A Little Madness

She had rolled and thrashed around in the king sized bed all night, unable to sleep alone in this big bed and overheated at this stage of life. Menopause, it certainly gave her men pause, they couldn’t stand to be in her bitchy company. Not that she blamed them; still it irritated her, as everything did recently.

She threw back the sodden sheets, rose and stretched. She peeled her damp nightdress over her head as she wandered to the window. Pulling back the sheer white curtain she was surprised to see that it had snowed during the night, unexpected and early to her thinking, also unwelcome.  Damn she said to no one. She headed to the bathroom for another early morning shower; this is getting old, showering before bed and again at rising. Suddenly she thought to herself, why? She grabbed the comforter from the bed and headed down the stairs, careful to avoid tripping over the blanket as she hurried down.

She ran through the kitchen and out the back door dropping the quilt on her way out the door. Running across the back deck she slipped, grabbed the railing to steady herself and stepped down the stairs. She had been moving so fast she hadn’t felt the cold on her feet until now. She ran out into the yard and threw herself into the snow, rolling across the lawn. Laughing like a mad woman she rolled as far as she could and stopped in a rather large drift. She sat up, looked around and dove over the drift where she proceeded to lay on her back and make a snow angel, the first one in over forty years.  Satisfied she jumped to her feet, her arms wrapped around herself and surveyed her work. Freaking fantastic came to mind and so did the fact that her skin felt as though it were on fire. She looked down and saw that her breasts looked like red balloons and her hands and feet were almost purple. As she headed quickly toward the house she saw old Ellen, the neighbor, watching her from her window, a perplexed and horrified look on her wrinkled face. Waving and smiling Traci darted through the door and into the kitchen where she grabbed the blue quilt from the floor.

She wrapped herself up tightly and headed upstairs to the bathroom. She was shaking so hard she could barely turn the water on. As she waited for the water to get hot she looked at herself in the large mirror over the counter. Her mousy hair wet and plastered to her head, her skin red and pimpled with goose bumps. It was the chattering smile on her face that interested her the most, almost alien to her. It had been so long that she did not recognize herself as she studied her face in the mirror. Now shaking, almost uncontrollably, she turned and stepped into the hot shower. She yelped as the hot needles pricked her skin. And then she began to laugh like the madwoman that she had become.

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