The Frames

Dorottya Turza

My picture frames are cursed.

On my eleventh birthday for a gift I received my first-ever picture frame. In it there was a figure of my friend who got me the present. In my happy daze I had no idea what it would start. That an endless cycle had begun.

I always liked to capture moments of my life, and now I had the means to hang them out my room and just admire them. I was incredibly happy for this new opportunity that I had never considered. I put as many pictures of my friends as I could into these frames.

In the beginning everything was just as usual. At least I believed so. But the curse was already in motion. My relationship with some of my friends changed drastically. I would rather say it went downhill very quickly. I was incredibly sad to part ways with these people who were very dear to me. However I knew that it was a normal occurrence, in fact it was for the better. There are just relationships that don’t work out, since people are so different, it is natural that personalities will clash with each other. So it was healthier to let go.

Slowly my friend group started to shrink. I found myself losing more and more people around me. Since I had fewer companions to spend time with, I had extra hours to spare. This pushed me more towards my mother. She was the one who jokingly brought up the jinx of the picture frame. That whenever I want to break ties with a person I only need to get their picture. We laughed it off. It was just a joke.

However when this occurred over and over again, my laughter disappeared. It wasn’t funny anymore. I tried to find a reason for this turn of events, but it went nowhere. I looked into myself and thought maybe I’m the problem. But my best friend pulled me out of these thoughts and assured me that nothing was wrong with me. That everyone else just couldn’t understand us. I believed her.

Probably this is the reason why the following event broke something inside me. We had an argument. A big one where we said all sorts of hurtful things to each other and pointed out insecurities we had nurtured. We eventually made up, but our relationship was never the same after this. When months later she calIed and requested a meeting, I was hopeful that this was the chance for us to sort things out. I never thought that this would be the place where we would part ways.

When the shock died down I realized something. Our friendship just ended. Just like that. I felt wronged, betrayed and in a fit of rage I took out every last one of my photos of those damned frames. I tore them up as small as I could and smashed all of my frames. Finally I tossed them into the trash can. This stupid trash caused everything!

After that I turned inward. I never was a very outgoing person. I always had more of an introverted personality, but at that time it really went out of control. I completely isolated myself from the world. I only left my room for school and immediately returned when classes finished. I shut out everyone, even my parents. I fled to the world of books for comfort, despite the fact that I had a number of people around me who could give me that consolation. I fell into a hole. At first I wasn’t too concerned by it. Shamefully I found safety in it.  Yet as the months passed, this pit became deeper and deeper. So deep that I couldn’t even see the verge of it. That sense of security turned into a prison that I desperately wanted to get out of. I struggled with all of my power, but in vain. I remained just as low as before. Therefore I felt I had no choice but to accept my fate. I sank further and further in this bottomless pit. The whole time I didn’t realize the key to my prison was in my hands the whole time.

From this condition not even secondary school could wake me up. When I arrived I felt kind of sanguine. This “optimism” instantly took a plunge after the first day. I was thrown into an entirely unknown place surrounded by strangers. I didn’t use to speak with my previous classmates either, but at least I knew them and how to approach them if necessary. But here there was no chance. The pit was so low that I couldn’t see at all, because of how dark it was. At that moment I felt lonelier than ever.

Until one day a ray of light penetrated through this darkness. It surprised me. I hadn’t seen the light for so long. It was a foreign sight. When I looked up there was a person standing above me. I recognised her, she was a girl from my class. She wore a kind smile on her face. My eyes were so completely fixated on her that I almost missed a hand extended towards me. It belonged to the girl. She tried to reach me? But why? I’m not fit to be anybody’s friend. As these thoughts pounded in my head I heard her say:

“Hello! I saw that you were sitting alone. As you can see I’m in a similar situation.  So if you don’t mind, we can stick together. You seem like a fun person, I would like to get to know you better.”

First I was reluctant. All my life I had placed my trust in the wrong people. I’m scared to trust again… but hearing these words. That she was in the same position as I. Maybe she knows how I feel. Maybe we can help each other…  Even with all of my doubt, I truly couldn’t reject her. So I grabbed her hand as if my life depended on it as she pulled me up into the light. At the edge of the pit the view was so different. I couldn’t help myself as I burst into tears. At last I didn’t feel alone.

Since then I have moved on with my life. I am feeling happy again. I gathered a small group of friends who taught me how to trust again, not just in others, but also in myself. They showed me that no matter how guarded I am, this can’t prevent me from getting hurt. That I need to truly live.

The curse finally broke.