggs one chilly winter’s evening.
It was 5:30 pm and the sun had already gone to rest, lost in my fantasies as usual it was too late before I realized I was falling down an open drain.
How I survived is another story in itself. When the rescuers pulled me out I felt like I was being dragged out of Satan’s lair.
The waves from the drainage network put up a good fight to claim me.
Like I belonged to them.
The elevator doors opened and the light from beyond the doors welcomed me into a safe haven as my gasping stopped, my phobia loosened its grip over me.
I struggled to fit the key into the lock of my apartment door but when I was finally successful I banged the door behind me, kicked off the platforms from my over worked feet before hastily unzipping the most uncomfortable pencil skirt that gave me the illusion of possessing a perfectly sculpted waistline.
I had to get out of these clothes.
I flung my lingerie over my newly purchased black leather couch and stepped into the shower. The room that I had invested the most time and money in my entire apartment.
As the water began to fall on me, I felt like a phoenix rising from the ashes.
Bells… but they weren’t so loud anymore.
I love the cold, warm showers have never really been my thing.
Ice cold droplets, calming every pore of my skin.
It’s been four minutes I think as I tilted my head back letting the water trace every curve, every crevice, embracing every scar, every mark, of my canvas body.
I was in a meditative state of bliss as I stared at the mole on my hipbone, the one which my fiance always found cute.
Now I was smiling.
Standing right under the shower head, letting the water soak my hair as it flowed passed my back I could almost feel glaciers flowing through the trenches of my spine and falling to the floor from the curve of my hips.
This time it wasn’t in my head, it was the doorbell.
And I knew exactly who it was. It was my fiance. I quickly turned the shower tap off, wrapped myself in a towel and merrily opened the door. Out of a cold shower and into his warm hands.
Perfect and final.
The remedy to curing a stressful day.


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