And there she was. Crushed, cursed, devastated. She had thought that she had finally met a match, a mirror, a man who would outrival her courage… but she hadn’t…
It was a mask yet again.
It was a spineless wimp yet again.
It was a love of convenience yet again.
Her friend told her to write bravely. She wrote, “He said he loved me and I believed him. I loved him, I hope he loved me too… even if it was for a moment, I hope he loved me too… the way I loved him.”
And she bared her true feelings to the people that mattered to her.
She told them how he made her feel. She was surprised at her audacity. She knew they did not approve. She knew that they thought it was an absolute mismatch. But she still said it all and said it out loud. He took her to places she’d never been, places she could not even have imagined existed. So she kept trying to explain what he was… Not that anyone was convinced, but she felt uncurbed.
At the very least it was liberating. She felt liberated… emancipated!
And then the realisation dawned on her… He indeed made her tremble with the sweet pain of pleasure, every time. He made her experience pleasures she never thought she was capable of feeling. But in the end, he was just a chapter in her book that was fast coming to a close… A chapter, a lesson, a memory and an experience. An experience she unabashedly reveled in, an experience that made her aware of a side she never knew existed, an experience that left her with a lot of anticipation for the coming chapters… and that is one thing she was grateful to him for… probably, the only thing.
Heartbreaks make you stronger, said the writer in this very sensible piece. How true, she thought… and how incomplete. Her first heartbreak had beyond any doubt made her stronger. It had made her…
The other day my bestie seemed to be in a furious mood when she called me. “I find the stuff you write too intense. Can’t you think beyond the vicious circle of love and pain? I am someone who needs humour in the stories I read… Tina Fey’s Bossypants did that for me, you know. The characters of your stories are always in an emotional mess, why? I am left to wonder what happened to them with every story. It is maddening,” she complained. After patiently listening to her, I ended the call and decided to introspect. During that process, I bumped into this article that I forwarded her later. Read it for yourself, but allow me to highlight a few lines from that piece here.
~ The very last page of his (William S. Burroughs) journal, penned three days before his death, read:
Only thing can resolve conflict is love… Pure love.
Love? What is It?
Most natural painkiller what there is.
A few minutes later I got this text from her, “Love it is. I always discredit it. It is called self-preservation.”
Love it is, I rest my case.
William S. Burroughs on Love
Being a lover of words, she tried hard to bleed out her pain on the paper; but all in vain. All the writing and words in the world could not help her even come close to the pain she was enduring. It was madness. A permanent devastation of a part of her. A part that made her more “her” than anything else in the world. She wondered if her eyes betrayed her every time she tried to hide behind the perfect fake smile. She did not know, but they did unintentionally reveal the agony that gripped her… not to the world but, only to the man who was the reason behind her misery. The absurdity of the situation was the fact that he too was suffering in the exact same way, but they were not allowed to rescue each other. All they could do was live through the pain and hope that it would fade in the future, if not disappear altogether.
In her bid to escape the mundane, she had reached a beautiful quaint town on an unnoticed Greek island. As she was sauntering around the charming little town, soaking in the beauty and peace of it all, she stopped outside a cafe noticing a pair of sad eyes of a woman staring at her from a painting; she could not help but stare back. “Do you like the painting?” a husky voice asked her breaking her concentration. She turned around to put a face to the voice and found a man in rugged light blue jeans and casual white shirt standing next to the pots of brushes and an easel. She responded with a question as she realised he was the artist who created this piece of stirring emotion, “Why are her eyes so sad?” The painter studied the inquisitor’s dewy eyes for a brief moment and then looked at his painting. After a few seconds of contemplation he demanded, “Why don’t you tell me?”
That’s the thing about art and artists, she thought. A piece of art only assures you that you are not alone in your wretchedness. It is always about your interpretation, your pain. It is always about why you feel a connection with it. Be it music, words, paintings, photographs or any other art form. The fact that she could sense the pain of the woman in the painting was only a reflection of her own misery.
She gave a knowing smile to the cute brown-eyed painter, decided not to answer this time and turned to leave.
After a few steps she paused, looked back, winked at him and said, “Efharisto.” This time he gave her a reassuring smile.
She entered her room, it was unusually quiet and not in a good way. She loved her solitude, but not today. She went through her normal routine around home craving distraction. Never did she feel so completely alone. Then the phone rang. It was her friend.
“Don’t use repression as a coping mechanism, your behavior is unnatural,” her friend blasted in a concerned tone. “This act of being strong, stoic, calm and unbreakable isn’t fooling anyone.”
That was it. The realization of the pain ahead dawned on her. It was only going to get worse. She had asked him to disappear from her life for good. She was waiting for the “good” to show its face. The pain was unbearable. The harder she tried to conceal her volcanic emotions, the more they raged through her. Sobbing and wailing in all her brokenness, she kept repeating in her head this too shall pass.
And one more time she had to cry herself to sleep.