She looks at the stars, specks of white against the midnight blue backdrop, the silver wane of moonlight that shines through her window as she smiles and realises she is never alone.
Sometimes I remember things, memories from years back and they're both particularly inspiring and leave something bitter at the pit of my stomach. These memories are both good and bad, I suppose. But they don't necessarily make me feel that way in the same order. There are times I wish I could look back and change things about my life, maybe a decision or a choice of words that would have made a difference in the long run. It's this nostalgia that always brings me back from being at the finish line to the beginning where it all started.
I don't know what really made me think of this. Perhaps it was just something about the constant rain on my way back from my old home, a five hour drive from the place I live now, somewhere different and similar at the same time. Or maybe it was the way dad switched the radio channel when too many slow songs came out from a specific channel and told me "They're nice but something listening to them makes you want to slit your own wrists," that got me remembering things. I could blame many things, to be honest. But it'll always end up running back to me and my over-thinking mind, simply because only I can really make myself choose to remember, I guess.
There was a time in my life when people would ask me why I would write when no one would care, my grandmother's disapproval at the side whenever she slammed a book down and asked me why I bothered with such trivial things like my imagination. They'd ask me how it all started, like a spare time hobby and made little picks on them whenever it got to complicated to understand and I tried to shy.
Eventually, I did start thinking about it. The why, what and how. This whole process of give and take that really was just me inflicting pain on myself sometimes but gradually I began to understand that this pain was exactly the reason how I cooped with it all, like a defence mechanism, the pen being sharper than the sword.
It started out with small things, little poems, couplets that would come under the guise of little things like the way the rain would pat insistently against my window sill at cold, monsoon nights or when the right kind of music appeared. They were words, words used to hide and show exactly how I felt and while I got worried stares when they became too dark or complicated for anyone's taste, I just kept them all in with a smile and fingers crossed behind my back.
They say that you can never pinpoint when you really start writing, when a hobby becomes something more than just a simple ambition but if I could, I think it started back in the days when I had a friend put up my hand and write down my name for a writing competition when I was seven or so. Just something small, yet terrifying to me at the same time.
But I did it, terrible primary school writing and all. It was a scary and fun process at the same time, challenging and calming, contradictions in their own way and they felt right.
And then I won, first prize being a little piece of paper with a title and name that I took as a little push that made things come true.
So that's how it all started, even if I'm far from it ending.
I've met people along the way, people still close and dear while others remain like faint whispers against my ear whenever I recall conversations and laughters that seem more like a distant memory seen behind the glass and static of a television set.
There used to be one really close to me, and I still think we're close even if we haven't talked in years. Maybe it's just my own feelings but I'll always appreciate how much she was there for me and vice versa. But at the same time, I hated her. I hated her for loving me and hating her own life because people didn't understand her the way she was suppose to. I can still remember tracing the scars on the inside of her wrists, the way she flinched and how all I wanted to do was to curl into her and cry what she wouldn't. The pain, the sadness, the happiness. I wonder how she is now, especially when I see her pictures and that smile still looks sad at the corners. I hope it's my mind playing tricks on me, but at the same time I'm not going to hope. She should have a good life. She always wanted to travel with just a backpack over her shoulder and a full tank of fuel in an old vintage car, not a single amount of technology on her. The way they used to live in the old days, she used to tell me, and see everything all over the world with her own eyes as she earned money for a living at a foreign country she barely knew the language to speak in. It was one of her dreams and I hope it still is.
And there are people now, but that isn't a book to be closed just yet. I wish I could speak my feelings out clearer than anything, shout them out to the world, paint them on the brick walls of buildings right across the street, make public declarations in every way I knew. It's pain and happiness that I feel most of the time, I guess. Bittersweet is the default taste in my mouth, too deep to scrub off my tongue. It'll always be there, I just hope time might fade it away even if it'll never be completely gone.
So I want to say I love you, to the people I'll meet in the future, to the people I already know and keep close. To the people that I've left behind for reasons both good and bad. I love you, because one day you'll be gone and I'll have that taste in my mouth again that I'll regret, dying old and frail against my deathbed with too much of a laugh and not enough of a heart.
And hello, to the things that will follow. Hello because change is constant and will never ever stop, not even to get up on your feet. The world is hell but living is the package that comes along with it so I guess there's no turning back.
It's too late baby, there's no turnaround. I've got my hands in my pockets and my head in the clouds.