The mail lady was one of the only people who could see her as she currently is. The mail was delivered like clock work every day between the hours of 10:00 am and 11:00 am, and just as reliably, it would be delivered to the girl who sat on the front porch. They would chat for a few minutes and exchange neighborhood pleasantries, before they parted ways and moved on with their days. Or at least the mail lady did — the girl remained sitting on the porch waiting for life to inspire her to leave her bubble of comfort. She seemed to have a routine of sorts that involved tapping away at her computer and scribbling notes down scattered pieces of paper. She could have easily been mistaken as a writer by profession, but that was only what she dreamed of. The mail lady saw easily what she actually was. She was unemployed and passing the time. She was lost and searching for a purpose within the confines of her own mind. She had a thick cough filled with the scars that only years of smoking inflicted, and was seen constantly with a cloud of smoke hanging around her head. She pretended to have a clear mind but the truth was easy to see for the woman who visited her every morning. This girl was lost, and had been for months. The time passed without consequence for her and she had settled into a comfort that was not taking her anywhere and helped her hide from the world. She seemed bold and friendly at first, but the longer the mail lady hung around to talk, the more she could see the truth about her character. She was often high and kept her mind in another state of existence, safe from the reach of others. She was often lost in thought and barely noticed when the mail was being walked up to the front step, pausing only momentarily from tapping on her computer to say hello and shuffle through the envelopes that were handed to her. Mail was not delivered to her house every day, and there were those days when the mail lady skipped the pleasantries and not interrupt the emptiness of the girl’s day. Those days she was lost even further in thought and became intimidated with the thought of interaction with others. It was those days that she was lost in the sea of her own thoughts and she had to force herself to row out of danger of being lost in her own mind for forever. She had not always been this way — she had once interacted with the best of them and boldly traveled the world as an extrovert. There were times when she craved the company of others and when she needed their influence on her lonely life. But she had grown accustomed to being lonely and she had closed her world in to a point that she could manage without anxiety. She narrowed her focus to her world consisting of a handful of people and she found that she was content with that for now. She had lowered her standards without making the conscious decision to do so, and she found it difficult to rediscover the standards she had once held herself to. Her world had fallen apart the first week she met the mail lady, and she was floundering to find a way to put it back together. She lost her job, purpose, and friends all at once and all she could do in response was sit on her porch and tap away at her computer. She had become weird and awkward and lost touch with the well practiced mannerisms that had gotten her by in hospitality and fooled others into thinking she was an extrovert. She had reverted back to her childhood state of eating Cheez-its under a table in order to avoid talking to others and the overwhelming world that surrounded her, and she was reluctant to emerge back into the world. Her view from the hole in which she hid was manageable and enough to satisfy her for now. She had suffered from countless panic attacks and was beaten down to a point of subtle, shallow living in order to decrease her chances of another debilitating attack. But it backfired in the end. It made her nervous to talk to the mail lady and it made her keep to herself for most hours of the day. She had to talk herself into going grocery shopping and to leave the house at least once a day. If the mail lady didn’t come to break the daily ice, she was left in solitude for ten hours to fight a constant battle with herself. It was a vicious circle of self-doubt and fulfillment that she swam in constantly, and the mail lady could see the struggle written across her furrowed brow before she looked up and noticed that her daily moment of interaction was approaching. The mail lady felt sorry for this poor girl who did not have anything going on with her day and barely had more to live for than the delivery of the mail. She had grown to be 50 years past her actual age in a matter of months, and the mail lady saw this poor girl’s future as a lonely old maid, tapping away on an outdated computer in order to pass the time. The girl saw this future too and it terrified her to think that she had already reached the end of what her life would consist of. She had already had all the adventure she was going to have and she was now left with memories to muse over and dreams that would never be executed. She was beaten down early on in life and she took the beating submissively and accepted her limitations in desolated defeat. Her world was now as large as the porch she sat on, but at least then her biggest threat in the day was the mail lady who would never inflict any harm on the poor lost girl caught in an old woman’s body. She decreased her world and decreased her potential for failure, but she simultaneously decreased her potential to live. She might as well die on the porch at the young age of 27 if this was what she had resorted to knowing life as. Her dreams left unfulfilled would drive her mad and one day she would not even make it to the porch and instead she would stay in bed all day. The bathroom would barely motivate to move her out of the safety net of sleep and she would learn how to close her world view in even further to accommodate her desire to hide. She would retreat to a point of barely existing and then one day the person she once knew herself to be would cease to exist all together. Her and the mail lady saw it coming, but the girl barely had enough strength left to fight it.