I’ve been a recluse. I’ve gone into hiding to avoid dealing with all the messes I’ve created and separated and untangled and hung out there to dry in the sun. It’s not healing, it’s not meditation, it’s not even a break from writing I’m simply lying alive waiting for the darkness that was once my friend. Depression seems to hit and miss me by one person. I’m jealous of the hopelessness I see in other people’s eyes. I want my edge back. We were good together – a good combo, like burger and fries, like cigarettes and coffee, like masturbation and death fantasies. No, maybe not that last one. It’s so easy to want to die, it’s so easy to wipe out like a lonely little flame fluttering in the wind. I wanted to be a limerick, a dirty joke, an old ditty that plays on the radio, the tip of an iceberg. Now I know, I’m a ballad of woe, a cross between Dostoevsky and Tolstoy, and water – just water on which other things can float and rise to the surface. I almost didn’t put these thoughts into words because when I do, I become the writer, I give weight to my own existence. But finally I am leaning towards the hopeful, gravitating towards the light and contemplating the burden of those with a weightless existence. It seems like a good beginning on the path towards the end.
I’m surrounded by people, but I am alone. As always, alone. I wish the smoke from my cigarette could obfuscate some of the thoughts floating around in my head, the ones that are too clear, too sharp for this particular moment. They worry about me. They think I am turning dark. They think I am letting myself go. Well, go where? I am right here, letting empty days stretch out lazily before me like a long winding road – their favorite metaphor for life. I may not laugh as much as I did, there are definite dark circles under my eyes, and I may be writing about death and sex and the darkness that shall fall when that last cigarette falls from your limp hand. I may be tempted by Death as a mysterious seducer, the she-Devil, a Scheherazade of the netherworld. But no, I am not ‘turning’ dark; maybe it was you who chose to only see the light. And no, I am not suicidal, I have always been strong enough to ride the wave. Let me reconcile with my darkness; I cannot shove such bile back down my throat like you did, only to have it erupt when you least expect it.
When I started this blog about three years ago, I only wanted to express myself, I needed a vent, something to do, something to care about. I was looking for someone who might empathize, who might be going through the same thing I was, and more importantly, people who would not pass judgments. 60 blog posts and 315 readers later, I realised, blogging had became all about showcasing my writing. Carefully treading the thin line between truth and fiction, the focus gradually shifted from needing a means of expression to trying to evolve as a writer. As if opening my eyes after an extended period of darkness, today I once again felt the need to simply express, to write only for myself, without trying to create a masterpiece.
I feel happy today. Perhaps the reason is something as superficial as – it’s the weekend! and I roamed the city like a free bird this cold winter morning, feeling the warmth of early sunrays caressing my face. I hit a couple of minor snags, potential dangers to my mood upswing – I sneezed 72 times (goddamn dust allergies), and, courtesy the new wave of black money eradication that’s gripped the nation, I waited 3 hours in line at the bank (which, I must say, was quite entertaining to the people around me, since I finished Tina Fey’s Bossypants laughing my ass off and grooving to Tool) – as I said, these were minor incidents, I wasn’t about to let anything get to me.
My mind was at peace. No restless drumming of fingers on the table, no sudden bouts of anxiety, and, thank God, no depression relapse or drooping self-confidence. It was calm inside, and laughter on the outside. Not particularly wanting to dwell upon the past few months, I can only be grateful for days like these, and hope they stay as long as possible.
Just begin soon. Get the damn celebrations and the enthusiastic welcomes over with already.
This time of year is trying enough for a voluntarily yet somehow unwillingly single girl, without having her birthday squashed right between Christmas and New Years Eve. I wish I could sleep through it all, and wake up in the New Year. A fresh start, so to say, as I know perfectly well it’s just a state of mind. I also know that change comes at its own sweet time.
Sometimes I just wish I wasn’t complicated. I wish I never knew the convenience of a drink. I wish I’d never known how layers of complexity dissolve and wash away in the sparkling liquids. I wish I didn’t meet people who are just plain simple. Cause complicated is just foolish when you throw away every perfectly good chance at happiness, for no explainable reason. I wish I didn’t have that raging need to think and over think so goddamn much.
I wish I wasn’t lost, but if I wasn’t lost, I wouldn’t know that I needed to be lost to know that I need to seek something vague that may or may not give me happiness, and that all I know is what I don’t want which may or may not have given me happiness had I stuck on to it a little longer. I wish I didn’t have the ability to generate thoughts such as above.
I am a million, tiny little pieces and every place I go, I’ve left behind traces. Travels become what you are; the mind is always someplace far. My soul can never be whole unless I can be every place I’ve ever been. And yet I’ll never go back, to pick up all the pieces I lost. It’s another part of me, cold, silent and broken.
It’s an important date. It used to mark anniversaries of a past love. Year after year of gifts and romance, cards and special surprises, then absence, distance, bitter fights to coming back stronger with a sweeter love. The aging date stole time from under our young, naive eyes, only to throw them back at me as memories of a lost dimension.
5 anniversaries later, I started resenting the lost years of stumbling through life unquestioning, unaware of who I was and where I was headed. I was restless, and I knew this time the upheaval was far too big to be subdued under compromise. I knew then, that I would always be restless in love. I would always be certain only of what I don’t want, and always seeking what I want.
On 21st November last year, I bade goodbye to my first love, scared of letting go and guilty of having hurt him. But my instincts told me I’m doing the right thing. A year later, and nothing has changed; but nothing’s the same any more.
Who knew so much could happen in a year, especially so much of what would ultimately be remembered with either sadness, guilt or regret? I believed I was still the same person inside, just doing things I didn’t usually do. It’s just a phase, and I’m living someone else’s borrowed lifestyle of excessive partying, drinking and occasional screwups, I kept telling myself. Well, not anymore. This girl is sobering down, it’s done and resolved.
The date is still significant. This year the clock struck 12 and time passed by a drunk me in a stranger’s arms. It gave me a good hard much-needed slap on the face. It left me wringing my hands in despair, and the more I thought of what I’m doing the more I fell into depression, terrified of confessing to anyone for fear of being judged, and completely clueless of how to get out of this mess.
So I wrote this post and decided that if there’s one thing I knew about myself, it was that I’m not a coward. I told myself to take a deep breath and start by being completely honest, without fearing who I might lose in this process. Once again, this date seems to have woken me up from a deep stupor.
I guess now the date marks my years of stumbling down an unknown path, stubbornly alone, just as unaware of who I am, and just as sure of what I don’t want.
I fell off a cliff today.
My leg slipped, and I felt hands trying to pull me back up. But all I saw were expressionless eyes and cold hands. So I let go and fell. I could see rocks jutting out, twigs and tree branches. I could just put out a hand, and try to let myself escape with just a few bruises, but the hand wouldn’t obey. So I told myself the twigs would have snapped anyways. I kept falling and hit the water below, hard.
Instinctively I took a large breath before going under. I found the water welcoming. I felt it engulf and wash over me with a sense of peace. Until I opened my mouth and gulped water. Until I realised I couldn’t breathe, but I wanted to. I tried to move my arms and legs but they got heavy and the water kept dragging me down. Down below the surface where I opened my eyes and looked around to see nothing. Looked below, and saw rocks at the bottom. But I hadn’t hit rock bottom, not yet. The fall had been too effortless.
The lack of oxygen was closing in, suffocating, pressing on all sides. I felt the sharp sting of tears pierce at my eyes, constricting my remaining air supply, gnawing at my own self-pity. And then I realised I was still waiting for someone to come and save me. I was waiting for someone, anyone who cared enough. I believed there would be enough ripples on the surface for someone to look into the depth.
And then I thought, ripples fade and soothe the surface. The water stays calm until the next storm. I had no breaths left to wait for someone to cause another storm. I knew how to swim, I just needed to remember how to send the brain signals to get my arms and legs kicking.
First thing to do was come up for air.
Oh, how I love being high. The kind caused by liquor. The ‘drunk on life itself’ kind of high doesn’t come to me all that often.
That warm feeling as the rum settles down into your stomach. You feel the air around your face heating up and a flush rising up to your eyebrows. A beautiful cosy feeling of happiness that hugs you and lulls you into believing that everything is going to be so goooddd and you just need to sit back and relax. More alcohol, please.
Then it begins to work its magic on your organs, one by one. It’ll loosen your tongue right up, fire up the no-nonsense neurons of your brain and rattle your humor cells till they burst out in the silliest ways possible.
It’s like time itself slows down. If a friend keeps blabbing on about work pressures, when you’re sober it may bore the shit out of you. But when the world is a blur and time hangs suspended from the ceiling, you do not even realise how long you’ve been thinking and day dreaming about that guy you think you love but can never really end up with.
You realise you have extraordinary persuasion skills and somehow when you’re that high you manage to convince your friend to go to the beach with you in the middle of the night. You get to act the part of the lone artist who keeps alternating between thoughts like death and suicide and depression, and sudden rapturous glee when you watch the waves form in little ripples scurried along by the breeze to join hands across the shoreline and come crashing onto the beach. The sound makes you think of your own life crashing around yourself and the reasons you started drinking in the first place.
You want this feeling to last forever. You’re floating on your own cloud and don’t want that bubble to burst. You can spend hours lost within a moment, wordlessly admiring the sound of the waves echoes in the numbed recesses of your brain, and the feeling of soft sand melting underneath bare feet as the tide swallows the waves into its darkness. All you want is to treasure these ‘I feel alive’ moments with such precision and detail that it can never be filtered or pixelated to a lesser level of happiness than you presently feel.