Short Story

The Candy Cane – Short Story Saturday

She should be working. She had mountains of paperwork to fill out for the new merger, but for some reason she couldn’t stop twirling the candy cane around in her hand. When was the last time she actually ate a candy cane? Christmas had passed by weeks ago and she kept the little staff-like candy in her pen jar.

Maybe it reminded her of a simpler time when all she had to worry about was getting her homework done. Or if the red haired boy knew that she had a huge crush on him. The longer she looked at the candy cane the more she started to wonder how her life had ended up here.

Growing up she wanted to be a tour guide. To travel around Europe showing all of her favorite places to tourist as interested in the history as she was. She took three languages in school so that she could navigate without trouble and even planned to major in Geography. Her parents thought she was crazy, tour guides don’t make a lot of money after all and for fiance people, that’s all that mattered to them.

She was very goal driven and until her sophomore year in college she was on track to live her dream. Then she met him. Bryan Waterfell. Those ice blue eyes could make her do anything they wanted regardless if she knew it was a bad idea. They had dated for a few months before falling in love and getting married. Bryan had grown up poor and was determined to raise is status in life and that meant using her family connections. Of course she didn’t know that until many years down the road. By then he had convinced her to change her major and join the family business.

Seven years and three kids later Bryan decided that he was well off enough to ask for a divorce. She had gone against her parents advice and didn’t a prenup, thus he took almost everything she had worked so hard for. Completely devastated she buried herself into work and her children. Now they were all grown and she was still working her butt off to make money for retirement. But by then she’ll be too tired to enjoy it.

What was it all for? Because society says that to be something you have to have wealth and status? Was it too late for her to give everything up and go follow her dreams? She had never given up on her love of Europe and kept dreaming about the day she could finally visit. Could she really drop everything and leave her parents high and dry for an adventure? Wasn’t’ she more mature than that? She had given them over twenty years of her life and what did she get back in return? A broken marriage and a prescription for Xanax.

Suddenly the candy cane broke in half and her decision was made. She gently placed it back in the pen cup and stood. Grabbing her bags and her phone she exited the room and shut the door. On the way to her car, she turned on her cell phone and looked up flights to Paris. It was now or never. Today was her day to start over and live life as she wanted it to be.

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