the exasperating persistence of longing



Like a psycho with two different halves to herself, sometimes I “hear” two voices talking to me and trying to tell me what to do. The rational half, or the voice of reason, is the one “who” knows what is best for me and what is definitely not (as it is supposed to). And the irrational one, the one “who” makes me act on impulse and hurt myself in the process (well.. most of the time).

I guess both sides are guilty of being manipulative, yet it always seems to me that the voice of reason is the only one being so. As with my parents, I rarely listen to it. I mean I do, but I never take it seriously. After all, I see myself as a passionate person, a hopeless romantic, and a sort of freedom fighter without weapons.

And it is true that such irrational, emotional half gives me excitement, pleasure, and happiness. Yet at the same time, it also gives me pain, almost unbearable pain. Like a monster, it is always thirsty, greedy and insatiable. And it can be strident sometimes. As a result, I often find myself oscillating between joy and despair. And sadly, joy is always brief and tenuous, while despair is everlasting and formidable, almost unstoppable.

At night, it would sneak up on me, when I am least capable of grappling with it.

I am not a strong person. I have never been one. And I am not immune to sadness (I wish I could get a vaccine if they produce one!). People say that I am self-confident and independent, but the truth is I am very weak. I avoid meeting people when I know I cannot handle them. I travel alone so that I don’t have to deal with others. I cut off a friendship because I fear it would never work. I act like I don’t care, and then I would feel terribly guilty and start hating myself for being so.

During some nights, negativity just goes on and on and on. I couldn’t fight it hard like a gladiator, so I try the avoidance tactics. Studying, reading books, talking to people about harmless stuff, watching movies, whatever that works.

It does not change the fact that I hate myself and that I hate those who caused me so much pain. No, sorry, I still hate myself and them with a passion.

But fortunately, after a while, the voice of reason would finally speak up, or should I say it would yell at me: Pull yourself together! I’ve had enough of your bullshit!

So I stuff all the negativity, all the sadness and pain, and longing also, in that imaginary box, and pretend to myself that I’m okay. And I would be okay, for a while, until the moment I see them all again.

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