Surrender

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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

The Day You Stopped Drinking

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Sometimes I think he’s just hiding. That alter-ego that you affectionately call your delinquent past cowering behind the blinding brightness you have become. Occasionally he comes out to play when the coaxing and mellow whispers prove too tempting to dispel. But most of the time, you keep him hidden under chains and shackles, under the weight of your morose, sobriety and numbness.

I take out a beer bottle, it’s cool surface kissing my lips and sending delectable chills of pleasure coursing through my skin. All that’s missing is the celebratory clinking of glass against glass — the sound that differentiates drowning of sorrows from joyous intoxication. But the clinking never comes and neither does the happiness. It’s hidden, muffled alongside the person you strangled within.

I long to see him again, for a chance to at least bid farewell the proper way. I long to see the shadows of his writhing form swaying on the dance floor, the exact motions of his moves already lost in my memory. I long to blow him a kiss, sending with him the part of my past that should have left as companion. The part that now lives in the present, agonised and longing your return.

I’m Looking For You

“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.

Goodbye, Goodnight.

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.

Controlled Chaos

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.

Hungry For More

I’m starving. Logically I know I am. I can feel my stomach clawing for food, I can hear my head telling me to fucking eat something, but I can’t.

The empty space has become my best friend. Everywhere I go, I know I have company. It fills up the voids between our conversations and it plants itself in the gaps between us on the couch. Sometimes, when I feel like I am truly alone, it creeps along the edges of my feet, tickling the very tip of my toes like a salutation from a friend that never leaves, a compellation from an enemy that never goes.

I cannot feed myself, because I am feeding it too-this emptiness that seems to grow every single day. In good moments, it cowers away in fear, its normal composed disposition undulated by the positivity of my laughter, the warmth of my toothy grin. In others, it consumes me from the inside out, like a fetus trying to break free from the restrains of what used to keep it alive, like a predator discarding its carcass after a full meal. I am its full meal. My good thoughts, my better thoughts, my sanity, they have all fallen prey, willingly. But there is beauty in this distress, not unlike how there is always beauty in death, in burial. There is beauty in this course of putrefaction because there is weightlessness in being empty. Hate rushes past you, jealousy walks through you, anger dissolves within you and sadness evaporates around you. And love, love leaves you. The love we spend our whole life seeking and hating leaves you, because it can no longer manifest within your warm body of soul. You are barren land, and love happens to be the crop. Dearth and famine replace the empty space as your new best friend and you will be hungry. You will always be hungry.

I am starving. Every piece of my soul is breaking from the hunger and I want to eat. I want to feed myself until the throbbing goes away, until the hole in my chest is filled. But this is a hunger you can never quell, this is a hunger that will never wane. Because it only grows stronger with every bite.

Death Shall Not Part Us

“You know I’ll always love you right my unicorn? I have to go now, but I will always love you.” Your warmth was leaving me, as was your scent. I clawed at you desperately, my fists making little balled clenches around the fabric of your shirt. “But I don’t want you to go. I want you to stay here with me. Please?” I felt hope, joy and happiness slowly crawl their way out of my life. You were leaving me, and they were bent on guiding your course. Despair seeped out from the corners of my eyes, stained my cheeks and soothed my burning skin, as though mocking my naivety for trying to bridge the distance between life and death. “Baby please. Baby please don’t go. I won’t make it without you. Baby please please please stay here with me. Please.” What was a well formed argument aimed at trying to keep you here had become nothing but a string of hopeless pleas. My thighs were next to yours, my hands on your shoulders around your neck and I, the entirety of I was placed upon you. The weight of me, placed upon the firmness of yours. Just like we had been this morning.

You looked so calm, so serene. On your face was the same smile I loved so much, on your cheeks the dimples in which I lost myself. Nothing had changed. You were here with me. Everything that happened was nothing but a bad dream. You were here with me. So was your touch, your breath, your scent and your heartbeat. “I have to go now baby. But I will always be here for you. Always and forever remember?” You reached across the little distance between us and placed a warm palm firmly against my chest. “I have to return you this for the time being. I ‘ll see you soon alright? Keep it safe for me? I’m sorry I couldn’t let you keep mine for longer. But I promise to let you steal it back when I see you again. For now, take this.” Then, I realized my heart was beating again. “But I don’t want my heart, I want yours! Don’t go please. Stay with me.” This was a battle I couldn’t lose. When it came to you, I never settled for less. I never gave in. “I have to go now dear, but I’ll see you soon. I will always love you. Always and forever right?”

Dealing with loss is never easy. Your lingering scent on my pillowcase, your clothes in that little compartment I gave you in my closet. Trying to remove you from my life was like trying to remove a sticky price label from a clear surface. No matter how hard you tried, some of it remained. You had grown and manifested yourself in my life like a parasitic organism. You left yourself in my milk cartons, in my candy jars and breakfast toasts. You left yourself in my thoughts, my words, my memories and my love. You were always with me-in the air I learnt to grasp thinking it was your hands, in the corners of pillows where I would leave kisses, thinking it were your cheeks, in the clothes I learnt to wear, thinking it were your hands around my waist. Every day, I miss you. So much more than I can bear. But I have also been enlightened to the fact that every day, you are there with me, that you will always love me, even if death separates us. Always and forever.

Inspired by a dream I can now only vaguely remember, in which words uttered hit me like a particularly harsh November rain-painful but oddly comforting. I hope you never die, but everyone does. I hope you never die, and live on infinitely.

Blurb: Not Today.

Today, I feel vulnerable.

Today, I feel like the light shines right through me, baring all my flaws. Today, I feel as though the stranger walking outside my door can see right past the wooden gates and into my crooked soul. Today, I feel as though every strand of my hair is out of place, and that every breath I take is an abomination to this world.

Today I feel small.

Today, you could hurt me with the delicate touch of a feather. Today, you could hurt me with the melodious ring of your laughter. Today, you could hurt me with the warmth of your love. Today, you could hurt me. Today, you would hurt me.

Today, I am not the girl who breaks down walls. Today, I build them.

Too Close For Comfort

Sometimes I wish everything were easier. That toothpaste magically capped themselves back after use and that tissue boxes never emptied. Sometimes I wish everything were easier. That hearts didn’t get broken and friendships never faded away. Sometimes I wish everything were easier. Maybe sometimes, more than sometimes. Every moment, I wish things got easier.

I can still hear the familiar tone of your laughter reverberating in my ear. The high pitched, semi laugh-semi giggle that erupts from your tiny frame whenever you’re amused. I remember how you used to lie on my shoulder and tell me your darkest secrets, as though my reputation as the class loud mouth were nothing but a lie, and that you were able to see through the layers of my shell and into my loyal tightlipped core. There is a photo of us on the corkboard hanging on my wall. The one where our hair was still short and your head was so close to mine we could pass of as Siamese twins. The one where we were both lying on the table, the one where we were both smiling like we had everything we wanted in the world right next to us. The one where we were actually happy together.

But like to every happy thing that happens in life, something happened. Oh wait. I’m wrong. Nothing happened. There was no spark between us anymore. For some reason, you stopped running to me with the latest gossip, murmuring excitedly about so-and-so who was attached to so-and-so.  For some reason, you stopped exchanging you-know-what-I’m-thinking glances with me when our gawdy looking literature teacher walked into the classroom. For some reason, you stopped wanting to curl up by my side and lay quietly as though my breaths were your favourite melody and my shampoo your favourite scent.

I miss you. I miss the way I was unguarded when I was your friend. The way I can probably never be now. I wish things could go back to the way they were, I wish we never grew up. I wish things could be so much easier such that when I look at your Twitter timeline, I could will myself into believing I was there with you during every update.

Life is difficult. Life is too difficult. You live everyday wishing you were dead, and you slowly die every day wishing you were more alive. Perhaps I don’t even miss us being friends. Perhaps you just happened to be the catalyst in putting together all the negative thoughts and broken relationships. Perhaps viewing your timeline on Twitter just served to make all the feelings of worthlessness, of loneliness, of utmost helplessness collide. Perhaps it was just time for me to realize that things were getting too complicated. That life, this jumbled mess we call life, is too difficult to ever figure out. That we are all just tiny specks of dust scrambling to discover the meaning of life, only to realize that this is a question with no answer.

I wish things were easier. Everyday.

Ashes To Dust

Coughing with a lozenge in your mouth is a bad idea. Tilting your backward to cough with a lozenge in your mouth is a worse idea. The slippery bugger keeps trying to make its way into the back of your throat and nestle in the depths of your esophagus. Not a good idea. Then again, coughing alone is a terrible idea itself.

In spite of the cough, the dizziness from wearing coloured contacts and it being another Tuesday at work, I am in high spirits. Perhaps it is due to the seventh lozenge I am consuming this delightful morning (in addition to the 7 tablespoonfuls of cough syrup I had after breakfast) that is making me a little lightheaded and ridiculously easily tickled by everything my colleague is saying, or perhaps it is due to the fact that I have come to terms with what seems like my biggest fear in my dramatic teenage life – losing people.

Just this morning while on my way to work, I was autopiloting, watching the trees morph into a huddled mess outside the car window and lamenting about how lucky my pet rabbit was while my conscious mind thought of the friends I used to have, and those I now have left. There are about a million and four ways how people can vanish from your lives. Some, you can pinpoint the exact moment you knew they were slipping away through the gaps between your fingers. Others just happen to vanish, like how you know you remembered your dream just seconds before, yet you have zero recollection of it the next.

I choose to believe that its no one’s fault. That when tea dates which used to last hours, filled with the sounds of clinking teacups, our boisterous laughter and incessant chatter are now empty staring sessions where we try to color the silent void with meaningless bits of information which we already know. “So…how’s the army?” “Same old same old, we had physical training yesterday and I almost died running. Improving though, I am now inching my way to Silver instead of a Fail.” “Yeah, I knew that you told me the last time we met remember?” “…Oh yeah.” “…”But I guess awkward tea sessions are way better than no awkward tea sessions because we’re both still trying right? As much as a cup of Earl Grey and a few butter cookies isn’t going to transform our relationship back into its old comfortable state, it means we both miss us. And perhaps that’s the best funeral for a friendship that is slowly fading away.

I am still using the bottle you gave me for my last birthday, the one you hand drew my crazy ass smiling face and my Chinese surname on it. I still open our group conversation every day and regret the times I muted the updates. I still have the friendship band we bought together on our night coffee dates of Caramel Ice Blend from Coffee Bean. I still keep all of you in my heart and as much as I would like to try to mend what seems like cracks in our relationships, sometimes things are better this way. People are more likely to be careful when they handle delicate things, they make sure they don’t make a wrong move, one wrong step. They make sure they don’t tilt their heads back to cough when they have a lozenge in their mouth, for fear friendship slips away like that slippery candy down their throats and into nothingness.