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Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “heartache”

Box of Memories

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Three words. Four sides. A lifetime. A box, however big or small, is used to store things you don’t want to throw away, yet don’t want them in plain sight. The box we most cherish is the one that holds our memories. Some keep it inside their head. In that special place with all the thoughts they love to bring to mind. Others have a physical container filled with memorabilia from times that were too special for them to ever forget.

Each memory box is unique for every person who has one. Because not everyone has the same perception of the things that matter. Some people are overly sensitive, saving theatre tickets, beer caps, hand-written notes, printed photos, even dried-up flowers. They are things that encase more than a simple memory; a feeling that is worth remembering. Because it was at that time when they felt serene, loved and happy. When they believed that ‘forever’ is more than just wishful thinking but rather a word that could gain the meaning they want if they try hard enough.

Others have boxes with fewer things: books, music, photo frames, souvenirs, even clothes. More practical entities of what a memory entails.

But all have something in common: the memories we create are the feelings that make us stronger, more optimistic and resilient. They are proof that happiness does exist and will last as long as you are willing to nourish it.

No matter how many boxes of memories we create, we must all believe in the beauty of a happy ending. And the fact that we each deserve one.

Self-inflicted wounds

http://buzzsouthafrica.com/wp-content/uploads/heartbreak.pngThey said to find someone who makes you happy. So you do. It takes time and effort and lots of heartbreak, but you do. You find that one and you start giving them all of your attention because they’re what makes you forget everything bad that’s going on in your life. They’re the first person you want to talk to in the morning and the last one before you sleep just so you can start and end your day with a smile. It sounds so great to have that someone. But it all gets so scary when you see how easily they can just leave and take all that happiness away too when they go.

And then you have to search again for that lost serenity first and foremost, before you can feel you can survive again. Because they’re still in your mind. And you still want it to be them that you talk to.

What is more, the pain of it all is hidden in everything around you, in all the things that hold a memory, a smile, a laughter, an image of a time when things were different. And you wonder if you’ll ever have that again. With that person you still feel for.

Love isn’t easy. Neither is life. It all takes effort. A lot of it. And a love that lasts. Truly and forever.

They said it would all be worth it in the end.

“The worst thing about heartbreak is that it’s a self-inflicted wound. After all, wasn’t it I who fell in love with you?” – Jessica Katoff

The expectation cake

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/06/69/65/06696539ee1ca72964593a3b663854df.jpgHelen was baking a cake. She knew exactly how she would want it to be. She had it all planned in her head up to every last detail. It was simple really – you took a bunch of ingredients, mixed them all together, place it in the oven and let it bake. Then the fun begun. Because everyone knows that it is the icing on the cake that makes all the difference.

Once the cake cooled down, Helen began to implement what she had already so careful planned in her head. She added colors to the sugar icing and delicately began to decorate. The cake had been placed in layers, stacked one on top of the other, each shrinking on their way up. She wrapped a red satin ribbon around the bottom layer and decorated the top layer with blue lilies made of icing. It seemed exquisite. It was exactly what she had imagined. She stepped back to admire her work and was herself impressed at how well she had managed to bring to life the image she had mentally created. She was proud of herself.

She likened the cake with her expectations of life, for she believed that if you set your mind on something and tried hard enough, you could realise all the things whose value you heighten in your head.

But then it happened.

A football came crashing through her kitchen window, landing straight onto the layered cake. The icing splattered onto her apron and across the kitchen, whose floor was also filled with pieces of broken glass.

The neighbor’s son was heard yelling an embarrassed “sorry”, but that made absolutely no difference now.

Reality struck with a thunderous collision for Helen that day. And that is was when she realized that sometimes, we shouldn’t expect so much from the slightest of things. Because in the end, expectation is indeed the root of all heartache.

Treacherous Love

forbiddenloveShe could understand when he would arrive because her heart skipped a beat. It was as if she had a telepathic sensor locked with his presence and she could sense him coming a mile away. She found herself longing for the moment she would see him again and couldn’t wait for the time to pass until that ‘next time’. She knew it was wrong. But she couldn’t help it.

She hoped he felt the same. He seemed to show that he did. She felt so safe and natural with him. As if the entire world disappeared in his arms, melting away in his kiss. But it never lasted for more than a few hours. And that prickled her heart like a rose losing its petals and having only its thorns remain. And as time passed, it hurt all the more.

They both knew it was wrong. Their society would not accept it. She was betrothed to someone else. Someone she had never seen before the day of her wedding. And he returned home to another. One others chose for him. She couldn’t stand the thought that someone else was sharing the most private moments of his life. She wanted that to be her. She wanted to be the extension to his arm.

They moved into this relationship knowing what they were getting into. They promised it would be carnal, to satisfy the lust they felt for each other. Yet, she fell deeper. She allowed herself to fall in love with him. To get stuck onto a reckless path, one she nonetheless enjoyed. And each time she saw him, talked to him, touched him, she was swept away further. Into a loop she knew she would never be able to untangle from. She found herself begging him to stay when she knew she should not even be there. His name constantly echoed in her mind. He was all she could think of and kept hoping he did the same. She could not step back though. Not now. Because they were both in too deep. And, quite frankly, she didn’t want to either.

Nothing safe is worth the dive. So maybe, she thought, it’s not really about that happy ending that they know will never come. It’s about the story they share together. And maybe that would make it all worth it. Because some hearts are meant to be broken, so that others can find their happiness.

Fine Art, Flawed Artists

books1There are times when you come across a book that you cannot put down, not because of its plot or fictional narrative, but because it is so inspiring you want to learn more. When such books are recommended by people who know you well enough to safely bet that it will enrapture you, then you are certain to read through the entire book in less than a couple of days.

Clive James’ Latest Readings is such a book.

Masterfully written it is witty, funny, absorbing, entertaining, inspiring. The flow of language is so effortless that it can be read in a gulp. There is a uniqueness in every line, blooming with such an exquisite narrative, that it makes you feel as if the author is sitting right there conversing with you.

Although an esteemed literary critic, in this specific book, James does more than simply review the books he read. He reviews a lifetime of reading books. Because he artfully combines his opinion of the book’s content, with its background epoca and its context, associating everything with current events – from the rise of ISIS, to the digitization of the written word, to Bill Cosby’s trial, even to recent TV series and movies. And all of this is combined with a telling of his own state (he was diagnosed with terminal leukemia) and the fact that he was melting away, or, like he says, “slipping into time”.

This is an illuminating book in many ways, because, although some books and writers may not be familiar to you, he will awake in you the urge to read more. He will illuminate the dream of having a large room with huge double doors opening into an entire library full of books. One that contains bookcases rising up from the ground to the ceiling, so complete that you need an incorporated sliding ladder to move across them. A library so full, that you would eventually need to smuggle books in and hide them, as he does, being under embargo for bringing in more books. And he encourages you to love books, despite the rapid conversion into the “rational solution” of a digital form, as “being book crazy is an aspect of love, and therefore scarcely rational at all”.

But he will also inspire you to become a better author in order to produce the book you dream to write. He urges you to be open to self-criticism, because “unless you can criticize yourself, you are not a writer”. He even calls out to journalists themselves, a dying craft of our times, stressing that “journalism is the first draft of formal history”.

He explores the background stories of the writers themselves, opening up details into their lives that you never knew. One of the most memorable phrases in the book is that “fine art is usually work of flawed people”, giving you hope that no matter your troubles, you can always produce something great.

His ode to Ernest Hemingway is beautiful, particularly noting that “he was a giant of who dreamed of being a giant” and was an author able to deliver such a convincing narrative, such that “his way of putting things was a transformative illusion”. His closing reference to Florence Nightingale is also both touching and enlightening.

What is most astounding throughout the book is that, despite his illness, James never gives up. He doesn’t abandon his wit and sharp intellect, nor does he stop reading, expanding both his knowledge and his world. And that, is perhaps, the most inspiring aspect of it all. After all, as he so deftly states, “If you don’t know the exact moment when the lights will go out, you might as well read until they do.

Do you remember?

Memories“Do you remember that time at the lake, when you fell and as you sat on the frozen ice it broke, and when I came to help I fell in? We were laughing so hard, we had forgotten all about how painful it was!”

                “No. I don’t remember.” Her face was cringing, as she desperately tried to recall the memory.

“Do you remember our first dance? It was that song you still love; it was during a full moon, during our dinner at that French restaurant you chose. You were wrapped in my arms and looked into my eyes, and that is when you first told me you love me. Do you remember? I was in tears when I told you back how much I love you too.”

                She began to cry. She could not remember. No matter how much she tried, her mind was blank. It was as if this all happened in a movie she once saw and now had forgotten. Her head hurt from trying too hard to remember something that was no longer there.

“Do you remember the time you told me you were truly happy? We had gone sailing and a miscalculation on my part – let’s call it that – caused the boat to topple over. We fell into the sea and you began to splash around, jumping all wet and soggy over my shoulders and grabbing me so tight. I could feel your laughter resonate in my chest.”

                “No,” she said tearfully. She could not remember the incident at all. She remembered nothing.

On the contrary, he remembered everything. Every detail. Every experience. Every feeling. Every laughter. Every tear. Every moment. Every word. So vividly.

He always thought memory was a choice, but after her accident, he began to reconsider this perception. It was not her fault. It was not as if she chose to forget.

But he didn’t know what was worse: the fact that he remembered everything, or that she remembered nothing at all.

The things you’d rather not know

sealed envelopeThere are some things in life that you’d rather not know. Because sometimes it is better to live with the notion of reality that you’ve formulated in your head, rather than the truth.

Sometimes it is better not to know. Because knowing changes everything.

There are some things that affect you even if you try to deny it. That haunt your dreams at night and stray your thoughts during the day.

There are things that change your whole perspective of life.

But there are things that you wished you’d never known, because it hurts too much now that you do.

Because expectation truly is the root of all disappointment. And the more you know, the more that illusion you built up for yourself crumbles down.

Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. In most cases, it is certainly a calm of mind.

And sometimes it is just better to not know certain things. Because maybe that’s how curiosity did kill the cat.

But you’ll always be left to wonder, if it is better now that you know, or if it would have been better to continue living with the false belief of not knowing all along?

Life is a constant dilemma. And the choices we make will undoubtedly affect our entire view of the world.

The Curse

flirty coupleWhen Lorenzo was a young boy, wild at heart, he met a girl on the train on his way back home from a weekend in the country. In his early twenties then, he loved to flirt and was a true heartbreaker. All during the train ride, they exchanged meaningful glances with the girl, discussed what they were doing and where they were from, shared their views about how they hoped their lives would be, and laughed a lot. By the time they arrived at the station, they both agreed it would be great to see each other again. The girl told him she was studying in a near-by town and he should call her so that they could arrange to meet up again soon. He carefully inserted her number in his phone and hit save.

Lorenzo lived twenty minutes by car away from the station. He took a taxi to get there and arrived half an hour later due to heavy traffic. What he didn’t notice until later that night, however, was that he had dropped his phone in the taxi. He had lost his device and everything on it, including that girl’s number.

What he never realized until years later is that this incident would haunt his very existence.

Since then, every time he made plans to visit that particular near-by town – which was coincidentally one of the country’s main attractions due to its architectural elegance and natural beauty – he would end up fighting with his current girlfriend, or having something extraordinary coming up work-wise, resulting in him never getting there. Eventually, he gave up even trying. He simply settled with the fact that it was just not his destiny to visit that town.

Little did he know that the girl on the train had been very upset that Lorenzo never called her – she had really liked him, and as every love-struck young girl, had already began dreaming of a relationship with him. So, she cursed him into never being able to set foot in her town. If he didn’t go there for her, he shouldn’t go there at all, she thought.

The power of a heart in love is immense, but the force of a broken heart knows no limits.

The singing nightingale

nightingale

It was as beautiful as the dawn of a new day,
But as fragile as the thinnest twig of a newborn tree.
It sounded as exquisite as the chords of a divine symphony,
But it alone felt the pain hidden behind each note.

The nightingale had a simple appearance
There were no extravagant colours adorning its feathers
Yet inside it enfolded a heart brighter than gold.
It could love as selflessly and unconditionally as no other,
But that, no-one would ever know.

For unrequited love is the most terrible of all.
It never thanks you for the rose you painfully and bloodily gathered,
It never recognizes how you long for their companionship,
It can never acknowledge the actions they never saw you take.

So the nightingale sings.
It sings to soothe its broken heart.
It sings in the night to express its sorrow.
It sings when it can hide in the dark.
It sings in the hope that things will change tomorrow.

Not even when the fat lady sings

fat_lady_singingBen was in pain. It was not the kind of pain that you can take medicine for and make it go away. This was deeper. It was an ache that reached right inside of him, grabbed hold of his soul and clenched it as tightly as possible. It was a pain that could not be soothed.

For two months, nothing could make it any better. Not even words of comfort from older and wiser friends. Not even music of all sorts. Not even movies to make his mind wander off. Not even alcohol.

But one day, the pain changed.

It became one that devoured his insides. He could feel it grasping his lower belly and causing him to fold into two as he fell to the floor, entangled like a baby ape.

That is how his aunt found him when she came to check up on him with a freshly baked carrot cake in hand.

Ben barely managed to utter that he was in too much pain to even move. He was rushed to the hospital and told that his sadness – his untreatable pain – had severely damaged his kidneys, to the point that they were no longer functional. His left kidney had to be removed immediately, but his right one was only in danger. He had to have a kidney transplant in order to be sure that he would not face any future risk that would endanger his very life.

Ben was of a rare blood type and kidney donors that were an exact match were hard to find. But, somehow, he was lucky. The “rare kind of lucky”, the doctor said, as a donor was found within 24 hours. It was a perfect match and the operation was a success. Ben was given a list of things to do, to eat, to take care of. “Get rid of sadness” was written in capitals at the bottom. But anyone who has ever been heart-broken knows that this is an almost impossible task.

The day after his surgery, Ben insisted on being told who his donor was. The doctor told him it was against medical practice, but he said the donor was asked and had no objection. In fact, the donor themselves wanted to come by and see how their new kidney-host was doing. Ben nodded, his curiosity rising.

As the door opened, he saw her. She was even more beautiful than he remembered, with a smile that made his heart pound and her eyes sparkling so brightly they lit up the entire room. He had not seen Lucy for two months now.

I thought it was over,” he told her, his eyes welling up. “Yet, you came and saved me.”

Honey, it is never over with us,” she replied, equally moved to tears. “Not even when the fat lady sings.”

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