All Alice wanted was to be left alone. When she was a child her parents were constantly telling her what to do and making what she considered to be unreasonable demands. To make matters worse her older brother would join in. It became unbearable and she hated it. She just wanted to be left alone. She looked forward to the first day of school, as she believed her life would be changed. She was quickly disappointed upon discovering her teachers were just as demanding as her family. Alice wondered if there would ever come a time in her life that she would be left alone. One day she came to the conclusion that in order to reach her life goal of being left alone that she would need to leave school and move away from her family. She knew that this plan would involve marriage. She met a young man who proposed to her and she quickly accepted. Shortly after the wedding day Alice realized she had made a terrible mistake. Her husband was even more demanding than her parents. She needed her space and to be left alone. She thought a job would be the answer to her problem, giving her a temporary reprieve from her husband. Her immediate supervisor was a tyrant. He constantly berated her, demanding of her far more than she was capable of. Alice wished he would leave her alone and let her get her work done. She just wanted to be left alone. Her husband was able to talk her into quitting her job to stay at home and start a family. Yes, she thought, I’ll finally be left alone. She had no idea how demanding a baby could be, but she quickly learned. Don’t get the wrong idea. Alice loved her baby. She just couldn’t stand all the demands placed upon her. She experienced dark times through those years but somehow survived. In the twilight years of her life Alice had lost her husband, brother and parents to death. She agreed with her son to move into Sunset Care Home on the condition she would have a private room. She sat in her room facing the window allowing the sunshine to warm her wrinkled face. She was thinking it took her eighty-seven years to reach her goal of being left alone. All of a sudden an orderly burst into her room almost yelling, “Hey Alice, you need to hurry up! You have your medication to take, and then you…” Alice interrupted him as decades of frustration welled up inside her and erupted out of her mouth directly targeting the unassuming orderly. Stunned, he quickly left the room. Alice began clutching her chest, feeling extreme pain, as she slumped to the floor, unable to move. She looked around the room. No one was there and her emergency button was out of reach. Her final thought was that the best thing that happened to her was also the worst. Alice was finally…left alone.
by Doug Bartlett
From: Friday Flash Fiction