You Will Heal (Life Gets Better, So Hang In There)

“I don’t know if you were expecting a story of how I’d fallen in love with the most wonderful person, someone who understands my struggles and all the depth and darkness. Something poetic like : “He saw her sitting alone in the darkness and instead of shining a light on her, quietly sat down beside her and held her hand, waiting the darkness out.” But this is not that kind of story. “

pridenyasha
Art by: Pride Nyasha

I sat down today on the same sofa I had sat on 5 years previously, when I believed with everything I had that nothing would ever get better.

A scrawny, withdrawn teenager then, I tried not to exist too obviously, too loudly. I felt I was nothing but all this anxiety raging inside of me, nothing but a receptacle for people’s dirty looks, their pity and yet sometimes amazingly, their jealousy. 5 years ago, I was fading out of existence, a process furthered by the discovery of human nature’s seedy underbelly. When I was finally allowed a look into an adult’s world, I decided I wanted nothing to do with it. But by then, it was a door I was practically being pushed through.

5 years ago, I was what? 15, 16? Oscillating between wanting nothing and needing it all. At the time, all hope had fled. Had spilled out on the pillow in silent midnight cries. I don’t really have hope now, either. But I have the belief that maybe one day, I could have it, and this makes all the difference. And between that ‘no‘ and this ‘maybe‘, stand 5 years and more than a few battles fought alone, to exhaustion. There were fears faced, comfort zones expanded.

I’ll get away from here, I thought, because as a teenager, that’s a totally legitimate plan to have.

But life had other plans. So I’m still here 5 years later.

I don’t know if you were expecting a story of how I’d fallen in love with the most wonderful person, someone who understands my struggles and all the depth and darkness. Something poetic like : “He saw her sitting alone in the darkness and instead of shining a light on her, quietly sat down beside her and held her hand, waiting the darkness out.” But this is not that kind of story. There was no flip. No plot twist. No one to rescue you.

It was mostly a ton of effort. Unsexy, unromantic, stinky effort.

Though I did meet good people. People who might’ve guessed at all the things I hid, but who never wanted to pry. People who were decent, who were funny and didn’t frown at my quirks, and who thought I was kindof cool, actually. People who apologised when they were late, who asked you to message them to let them know you got home safely. People who celebrated your achievements, who would drag you out of hiding and shine the light of recognition on you because take credit for your accomplishments, damn it.

I’ve got some ways to go still.

But 5 years ago, I sat on the same sofa and was another person. 5 years ago, the world was ending, in more ways than one. Today though, I am sitting here, writing, humming the melody of a waltz from a movie I love very much. My breath is light with the scent of peach iced tea and I am relishing the silence, being grateful for the time I am given.

These days, given the right opportunities, I also open up a little. Inconsequential things, stories stripped of too much emotion and detail, but spoken into the atmosphere still. These stories might just be rubble compared to the complex structures I keep inside, but it means that there is a bridge, nonetheless. That trade is open. I squirrel away parts of my story, bits and pieces that don’t connect. I am not doing ‘good’ really, but I am doing better. And in the end, I think that’s all anyone can hope for.

Hang in there, life gets better. And you want to be there to see it happen.


Note: This is Day  22 of my little NaNoWriMo Writing Challenge. This is also something I want to dedicate to a good friend, a soul sister, really, who’s going through some rough times. Just hang in there, people, it really does get better. If you liked this entry, you can also check out yesterday’s entry here, which is a little more on the cheerier side of life 🙂

Residual Warmth

“You see,there are days that even the coldness of life cannot reach. Days that are safe, far, far away from the darkness of everydays.”

heojiseon
Art by: Heo Jiseon

There is something so delicious about residual warmth.

Heat muffled in between sheets
Warmth that smoulders, woven in the wool
The wonderful heat that hangs on a coat that is loaned to you

It is so easy to catch and hold. Something that looks too precious to be free. Too precious for me to have, this tranquility within arm’s reach.

But here it is, like a gorgeous, red ribbon that beckons me to pull it open and watch as it unravels. Then it turns out the ribbon was closed around a bouquet. So with a single touch, an effortless tug, the world blooms red with this glorious heat and I have an inexplicable, breathtaking warmth pooling around me. There is happiness fluttering in my veins, residual warmth seeping in this heart.

You see,there are days that even the coldness of life cannot reach. Days that are safe, far, far away from the darkness of everydays. Days when I live inside a snow globe or a bottle thrown at sea, the kind of bottle made from almost opaque dark green glass. And the glass is so thick that from the inside, I cannot even hear the roars of life. There is no world outside, save for the soft waves that undulate to-and-fro. But if I try, if I should want to try, I would drift to sleep to the gentle sound of waves crashing in my ear—and warmth all around.

A Gust of Existential Angst

“The memories one day will flare, bright and summery, whirling through this body, all the way to my fingertips, to the strands of hair your fingers pushed back one stolen afternoon — and my whole being will remember what it means to be.”

ExistentialGif
Gif by: Francisca Borzea

Ungrounded. Not floating—not flying and yet not rooted, I am caught in in-betweens, enmeshed in threads of Fate or Entropy I do not control. This heart, gushing hot, red blood is stoical. Everything tastes grey and I’m lying because I don’t even remember what life has been like these past 24 hours. This body is not mine, these memories— these small, distant touches of warmth— do they really belong to me? Or are they just electrical signals that buzz through ‘my’ brain? Mere pieces of data that can be forgotten, erased out of existence? How important can my existence be if it can all be reduced to such fragility?

All I am, all I know is this voice. It echoes thoughts in a dark room, raises questions, throws around truths that cannot be faced or acknowledged. I, I think I’ve gone and done it— I’ve overthought myself out of existence.

It’s not good.

It’s not bad.

It is what it is.

And it too, will come to pass as all things must.

The memories one day will flare, bright and summery, whirling through this body, all the way to my fingertips, to the strands of hair your fingers pushed back one stolen afternoon — and my whole being will remember what it means to be.

But that is not now, so when you ask, kind and unsuspecting, if I am fine, what other answer can I give but yes?