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The house is quiet. You are suddenly aware of the lonely feeling looming over you like a dark cloud, not quite ready to rain. You want to cry but you hold it in. Perhaps it’s that you’re too deprived to cry. Or maybe you know you wouldn’t want to show up to school the next morning with puffy eyes and a stuffy nose and receive more attention than you ever would. Or the need to diffuse people who surround you with their (much to your dismay) short-lived passing concerns by blaming it on your allergies, even if you have never had allergies before in your life.
You wondered why crying is often associated with weakness. Vulnerability doesn’t mean weakness. To show it at all to the world is pure strength. Who would be brave enough to show a side that could easily be harmed unless they know they can recover from it? And that it wouldn’t bring them down?
Right now you don’t know if you want to cry due to anger, or to sadness. It’s all there. It’s all a huge mess crumpled inside you and you just want to feel numb. Imagine all sort of emotions, each represented by a different color. And when you mix the colors up, the result would be a disgusting blob of brown; you’re a muddled mess. Because the loneliness that engulfs you mentally haunts you, and you’re wishing, “Please! Let it be subdued.”
When you walk outside your room because you can’t stand the hunger any longer, since there is always room for appetite, you realize that truly, no one was home. They’ve left. You could, too, if you wanted. But to where?
Not that there was an urge for you to go anywhere. You’re sick of talking to people. Or more like, you’re just sick of interacting. There’s no enthusiasm. You feel like a burden talking to them.
So you just lie there. On your bed. Facing upward. Staring at the ceiling as the fan spins and spins -- like it has a purpose. Naturally, you begin to question your own purpose in life. What are you there for? As your body begins to stiffen, you move around, hoping to feel. You place your right hand on your chest, and it falls instinctively on your heart.
Ba dump. Ba dump. It beats. Though you could not hear your heart, you could feel it -- its rhythm -- beating against your chest like muted poundings against the door that refuses to open. The heart swells, intensifies. Pops, retracts -- Swells again, and so on -- like a continuous bursting of a never-ending bubble.
It seems like silence enhances your sense of hearing, as well as your loneliness, because you are suddenly aware of the absence of noise -- of life. You feel secluded. Sure, you have friends. But at times like this, the act of reaching for another person would have taken an astronomical amount of energy -- something you’re already lacking at this moment, even though you’re quite immobile and torpid. You don’t want them to cheer you up -- not forcefully. Feelings shouldn’t be coerced. They should happen naturally. You don’t have the will. As if you’re shooting an arrow with no target. Or as if you’re using a pencil without any lead. There is no point.
It feels like a world of vibrant color that slowly drains into a dim, muted tone -- a step of toward desaturation that no doubt leads to the monotonous black and white. After all, those two represent an absence of color -- it feels like an absence of life; there's nothing you can do about it. It is like watching a film that you can only react to -- a movie where you scream at the character for their stupid actions because you know better -- but in the end, you are not able to change a thing about it. You can only watch helplessly on the side as the movie continues -- and you can’t pause it.
You want to be able to orchestrate your feelings like a director. Because if you could, you’d always be happy. Blissful. Content. But if you were to remain constantly happy, would you be able to differentiate peak elation with profound sorrow? How would you be able to distinguish happier emotions? There would be no climax. You would become desensitized to your happiness, and then you would lack feelings again.
The problem is, you were just fine before, when you are not left alone with your thoughts. Perhaps that is why you like movies so much. They distract you from your thoughts. You get to escape your head for a while. But when the movie finally ends, you’re stuck with yourself again. Then a thought strikes you. Maybe this is why people commit suicide -- because they couldn't think of a way for their ongoing pain to stop. And of course, you know you are not going to kill yourself. You’re… sure. But that’s ridiculous. Of course you wouldn’t want that. You should never.
You try to put away these destructive thoughts, but you do wonder, though, what it feels like to just… disappear.
Would they miss your presence?
Would your absence impact them at all?
Would they crash and collide solely because you are not there?
Could your missing cause them agonizing pain? Not that you ever want that to happen, but just the thought of them grieving the loss of you means you are something. Something worthwhile. Something meaningful.
And while you’re having all these negative thoughts, your mom and your little sister come home from the market. And your sibling trots up to you excitedly, waving a bag of chocolate squares to share with you. And your mother rolls her eyes but smiles, and comments, "She specifically sought it out for you. Six dollars for that tiny, little bag.”
"With my own money, too," your sister crosses her arm haughtily, her chin high, as if she wants recognition for her efforts.
And the ends of your lips can't help but quirk up a slight smile, and then suddenly you feel lighter. You stare at the now-ripped bag of chocolate as your little sister begins to casually talk about her day, and you suddenly wonder… how little does she know that she saved a life that day.