Narrative by anonymous
Snapshots and elephants. These two things have nothing to do with each other, under normal circumstances, but sometimes two things that don’t belong together, come together for a moment in time, only to become unrelated and separate once again.
Snapshots. The memories come in snapshots, bursts of clarity and memory, like an old fashioned camera going off in a dark room. Soon they are gone and I am left with ghost-like sensations, barely there, yet very prevalent. For a moment, before the memories fade back into the dark of my mind, I can almost feel what it felt like to be near him, what it felt like to kiss him. I can almost feel how, when we held hands, our hands didn’t quite fit together correctly – a key jamming into the wrong lock, a puzzle piece scraping over it’s false match – as though our bodies knew all along that the two of us were not meant to last.
Sometimes I remember little things. Like what he was wearing the time I went over to his house and watched movies (a red shirt and khaki-colored cargo shorts and white socks, and the white socks made him look like a child who had taken off his shoes). Like how he smelled every time he was close to me (detergent and general cleanliness, but no one I had ever met or been physically close to had ever smelled like that). But sometimes I remember the things I’d love – almost as much as I loved him – to forget. Like how I was always self conscious of how I kissed, how I was as a girlfriend (and how he only perpetuated this feeling of inadequacy, how he liked it best when I kissed him like She once did). Like how I would say no (pushing his greedy, clammy hands away from me, but they pushed back, and they won, reaching towards me as I pretended to be okay with it).
Elephants. The pain was like that, like a circus elephant, or two, sitting upon my chest. Crushing my ribs until they poked into my heart. And I was scrambling, flailing, to move, but the sadness, the pressure of the elephant on my chest, pinned me down. I was going to die, I was sure of it, I was going to die, whether it have been of a broken heart or by my own hand, but I had never been more sure of anything.
Sometimes, when I’m near him now, when I sit near him in one of my classes, a little part of me feels that elephant’s tentative pawing at my still-healing rib cage. And sometimes, when he smiles at me – that completely platonic smile of complete innocence of his horrible effect on me in the past – I feel that elephant begin to dig in, like a cat carving out a nest in a blanket. And sometimes, while I’m looking at him, and I’m smiling stupidly, almost forgetting how I once felt, my mind reminds me of his words:
“I’m only perfect because I’m with you.”
And part of me, everytime my mind replays those words, breaks apart again.