“Writer’s Block…” he played victim, blaming state-of-mind.
She feigned ignorance, trying hard to empathize. “What’s that?” she responded with a question.
“When a writer is blocked and can’t think of ideas,” he didn’t pick up on her sarcasm.
“What’s it like to be blocked for ideas?” This was not rhetorical.
As a writer, Olivia had never found it hard to come up with ideas to write about; whether those ideas are well-received is another matter altogether. However, the sheer simplicity of generating an idea has never been an impossibility for her, so as much as she had wanted to relate, Olivia was nonetheless faced with inability to truly understand Oliver’s struggle.
In the minute it had taken Oliver to express himself, Olivia’s mind had elicited about five realizations. One, it was that she took herself for granted far too often. Two, it was gratitude of not being plagued with Oliver’s brand of “struggle”. Three, she felt bad for her friend, who could not seem to overcome a mental block. Four, she thanked her younger self for the discipline that had been instilled in her life as well as her writing. Last but not least, it was in this small moment that she realized the true power in self-commitment.
The crossroad is where you and I first met,
I inched forward whilst you raced on ahead,
Neither of us knew what was in store
But I sought direction and you just wanted… “more”.
Here we meet again,
at this crossroads, my friend;
Me? I never left,
merely needed the rest.
You ran in circles
wrapping up your own mess.
Never have I seen
anyone in such distress,
for usually it is I who causes
the chaos and unrest.
If I am to admit, t’has truly been quite a while
since I’ve had to hide a tear and even feign a smile.
Yet that is what you’ve needed,
so that is what I gave,
then you trampled on our seeds
sent our forest to its grave.
After all this time
I surrender my pride
Your demons are no longer
my battle to fight.
They never really were,
nonetheless I tried
But darling, I’m not your saviour
Just a friend you devoured.
Such twisted bliss
A blissful twist
The masochist and the narcissist
She knows he will break her
Yet still lets him take her
For brokenness was all she had known
And heartlessness was where she had grown
Hopelessly alone, she drew her conclusions
It was a world without love, only illusions
A place overcome by untamed emotion
But her heart remained deep as an ocean
Seeking narcissistic love with its highs and lows
For that roller coaster is all she knows
Fear, and rage
On insecurities the narcissist feeds
Validating the ink that bleeds
Enabling the scars a masochist needs
Leaving wounds deeper than skin
Penance for her every sin
Until the day he bled her dry
And the masochist could no longer cry
For her evaporated tears left a stench
And the narcissist’s thirst no longer quenched
Thus he moved on, new prey to hunt
A planet with eight billion is more than enough
Masochists everywhere, they call themselves “humans”
Silver platter for the narcissist — salt, paprika, and cumin.
She looked at me with insecurity in her eyes, as if pleading for sympathy.
Much as I tried to muster up a shred of compassion, she had used up the last ounce left in me. Used it up on some medial triviality that was, if anything, inconsequential to the matter at hand.
For years, I had done my best to understand the root of the issue. For years, I had given a part of myself to her — my ears, heart, time, energy. I had been sympathetic towards experiences far out of my scope. My arms were always open for embrace, my head was always open to another perspective, but my soul was guarding my heart from digesting more than I could stomach.
Then it happened.
One day, I opened my eyes and realized that she was a living, breathing reminder of everything I had already overcome. She had the demeanor of a human, but the behaviour of what used to be my undefeated demons.
I was at the end of my tether, a tether I didn’t even know existed — perhaps very few people had ever dared reach it. Even fewer lacked the cognizance to know where my line lay.
But she, I suppose, fell into that category of “one of the fewer”.
I confronted her, of course, regarding the levels of disrespect radiating like Venus’ sulfuric acid — she didn’t “mean to”, she just couldn’t “help it”. Apparently it was my fault for letting her speak in that manner, for not defending myself.
Well my apologies for choosing to rise above the need to be unnecessarily defensive.
I took her advice, nonetheless, to prove a point. I “defended myself” by not taking blame for other people’s transgressions. This was, incidentally, viewed as “interrupting” and “not letting the other person finish speaking.” (Rambling, honestly).
Well my apologies for having self-respect and guiding a conversation instead of enabling validation.
How did I even let it go on so long?
I’ve been there before.
I’ve been in her shoes before. Those juvenile, self-centered, self-indulged, narcissistic, insecure, egotistic, defensive, over-analytical, paranoid, anxious shoes.
I’ve worn something like that.
Many moons ago, but in those shoes I’ve tread those paths — climbed the mountains and rolled down cliffs, drowned in lakes and washed up on shore, broken my bones and worn them casts.
But I am not there now. Nor do I want to go back to any of it.
So when I say that I am out of sympathy, it is not selfish or uncaring. It is not callous or heartless.
It is that I will no longer allow anyone to twist something beautiful into their distorted versions of reality. I cannot fill the voids she won’t admit exist, and will not validate insecurities that are hers — not mine — to fight.
My darling, if you ever read this, I’m sorry that I’d ever let you mistake my kindness for weakness, but I’m walking away because of the strength I’ve mustered up after recovering from this battle. I can’t let you interpret my words to your advantage simply to justify the mistakes of mine you continuously repeat instead of move past. I cannot keep being the buoy you cling to when you get stranded at sea, repeatedly. It’s time for you to pull your own weight — I’ve left you with enough care packages and tools to sift through, but it’s up to you to figure out how to use them.
You’re on your own, darling, but in a way that you need right now.
I’ll see you on the other side. Hope you make it out alive.
Signed with the kind of love you’ve yet to understand,
Since your mysterious disappearance, a lot has happened and changed. Not just externally, those are almost expected, but intrinsic transformation beyond even my wildest of imaginations.
It has been a year of adventure, of exploration, of growth. A few days ago, these words came to me and many unanswered questions finally found their resting places.
Real love remains even after your ego breaks.
While I’ve always known that ego has been my greatest challenge in life, meeting you is what taught me to stop leaning on it. To stop leaning on my own understanding and perception of reality. You and I had a few brief and deep conversations, we connected on a level that not many can do so naturally. There was definitely a form of chemistry between us, yet neither of us seemed to know what to do about it.
I battled myself for months, deliberating whether or not to make a move or contact you. I wanted to, each and every day.
But I knew that what you deserved, what you needed, and the type of understanding that you required was beyond my capabilities at the time. Much as I wanted to be strong enough for you emotionally, much as I wanted to give you the space you needed to grow, I couldn’t…
…because space is not a luxury I’ve been blessed with until more recently, and thus could not give what I did not have.
For this, I apologize, sincerely. I am sorry that I couldn’t give you what you asked for, that I couldn’t be who you needed me to be, and that I couldn’t see what it was you were trying to show.
Having come to terms with a neurological condition in recent years, learning how to integrate in an overwhelmingly temporary world, and moving past a series of repeated traumas in a few years whilst refusing to be victimized is honestly not an easy feat. Not easy, but still possible.
When we met, I was coming out of a dark hole, still crawling back to life. You met me when I was battered and bruised, torn and tethered. When I was nothing but a shriveled up patient in recovery who had just taken off a cast and had yet to relearn the functionality of those decayed muscles.
When we met, I was still in metaphorical rags.
I can understand why you left; I must’ve looked like a zombie coming after your brains. Maybe I was, figuratively speaking…
It was your soul.
It was your beautiful soul that drew me to you in the first place. I’d been living without one for so long that your radiance was an inevitable magnet to me; that bright light you see as you leave the tunnel of darkness.
I followed the light. I followed you…
By the time I’d finally made it out of the tunnel, you were gone!
Lost and displaced I was for a while, calling out to you and reaching out, not knowing why you’d disappeared.
Until now, I never figured it out. But I do love you, in the way you asked me to…
You wanted to be loved like the sun: from a distance, your light is lasting and appreciated. Up close, your passion burns so hot that you accidentally hurt those who overstep those boundaries. You pull away to protect the ones you love, not because you’re avoiding them, but because you want to keep them safe.
You, more than anyone, know your passions like no one else.
For that reason, you live your life the way you do, nomadic as a passenger. You don’t want to burden others because you know you can’t take on theirs either, yet you want to be loved nonetheless.
You deserve to be loved.
It has taken us this much distance for me to finally understand that. To understand how you want to be loved.
That, darling, is the love I can give you, because I don’t love anyone with the intention of ever “getting over” the person.
If I choose to love, then that love lasts; it doesn’t disappear, it merely transforms.
I do love you in the way you asked; it may not be what I had expected of myself, but it is what it is.