I wanted to try and write something from the perspective of a person who would normally be very unsympathetic. Here's what I came up with.
MARK, mid twenties, is sitting in on a meeting for a troubled parents support group. He has just been called on and hesitantly begins to tell his story.
It was two and a half years ago when my girlfriend Stephanie and I found out we were pregnant. We were scared. Really scared. I mean, we’d only been dating for a couple of months and, neither of us had any idea what direction our relationship was headed. And now we had a kid on the way. We thought about abortion, but, neither of us could go through with it. Somehow, through all of this, we got closer than ever before. You would think that in a situation like this, when two people’s lives are crumbling because of each other, that they would run the other way, but our connection just got stronger. Because we knew we had to endure this together, ya know? And we knew that this baby deserved the best life it could have. So about a month later, we decided to have the baby together. I never left her side for the whole nine months. And when I was sitting there beside her at three o’clock in the morning, when she was in labor, I was more in love with her than ever. And then something happened. The moment Kaylee was born, I was struck by so many feelings at once. The first one was this overwhelming happiness. I had a beautiful daughter with the girl of my dreams, and we were gonna have the perfect life together. Then I held her for the first time. And there was the fear. I was afraid that I was going to be a terrible father. I mean, I never was all that good with kids, so how could I raise my own, right? And the dread. I remember hearing once that when you have a kid, your life, as you know it, is over. The freedom you once had, is gone. Never to return, no matter what happens. This baby was going to be my life. I started to feel so trapped. The hospital room even seemed like it was shrinking. At that moment, I wanted to drop Kaylee back in Stephanie’s arms and run. Just keep running until I found my way to another life or something. But I found the strength to put on a smile and stay with the two of them in that hospital room until morning. Five months go by. Things could be a lot better. Stephanie and I are getting distant. Those terrible feelings I had in the hospital still haven’t gone away. One night, Kaylee wakes us up at two-thirty in the morning. It’s my turn to put her back to sleep, so I get up, and I hold her for a while until she stops crying and I put her back down. Then, I look out the window, and I see the world out there in front of me. Everything I could have if I just walk out the door…so I did. Right then and there. I quietly went back to our bedroom, packed a small bag, and wrote a note. Then I went over to Stephanie and kissed her one last time. Thankfully she slept through the whole thing. The next morning, and for a few days after, she tried calling me about a hundred times, but I couldn’t bear to speak to her. So I got some pretty nasty voicemails. I knew my parents, and everybody else I knew considered me a real asshole, so I went as far away as I could. I lived alone in a shitty one-bedroom apartment on the other side of the country for a few months. Never felt so low in my life. I won’t go into detail about that period, but, let’s just say, I’m lucky to be alive today. So, then I moved a couple of states up to try and start new again. That didn’t work at all. It took every ounce of strength I had, but I finally managed to get on a plane and come back home. The first thing I did was go to our apartment, but I found out Stephanie and Kaylee had moved out three months ago. I called her and found out she switched numbers. I knew no one would tell me where they were living now so I tracked them down with a phone book. They were staying at a small apartment downtown. I stood outside the door for about a half hour, trying to work up the courage to face them. All of a sudden, I heard Stephanie’s voice say my name behind me. I turned around and there she was, holding Kaylee, looking a mixture of shocked and disgusted. I went to hug her, but she slapped me right across the face, probably as hard as she could. Then she stepped inside the apartment and slammed the door. I deserved it. I deserved more. But I stood outside the door, knocking and calling out her name and crying like an idiot for almost an hour. Finally, I gave up and checked into a hotel room. That was two and a half weeks ago. I’ve been going to her apartment every day since then, and I haven’t seen her at all, but I can hear her and Kaylee inside. I just stand there outside the door, knocking, and pleading, and crying my eyes out for an hour or more. I don’t know how much longer I can do it. I don’t want to give up, but I’m pretty sure she’s given up on me. I’ve fucked up my life beyond repair. I threw away so many amazing moments. Getting married to Stephanie. Having our honeymoon on a beach in Hawaii or something. Seeing Kaylee’s first steps, hearing her first words. Walking her to the bus-stop on her first day of school. Taking her and Stephanie to Disneyland and taking pictures with Mickey Mouse. Taking her dress shopping for her senior prom. I’m never gonna have that! But I would give anything for it. I would do anything to see those two beautiful faces again…
MARK looks up to see that a familiar face has entered the room.
I think if we got a really good actor to play this, it could make an interesting short film. Any takers?