I was sent away. As much as I fought it. The fat drops of tears glide on my face, it doesn’t matter. There are seasons, you know. And when one thing ends, when it dies, a person must move on. He hasn’t told me that this is the case. But I’m a smart woman. He knows that. An empath. I can predict the future before it even decides its fate.
It’s my fault really. I’ve heard that you can manifest your destiny with thoughts. And my thoughts have mostly been pools of darkness throughout my life. I remember being that kid who never got picked to be on a team in gym class. Although I was good at sports. I was good at a lot of things. I knew it. I felt it in that little spot inside. That secret spot that knows all the truths. “I’m fucking awesome, why doesn’t anyone want to be my friend?” I would ask myself.
The boys didn’t like me because I was too quiet. I wasn’t like the loud ones who always knew the right things to say. The seductresses with all that bursting confidence. The pretty white girls with the designer clothes who lived in big houses. No, I was in the corner, peering out, hoping, wishing for someone to ask me to dance. When I was finally interesting enough to be asked on a date, it was usually a disaster. No one taught me how to engage in proper conversation. I wanted to talk about books and the Roberta Flack. They wanted to unsnap my bra.
There are these books too that tell a woman how to trap a man. And there are the other books that give you step by step instructions on how to love yourself…how to be the better version. I finally did it. I played the game. I had a life with a family and a great job. I had the house and the car and the cat. And then, like a child blowing on a dandelion, it scattered away. The only thing left, the dark thing.
Some may call the dark thing “pain”. But pain can be tolerated. Pain can be managed. Pain can disappear. This dark thing that wraps itself around me is palpable. The living can see it. I can’t destroy it. You know why? As soon as I am allotted a little bit of sunshine in my life, a little bit of direction, and maybe a shadow of happiness, it’s taken away from me. The universe and its cruelty.
After almost four decades of rejection, I decided to end this chapter of my soul journey. What did I have? No home. No love. Not even a friend. I didn’t even like myself. But the attempt failed. And the universe threw me back into this vicious beast of a world.
And then he found me. Not only did he find me, he saw me. Really ripped everything I built to hide and extracted me. It wasn’t an easy process. We did almost everything imaginable to destroy ourselves. But I didn’t care because I don’t fear death anymore. I fear life. And we lived. I mean, we really lived. We pushed the boundaries of sex, relationship and friendship. And we came out the other side. It was freeing.
Now, almost ten months later, he sends me away. Back to the inferno. Metaphorically and literally. The sun mocks me. The Sun who is supposed to nourish, scorches my soul. I’m back to being that little girl in the school yard. Did I tell you that story?
I was in primary school, about six years old. I was on the seesaw, alone. I jumped up to try to lift myself to the sky. But I came crashing down, hurting my bum. A boy came running towards me. I’ll call him Alex. Alex came to me.
“Don’t cry. I have something for you.”
And he took a cheap metal ring out of his pocket. You know, like the ones you get from the quarter machine. He handed it to me.
“Will you be my girlfriend?”
I was terrified at first. What would my father say? He’d kill me if he knew a boy wanted to be my boyfriend. But Alex looked so sweet with his toothy grin. And the other kids barely spoke to me. I took the ring and put it on my finger. It was a bit tight but I felt like it cost a million bucks. Something inside me burst with happiness. Years later, I would recognize that it wasn’t really the ring, or the fact that Alex wanted to be my boyfriend, that made me happy. It was that someone actually saw me. That I wasn’t invisible. That I mattered.
“Okay,” I said. And he ran off.
The music lasted all through the night and continued to the next day. The sun! The sun was out and smiling for ME! For me! But this would be the start of that love condition. The sun hiding behind its sister clouds.
In class that afternoon, Alex came up to me. I felt like a fairy princess and I smiled at my young prince.
He looked at me sheepishly.
“Can I have the ring back?”
Just like that, happiness is fleeting.
My lip trembled, characteristic of a sensitive child. I didn’t say a word. He waited for me to produce the ring that was now burning my finger. The sun somewhere laughing at me.
“I want to give it to Amy. Amy’s my girlfriend now.”
I gave him the ring but waited until I got home to cry and lay my first brick.
Love is fragile. I am fragile. But the wall is temporary protection. The constant heartaches became normal. I resigned to the idea that maybe I’m just one of those damaged people. Maybe I’m not worth loving. But I don’t tell anyone. Because pity is worse.
When I found him. The last Him, I felt like that wall was a ghost. Maybe hurt is an illusion. The funny thing is, I didn’t allow myself to be completely happy either. I ruined it with insecurities, tears and desperation. Until one day, I came home and he looked me like I broke into the flat. I no longer was his love. Something had clicked. I’ve seen it a thousand times. The “nope…not you.” And that was it. That is the last one. I can’t allow it anymore. He exposed the soft flesh and then destroyed it. Or I did. The line is subjective.
Here I am back in the land where I came from. The people I knew are strangers. The life I had is a memory. All that remains is the little time I have to say my goodbyes. To hug the one who matters. To write another poem. It’s okay. They might hurt for a little while. But I will soon be just that sad-eyed girl who felt too much and covered herself in the darkness. The girl who couldn’t absorb the raging sun.