She asks me a question. It's between three and four in the morning, if I remember correctly.
It's after I return from the bathroom. After I stand there in front of the mirror. Peering into my blue eyes for some sort of self worth. Some sort of significance.
My pupils are dilated from all the anti-depressants flowing through my body.
I turn my head down. Relieve myself then leave.
She's smoking a cigarette when I crawl back on the mattress. The room is freezing but we stay atop the blankets.
As I take the cigarette from Her and place it in my mouth, She asks the question.
Are you okay? She asks.
And I've heard these words before. I've heard them throughout my entire life. Daily from my Mother growing up. From concerned loved ones throughout the years. From colleagues. Classmates. Strangers.
But it's this single time that stops me. That makes me pause. The bass in Her groggy voice. The regard in Her tired eyes. The patience of Her folded hands.
With smoke in my lungs, I pause.
And I don't remember the answer I give. All I remember is laying awake for the next several hours, staring at the ceiling from the floor.