Everywhere I look I see myself. Reflecting across time. The past, the present, and the future churn together. I am finally, after long, really united with myself. I have come home to me. The myriad Is dissolve in an uncertainty already tinged with sorrow and so my anxious half-breath moistens the mirrors I see everywhere.
The chest pains.
But before that, there was an image that stood out. There I was, flying like a witch towards the moon on that long broomstick with the wind in the hair and magic in my mind. That too was me. Fallen but flying. High and fast and very sure.
The mind fogs.
Patterns swirl. I see it repeat. I think I know the end. I do not mind that life will be over. That it will all end. That nothing will ever be the same. The mourning is because I know I will move on. That in time it will hurt less. Till it starts again. Why get better if you will only fall sick again?
The breath hitches.
That is the only sound for miles. The world is silent. There is absolutely no noise that can overpower the voices in my head. Filled with dread and warning and smug assertion. The voices in my head knew about this pain. They knew it was inevitable. They knew it would come to pass. They cackle wildly in my ears. Say that stillness is fearless. Alone is always better.
The arm catches.
I tell myself I won’t break. I won’t crumble, I won’t fall. I will not be bitter nor will I pretend. And I will definitely not talk. I will seal my lips. And I will not falter. It will all go on. Minutes melting into days and then to years and the only memory that will emerge will be the one made by the pain. A painful memory that will always make a mockery of time and desires. My pain gives me strength. So I will hold my head high, walk tall, speak not. Because that’s how queens embrace even the guillotine.
The shivers begin.
They will be there if I ask. They will hold me. They will not let me go. If I open my mouth; if I share, then we will be together again. It will be like I had never left. I will always have them making fun of the way I talk, the way my breasts lean on the tables, the industrial bras that can save lives. And I will laugh. And they will smile at me with tears in their eyes. I will weep and they will wipe my tears even as they shed some of their own. Then it will begin again. I will distrust them. I will become paranoid. Lose my mind just a little bit. Sometimes more. And it will all begin again. Even that doesn’t matter. It’s not them, it’s me. I suddenly do not matter. I do not need to do the drama and be the queen. So I tell myself that I cannot need them. That I will not need them. And so, I do not need them. And as I turn away they fade to black.
Now everywhere I look I see myself. And yet I am not here. There is nothing when the pain begins. There is nothing now but the smoothness of the pills that I had forgotten. Now I will take the flat buff one again and my chest will stop hurting somewhat. I will swallow that pinkish red one and wait for oblivion. The pills will increase in number again because the chest, it really pains; the mind heavily fogs around every sensation, every thought. Only the fear remains. Clear. Wide. Encompassing. And so the arm catches. It twists, becomes shapeless, deformed. A cruel foreshadowing of the future. This is the future staring back me.
I have met me. We have come full circle now.
I will sleep now surrounded by silence and the burning memory of midnight conversations of nights that have no meaning anymore. When I wake, I will be swollen and brittle. It’s only right that I went and found myself amidst all the rubble, buried there in the ruins. But at least now I will sleep in the silence. It doesn’t matter that I lost months of resolve, succumbed, swallowed pills. At least I will sleep. And I will no longer dream. And there will be no pain for a few hours.
It’s all justified. It’s all as should be.
We have come full circle now. I have met me.
And that is all.