…And Receiving Them (2/2)

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Art by: ceruleanwax

At the breaking of dawn, you could not take it anymore. Could not start even another day with the burdens of the past. So as the sun awoke and its first beams caressed the scenery, your tears fell, and your truths bled all over the kitchen counter. The good, the bad, the vulnerably honest, the dark, the nonsensical, the raw, the accidentally poetic. And you looked at me then, as if you had placed your beating heart in my palm. You waited to see what I would do with it. I could crush it, without even saying a word. But what does one say when exposed to the very thing all people learn to hide from others, from themselves? What does one say in the face of others’ soul-deep pain?

All you need sometimes is an “Okay”.

You don’t need an: “Oh… I’m sure it’ll turn out fine in the end.”. There’s something that’s often…dismissive about these ready-made phrases. Like, here, take these formalities. No, sometimes, I find you don’t need many words. Just a singular, sincere one. You just need an “Okay”—strong, steady, sure.

Because any other words will fall flat.

“You’re suffering, but move on.” Isn’t that what it means sometimes? “You’re suffering and I can’t sit with you while you do.” or “Your pain is a burden.”

We want people to be happy not because we love them, but because we can’t handle them when they’re sad. It’s hard to love a sad person, because loving means a whole other thing when someone’s not happy. Loving means wiping away tears not knowing if and when they will subside. Loving means looking behind the mask and risking yourself in the cracks and dents of their soul. Loving means facing uncomfortable truths and not looking away. It means looking so far into their fears, you start facing your own. Sometimes, it is to find the courage to do for them, what you could never do for you.

That’s why you need an “Okay”. You need an “Okay” that says: “We will not move on. We will sit down and feel this together. You might still be sad at the end of this. You might never be the same person again. But at least you’ll be you. At least you won’t be hiding. You won’t endure because you think that’s what will make others happy. You won’t feel guilty about being in pain. You won’t feel like you have to face it all by yourself. You will learn, that pain does not have to turn into suffering.”

All in one “Okay”. An “Okay” that sees you, that understands. That will stay with you for longer than an entire speech would.


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Note: The year’s first series! (Is it still a series if it’s only 2 parts?🤔) But, to my defence, this was going to be 3 parts. Until the idea for the last part just slipped out of my brain and wandered into the great, wild world without looking back. 😒 Oh, well. I still hope you enjoyed it 🙂

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.”

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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.

I See You

“You.

Yes, you.

I see you, bleary eyed and resigned, the weight of the worlds digging into still soft shoulders. I see this bone-deep ache that you try to hide, this tiredness that has nothing to do with how much you’ve slept or how many hours you’ve worked. “

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Art by: France Corbel – traitspourtraits

You.

Yes, you.

I see you, bleary eyed and resigned, the weight of the worlds digging into still soft shoulders. I see this bone-deep ache that you try to hide, this tiredness that has nothing to do with how much you’ve slept or how many hours you’ve worked. I see the disillusion in your eyes, I feel the sadness in your soul when you say: “I’m fine.”.

I see how you can’t eat because the sadness has filled you up or how you can’t stop having junk food because the melancholy has carved out a hole in you that you desperately need to fill. I see you slump into yourself, trying to disappear, drowning in music that speaks to the pain and gives you a moment’s relief. I see how you try, how you want to open up but get cut off because your voice is too soft, and your words trembling with fear. Fear of being discovered, fear of being found. And when you are silent, you fear never being searched for, never being thought of.

God, I see you. I see you. I can’t change the world, and I may not be able to do much for you, but I see you. I do.


14/10/18  : The 10th of October is World Mental Health Day, and to the people who are struggling, who everyday fight battles no one else can see, I wanted to say at least this much : I see you. I know you are out there, trying your best even now.