And he said, “I am fond of you”, just that.
Not “I love you”, or “I like you”, He just felt a fondness for me. Something to say he enjoyed being in my company but, He wouldn’t take it any further.
For a while, it was enough for me. I couldn’t get the entire cake, so I settled for that little slice, enough to leave a sweet taste in my mouth for a while.
But as all things come crashing down eventually, my fantasy did. I realized when you love someone, “fondness” just couldn’t cut it. There’s a little bitterness that begins to form in the throat when you tell someone “I love you”, and they smile and utter, “I’m fond of you too”.
The bitterness spread in my mouth and I knew I had to make a choice. It was either him or me. If I choose him, I lose myself. So before my heart could convince me to do otherwise, I ran. Not literally. In the span of a few moments, I deleted his contacts, his pictures, his physicalities, leaving only his memories. His memories… Science had taught me a time will come when they will begin to fade too.
Sometimes, you have to love yourself enough to walk away from things and people who put a dent around your heart.
Some like ‘em skinny.
Some like ‘em thickum.
But until you find it within yourself to love you as you are,
You’re going to spend the rest of your life holding on to friendships which should long have been allowed to wither away, simply because they find you “beautiful”.
You are going to spend the rest of your life crawling through moments, searching, chasing, someone to call you beautiful.
And until you learn to love yourself, “beautiful” to you would always, always mean something that is skin deep.
But my dear… Beautiful is so much more than that. Beautiful is not skin deep, it is soul deep.
At the back of my mind, I always knew that, It, this, could come to an end.
I could die,
He could die,
He could leave…
And I know this might seem a morbid thought to many. But, there has always been a spot of realism amidst my fairytale romanticism filled life.
I try to keep a little spot, save a little grey in my rainbow, in order to remind myself about the reality of life.
I refuse to live in a world filled with illusions and the delusion that endings is not a possibility.
I want to be able to say: I am okay and I am fine with endings now because I know I can always begin again.
You will come across people,
who would tell you,
“No, You cant.”
You look them in the eye
(stand on your toes if you must)
“Yes. Yes I can“.
Don’t just leave it at that,
You may add a little spice with-
you walk away.
You let the conversation go.
do not need to explain
how you are going to do it.
You do not need ANYBODY telling you how you are not going to do.
Just let them know you are and… do it.
The sun sprayed gloriously upon my skin, the mockingbirds sang the tune of my soul, natures forces whispered to me and I felt renewed, rejuvenated…. That, is not how it happened. I wish I could say that was it, but it wasn’t it.
It took a tragedy to pull me out of my darkness. A tragedy so great, I expected it to plunge me further into darkness’ clutches. I didn’t just wake up and decide to take hold of life; I woke up, and Life happened to me… That woke me up!
The sun did shine gloriously that morning, the hummingbirds sang, and nature’s forces were aligned in their greatest- but one person didn’t.
How it started, I can’t even remember. And before we could figure out our lives, the drugs had taken control of us. But that’s the thing about addiction, you don’t realise it is a problem until It has it’s cold arms, wrapped tightly around you in an unrelenting grip.
She didn’t wake up. I watched her lying there, with too many tubes, looking the most peaceful I’ve ever seen her, the doctor’s words amplified in my head; not a single visitor, not another friend present… I knew, unless I changed something, sooner rather than later, It would be me lying there.
I wish I could say, I simply woke up and decided to change my life. It took a tragedy, to pull me out of my darkness.
Nothing prepares you for that knock on the door, that one thing which throws your world into a whirl storm.
There is no set manual which details- preparation for loss.
But, it doesn’t come as a shock either.
You’ve felt flutterings in your heart all morning, not the pleasant kind.
Your hand trembles as you lift the coffee cup to your lips.
You feel some type of way but you don’t know why…
soon enough- you do.
There’s a banging on the door. A body is framed in the doorway.
Your heart skips a beat, lips quiver,
no word is said but a silent motherly message passes across- from her to you.
She barges into the house, turns on the TV set. Her legs give way.
She collapses onto the couch.
You crash beside her, hands intertwined in each other’s. Holding onto the only thing you’ve got- hope.
A voice on the TV utters, “school under siege”.
All you hear: “our baby boys are under siege”.
Nothing prepares you for that knock on the door. When your world as you know it- is thrown into a storm.
I kept waiting for the world to hand over to me, that which I withheld from myself. I sought for it, chased it, demanded it. That fuzzy feeling which one gets from being appreciated or loved or cherished.
I stood on tiptoes awaiting that one person who would make my world all sunny again, that one person who would make me feel like my presence is needed and my absence dreaded, that one person who would make me feel good about myself.
And what I got, was a ball of spitfire. From afar, it looked like a beautiful powerful light, just the kind to elicit the feeling of stardom, but up close… It burned. And I learnt, the world is a reflection of the image I view myself in. (I saw charred skin in the mirror, and the world gave me one).
-We cannot expect love from the world until we are willing to give that love to ourselves. And when we get to know who we are, we accept who we are, we love who we are, the world as we see it would be different.
Somewhere in Africa,
A dark skinned child
Lay on clay soil, laughing away
The earth’s worries.
His mother, braiding cornrows
On his sister’s 4C hair,
Discussing the business
Of the neighbour’s daughter,
Who is conveniently
Absent from their midst.
A man, assembles his
Remote tools into a barrow:
Hoe, spade, cutlass.
The ridges are made,
He stares at his empty land,
The sun is out,
The cloud’s at bay,
A prayer escapes from his lips,
Lord, please let there be rain.
They have food for their stomachs
Only for a meal,
A man steps upon clay soil,
To the sound of a child’s laughter:
Water glistens upon his skin,
His stomach churns;
But two hands are outstretched
Picking up the laughing reason
Why everything is all worth it.
The above image is courtesy of British Ecological Society
Some scars are tapered to our skins as a reminder, of the battles we’ve conquered and a reminder of a future we do not want to recreate.
Some scars hide in the depth of our memories. Sitting, bidding their time and awaiting that one little thing called a trigger, which would birth them into existence again.
And then there are those scars, ambling between our frontal cortex and amygdala. Always there in our thoughts, present. Awakening a daily battle of conquest and defeat (of which victory is not a daily occurrence).
Some scars are revealed, many are hidden, but everyone inevitably houses one.
And if we look beneath the surface, we’ll find that most people are just as scarred as (if not more scarred than) we are….
You watched me grow from a 21 year old kid to a twenty six year old adult. Held my hand, stood beside, while I crashed and rose and crashed some more because, I never learnt the first time.
You braved it out despite knowing, you were not my choice. You were solely the outcome of a daughter abiding to a mother’s choice.
You stood beside me when the people I thought were my world looked at me, solely as a label. Your caramel eyes peering into mine as you declare, “You are perfect”. A mantra you’d whisper, no matter how often I needed to hear it.
You’d tell me up when I needed it most. And it hurt, and I sulked, but each time I’d secretly acknowledge you were right… secretly.
I didn’t tell you. I could but I didn’t. You didn’t get to hear me say “you were right”. You didn’t get to hear me say- I love you.
And just as we were, we are no more. It’s just me- my sorrow, my burden, my grief, my guilt and my words which I whisper to the winds hoping the carry them to the ground you lay.
I love you…. I’m sorry.
I really enjoyed doing the december poetry challenge last year. Plus, I found this really inspiring prompt called “30 layers, 30 days” which many bloggers have completed now. So, I decided to use the prompts for December.
Prompts: Day 4 (The right person), Day 5 (Over too soon).