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Comfortably intoxicated, yet not yet satisfactorily inebriated to be content with life at present, I sat. I looked up, hoping to see stars. None. Were there stars in new york city anymore? I rummaged through my recently cluttered mind hoping to uncover my last memory of these simplicities. I struggled to remember happiness. Moments later, the nonexistent stars began to spin and I landed facedown on the grass. The vomiting induced.

Half an hour later, I forced myself to ignore the vehement sting of the next shot of vodka being self forced into my unfortunately empathetic frame. The desire to escape my mind overrode everything. Even oblivion bored me these days. And with each step took, I was more and more aware of everything I was throwing away.

I was terrified of the potential I’d never reach.

Nikki, age 25

* This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.