viewed through sleep stained eyes, in a space between imagination and reality, a message was received: if you're tired or if you're having a difficult time you can come back to me anytime. you should know that.
to the me who was hopeless, afraid and full of doubts. burdened with worries about my future. family stress and identity crisis. friendships slipping through the cracks and a dropping weight the only source of comfort. to the me who was weak but remained strong; thank you, i love you and i'm sorry.
the words that hurt and dug deep into my skin. they were so relentless and bold. making a home where they were not welcome. now when i see you those words surface again. as fresh as ever, they circulate in my head. round and round. down this path we've walked. apologies and faked forgiveness. perhaps i am still immature. because i can't move on. cannot accept you've changed because those words linger. you could mean well, but when you smile at me i feel as though you are mocking me. when you greet me i wonder if you enjoy torturing me like this. i always wanted to grow older and move away. this world is so big but not big enough. i wanted to move onto another life at some point. but with my luck i would still see you there. the me who was small and afraid. she hides behind the me who is cold and unapproachable. i'll reciprocate your smile and greeting. the smile won't reach my eyes, the greeting won't ever be genuine. i'm mature, i get it now. i just have to pretend like everyone else.
holding onto the hands of time and begging him to stay. tears that rarely fell are coursing down his face. a memory of a man who smiles with his teeth is fading fast. hunched posture, shaking shoulders. all it will take is time and he will be whole again. warm porridge, a hot bath, fresh pajamas. i won't take my eyes off of him. i'll tuck him in. wrinkles that were deepset are easing away. blanket rises and falls with every breath he takes. i hope he's dreaming a beautiful dream. with his eyes closed, finally i cave.
when i am smiling naturally like this. laughing so earnestly. in photos, the happiness even reaches my eyes. realising i am capable of such emotions. for a fleeting moment, i think to myself. I’m not used to seeing myself like this.
the trail of your compliments lead to this hide out. each step towards it makes me more nervous. yet still, there's a flutter in my tummy and a smile on my face. the thrill of it all, the secrets we make. words we'll never tell and stories that can remain just ours. i grip your hand tightly as we walk inside. a roof, four walls and the two of us. soon you'll start saying dreamy things. i'll nod along like i always do. the sky is green if you say so. i guess you've got me good.
when all of you knows all of me and when all of you accepts all of me. like a hug from a mother who has loved you unconditionally. like a comfort meal that spreads warmth from your belly to your extremities. exactly how do i stop myself from falling into you?
will it hurt again or will this time be different? i hope there's no awkward moments or time for silence. i hope i can be at peace and truly happy. i hope i can look back on the day and let it become a good memory. i want to be the type of person who enjoys company. i don't want to dread. i don't want to regret. i will make it perfect.
i'm scared of everything i have worked for amounting to nothing. in one cold sweep, a wind could take it all. i keep my head down. gravel beneath my knees keeping my senses on high alert. the fear of it all being for nothing, i bury it for a while. i will meet it at a dead end street. when i turn this back on myself and fall to my knees again. i will face this thought more frequently until it is tame. until the pulse beneath my fingers has settled.
Stay still. Let's not make promises, we don't know what will happen tomorrow. Let's not fight either. I think you like how things are now, so I want to protect it. Let's not make promises. Let's not fall deeper. When you share that smile and say those words...I want to believe you. Still, we don't know what will happen tomorrow. In this blissful stage when everything we do can be viewed as endearing. Let's stay here, remain just like this. So that you can accept my clumsy heart. So that you are not disappointed. For my sake, let's just stay like this.