Most people have an expectation of what their ideal partner would be like. Usually these notions are ideals imprinted through Disney childhoods or classic novelists, through parental impressions or media propaganda. Seldom does our idea of the ideal companion come from who we are and what we want, it is usually a combination of factors with our Ultimate Truth barely making the equation.
In my case, the few essential qualities selected have started to appear less like ideal characteristics and more like intentional confinement. The average person will have an idea of what it is they are seeking, a basic list of traits from which they will not be swayed, but the more intricate items will be overlooked when love comes their way. A few crooked teeth and a different career path are gladly forgotten when the Italian artist smiles as he sweeps the Russian-loving businesswomen off her feet, and yet I seem to have such an unrealistic outlook that I have started to recognise it for what it is on a subconscious level –an excuse masquerading as a standard.
So impossible is my list that it is dubious whether such a person could exist anywhere other than in ink and imagination. It starts with a desire for a specific eye color, which I am convinced my heart can only beat for. So staunch am I in my convictions that I have yet to envision anything other than that colour, and tell myself it is because the iris is the only physical asset that remains the same when all else changes. But then it is also his profession, refusing to believe I could be compatible with those in certain industries, and placing a biased belief on all men in certain sectors -thus completely ruling them out. But I take it a step further still by believing they must be native English speakers, for so strong is my need to explore and express with another that the thought of having a barrier between complete connection is instantly unsettling. Further still, and the man I am with needs to be in touch with his emotional side as stone cold logic would not bode with my fluctuating emotional current. In fact, not just an emotional side -there needs to be damage, and more moderate than mild. Plain down fucked up could be just the ticket. In addition to this he needs just the right mix of characteristics -lacking in one of the traits I deem most imperative is an immediate dismissal, as if I myself am not made of good intentions that never manifest. Most importantly we need to connect, a bond so strong it would feel as if it the comet that struck the earth and took out an entire damned species couldn’t compete. And on top of that, he’s got to…
He’s got to not exist, because if he exists I may let him in, and if I let him in he may stay, and if he stays I may get used to him being there, and if I get used to him being there he may go, and if he goes it may hurt… And if it hurts I’ll have to heal. Again.
Dear Kat: What Life Is Like Now That You Are Gone
It’s absurd how often I think about you now that you are gone; every casual conversation we ever had an exchange of words I did not realise would cement themselves in the place you no longer are.
Your passing apprised me with the fragility of human existence, and the profound impact interactions could have well after their moment had ceased to be anything more than recollections.
A million words are incoherently strewn in my brain, wishing to string themselves together and sound out like notes to your ears, to fill you with the Love that is owed to all who live -not only to those who have left us behind. I view the warmth of affection as a blanket of selfishness I swaddled myself in, and feel myself imploding with the knowledge that I can no longer infuse you with emotions.
If our true human connections were to be viewed as a single piece of jewelry, then your place around my wrist would have been a sparkling gem I did not pay attention to until your casing was without stone. Now all I see is the empty space in which nothing will ever fit as appropriately, a vacant gap as dull as the darkness that blinded you and a thousand words remain unspoken…
-except the air hears them all: the unoccupied car seat as I barrel along the highway with a melody that chokes of your memory, the way I envision you in my room when all I can think about is how there is no elegant way to describe death, nor the loss of the companions you learn to love along the way and my God I hope you know I loved you…
And thank you. The little pieces of yourself that you have left behind are enough to help feel closer to you whenever there is a lacking; the way you laid yourself out was a patchwork manner in which we could piece you together when we no longer knew where to look for you. With the haze of hurt slowly subsiding, and the reality of a life without you settling in your words become clearer, your truth becomes louder…
Yet still it is as if every memory I access ties itself to you, and of a multitude of neural fragments yours stab the sharpest until you are a migraine I do not want to be rid of. It would be me who fell to my knees now, if only I could see you! Neither of us recognised the importance of your existence when your lungs still took air, in death you embody all that it means to have taken things for granted. You were an inspiration in the most subtle way, that our very conversations encouraged entire poetic pieces without me ever attributing the significance to who you were to me. In hindsight, my writings have rarely ever taken shape without tragedy. How ironic then, that we find ourselves here. Do I find you here?
Too many of the things I love have chords of you hidden in the tune, speaking through the lyrics and so I no longer know how to listen without hearing you. Yet lately Kat, it seems evermore to me that this life is beautiful: it feels as though I have gone through chrysalis to emerge with wings that you will never see in flight, and I only wonder how bright your wings would have been had you envisioned the darkness as encasing a beginning rather than the cocoon of a curse. Oh, my Skittles! Sometimes I taste the rainbow, and only hope that you have found the pot of gold at The End… ♥
It is not my fault that you are gone. It IS my fault for not realising that you were not going to stay.
It Is My Fault for overlooking your emotional decline, as if my helplessness regarding your hopelessness was a validation for the way in which I handled your statement of depression. I, always so abundant in advice for those I care about, found when your tongue stalled mine stilled. In your silence there was a hunger for the words that I did not have.
It Is My Fault for the immoralities in which I have excessively indulged, for the vices that we would unite over and the manner in which they obliterated the memories of your every profession. In your absence my thoughts have sobered, and I have been left to reflect upon what I have now come to know was truly your confession.
It Is My Fault for allowing the anxiety that ticks in my head like the hands of a clock to convince me there was no time for a farewell, because there would always be time for another hello. The uncharacteristic keenness you displayed should have served as an alarm, yet my apprehension was the only thing I allowed myself to pay heed to… The loss of you has detonated with more force than any fear ever could have.
It Is My Fault for blithely accepting your response to my query; you were a puzzle I was too ashamed to admit I could not solve. What you presented was a perfectly coloured side of a Rubik’s Cube, and although I could sense the angles you did not display were a mangled mess aching to be resolved I did not know how to align the rest of you without disrupting the best of you.
It Is Not My Fault that you are gone, but It Is My Fault for not recognising that you weren’t going to stay. As you journeyed to your final destination, you left a trail of breadcrumbs in your wake –and now, I’m choking on them.
Loneliness. Each individual has a unique interpretation of loneliness as they experience it. Is it the lack of companions that imparts a sense of aloneness in you? Is it the act of being ostracised by your community, rejected by your peers? A feeling of being misunderstood? Or is it solitude itself?
To me, my loneliness stems from the belief that I am irreparably damaged, that I have been so broken by life that I can never bind the cracks of my shattered self together –let alone deeply bond with another! – that I am so misshapen my psychological model is considered defective, and discarded. My imperfections are not the quirky foibles one can consider endearing, but rather abominable deficiencies so dark the light of day would not hazard an attempt at illuminating them. A sense that although all my broken pieces play hide-and-seek in the mansion of madnesses and I am able to use them to witness, understand and relate to the inhabitants of each room, they are all entire yet fractured whilst I am partial and wrecked. I wander the halls of life, laden with lockers all protecting the treasures of complete existences, holding the promise of potential connections, taunting me with the knowledge that at any moment I could reach in and discover the depths of another. There is no place for me, I am but a tourist, a foreigner –wherever I go, all I am is temporary. Few can get close, and those that do are almost guaranteed to injure themselves on the razor edges of my fragmented remains. In their haste to draw back from the sudden pain, the probability of their mishandling me is likely to multiply my pieces into smaller, less manageable shards whilst inflicting unintentional further harm upon themselves. Broken people break people.
The solitary life has been my default mode for as long as I can remember –I bond, and in intensity, but generally it is exclusive to one person during a given period, and at the exclusion of any other notable attachments. This is sufficient for my needs, but it isn’t uncommon for me to oscillate between being involved and being isolated. Withdrawing into myself and warding off interaction becomes my modus operandi with alarming frequency, and those I love become the ones I lose. The more the pain accumulates, the further I retreat into my own shell. And although externally I inhibit my expression of taste, my inner world is a rich and colourful haven –even when those colours are varying shades of black, with a burst of vehement crimson and an irate blush of scarlet to break the monotony. It is here that I find my solace, and it is here I feel a sense of acceptance; for in my complete unacceptance I am sure, in my faults I am certain, in my failings I am aware.
Loneliness? It isn’t a lack of people with whom you spend your time, but rather the absence of understanding even among those with whom your time is shared. It is a self-imposed sequestration, a selected introspective isolation. And yet in it I have found there is serenity, there is splendour but most importantly? There is safety…