Ever since she was little, Rosalind relished the stars and the universe. She often told her mother, Jane, that she would one day grow to be a star- not like the stars you see on the television, she was to grow up and become one with the universe in the most literal way possible. She believed that natural disasters were beauties in disguise- it wasn’t their fault if they caused a few fatalities. The universe just wanted to be heard. She believed the universe is jealous of the human race, how we continuously walk through its home day by day, not taking time to appreciate all the universe has given for us to use. The tornadoes, the volcanoes, the earthquakes, hurricanes, the sand dunes- they are the universes’ voice. They rumble when their angry, their mind spins when they’re confused. “There are reasons behind it all,” she says. And she wants very desperately to be heard like the universe is. She wants so very desperately for anyone to hear her, for anyone to respond to what she says. The universe does.
Jane, her mother, finds Rosalind to be naïve. “You’re a magnificent dreamer,” Jane tells Rosalind. Rosalind says that the title of dreamer is an underestimate at best, but it will do for now.
Rosalind and Jane grow farther apart each day. The wedge of being a mother and daughter forces its way between them, and their differences begin to define their relationship. Years pass. Rosalind, no matter how alone she is on her beliefs, never gives up on the universe; and so, the universe never gives up on her.
It’s March of her sophomore year in high school. Rosalind has grown a deep love for astronomy. She is often put down by her school mates, called names, and has never sat at a lunch table during school. Instead, she spends her lunch hours researching the stars. When she comes across a story about how the stars led a person to something- whether it be safety during the civil war, or a personal journey through spirit- she prints out the story through the school’s library and tacks it on the walls of her room. Her walls are plastered with these stories.
One day, she comes home and finds every last story shredded, every single slip of paper eradicated, left in millions of pieces. Rosalind’s innocent eyes droop with sorrow as she sits in the pile that symbolizes her dreams and her stars. When Jane comes home that night, Rosalind is gone.
Rosalind bikes to the Pacific Ocean with a bag strung on her shoulders. She ties bricks to her feet and walks into the ocean. The second her heart stops beating, a tsunami comes over the city of Seattle, drowning the buildings and all the people in it. For the first time in Rosalind’s life, she feels like she is finally one with the universe. No, she is not a star. No, she is no longer a dreamer. But she is heard.