Love sharing this each year. I don't often write fiction, but this short story was for a contest.
If you've never read it, enjoy!
A Short Story By: Debra Wilson
(This was written for a contest ... you had to start with the first sentence)
She closed the book, placed it on the table, and finally, decided to walk through the door. As she reached for the door she paused, looked back at her husband and children and relived a lifetime in the seconds it took to turn the handle....
She was six years old again, on summer vacation with her parents in Florida. She could feel the warmth of the sun on her back and hot sand beneath her feet. She breathed in the scent of salt water and suntan lotion as she ran toward the water. Screaming with abandonment, arms flailing in the wind, she took that first plunge into the cool ocean waves.
She resurfaced, opening the door of her high school auditorium. Passing a mirror, she caught a glimpse of her cap and gown as she made her way behind the stage to join her classmates. Together they waited for the moment they had dreamed about for the past twelve years. Her best friend ran up, threw both arms around her neck and giggled with glee at nothing in particular, just the simple excitement of knowing life as usual was about to change.
Exiting the stage after receiving her diploma, she opened the door leading to the senior parking lot but found herself in her church dressing room staring into another mirror. Smiling, she admired her wedding dress. Walking down the aisle, she looked into the eyes of the man she loved and would spend the rest of her life with. As they said their “I do's” and were pronounced man and wife, they made their way back down the aisle toward the door of their future.
The doors opened to a sterile hospital room. For the first time in years she experienced the full blown pains of childbirth. She dug her nails into her husband’s arms as she felt that final contraction begin and he yelled, "PUSH! You're almost there." The doctor laid her first born son on her chest. She breathed in the smell of her newborn, closed her eyes and kissed his forehead. When she opened her eyes she looked with confusion into the face of her daughter who had been born three years later. short sexy wedding dresses
Each new door led to the memory of a significant time in her life. With the clarity of a movie she watched her children grow, her parents die and she and her husband celebrate ten, twenty and thirty years of marriage. Her children graduated high school and college, and her son married his high school sweetheart. She relived the joy of her first grandchild and the sadness of watching her daughter endure a miscarriage and later a divorce.
She saw the reward of her good choices and the consequences of her bad ones. The face of every person she had ever met flashed through her mind like the frames of a movie reel flapping at the air as the feature ends. Each of those lives, most completely forgotten, left an imprint as individual as their fingerprints. These millions of moments made her who she was. The unique experiences that were hers alone shaped the sum of her life.
Her husband was smiling now, urging her to go ahead, promising he would see her soon. She blew him a kiss, turned the door knob and stepped through that final door; the door of death. Immediately her senses were overwhelmed and she realized that life had really just begun.