There are days where you feel invincible, days where you feel as if the mere tipping of your toes will hoist you high enough to pick a star out from the night sky. These days, everything you do is adequate. Even the mere act of breathing makes you revel in the fact that there’s so much you can do, will do and have already done that you will one day compile into a heaping list that’ll give meaning to your existence. Days like this, you wish will never end.
Then there are days where you feel like a sail boat on windless sea. Days where hours spent relentlessly working amount to nothing, like scribbling with white ink on white sheets, like dusting cupboards during dry storms. Days where you try so hard but get no where. Days where light blinds and darkness suffocates.
Sadly, today is one of those.
I don’t have pearls of wisdom or words of comfort because most of us have these days that nothing can turn around. Reassurance stings like swabs on wounds and advice falls like bitterness at the back of tongues. Bad days remain bad despite all the good in the world.
But it’s alright, because like everything else, days too shall pass. Good ones, bad ones, they’ll all fall into the valley where we’ll forget to pull them out for scrutiny so even when we look back, we look pass them, through them, away from them as if they never even happened.
So just hold on tight and keep your knees a little too close to your chest for comfort. Let this bad day reign over you, will it away and celebrate its passing. Oh, and admit defeat. The earlier you surrender, the less it hurts.
Image credits: Daniel
There are so many things I would like to do, so many dreams that have already begun to sprout. But sometimes dreams remain in the depths of your imagination because reality gets in the way, and after you’ve awoken from this hot summer haze, you’ll realise there’s a reason why they’re called dreams in the first place.
Tomorrow will mark my 16th day in school. And out of these 16 days, I’ve spent 2 and 2/3 days travelling to school. That makes 64 hours.
I live in the far east (or more specifically, Pasir Ris) and that’s a whopping 27 stops away from the nearest train station to school. On good days, I take 4 bus rides and 2 train journeys to complete my voyage from home to school and back again. On bad days (really horrifyingly bad ones that include tastings at inaccessible places), it takes me 6 bus rides and 4 trains. Cringe.
Money aside, travelling sucks away your energy in the most unfathomable way possible. You’re well rested, excited about school, board the bus/train at 7am in the morning and you’ll realise that there’s a mysterious force in the universe of public transportation that’s slowly but definitely siphoning your energy away for its own use. I call it war. PT (public transportation) war.
Classes that begin between 9-12pm can hurt my sanity, because even when I’m taking the train from the depot, the fucking thing arrives half filled. Why? Because Singaporeans have mastered the distasteful art of bouncing. Residents of the next few stops (ranging from Tampines to Tanah Freaking Merah) take the train in the opposite direction so they’ll be able to sit comfortably to work. Even if it means wasting an extra 10-15 minutes bouncing from station to station. I live in Pasir Ris. And during peak hours, I can’t even get onto the train that supposedly starts its journey from this station. I cannot even fathom how many trains others have to miss.
The congestion, the rush, the heightened senses and magnified grumpiness — it can hurt sense and sensibilities sometimes, and it can bring out the worst in people. I’m not really a fan of politics, because I come from a country I’m proud of for being safe, efficient and wonderful to live in. But there are some small things that’s easy neglected in a forward looking nation like ours. Tiny little things like how people like to have both feet planted firmly on the ground.
With a population density of 7252.43/square kilometre (that’s about 7 people per square meter), we have gotten so accustomed to spending most of our lives upon the cemented floors of our HDB homes, or the glass panelled surfaces of our latest malls, forgetting that these are not set upon solid ground. I don’t need much space. I don’t think we all do. I only hope that one day, we can stand side by side on real solid ground and not feel the sound of our nation whining beneath our weight. I only hope that one day, this nation will be able to comfortably fit us all.
“Don’t worry, you’ll blend in really soon just like in high school.”
“Ya, that took me six years.”
I feel like a kid waiting for midnight so the magic can begin—knowing very well that eventually, the clock will strike 12, but still remain tortured by its final countdown. School’s been great, it’s just easier to feel lonely amongst people who’ve already found their place you know? And despite being lost around campus, having to battle long train rides and experiencing loads of laughter, there are still pockets of emptiness that’s patiently waiting to be filled. By what I’m not sure, but so far, loneliness seems to have been calling it home.
The feeling of familiarity has been so misunderstood—perhaps we only see its value when everything seems alien and strange. I don’t like change, and my patience and hopefulness in welcoming familiarity is running out. I know the feeling I’m looking for will come soon enough, but this time, the wait seems unnaturally long.
There will come one day where you will forget the sound of keys chattering beneath your fingers, the feeling of fullness when words fill you up, the satisfaction of seeing black ink on blank canvas. There will come one day where you cannot remember how, what or why. There will come one day where you hit rock bottom and have to start all over again. And what will come as a surprise is that you’ll actually feel okay.
Letting go of everything that keeps you anchored is scary. It is more than scary. It is frightening, petrifying. It is the first time someone took away your safety blanket. But letting go of everything that validates you also makes you hungry. It is a kind of hunger that reeks of desperation, and desperation is a good thing. It makes you want to learn, it makes you want to lap up knowledge like a starving stray cat. It lets you put yourself out there with zero remuneration, it humbles you, liberates you and reminds you that as much as you are something, you are also nothing.
It is okay to start over. It is okay to leave things unfinished and start brand new even if it means you spend week after week wallowing in tears, hopelessness and unworthiness. Because when they begin fade away, you are fearless, famished and so much better than you ever were.
One day you will realise that the infallible will fail you. And when that one day comes, you will want to burrow deeper into the depths of your duvets and never ever emerge again.
Happy Sunday to you.
I am a stranger in my own home, a wandering spirit without its soul.
It feels a little lonely tonight. Just a little. Maybe the air is two and a half degrees too cold and the night sky four shades too dark. Maybe its six and a quarter decibels too quiet and three minutes too fast. Maybe there are no reasons to why I happen to feel alone tonight, just like how there are no reasons to why I shouldn’t.
I have somehow or rather accepted the fact that I won’t be getting any sleep tonight, and I still don’t get why I’m still trying so hard. I am desperate to leave this mess , and this desperation seems to escalate with every case I am forced to dissect and every word I am forced to burn into memory. I am lesser of who I am, and more of who they want me to be. I don’t try anymore, I don’t fight. I have possibly given up on most of the things that I thought were extremely important to me, but now seem to be of no value to anyone, or anything here. I am desperate to leave and to reclaim the things I have lost. I am desperate to leave, but afraid that this mess extends further than what seems to be.
Sometimes people will make you feel worthless. They will make you feel like you’ve been relegated to the bottom of the food chain. And for 6 weeks now, I’ve been swimming around like krill, my sole purpose of existence to fill the bottomless, souless bellies of these whales that surround me every single day. And for 6 weeks now, I have failed to retaliate. But soon you will realize that, when cornered, desperate people can achieve even the most unbelievable feats. And right now, this is me.
I am messed up, I admit that. I have no solid plans for what lies ahead, neither do I have any plans for now. I am about to throw away what seems to be a blindingly bright future and walk the unknown path in the search for happiness. I am not sure if it even exists, or if its too elusive to belong to someone like me, but unhappiness is something you should never get accustomed to. Happiness may not exist, but you should never stop searching for it. And if in this course of forage brings broken noses and scraped knees, count me in. There is never a losing battle, because every time you put up a fight, you’ve already won.
There will come a time in your life, where you will repulsively realize that every aspect happens to be spinning rapidly out of control. Your phone is out of juice, you may have had a drink more than you should have and you’re patiently waiting for the last bus to come whisk you home from the bus stop-all while trying to refrain from vomiting on your brand new shoes.
I am a little buzzed right now. Everything seems a little happier than it is, a little more positively charged than how it usually feels. When you have the right amount of alcohol in your system, you feel like the world speaks in helium voices. (The kind where people kind of speak in chipmunk-ish pitches instead of their usual ones? Yeah.) My throat is burning, apparently beer doesn’t help with the soothing of sore throats and neither does liquor. My thoughts are chaotic in my head, like flies kept in a bottle, driven mad with containment, driven desperate by claustrophobia. I haven’t written in a long time I’ve realized, perhaps too long to maintain my internal equilibrium, driving my sanity to a corner and letting something else take over. What exactly, I’m not very sure.
If I were to have a daughter in future, I hope she’ll be a wild child like me. Children who have been exposed to the toughest of shit tend to hold themselves better when things get rough. And things always get rough. I hope she’ll deal with things the exact same way I do, because I think I’m doing pretty damn well right now.
I just got my Macbook Pro, and I’m gonna shoot some zombies right now. Fuck the world, everything is nothing compared to a zombie apocalypse. Adios my friends, and wish me luck. May the best man survive.
No goodnight kiss, empty bank account, too sober for my own good and sleeping next to someone who pretends she loves me-best night ever.
Fuck the world, stop dying and start living. Irresponsible as hell, but gratifying nonetheless. Drink, drink, drink, repeat.