by Jeni Padua
What is more convenient than being a self-proclaimed outcast? What is more comfortable than being a shadow? What else is there than being numb?
The hollow ended when I saw his pair of eyes. He has those sincere kind, warm and soothing. I almost succumbed to those orbs, but then those “perfect eyes” from before flashed yet again, and I squinted my eyes close, taking those kind eyes for granted.
The pain subsided when I saw his genuine smile, lifting the side of my lips just by looking at it. But then that “flashy smile” from ages ago pierced my chest once again, and that curve on my lips turned back into a thin, quivering line.
The waterfall of tears halted when I felt his touch, gentle and light as a feather, almost as afraid as I am. But then I felt the cold patches of longing from that time, when I am still too naïve for my own good, and that gentle touch seem to turn from a breath-away to a distance too far of a reach.
I finally found the right tune when he sang and played for me, when I heard his beautiful music echoing through my being. But then the lovely strums and plucks replayed like a radio blasting, and I pressed my hands over my ears, blocking the right tune for safety.
I was finally out of the dark when he lent his arms to lift me, but then, cold hands appeared, snatching me back to that dark scary shell. I curled up again, conceived in that blinding nothingness.
I was out. I was learning to be happy. But I chose to build walls and hide away, afraid to feel what I felt. Scared to lose myself over the unimaginable torture I once showered myself. It was far better to stand alone, far from the mess of the outside world. Away from tears, away from more pain and suffering. It was better to live with numbness as your companion inside this cell, than to step outside and face my worst fears.
It was better. It was.
Gradually, I realized that I let my own stupidity eat me. I only suffered more, a complete opposite of what I thought it was doing.
It was not “him” who urged me to cry. It was not “him” who punched that hollow on my chest. It was not “him” who made my life a scary black hole. I did this all to myself. I did all of that to mask my weaknesses. I refused to move not because I am afraid. I shackled myself because I wanted to remain frozen in that moment when the only happiness I knew is to be with the memories, though I was hurting really badly. I did that to show that I can get by just by myself.
I was okay to be alone, that’s the thing I always say. But the truth is that, I really want someone to stand beside me and hold my hands. Someone who could say that everything would be okay. Someone who could be the light when I’m vanishing to complete darkness.
Someone. Just someone.
Numbness takes over when everything is too painful to bear, to prevent yourself from hurting more than you already have. Sure, it will protect you from the outside pain, but the longing and pain from before will always remain, immovable and stuck. No chance for a better change, just a constant internal battle of emotions that could crush you.
Being a shadow is sure to be safe, just hidden behind the reality of life. But a shadow will always remain in the dark, never growing. Always parallel with the truth and will never interact with it.
Being an outcast is absolutely convenient; never have to face the pain of being pushed away, of being taken for granted. Always alone, staring from a corner as everybody else laugh their heads off because of their inside jokes. Always by himself, and his invisible friend – loneliness.
I know those things. I’ve overlooked them long enough to be familiar with them. But they still came as epiphanies, sudden realizations, and I learned that the only thing that can actually hurt you is yourself. You can blame everybody and everything, but it will all come down to you in the end.
That’s just how things work. Acceptance doesn’t always come when you need it badly, it often times appears when you are too fed up of all the absurdity of life. Because that’s the only cure, the only way out.
How you live your life will always be your choice. Isn’t it much better to be hurt, heal, and then grow? Isn’t it pleasant to survive it all and still wear a grateful smile? Isn’t it wonderful to not be scared of trying? To try your best in all things? Isn’t it a fruitful, colorful, happy and fulfilled life worth all the challenges and pain you’ve come to know?
Life is never easy, I know that for a fact. But life will get by without much of a hatred and sigh just by flashing an appreciative smile. Rely not only to yourself but to the comforting hands of others as well, especially the holy arms of our Creator.
I guess I’m now ready to take the chance.
The wind will pick up its pace. Let it blow and take me to wherever I deserve to be.