Maybe that was what was called instinct. Hugely ignored. That little feeling in the pit of my stomach. That I-have-forgotten-something feeling. But in between all the pushier feelings maybe there was no space for that. Caution and stupidity have probably switched roles somewhere along the way and there is no knowing which is which anymore.
The games we can play with our own minds and our memories are embarrassingly potent. Here I am. I have a choice of how I want to remember that day. The day. The only day that from then on should have mattered. And all I can remember from it is the feeling of wrongness. Something missing. Somewhere, something, somehow.
The lead up to this event was also eventful. The excitement I saw in the younger eyes around me was missing in mine. How do I tell you the real story? How do I break your hearts by bearing my soul to you? How do I tell you that what you see is just an act colored by your own demanding and desperately constructed realities? If you knew the truth you’d just tsk tsk and sit back wondering why all this had to come this far anyway.
Flashback to that “fateful” day doesn’t help much. But does put things into perspective. Weighs them out and puts them into that futile bag of realities labeled “hindsight”. Learnings, there are many. But once again you’d say I think too much and this reality that belongs to me is only a manifestation of my arrogantly selfish mind.
I don’t have to close my eyes, sit in a dark room and brood to touch this reality. It swims right before me dimming only when I am deeply distracted. But you will say that is life. You will say distract yourself. You will say come here, let me give you a hug. Take a deep breath, move on.
And I am.
If only learning from mistakes was not our anthem. If only truth and honesty and dignity didn’t mean anything. If only you’d admit that you lied and you would prefer that we continue living our masked lives. If only you could bear yourself in front of me and let me hold you instead and remind you that this pain is more yours than mine. I have crashed and burned over and over again – and keep doing so – but am still breathing just enough to tell the story.
And a story there is. This one is the kind that is not talked about if helped. It reeks of human mistakes and childlike innocence. This one is just slightly poked at the surface, if at all it must be mentioned.
But here we are sitting opposite each other, lumps in our throats and questions in our eyes.
Why? What next? How could you? The questions are many. And the answers unsatisfactory.
There are people who are allowed (expected?) to make mistakes and those who are not. Ironically the former are forgiven easier. But I have made a mistake. Now under the weight of words like “perfect” and “flawless” and “destiny” I can feel myself give away. Look at me and you’ll know the empty words you are ranting. Can I just tell you that they are not true? It was only what you wanted to see. Those gaps were filled in by your own dreamy eyes. You made it up and made me like this. Just open your eyes a little wider and you’ll see the cracks expand into gaping holes. Bottomless pits.
This picture is not beautiful. And this cloud of hope that I hold in my hands belongs to you. I didn’t dream it, or want it. I hold it gingerly with my fingertips, nevertheless, afraid of what might happen if I let it go. But it prickles like an allergy and squirms to jump out. This thing that is yours. A stranger in my hands.
Just like me in your hands. Waiting to exhale.
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