Power Trip

She started driving 150 miles north, to the big city. She wound her way through a seedy part of the city, around the dirty familiar streets, to the ugly green apartment building with the burn marks on its side.

Most of her time there, she had been high. She did remember her roommates cooking meth at the top the stairs, while one of the guys, who was perpetually drunk, looked on. She also remembered her abusive girlfriend slamming her down, throat first, onto the balcony railing.

“You have no power over me anymore,” she said, in the strongest voice she could muster.

Next was a restaurant an hour south, where she’d worked six months, bussing tables and running food. She was either drunk or high most of the time she worked there. Most of the people there didn’t like her, and several stole tips from her. They didn’t like working with a trans woman.

“You have no power over me anymore,” she said, as clearly as she could staring at the outside of the ritzy restaurant.

Next, it was back to the town she lived in and the house she grew up in. After her parents moved out, and after she left the meth house apartment, she lived here while she worked at the restaurant half an hour north. She had gotten so messed up on drugs there, she began to hear voices and see faces at the windows. Her father came and moved her out and into an apartment one night.

“You have no power over me anymore,” she said, mustering up as much courage as she had.

Finally, it was cross-town to the place she dreaded the most, where her abusive ex-girlfriend still lived. She actually shook in the car turning down the hated street. She stopped her car right in front of the house.

“You have no power over me anymore.”

{“yes i do”}

“YOU have no power over me ANYMORE.”

{“i always will, and you know it -“}





She sat in her psychologist’s office, recounting her trip.

“I did exactly what you told me to do, all of it.”

“And how do you feel now?”

“Weird,” she said, sipping a Red Bull. “Cost a fortune in gas…”

“Go on.”

“I have had nightmares about all of those places, and it was good to face them, but…”

“But what?”

“It isn’t what was done to me that won’t leave me, it’s the things I did to myself.”

“Yes. But you aren’t that person anymore.”

“So I have no power over me anymore, either?”

Her therapist smiled. “The you that was has no power over the you that is anymore.”

“Who does, then? Where do I go with my life?”

“Forward. It’s the only way any of us can go.”

“So does this mean the nightmares will stop?”

“I can’t promise that. We’re just working on taking down whatever barriers keep you from moving forward.”

She left her therapist’s office and met her father down at the park to walk.

“How did it go at therapy today?”

“Oh, you know. Just the usual, breakthroughs and stuff.”

“Cool,” her father said, absent-mindedly.



For Nano Poblano this year, I’m trying a prose post a day instead of my usual work in poetry. Thanks for reading. – S.B.


Author: Sibelius Russell

Sibelius Russell (a/k/a/ Owen "Beleaguered" Servant) lives a life of whimsical servitude -- whatever that means.

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