Sunday, 6 January 2019

To Tom (7)

Mama, take this badge off from me
I can't use it anymore
It's getting dark, much too dark to see
Feel I'm knockin' on heaven's door

Dear Tom,
It pains me to write this, it pains me both physically and emotionally. What follows is not going to be pleasant to read (and believe me it's the farthest thing from pleasant to write) so forgive the mess. I am trying to blurt it out before I lose the small bit of bravery I have right now.
I have so much to say, and I am not sure exactly how to articulate. I am merely writing this for documentation's sake, I haven't been writing for the sake of writing since forever and just the thought of it makes me sick to the bone. It brings me so much shame, and you're the only one I can open myself up to.
Shame. An emotion that has become too familiar,  I know every twist, every turn, because the road always leads me there. I am so ashamed of myself,  I get sick of the skin I am wearing and of everything that goes on within. I am just... tired. Yesterday I accidentally cut myself and I reveled in the pain, like I deserved it. I've been thinking about it a lot lately, hurting myself, my fingers itching to claw at the skin where my veins rest, my knuckles straining under the weight of me denying them the right to inflict pain on the body that holds them. I thought it was a moment's thought, that it will just go away when I am calmer, but I don't trust myself anymore.
I almost crashed my car today, my head was buzzing with thoughts I couldn't drown out even with the music at maximum. Everything was a haze and I couldn't help myself, I almost did it. I wanted the crash, I wanted my bones to ache and then I wanted it all to stop. Cease. But I didn't. I am anchored and it's the only thing that's keeping me here and it makes me so angry. So angry because I want everyone anchoring me to just let me go, I do not want to think of anyone's pain, and I want mine to cease. Anger. I never thought I'd have so much anger; it's like everything I've been feeling has hardened and just turned angry.

There's a ghost on the horizon
When I go to bed
How can I fall asleep at night
How will I rest my head?

My mom told me I lost so much weight I look like a ghost, I smile sarcastically, I don't tell her that for six days the only meal I had was breakfast. I am not sleeping much either, the nights stretch agonizingly and sometimes I can't go through them on my own. I am not sure how much longer I can linger. I am not looking for anything here, I won't ask you to send light my way this time, because I don't want it. I just want everything to drop dead. I'd rather you not write me back either. It'll make me feel less pitiful, and I know we've agreed that pity has no place between us, so let's not give it one now. How's your book coming out? I am sending you all the bits of light I have left, as always.

Yours forever,

Saturday, 5 January 2019

To Nick

Dear Nick,
Do you know how some people say that writing in your second language is a lot easier than writing in your mother tongue? Well the theory goes like this: Writing in a language that is not your mother tongue lays a distance between you and the words, like you're standing behind a glass wall and your words are on the other side. You've never lived through these words, you know what they mean, but only from a distance. Your mother tongue, on the other hand, knows you inside out. She knows everything you feel, everything you go through, and even if she doesn't have the words for it, she knows you better than any other language. Because you see, language is not just some letters that are attached together to give you a certain meaning, language is culture, it's memories and scents and love letters. But here's the problem; English is not my first language, but it's become too familiar that i feel like the words strip me bare whenever i approach them. I become too vulnerable whenever i hold a pen in my hand and you know how much i hate vulnerability. I hate the idea of being exposed like an open wound bleeding for all to see. And for a while English has managed to hide that vulnerability to some extent. But now i feel like English knows me better than my mother tongue and it's very inconvenient for me. That's why i have decided to move on to another language, another hide-out, and hope the words can still give me shelter. Et je pense que le français est celui pour moi. I know you're thinking this is absolutely bizarre and that i should find something better to do with my time instead of think about these things. But what can we do? We are who are. Anyhow, i miss you, and i hope you're well. I know you hate the winter, so i hope  this letter finds you warm.

Yours always,

To Tom (6)

Dear Tom,
I don't quite know how to start this. I know. I've been away for too long, and my departure has been cruel and inexplicable. Forgive me. I miss you. I can see you rolling your eyes and to be quite sincere, i am smiling a little at the sight of your face. I've always managed to exasperate you. And you've always managed to tolerate me like no one would. Like no one can. I miss you. The words seem tasteless and inadequate because they are. Because compared to how i feel they're a tiny speck of dust. I've ached for you. I still do, even when i am writing this. Tom, i swear there were days when i wanted to split my heart open on these papers just to get you, but i couldn't. I'd start my letters and my hands would freeze, everything would stand still. The words flee and i am left with nothing but shame. I have no explanation. And I know you ask for none. You know me like the back of your hand, even better I'd say. My days haven't been kind. They're all the same; soulless, tasteless and so very tedious. I always feel like i am running after something, and running away from something. The nights haven't been light either. All my distractions fade and i am left alone with myself which we both know is not the best situation. Tonight, i am feeling quite alright. I was smoking a cigarette in my balcony and Bob Dylan whispered quietly, "the sky is changing colour and i must leave fast." It made me yearn for you and how you're always  whispering "Lightly, lightly, lightly." Dearest Tom, please forgive me. You've always been patient with me. I don't know why, but if there's one thing that i can ask of you (and believe me, it's not without utter shame) is that you'd let this patience prevail. Don't let your heart harden, Tom because if it wasn't for the mere thought of you, I'd have gone mad already. Je pense toujours à toi and how you always held me lightly, quietly.

Love always,

To Tom (5)

Dear Tom,
I know I ended my last letter on a very distressing note, and I am sorry. It's kind of absurd that I put you through this with no adequate explanations, and I quite honestly don't know how (or why) you put up with me, but let me tell you, if there's one thing that keeps me from going utterly and irreversibly mad, it'd be the thought of you reading my words.
I've been struggling with myself a lot lately, and I am so worn out I made peace with things I shouldn't make peace with. One of them is the reason why I am writing you this. I am half a person, Tom. It makes me sick. I am always there, but not quite. I am half a friend, half a lover, just half everything. Even writing makes me sick these days because the only faint connection I have with being a writer is these letters and they've become battered and worn and purposeless and I am sick of it and all my attempts at being something more. I've made my peace. I am here to tell you I've made my peace with not being whole. I have nothing to claim, and no person to call my own and in a sense it's serene. I am not here to grief because I've decided that this won't be how I end things between us. Yes, end. I've decided that I will no longer send letters, and I will no longer call you my own, because you, Tom, cannot settle for half a person. I can hear you cursing me under your breath now, I can hear all kinds of things, but you understand me better than most, and you know that this is what I have to do. You cannot settle for someone who's not here nor there, I won't let you. So this is where we part ways, dearest Tom, I will be leaving you here, with all the light I have to give, and I will only ask of you to think of me with the same light I think of you. I know you won't rest, but you also know I won't budge, so for the sake of both of us, do not send me any letters, I will not open them. This is a road I have to walk on my own, so all I ask of you is just to think of me with grace.

Yours always,

To Tom (4)

Dear Tom,
I've thought of a lot of ways to start this, I've been staring at my screen for exactly 2 hours, my brain buzzing and my stomach in knots. If you haven't noticed already, I haven't been writing, not out of lack of words, but because I am scared. And when I say I haven't been writing I mean whenever I "think" of sitting down and letting anything out I almost throw up. Literally. This whole letter is the farthest thing from figurative, mainly because I am too weary, and I don't see a point of embellishments when I am forcing myself to write. I've blocked everything and everyone out, and I am not exactly sure why. I've been telling my best friend that I am okay every day for the past week, she doesn't believe me, but she'll stop asking soon. I am like a toddler who's learning the alphabet except the alphabet is asking for help and the toddler is extra thick. He gets to the A, then to the B, then to the C, but never past that. I get to holding my phone, then to the text, but never past that. The ticking bomb has never been more eager to go off, it's corrosive and it's eating away at me like fire.
And It's here again, the urge. I've been trying so hard not to go there again. I've been saying to myself over and over again that no matter how bad it gets as long as the urge isn't here it's okay; I will still put one foot in front of the other and make it through. I've been getting good at it, making through, keeping it together, smiling enough, pretending to listen, and I thought this is it, you're there. But it crept upon me, so quietly, so lightly (funny, right?). I am not here anymore, I am hollow, and everything goes through me. It's scary because the urge is here and it's telling me to go, quietly and consistently like a lullaby that gets stuck in one's head. It's here in the most mundane moments, it catches me unaware and it keeps telling me to go, Tom.
"You’re tired of movin', your body’s achin'
We could vacay, there's places to go
Clearly this isn't all that there is
Can't take what's been given
But we're so okay here, we're doing fine
primal and naked
You dream of walls that hold us imprisoned
It's just a scar, at least that's what they call it
And we're free to fall"

To Eva

Dear Eva,
I get it now. I always used to think your "I close my eyes when music is playing because it helps me see" was just a romantic line of yours, you've always loved to make everything poetic. But I get it now, I do. I closed my eyes and saw him. And I swear to you, when I opened them, it was only him. I saw everything, Eva. The way the ghost of a smile would come across his lips at a certain part, or the way his fingers would slightly move of their own accord, I know he can't help it. Hell I even kept imagining what would go on in his head, does he miss someone? Does he ache?
You know how when you're longing for someone so much that you start imagining them everywhere? I don't even need to close my eyes anymore. I miss you. I've been thinking too much, too too much it's getting suffocating, I even had this letter in my drawer for three days, thinking, again, too much about whether am I gonna add in what I am going to write now or not. I don't know what's wrong with me, Eva. Or maybe I do, I know my principle problem, I keep everything unresolved and I bury them, the thing is they never settle, they jump back at me with so intensely I can't take it. I fall, I fall and I fall and I fall, harder each time. I am always scared of my next fall. In fact, I think I am approaching my next fall, I am approaching my next breaking point and I don't know what to do, I choke on my words, it's like I have this unbreachable wall, and if even I can't push through, how can anyone? Don't worry, darling, I am not asking you for answers; consider this is one of the bottle letters that never reach anyone. How have you been? How many times have you fallen in love since we last talked? Tell me all about it.
Love always,

To Tom (3)

Dear Tom,
I know it's been too long, but that was our deal right? We will never be superficial, we will never allow mundane details into our relationship, no ingenuity of any sort. So here I am, reading this book about lightness and weight and remembering you. I wonder how one could bear both the weight of their existence and the lightness of its insignificance, all at once. It's kind of funny; I've had this book on my shelf for ages and I only happen to pick it up when I am struggling with both contrasts. There's another concept in this book, this concept is "Es muss sein"; it's a phrase that means "It must be". Do you think reading this book at this exact time of my life is my Es Muss Sein? Isn't this the kind of coincidence you'd read about in one of your novels? Do you remember that time we were sitting on your bed and you told me "I don't want to wake up tomorrow, Anna" in the most casual tone ever, like you were asking me what are we having for lunch? It horrified me. Not the fact that you didn't want to wake up tomorrow, but how calm you sounded when you said it, because I know you, Tom, you're not the kind of person that can conceal their feelings, your voice always betrays you, so I knew you were feeling as calm as you said it and it scared me. I didn't understand, but now I do. I've always aimed for the lightness of being, but I can bear neither the lightness nor the weight of my being. I want it all to go away, Tom. I can't stand myself, do you think it will ever stop? In my lifetime, I mean, has it stopped for you? Talk to me, Tom, I miss you like hell. I'll always think of you as the most precious thing I've ever had in my life.
Yours always,