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[Write the Story] Living with a Chronic Illness – Halloween Edition

Posted by reudaly on October 31, 2017 in Writing |

It’s not Friday…but it is Halloween. And a few weeks back Jimmy and I were listening to Stuff You Should Know and Chuck Bryant talked about old fashioned wheelchairs and a haunted one. Which is, of course, created a plot bunny.

I’ve jumped ahead in my calendar of Write the Story Exercises to the story I wrote today – Halloween – which was a hard topic (Chronic Illness) but I wanted to take on the haunted antique wheelchair too. This one cries out to be expanded but for today… a Halloween Edition Write the Story…

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Prompt: Living with a Chronic Illness

Words: fever, weight, unpack, rollercoaster, surgeon, daffodil, Northern, patch, mossy, tendril

Story

Maybe it had been the fever or the long rollercoaster ride of the last year trying to unpack the diagnosis, but Charlie was worn out. The weight of knowing it was never all in his head but an actual chronic illness was gone, leaving behind tendrils of pain and exhaustion and legs that no longer held.

“We found this antique wheelchair in the attic. We thought you might like it better than the regular ones. At least until we know more.”

Charlie spent his days in the wicker-backed wheelchair. Weird dreams and dark, horrific images floated daffodil-like through his patchy consciousness. He spoke to the surgeon about them, but was shrugged off. Side effects of the medication.

The longer Charlie stayed at Northern Hills Medical, the more vivid the disturbing images. It wasn’t the meds, he dumped those behind some mossy rocks by a water feature. Still they persisted and grew darker, more disturbing and then the voices began. Nothing curtailed his growing fear and agitation. His travels in the chair ranged wide and gained speed until it seemed the chair took on a life of its own, even as Charlie’s hovered in a twilight state.

“Stop!” But it seemed the chair wrapped around Charlie, not wanting to let him go. He hurtled them both into the water feature, drowning the voices.

The next time the nurse went to the attic, the chair was there. Waiting.

Word Count: 236

Written: 10/31/17

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