my emotional life is a series of crashes. they always go something like this:
i get in the driver’s seat and put the key in the ignition. the radio’s playing one of my favourite songs. i hum the intro and mouth the first couple of words while reaching for the seatbelt. my hands hesitate – what is it they say about living a safe but boring life? maybe this time, i’ll let loose a little. my right hand falls onto the steering wheel while my left puts the car into gear. the hand break goes down, my foot hits the pedal, and i’m off.
it’s a comfortable speed at first. i smile at the clear skies ahead and continue singing my song. the journey is smooth and i’m enjoying the ride…when suddenly it turns dark. my mind races and i start palpitating. i know what’s coming up in front of me. i know it. it’s happened so many times before it just has to be it. my left arm crosses my chest as my fingers search for the seatbelt.
but it’s too late.
i see the red brick wall ahead of me, placed inappropriately in my path. it doesn’t belong on the road, but i know it’s meant for me, like the time before and the one before that.
the car no longer obeys my shaking hands. it accelerates by its own means, on its own terms. i snap out of my horror long enough to put my foot on the brake pedal but it’s all in vain…
and i crash. and burn. in a pile of tears and heartbreak.
did i see it coming? yes, on hindsight the clouds gathered long before the familiar terror struck me. just as i hesitated protecting myself right from the start, i allowed the hope of a different outcome to propel me forward. but once the wall came into view, there was no hope of emerging unscathed. i let myself crash. like i’d done so many times before.
don’t say i’ve emerged from each mishap stronger than before. even in real life repeated impacts on a person’s body takes its toll. a repeatedly broken ankle ruins an athlete’s career. a repeatedly broken heart has ruined my self-esteem.
i need to get out of this town. fast.