Elisa was the most beautiful thing I had ever laid my eyes on. I was somewhat surprised in a way. She was my daughter, so that probably comes off as a little strange, but when I was pregnant with her and my friends who had already become mothers would tell me how when I had her it would be the strongest bond I’d ever felt, I was not expecting it to be as huge as it really was. She was not, “my child,” but more myself, in a new body.
When she was born, I was just like every mother in how joyful and relatively new I was to the whole experience of having a child. She was my first, and I was going to be raising her on my own. I did my best to make sure she was a happy, healthy, little girl even if it meant I’d be a little hungry or tired day by day. It was strange how things unraveled, as all I saw in her was this bundle of perfection, and even as the events that would happen over the next few years unfolded, my view of her never changed.
She was four months old when the first incident took place. Our mailman, Buggy, dropped dead on our porch step while delivering my daily tribune. It was rather traumatizing for me, as I had never seen a dead person before. The most peculiar part of the whole thing was that that his autopsy showed no evidence of what could have killed him. It just sort of, happened.
Luckily Elisa hadn’t experienced anything bad from that, because she would be too young to remember.
The next happened a mere three months later. My grandmother, a dainty woman with a heart kinder than most others passed away days after meeting Elisa for the first time. This one hit me much harder than Buggy’s, as she had practically raised me when my own parents failed to. The idea of her never getting to watch Elisa grow up, or Elisa not having a grandmother was hard for me to bare. It took years for me to get over this loss, and some days it bothers me still.
It did not occur to me that I had never experienced loss until Elisa came. I wonder what may have been different if I had realized sooner.
By the time Elisa was around one and a half, three more of our neighbors had experienced untimely death. The sense of gloom filled the house as it never had before, but I tried to remain oblivious for Elisa’s sake. I considered moving many times but I was not in the financial state to be able to do so. Some of my friends had begun to get suspicious of Elisa and I. The suggestion of what they suspected me of offended me to the point where I cut most of my friends off. I was simply a mother trying to raise a perfect child. I would not let superstition enter my mind.
For a few months all was quiet. Elisa hit two years old and was doing quite well. I had finally become somewhat comfortable with our situation, and was able to feed both of us better and at times even buy a little extra for Elisa.
All was well when he came back.
Elisa’s father, who had not been around since before she was born came back in an attempt to repair the damage between us and become a better father to Elisa. I was fiercely protective over our daughter whom I had raised on my own, but slowly let him make his way back into our lives. He had practiced beliefs that were taboo to most people. I was not a fan of it. His insistence on performing darker rituals terrified me to the core, and had forced me to leave him the first time.
He had proven to me now he had gotten over that period of his life, and was now a reformed Christian. I had no religious preference, but I certainly approved of this more than what he had previously done.
A year later and we were engaged, getting married shortly after Elisa’s turned three.
Around the time Elisa was three and a half, loss had become a normal event once again. Two of my old friends had passed away within a month of each other, and my father just two months later. Along with those, four of my coworkers passed away during these months also. None of them were unhealthy, the only answer anyone could come up with was “death by natural causes.”
I was increasingly wary of my surroundings, as I had begun to think that something was wrong with my perfect child. These thoughts were short, and I would always push them away to a place where they would never come out. That is, until Elisa’s father passed away with her in his arms on her 4th birthday.
Most of my soul, or hope in life had left me after losing so many loved ones in my life. This was the turning point. After so many deaths occurring after Elisa's birth, I finally had to admit what I had tried to avoid thinking of. Every person that had passed away had been near Elisa at least once, and most of the time had been around her shortly before their own demise. Was there something wrong with my baby? A question I never wanted to face, but was forced to.
I researched quickly but with focus. What I found was absolutely horrifying. After hours of searching and I put the pieces together; the cult her father had been a part of a lot more sinister than expected. I came to the conclusion that my daughter, my precious, perfect daughter, was cursed to cause death to those she was near. Her father’s past had done her the greatest damage, a supernatural occurrence.
I was torn apart, my soul ripped out of me. There was nothing else I could have done.
The night I learned of this tragedy, I entered Elisa’s room shortly after she had fallen asleep. She was so beautiful. So innocent. No one would ever know the fate she had been damned with. Was I to save my daughter, myself? Or the lives of many who may fall victim to this curse?
I took a pillow and put over my perfect daughter’s face. She wriggled and struggled, but I sung to her in attempt to comfort my baby. She could not scream.
“Mommy loves you,
My special girl.
Rest my love,
All is well.”