My Short Story

This story appeared on the website of Susie Magazine:

Learn To Trust
fiction by Sarah Rupp

Kaylee patted her finger in the small jar of concealer once more and dabbed under her eyes, trying to cover up the purplish-colored circles. She stepped away from the mirror and looked at herself. Even with her brand-new blond wig, which was a fun contrast from her normal dark brown, she was sure everyone would notice that she didn’t have eyebrows. Eye shadow or lip-gloss couldn’t make her look any better, so Kaylee didn’t even try. Her collarbones bulged under her pale skin and her cheeks and eyes were sunken.

“I’m so sorry, Kaylee has leukemia.” The doctor’s words echoed in her mind so clearly it was like it just happened yesterday, even though it had been six months since the diagnosis. Dad hugged her close to his chest and Mom stroked her arm in the lonely doctor’s office.

But Kaylee didn’t cry. She was too shocked to feel anything. Later, that night when Dad and Mom were asleep and Kaylee was alone in her room, she hugged her knees to her chest and sobbed until it hurt to cry any more.

Everything Is Different
Now nothing was the same. Nauseous, tired and bored, she found nothing better to do day after day than watch the chemo drugs drip one drop at a time through the thin tube inserted into her arm from the bag hanging over her head. The chemo drugs made her lose her precious hair and feel sick and weak. When undergoing the gruesome treatments, Kaylee wished she could slip out of her body and run straight out those hospital doors and be anywhere else but there. Why had God allowed her to go through this?

I’m so ugly, she thought as she glared at herself in the mirror. Sighing, she straightened and smiled at her reflection. This is as good as it’s gonna get. Be happy you’re home. At least you’re not puking up everything you eat, like during treatments.

“Kaylee, are you ready to go?” her mom called up the stairs, breaking into her thoughts.

“Almost, Mom!” Kaylee called back. She wished she wasn’t almost ready. She didn’t look forward to going back to the doctor, even if this was just her monthly checkup.

When she reached the bottom of the stairs, her mom was waiting for her with the car keys, ready to go. Kaylee stuck out her bottom lip at Mom. “I don’t want to go out like this. I look like an elf monster.”

“A very cute elf monster.” Mom added with a smile, ruffling Kaylee’s fake hair.

Kaylee sighed. “Whatever.”

Mom placed her hands softly on Kaylee’s shoulders and looked her in the eyes. “You are cute. Honest.”

But Kaylee didn’t really believe her mom. Moms are supposed to say things like that. Tears pooled in Kaylee’s eyes. “I’m so small and sick-looking.”

“This will pass, Honey,” Mom said. But Kaylee saw the tears glistening in her mother’s eyes, too. “You just need to trust God.”

Kaylee didn’t want to say it to Mom, in case she’d worry her, but trusting God was something she questioned now. What kind of God would put her though all this suffering?

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