Three Days With Marylin
Three Days With Marylin7 mins 222 7 mins 222
Although long past, I still remember that period of my life very clearly. It was not a happy time for me. Not at all. In fact I was a gloriously miserable eighteen year old dealing with mild depression, constant self-deprecation and anxiety. Needless to say, I felt like a minority in all that surrounded me, my own country, my own town and even my own home, I felt like I or people that resembled me were known-about but never truly heard. It was hard for me. I needed advice, I needed a kindred spirit with whom I could share all my troubles and doubts. So as I watched the falling star shine across the sky on August 1.2019. I wished for just that. I wished to meet an equally troubled soul. I wished for just three days with my kindred spirit. For the first time in a very long time I fell asleep peacefully.
That morning to my utter surprise I woke up in an unfamiliar hallway with a blinding headache while a soft feminine voice called out to me.
“Pardon me, are you all right?” asked the voice softly whilst I, still half asleep and slightly disoriented tried to open my eyes. That voice sounded familiar. When my eyelids finally agreed to cooperate with my brain, a wave of nausea and utter shock overtook me like never before. The nausea, probably a result of the horrendous headache and the shock, well the shock simply came from the simple notion of eye contact with the person in front of me. Before me, in all of her iconic glory stood none other than Marylin Monroe herself. How was this possible? Where was I? When was I? The night before, I fell asleep like I always did, hugging my pillow and crying over the almost healed scars on the inside of my wrists, products of a very dark moment in my life.
But unlike any other time, I fell asleep before the first rays of sunlight fell upon my window, I fell and dreamed of nothing except the desperate wish I had made just minutes before. The wish. Of course. By some miracle, this must be it. I took a closer look at Marylin, seeing her genuinely worried expression and her eyes, her soft brown eyes red at the rims probably from too much crying, her eyes similar to mine were the saddest eyes I have ever seen. Maybe it was my own desperation I felt or her own, but something in that moment possessed me and to her surprise, I said nothing and hugged her tightly. She fell apart then and started sobbing uncontrollably and as quickly as she started she quieted.
“You’re not from here, are you?” she asked, her voice, a small broken whisper.
“No, I’m not”. I answered truthfully.
Like a true professional she wiped her tears then, helped me up and without another word led me to her suite. She stood while I sat on the sofa.
“You’re like me, aren’t you?” she asked softly while lighting a cigarette.
“Yes, I am”. I said after a little pondering. I was, in a way I was like her without the glamour, without the lies, without the mask. From that hug in the hallway we both knew that we were more alike than we, or I, originally thought. She was a star, perceived as a dumb young blonde girl with no opinion, like me she was seen but never heard.
“I wished for you, you know. After a really long time, I made a wish on a falling star. I wished for someone who could understand me… and imagine my surprise when I found you in my hallway the very next morning. she said with an amused smile. “Is it better for us there, where you come from?” she asked, her eyes now resembling a dreamer’s.
“It is, but not by much. Wha
t date is it?”
Three days. I had three days with Marylin. Three days before I had to go back to reality. Three days before…before she died. I hugged her again and wiped the tears that again fell. The days passed quickly, days which normally were neverending for me, with her past in a blink of an eye. She was warm and comforting, welcoming like no one before her in my life and while the hours were ticking away I told her my story and she told me hers, I always hugged her afterwards and the tears always fell as if they had not ever fallen before. She told me about her painful life as Norma Jean, the abuse she endured and continued to endure as she fell into the high heels of Marylin Monroe the model and after that, Marylin Monroe the star. She told me that she loved once, a long time ago, after she divorced her first husband but her love was simply “not meant to be”.
She told me her painful memories of losing her babies as a consequence of the constant stress she had to endure. In the end she gave up. She lived only for love, even if that love was fabricated and shown on screens all around the world. After she finished I hugged her again. For exchange I told her my story. The constant bullying in school, the abuse at home, the stutter I had developed in 4th grade and how all that led to my depression and anxiety which in the end both led me to self-harm. For the first time since I arrived, she hugged me then.
Although she was visibly shaken she took both my arms and while running her fingers along the many scars she said:
“Those people and the monsters you have in your head do not define you my darling, these do not define you, your body loves you, it keeps you alive, don’t hurt it, love it back. You are not your scars, you are your love for the world, remember that”.
I cried after that and she held me, she may have not healed me but she helped me when I most needed it. I will always and forever be grateful for that. So when the day came for me to leave her, just before we fell asleep knowing her fate I hugged her one last time.
“I do wish you could take me with you. I wish I could start anew far away from this madness” she whispered to me through that one tear that fell.
“I wish I could take you with me, as much as I wish it for myself, I wish a new start for you too” I spoke quietly.
“Take care Annie.”
“I promise I will Norma Jean.”
We both fell asleep oblivious to the two shining stars that made a trail through the dark night sky.
Years passed after that faithful meeting. I woke up in my own bed that morning, I’d never thought I’d see Marylin again. But I did, years later as I walked my daughter through the halls of what would be her primary school.
“I guess wishes do come true. I had a feeling I’d see you again” spoke a middle aged woman with brown hair wearing jeans and a white button up. It was Marylin…no, it was Norma Jean Baker this time, she made it, she and I simultaneously got our whishes granted, why I do not know. I hugged her then, my eyes filled with tears, hers didn’t, just a small smile adorned her face.
“Tami, this is your teacher, Ms. Baker, listen to her she’s smart, she saved me a long time ago.” I spoke to my daughter as I kneeled next to her. The bell rang.
“Come on Tami, time for school.” Spoke Norma Jean with a smile as she held out her hand to my daughter just as she held it out to me in that lonely hallway. “We’ll be okay, don’t worry. Wave to mommy, Take care Annie. See you in a bit.” The end of the sentence was punctuated with an over-exaggerated wink. I guess not all of Marylin was gone.
And yes, this is the end of this story but also the beginning of something new, a happy beginning for two broken people who through each other found what they were seeking, found peace and happiness and with that, without anyone’s knowledge, rearranged a small piece of history.
As far as the world was concerned, Marylin Monroe tragically disappeared one starry night leaving all that she owned behind.
And as far as Annie’s family and friends knew, she started battling her demons on paper instead of on herself and years later finally found happiness when she found Tami.