Everyone is born with a mark on their bicep. Sometimes its dots, a number or symbol. Mine is an infinity symbol. I can never reveal to anyone what my mark looks like. I have never seen one that looks like mine. The highest I have seen is 30. There is a club for those that reach 20, then 50, and there is an exclusive club for those few in the city that have reached 100.
I can only remember the last 10 lives that I have lived, so I am unsure at how many I have actually lived before that. Sometimes you bring all of the memories forward with you. The last time I died I only brought with me the memory of my mother and father and the day that I died.
I can only assume that they were the reason I was in the institution to begin with. They had come to visit me that day. It seems like it had been weeks since I had seen them. Honestly, I cannot remember all of the details. My mother looked withdrawn and tired. My father looked disheveled and unshaven. I thought we were going to sit down to have lunch like I remembered doing several times before but they stopped my nurse before we could make it that far.
“We aren’t here to have lunch today. We have come to say goodbye.” My father spoke so soft I could hardly hear him.
“Why?” I whispered back.
“It has become too much for us to be here. Your mother and I have to travel almost 100 miles round trip.”
“Cecilia, Are you ok?”
My head began to spin and my breathing became labored.
“Cecilia? Mr. and Mrs. Dirk, I am going to have to ask you to leave. Cecilia needs to lay down now.”
As my parents turned to leave I let out a sound that I had never heard before. It felt like my body was breaking. They moved as quickly as they could. As they reached the door I went barreling after them. They were able to make it across the street and as soon as my foot hit the asphalt I was hit by a car.
This scenario now plays through my head daily. Walking down the street I am always extra cautious of the cars and buses as they drive by. Today I am headed to my first day of college. It seems like I have waited years for this moment in this lifetime. As I round the corner I bump full on into a couple. As we look at each other it registers that we know one another. They see it to. My old parent stand a few feet in front of me.