It is convenient to have a fear of flying when you can’t travel anyway.
All that I will tell myself (and remember in the future) is that I’m not leaving. There will be no major reason; I couldn’t and I (possibly) wouldn’t want to if I could.
It feels familiar. That’s how I spent most of my young life: watching movies, and reading about other places. Yet when I realized I couldn’t travel abroad as a teenager, I began to take note of what would repulse me about what happens “over there”.
I am little uneasy that I am growing into my older self. Growth isn’t supposed to be in circles. You’re supposed to learn and learn until you know almost everything you need to know. So by the time you’re old, everything would seem repetitive and boring because you know everything.
A few days ago, I woke up feeling terrible. I knew I had bad dreams, but I didn’t remember anything. It was helpless misery, and for the whole day I was feeling terrible for nothing that I have committed. It was one of the worst feelings.
I promised myself that I will stop my old habit of believing in the least optimistic view on things. I planned to do it, at least just to show that I’m growing in the traditional sense; growth by not being your past self.
But I’m starting to form an explanation that ties everything together.
There will be many “maybe”s in the next sentences. I don’t want to break my promise, so I’ll just express doubts that I don’t fully believe.
I couldn’t study abroad, that’s the fact.
Maybe my fear of flight is a tool I used to not feel helpless misery. Maybe in those terrible unknown dreams I was just traveling the world. Maybe I haven’t grown in all those years. Maybe I don’t know how to handle this failure better than my 15 year old self.
Nothing remains but memories of feelings. And only now do I have a more objective view, perhaps (somewhat) similar to yours.
I still remember you on occasion, when the moon is especially bright, or when the night is especially dark and missing something.
This is a pure apology; nothing but an admittance of guilt and an expression of regret.
I am sorry.
I guess this is the classic procedure, how things like this end; nothing out of the ordinary. Many stages, but at the end is a pure 100% apology. A letter devoid of anything but guilt, regret, and memories. A letter so unlike anything I have written for you in the past.
But I stand by my apology, I was wrong and I regret having written any of them.
It’s a near impossible task for me to write more, though I want to express more. I want to remain in touch, if only by writing letters that you cannot read. But how do I address you? A past lover, or a past opponent? A stranger ? but I cannot see you as a stranger anymore.
It must be part of the classic procedure. If the apology is pure, after it comes nothing.
I look at you, and I avert my eyes.
I look at the sky, pretty beyond description and far beyond reach.
If only I were a star, and I could part of the sky. I would be her partner, burning to add brightness to her nights so that she may never be lonely.
It’s unfortunate that I wasn’t a star.
But it isn’t unfair. And I know that anyone who looked at the sky, wished to be her star. The sky is one, and the gazers are many.
And maybe everything I say, and everything I could say, is repetitive and unnecessary.
I said this before, but let me say more of what is repetitive and unnecessary:
I wish that I was never born, that I never saw the sky, and that I never sat down gazing at her helplessly, repetitively, and unnecessarily.
When she rained, I cried hoping she couldn’t tell my tears from her raindrops. And when she stopped, I looked to the ground wishing to be devoured instantly.
If it was by merit, then I cannot complain. If it was by chance, then I cannot complain.
But I guess the question becomes: what if it was by merit, and my merit was assigned to me by chance?
Hope, or the list of things I do not consider impossible.
My analysis of that list does not exceed noting that they’re possible at any time that isn’t now.
There is a limit, though, when there are enough writings, and enough memories. There can be too many possibilities and too many possible times.
Persistence, or grit.
We were solid as a rock. Emotionless as a rock. Expressionless as a rock.
Only immense heat and pressure could make something so solid yet so dull.
As the sun rises, as I see the skin of my hands, as it gets more and more difficult to fall asleep, it pains me to realize that today is not the day. I am keeping count, you see, on the wrinkles of my skin.
I’ve hoped for so long, and I am starting to doubt.
I looked in the mirror, and all the ungroomed hair that covered my head and face couldn’t hide who I was, and it couldn’t hide the resemblance to my two uncles.
I used to think that something went wrong somewhere, and it led me to this. But I’m starting to see that this man in front of me is exactly how the child I was could grow.
An average of two extremes, but even every commendable achievement was earned for the wrong reasons.
I was terrified of becoming like my uncle, of quitting everything I have and simply living to die.
Then I remembered what my grandfather said.
Yes, I may avoid my uncle’s life, but it is equally terrifying to live a difficult life only to provide an excuse. It is equally terrifying to punish myself for their evil genes.
As if I was born undeserving of life that the meaning of my life became to justify it.
As if the limit of my life’s meaning is to push myself as far away from the evil extreme, so that the likes of my grandfather can describe me as “OK.”
Grandfather, I don’t know if you can hear me, but I want you to know that I have never hated anyone in my life as much as I hate you today.
“Why don’t you go inside and eat with others?” That’s what my uncle asked. He saw my habit of eating on the stairs outside because I wanted to be by myself.
Even in college, the many times I ate on the stairs of buildings.
“He’s always like that, even at home.” My father used to tell people, sometimes even those we meet for the first time. As if something was so visibly wrong that he had to explain.
I started writing only after I have read so much in middle school. When I hid everyday in the individual cubicles in the library.
At the hospital, where we woke up at 6 and went to bed at 6, I revisited my favorite hobby of reading.
The more I remember of my past, the more likely it seems. Things have a better explanation now.
Things like the girl whose shoulder I burned with a wire hanger trying to approach her when I was 10 years old (funny that we were visiting my grandparents at the time).
Things like molesting another student in elementary school when I didn’t even know much.
Things that were only tolerable because I was “gifted”. It was the reason I was allowed in society, the excuse for my life.
Today, my thick folder of transcripts and acknowledgments shares the room with many empty medication bottles. Nothing gives me more pride and more humiliation than seeing my name written as the recipient of praise and pity.
How sickening to live as an average of two extremes.
He died in a car, but not in a car accident, and he made amends soon before it. Not many people ask more about it.
His younger brother, the cool uncle that played video games with me, quit his job and lives with my grandmother. Every time we visit, he shows up with long ungroomed hair and yellow teeth. It doesn’t take more than 5 minutes of talking with him to know he isn’t completely sane.
Their father, my grandfather, has died a few years ago. I remembered something he said and it frightened me today.
We were three sitting, my grandfather, my father, and I. I was about 14-16 years old. They were talking for a while, then they stopped.
My grandfather stared at me for a moment, then he looked towards my father and said in a low voice: “the kid, his mind is not right.” My father looked at him but said nothing.
I fear that history tells me that there are two possible outcomes. Which of my uncles lives are less pitiful?
As the night begins, I descend.
My comfortable place is below that of a human, but it’s comfortable.
As I enter, the walls start to dance. I feel light, and smile at the dancing walls.
I tire myself dancing, and then I start to regain my mind.
Eventually, I start to remember. Not the terrible memories anymore, but the one complex inhumane feeling they evoke.
I remember that I’m comfortable, but I am below the place of a human.
How long has it been? I can’t tell, but there are so many empty bottles.
Are there more bottles than ugly memories? I can’t tell, but there are enough memories to want to be absent-minded, and enough bottles to be absent-minded tonight.
Barely conscious, but barely able to feel any kind of pain.
Only the essential pains I feel.
By God, by every divine and undivine being, I will not remain helpless towards my own life.
By all the angels that have guided me when I was once worthy, and by all the devils that grasp my mind today. By myself, by everything.
I swear, and swearing is meant to be most honest.
I swear and all of those testify.
On an indeterminate day, at an indeterminate time, I will be most determined, as determined as a living thing can be.
People have warned me of falling into pits.
Because falling requires only lack of care and lack of attention, and then gravity will push you towards the molten center of the earth.
But rising and climbing the mountains is a conscious and constant effort to ascend level after level.
Although they have warned me, I was careless and I was inattentive.
I have fallen into a pit and I do not see its bottom. No care and attention can save me now. And as my speed increases, I wonder how much more violent my final collision will be.
I hear the voices of the few loved ones calling me from the top, but it becomes harder to hear them with every second.
I wonder if they have given up on calling for me, or if I am too far down to hear them.
I am sorry. I do not know to whom I apologize, and I do not know why, but this, all of this, is truly unfortunate.
I remember my childhood, and I imagine that I was a child when I started falling.
Maybe my apology is to that child that loved life and aspired to climb the highest of mountains.
I am sorry. I have disappointed you.