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A Cure for Madness (standard:Psychological fiction, 934 words)
Author: akAdded: Jun 24 2003Views/Reads: 2284/1367Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
On an impetuous mission to rid herself on a genetic disease, a woman finds a cure for her madness.

A Cure for Madness 

by Kira Pirofski B.A., M.A. 

Rebecca fought to maintain her sanity with the same fierceness a tiger
fends off a charging predator. Genetics made it a tough battle.  
Rebecca's grandfather had been the quintessential manic depressive who 
could sink into a motionless depression as easily as he could soar up 
into a manic frenzy of productivity. 

By the time the illness had trickled down to Rebecca, the payoff of the
manic phase had worn thin.  Grandpa had had success as a salesman.  His 
mania was useful and drove the Polish immigrant to accumulate five dry 
good stores. Each had been more successful than the last.  His mania 
had terrified his children and wife, but it charmed customers and made 
him a millionaire.  But Rebecca had a second hand version of his mania. 
 She had mania, but it was not accompanied by success or wealth.  She 
had inherited his depression as well, but while his served as a well 
deserved respite from his manic phase, hers was a deep abyss that was 

So Rebecca had the mania and the depression, but was bereft of the
benefits that grandpa had derived from it.  The illness landed her in 
mental hospitals, emergency rooms, and doctors waiting offices.  She 
longed for sanity.  It escaped her at every turn.  So she fought back. 

Rebecca tried to act normal, she tried to be happy.  Each morning she
would carefully apply makeup, dress fashionably, accessorize, and hope 
for the best.  She tried to plan and map and scheme so that those 
impossible lows could be sidestepped. 

The television shows she watched were sitcoms. She tried to laugh. She
tried to identify with people who were cheerful and blithe.   The food 
she ate was healthy.  Perhaps fruit, vegetables, and lean meats would 
lighten her mood. 

In an attempt to lift her mood she had her skin peeled regularly,
colored her hair, and bought anything that helped her emerge from that 
dark cloud of sorrow and despair. 

Inevitably the sitcoms got irritating and inane, the makeup felt
clownish, she became more depressed over the amount of clothing and 
jewelry she had accumulated, and her diet became monotonous and bland. 

One weekend, after a series of downward turns, the depression and sense
of hopelessness hit her with all its might.  There was no way out.  
Every plan, scheme, maneuver that had worked made the situation 

The dark cloud became denser, denser, and denser.  The very air seemed
to evaporate and the oppressiveness became unbearable. 

With the last ounce of energy she could muster, she made one final plan.
 She would visit the grave of the man who had laid the seeds of her 
illness.  Her dead grandfather, from whom she had inherited this curse, 
was to blame.  Rebecca thought if she could confront his headstone once 
more, she would be free at last. 

Although she could hardly think straight, she purchased a plane ticket
to Chicago.  Rebecca boarded the plane and prayed.  She prayed her 
strength would hold out long enough to survive the flight. 

In a stroke of twisted fate, a storm struck and the plane ride mirrored
the turmoil and primal force of her swirling, thundering mind.  The 
whole plane was engulfed in darkness.  A true blessing.  Outside her 
window she saw lightning, torrents of rain, blackness that matched 

When the plane landed she felt strangely relieved of her depression.  It
was almost as if she as normal once more. 

For the first time in months she was herself again.  She felt normal. 
She had energy. There was no second guessing of her every thought and 
move.  The obsessive behavior and thoughts were mysteriously absent.  
In there place as the semblance of normalcy. 

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