Proud people bring sorrow upon themselves

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


It has been some years now. I do not think of you anymore, and only recently has removed every photo of you from my computer. Every once in a while, I would suddenly feel, what it has been like to hold you in my arms again – but that is not exactly thinking, nor is it even remembering. It is a physical sensation, an imprint of the past that has been left in my body, and I have no control over it. These moments come less often now, and for the most part it seems as though things have begun to change for me. I no longer wish to be dead. At the same time, it cannot be said, that I am glad to be alive. But at least, I do not resent it. I am alive and the stubbornness of this fact has little by little begins to fascinate me – as if I manage to outlive myself, as if I were somehow living a posthumous life. I do not sleep with the lamp on anymore, and for many months now I have not remembered any of my dreams.

I no longer accept any invitations and avoid most of my friends, all of whom profess themselves anxious to see me, perhaps they are, but I can anticipate the conversation, the avoidance of a certain subject. And I feel protective of their naïve kindness, far more protective of them, than of myself.

In any event, I am scarcely aware of hurt, only of shock. This has a curious effect on me. I become polite and humble, searching people’s faces for the assurance I can no longer find in myself. When I look in the mirror, I see that my expression is one of pleading. If I live at all, in these months, I live automatically, eating without hunger to combat fatigue, exercising in order to afford myself some vestige of healthy activity. There is one change: I sleep a lot. I become a sleeper of heroic duration and consistency. In the early evening, I think of my bed with longing but wait until suitable hour before I permit myself to pull off the coverlet with relief. During weekend, I camp inside my room permanently, sometimes spending time outside only to use up the time before I can decently go to bed. Sleep is what I most want and crave. It seems to be the only need I will ever have again. Sometimes before going to sleep, you will enter my mind even if your life has excluded me for an appreciable time which I accept, however regretfully. I tell myself over and over again that our parting is inevitable. I go through this reasoning every night. Then I enter sleep as others enter religion.

In time, I regard the whole tragedy objectively and is successful in dismissing it from my mind for a good part of every day. What remain of it is incorporated in my loneliness, the one contingent upon the other. Because of the part I played, I am condemned to go through the world uncomforted, and because I accept this the burden remain oddly manageable, so manageable that I think few people are aware of its existence, whereas to me it is a physical accompaniment, a doppelganger, and the price it exacts, or the one that I volunteer, is a form of celibacy, interrupt only briefly from time to time by a transitory impression of closeness which do not survive than a night or two.

I have no one. I am, despite my many friends, to all intents and purposes, unsupported, or rather deprived of primitive parental and siblings’ support that one craves in the time of loneliness. Even though it bothers me greatly, I feel sometimes my self-communing is so intense that it is an effort to spend many hours in company.

My past experiences now appear to me as one vast divagation, a series of inevitable mistakes. Or maybe these mistakes are there to stop me from repeating them in the future. But usually too little information is known at the outset, especially when other’s do one thinking for one. I have simply failed, as others no doubt fail, when the fledgling judgement proves inadequate to the trials one encounters.

Friday, April 22, 2011


I knew about love and its traps. How it starts well, how mistakes are made, how in moments of confidence or unbearable pain, things are said and never can be unsaid. How caution intervenes, and you behave like a polite friend, aching with the need to renounce that caution, if only to say intolerable things again. How those intolerable things, how cruelty comes into it. And terror. Suspicion. How you are bound by those rules of politeness, self-imposed, once again, never to seek out the vital information. How not knowing become worse than knowing. How your life becomes devoted to finding out. And how you find out. I knew all that. I never speak of it.

I wanted an end to shabbiness, to pretence, to anxiety, to dissembling. The last time, the time of which I never speak, had been so unendurable and also so baffling. I found myself rising, somehow, to expectations which I did not understand: grossness, cruelty, deceit. I had been humiliated, and had been enjoyed precisely because I was humiliated. It was all so different from what others had believed of me. I had managed, somehow, to live two lives. But in the end, it was the more respectable of those lives that I had inherited. I minded, of course. Oh yes, I minded. But at the same time, I know that whatever people say and whatever they put up with and whatever they get away with, love should be simple. And it is. It is.

And then you came along. You fell into my lap like a gift from God and you enlightened my otherwise uneventful days. Ever since I had known you, I was smiling all the time. When we were together, everything seemed right. I could go on with my days, doing things I did not want to do, seeing people I did not want to meet. You pleased me to no end and I thought I had it right this time around. And ohhh how you spoiled me. Maybe because I wanted to be spoilt, at the same time, in a same way, I suppose, that fortunate women are spoiled, or lucky ones. I wanted to be treated a bride, of course.

And the best thing was, I always knew when I would see you. You did not keep me waiting. You did not keep me wonder or speculate. This was so unlike the last time. I could only say that everything that had happened was miraculously reversed, and I embarked into this venture with full confidence. The worst thing that a man can do to a woman is to make her feel unimportant. You never did that. Finally, there were no images in my head. I did not write. I was happy.

But at the end, I know nothing about love. The only thing I know is I am losing you and I can feel my heart sinks at the thought of it. It seemed to me that I, rather than you, had brought this about, and my despair is extreme. Lately when I think of you, I tremble steadily, close to anger but not quite angry enough. I am tense with anxiety, with great sadness, for I doubt my ability to inspire love. If, as it seems, I have become so uninteresting so quickly, how can I put matters right at this late stage? I am not a powerful woman, able to bend others to my own will, nor am I particularly malleable, and therefore able to bend to the will of others. I could have been different, I think. Once I had great confidence, great cheerfulness. I did not question my purpose or the purpose of others. All that had gone, and I have done nothing to replace it. I have become diligent instead of spontaneous; I have become an observer when I see that I am not allowed to participate. I would do what is required of me - although I am by now so confused that I cannot quite decide who requires it.

Still, I miss you so very much. For now that I know I love you, it was your whole life that I love. And I would never know that life. Changes would no doubt take place, and I would never know what they are. And if I wish to please you, I must simply stay away. And your life…your life…would go on without me. And I would have no knowledge of it.

And yet, every single night, it is you by my side. I curl my body around you in my dreams. You are in my subconsciousness during the night and in my consciousness during the day. Even though you are stucked in my head now between the intersection of the imagined and the real, I know it is you I love and it is you I kiss...