You find yourself sitting under that cold-vent again, wrapped in your paper thin school blazer. You look over your shoulder and catch her mid-laughter, hers is the most beautiful smile you’ve ever seen, it reaches up to her eyes which crinkle at the corners, filling the static air with a pleasant giggle… You two had made yourselves a cocoon to retreat back into, a sanctuary for when their blows became unbearable.
Remember that day on the tracks you ran beside her, how you’d quietly fallen in pace, unknowingly, and she breathed her secrets under the crunch of your shoes.
Do you remember that bus ride home? You held nothing back and she still smiled at you, despite everything, when you got off together you told her you loved her and knew it to be true.
She was happy then, wasn’t she?
If I could travel back in time, I’d warn you to be aware of her, I’d tell you she lives two separate lives, that you’d come to love a ghost, a liar.
Years later, she’ll bring you home and sit you down on her bed and tell you a horror story.
She will talk about how her life’s falling apart, of how tired she is of putting on that mask everyday. She’ll speak about how she keeps her parents affairs a secret from each other, she’ll speak of little notes and threats and scars tucked away under the bed. She’ll tell you she shares her room with her mom because her mother’s scared, her mother tells her stories of their future with the boyfriend, how they’ll finally have a perfect family one day. Sometimes, she says, the dad wakes up in the middle of the night, he mutters to himself in the living room, deliriously pounding the floor with his hands. He calls for the mom and they sit at the dining room table fearful of what’s to come, he stands up furious at her presence. His eyes steeled and full of confusion he walks out in the cold at 3 am.
She’ll tell you that sometimes when she’s alone a woman comes into her house hoping to catch her doing something wrong and she’ll whisper to you about how that same woman’s husband used to grope her when she was young, how he’s now a friend of the family.
And you don’t like this tale anymore, don’t recognize the ghost before you.
You hate her for deceiving you all these years, you hate everyone else for not seeing through that smile of hers, but mostly you just hate yourself because she hid herself so well you didn’t know where to look and you never found her until today.
You’re crying because she’s still mumbling and you finally understood why all her bones were labelled fragile, why she always seemed to want stability when you held her. You wish you hadn’t outgrown that cocoon, wish you could go back to when she fooled you. You want to play God and destroy anyone who’s ever put her in harms way but you never much believed in a God so you do what you know best and just be there…
By the time you leave the sun seems to have evaporated from her face, and you realize your work here is done, looking back at her unseeming house, at its concrete walls that meet at perfect angles, it doesn’t look any different than your own or any one else’s. They have given recluse to fear, neglect, shame, lies and sorrow and these are guests that have overstayed their welcome, that made themselves at home. But so have we all.
I enter my room that night, and realize it has housed ignorance for too long so I leave the door open for it to walk out.
You see her once every other week now, she tells you she never really knew how disguises work, her skin is now a quilt of all the best parts of the disguises she wore and some parts from the people she’s been with, she says she’s finally found herself, that she’s healing.
I want you to remember this, to remember her, all of her.
Some days I’ll see her walking down the street her arm linked with another’s, and it stings just a little to know that used to be me. You can’t help but wonder why hers is still the most beautiful smile you’ve seen, but she seems so happy, doesn’t she?
“You are on another planet, no one understands what you’re going through, but actually they do, you don’t think they do because the only reference point is yourself. You have never felt this way before and the shock of this sense is traumatizing but others have been here, you are in a dark dark land with a population of billions.”
– Will Darbyshire
P.S – This is about a friend I used to have, I borrow her story because these are topics considered taboo around where I live which need to be talked about, a dose of reality for all of us who get ignorant of all the blessings we have, a story that I can draw courage from every time I think of her. I was astound that someone could suffer all that and still come out alive and I know that today she is the strongest person I’ve known. If anyone out there has ever felt this way, I urge you to speak up, do let us know what helped you to overcome this grief, you wouldn’t know how positively you’d impact us.
I quote one of my favorite YouTubers ‘Will Darbyshire’ in the end, it’s from his video called ‘Reasons to stay alive’ you can check the link here
Thank you for reading, I cannot express how joyful I felt at the immensely positive response to my last blog post. Thank you for the wonderful comments and mostly for having faith in me. Once again, like, share and subscribe if you enjoyed this! Have a great day! 🙂