Tag Archives: women

The Silent Killer is NOT (Just) Cancer

Lurking within me is a beast waiting for the right time. And like its prey, I have little to no warning of when it will emerge. But best be reassured that there is no way of escape. Like Cancer, there is no cure or way for peace; but, few seek a resolution and instead many must suffer.

Little know or have even heard of this thing that will forever control my life. To some, it is considered “the Silent Killer” and to others it is much worse as some, like myself, considered death to be a relief. The pain alone becomes so strong so as to cause one to stare lovingly, longingly at any breakable or sharp object.

Then there is one’s diet. Remember all the foods traditionally savored and enjoyed, like ice cream, cake, cookies, candy, there are even more that one must deny the pleasure of consuming. All are a special case but all crave for a whispering taste of any deliscious morsel.

And I can’t forget one of the most fought for natural right of one’s womenhood. Because if we dare to consider the thought of children, then we must prepare for a long hard battle that many fail to ever win though some do. Yet, it is through many attempts, calculations, drugs and tears that such a feat is obtained.

Do not forget though that often those who are deadly end up become secretly passed along so as many after may suffer through similar difficulties.

A sure sign of such is the taunt and glances of many upon another whose looks are not entirely of the norm. Those, like myself, are all too familiar with the daily battles against one’s own hair as this beast enjoys to lay its tail like a mustache upon our upper lip. Its hair could also be shed upon other parts of our body so as to create an art peice of its own.

But who is this artist? this mastermind? this beast? It is none other than Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.

If any knows of its slow death then it is well known that it not only gives physical torment but mental too. For how can one continue with life, when many only offer temporary aid. Is it not better to succomb to the beast’s ultimate wish? Is that the only way for relief?

© 2016 Jessica Santos

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The Cross’s Deceit

Her sight blurs
And her balance falters.
Slowly, she sinks to the ground.
“What is happening to me?” she begs,
While a throbbing ache in her side persists.

Throwing the drawer open,
She searches for any blade.
Finding none she grasps a glass jar
And with one great crash
It shatters at her feet.

Slicing her fingers,
She holds an angled peice close to her pride,
Preparing for the first incision.
She gulps down her strength
But the lady walks in.

Calmly, she clears the glass away.
“No dear, that is not your remedy,” she states.
Then, picks her up
And sets her down on the metal table

Fastening her legs upon some stirups
And shoving her on her back,
She chooses a metal probe.
“Now, take a deep breath,” she smiles.

A twinkle flashes into those eyes.
It is hardly noticed
As her legs are instantly parted
And with one fluid movement,
An icy chill rips through her
Snooping over private hills and tiny crevices.

What was left of her precious is lost.
Only a desire to scream pervades;
But, her mouth remains shut.

“Just a little longer,” the lady coos.
(As if she could even be aware of time)
But, just as the wondrous wonder adjusts,
A sharp jab consumates more
Sending a swift reminder.
And, just as it began,
The lady removes her wand.

Words pass through the air
Followed by a torn note.
She crams it into her pocket,
Like the thought of return,
And clumsily walks away
Dripping in red.

The footsteps she leaves are not to be followed;
But, exiting the double doors,
She glances into familiar eyes.

© 2016 Jessica Santos

A Mother Knows

It was the day before her tenth birthday and all the women sat around an old oak table. She listened closely around the corner as they began to mingle and gossip. The oldest talked about the past and hopes for the youth. The youngest shared their pain and hopes for the old.

Story after story was brought up until Mama finally spoke. Her ears strained to listen but she didn’t have to wait long.

“My baby is turning ten tomorrow and it only feels like yesterday I was rocking her to sleep,” Mama said.

“Come now. She’s still your little one,” assured Mama’s sister.

“Yes, but it isn’t long before she goes off to college,” Mama answered with worry in her voice.

“Sshh…child. She takes after her mother and is already following in your foot steps,” Grandmother said softly.

She pulled her ear away and tilted her head. She looked behind her and down at her feet. How did they know she was following Mama’s footsteps? How was that a good thing?

Curious to know the answer, she ran out from her hiding place and into Great Grandmother’s lap.

The little girl looked into each of the women’s eyes and asked, “Why is it a good thing I’m following Mama’s footsteps?”

Great Grandmother chuckled, “Because your mother is a hard worker and has come a long way. She’s doing well for herself. Don’t you want to do well too?”

Squirming under the watch of the women, the little girl nodded her head shyly and probed, “But, why must I follow her footsteps? Why can’t I create my own?”

Shaking her head in good humor, her mother stretched out her hand for her baby. The little girl walked over to her and Mama kissed her atop the head before saying, “She doesn’t mean that you won’t make your own footsteps. You can zig and zag as much as you want. Just don’t forget to come home to these arms, okay?”

The little girl’s eyes shone bright as she nodded her head and kissed Mama on the cheek. But before she ran off, Mama caught a glimpse of the many generations of women in their family and she knew that her baby would be just fine for the years to come.

© 2016 Jessica Santos

Her Little Secret

“Sshh,” she whispered.

Behind her, he paused in the doorway and watched as she bent over her overnight bag whispering softly to it.

He stood there for a bit but eventually shuffled his feet causing the wooden floor boards to creek alerting her to his presence. She hurriedly shut her bag and stowed it away beside his dresser drawer then spun around.

Innocently, she plastered a smile on her face and went to sit on the bed. But, her attempts to draw his attention away failed as he curiously walked over to her things.

He bent down and picked up her bag. He was about to unzip it when she rushed over and took it from him.

With worried eyes, she looked up at him and shook her head hugging her bag close to her heart. He didn’t say anything and instead crawled into bed leaving her to put it back.

When she did, she unzipped it and peered into its contents shaking her head and mumbling under her breath, “No…not tonight, not yet.”

Deciding to give her some privacy and a little bit of trust, he flipped over on his back and shut his eyes. She soon joined him on the bed and shut the light signaling for him to roll over and hold her close.

But, when he did, he felt something small and soft within her arms.

He kissed the back of her neck and whispered softly into the night, “Whose your friend?”

Instantly, he felt her instinctively squeeze whatever it was that she held closer to her. She didn’t say anything and he didn’t push her.

In the morning though, she had flipped over and was resting her head upon his chest with an old stained worn out plush dog resting in her arms. He smiled and chuckled softly to himself before kissing her awake.

She had forgotten about the toy but was soon reminded when he lifted his hand and patted the dog on the head.

Blushing, she hid her face behind her old best friend. But, he gently picked the toy up in his hands and turned it to face her.

Then, softly, he brushed the tip of Snow’s nose along her cheek much like any other dog would.

Years later, as she left the same bedroom one morning with their hungry four year old mutt, he picked up Snow from a chair sitting just within reach. He remembered how she once couldn’t bare to sleep without her and always reminded him of how she always wanted a dog for her own. It was then that she came back into the room and saw her in his hands.

She smiled at her childhood toy and sat beside him on the bed. He instinctively turned Snow to face her and just as he had done the very first day, he brushed her nose along her cheek only this time it was to wipe the tears away.

© 2016 Jessica Santos

More to a Burger

He texted me in the middle of his class. I had just gotten off work and was already feeling pretty beat but the minute I saw his message, I smiled. It wasn’t just a small one either. It was one of those big ear to ear grins where you look up wondering if anyone saw you smiling at your phone. He had texted me asking if I was in the mood to eat a burger.

As ridiculous as that sounds to smile at, I feel no sense of embarrassment. You see, I barely ever indulge in something juicy and fatty, but the minute he offers, I am the first to tag along. Yet, truth be told, that day wasn’t a day for indulgence. It was a day to curl up and listen to him whisper sweet nothings.

But, what a woman wants translates differently. This could be because there aren’t many of us who follow the rule of being direct. No matter, on that particular day, I had mentioned to him how I wanted to curl up in bed with him.

Obviously though, he twisted it to mean something a little differently. Perhaps a guys way of solving those bouts of neediness is through food.

Either way, I could be completely wrong but at least I didn’t have to cook. Instead, I was able to sit back, eat, talk and NOT think about cleaning up afterwards.

When we had finished, I knew he was going to head home; but before he did, he took me by the hand and led me into the bedroom. He began to take off his shoes and belt before checking his phone. I took that as my cue to hang my own belt and turn on the lamp.

Not bothering to check my phone, I set it aside and crawled atop the bed. I laid like that for a second before my needs clawed to the surface and I reached out and pulled him down beside me. He could check his phone while holding me after all.

But, he was a smart one.

Immediately, he shut the screen off, set it beside mine and pulled me closer to him.

Like a puppy, I found the perfect spot in the crook of his arm and rested my eyes as we began to whisper back and forth. We didn’t stay like that for long but as I’m thinking back to that moment, I can’t help but consider the fact that he did more than answer my want.

He answered my need.

© 2016 Jessica Santos