May was called May because it was on the third day of that month that she took her first hesitant breath. True to her name, May was a lot like the month. She could never make up her mind: constantly busy, preparing, considering. There were so many things May had intended to do but never actually did. It was as if she was continuously waiting for someone to give their approval. It was as if she couldn’t take control over her life, even if she wanted to: she just could not. She felt lost in feeling unsure, stuck in limbo, forever doubting.
Her moods were like the May weather. At times brilliant; the sun shining brightly with only a few clouds and a slight breeze that would make it perfect sundress-with-a-cute-jacket-on-top kind of weather. Other times, however, she was the dreary morning of a day that promised never-ending-pouring-rain with a considerable chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. She was erratic – but not because she wanted to be, of course.
At school she became known as “Manic May,” the girl who was never sure, was never ready, was always asking if she could but never actually did. They knew her for her mood swings, the inherent unpredictability of her character. She hated it. Mostly because she felt it was partially true, but also because it made her feel like nobody really knew her.
Often, she wondered how it would be to be known by a different characteristic. She could be “front teeth gap May,” or “fan of weird German industrial from the 80s May,” or “that girl that tripped and had gotten punch all over the audio installation last dance May,” or worse: “never been kissed but once been felt up by a cheerleader at last year’s cheer camp May.” It was as if nobody noticed her absurdly long hair and abundant number of freckles, her fascination with elderflowers, her love for rhubarb compote, or her obsession with Swiss literature. She wondered how no one noticed how weird her toes looked in sandals, how she always smelled like sunblock, how everyday she wore at least one yellow item hoping it would keep her shining bright all throughout the day.
She was over analysing, she knew, but it irked her how little attention people paid to one another. Especially if the other in the situation had a nickname as widely known as May’s. How did everything get so disconnected? Did anybody even know the colour of her eyes? Or her favourite band? When was the last time her friends asked her what she loved most in the world?
She knew that Stacy’s eyes were blue with specks of green, and that Jennifer always wore a green pendant on Thursdays, and that Boris’ parents were Swedish – not Russian, and that Stephen was deathly afraid of pine cones but tried to hide it.
Maybe she knew because she was always asking, never acting. Maybe she knew because she was Manic May before she was anything else. Maybe that was why she loved Mondays the most.
Because Mondays were known to be manic, just like her.
Isolde van Gog