You are surrounded by so many people, yet you have never felt so alone.
You try to surround yourself with so much light, but it still feels like the darkness that just used to hover over you has started to cling to you like a shadow.
You stare at the glow-in-the-dark star stickers on your ceiling, and your mind automatically drifts to the boy who promised you forever under the blanket of stars by the beach. The same boy who held your hand, and promised to never let go.
Sunlight flits through the curtains as a brand-new day beckons you to continue living. You step out and curse the sun for its audacity to show up as if all was right in the world. As if your entire world did not crumble when you lost him.
You feel empty as your eyes fall on the empty chair across you at your favorite café. A chair that used to be occupied by the boy who promised to stay, but did not.
And as you drink your coffee, you realize with a pang that you could no longer finish the entire steaming mug by yourself because you had become accustomed to sharing it with him.
You try to smile politely as the barista looks at you and the empty chair before you questioningly, as if wondering why he isn’t there with you. Because the truth is, you can’t admit it out loud that you are wondering the same thing.
Despite the heat, you open the windows of your car, eager to get rid of the smell of his perfume. You turn the radio on, and you smile as a song by The Smiths starts to play. Then the tears start to fall as you hear the words, because like Morrissey, you know that it’s over yet you still cling. That you don’t know where else you can go. But that it’s over, it’s over, it’s over.
It’s two in the morning, and you are finishing yet another bottle of wine. You look at your phone, willing it to ring. But when it does, it’s never him. Of course, it will never be him ever again.
Finally, you drag yourself towards your bed, and you’re back to staring at the glow-in-the-dark star stickers on your ceiling, dreading yet another day without him by your side.
You wonder when things will get better. Because they did say that things will get better eventually. But when is eventually for you?
You feel like you are drowning, and it’s becoming difficult to breathe. You are faced with the ambivalence – to just let the darkness take you, or to struggle and fight back to break out of the surface.
A tiny shard of hope pushes you to swim. Its voice a mere whisper. The shard eggs you to swim. It asks you to extend an arm, take another’s hand, so you could reach the surface and breathe.
Yes, I know. The voice that tells you to drift towards the bottom is stronger. But listen to the whisper. Swim. Do not drift towards the bottom.
No matter how hard it is, so hard that it seems that the darkness threatens to snuff the light completely -hold on.
Hold on to that shard of hope, no matter how tiny it is.
You may have the feeling of needing to put up a façade to cover up what it is that you really feel. But you don’t. You don’t need to pretend you are okay. It is alright to not be okay, and to admit it.
You may feel like no one else could possibly come close to understanding what you are going through. You may feel like there is no sincerity behind every “Are you okay?” or in every hackneyed expression or inspirational quote they throw at you. You may even feel scared of reaching out and talking about it.
But let me tell you, there are people out there going through the same thing. And there are people around you who genuinely worry about you, and who wish nothing more than for you to be happy. And whereas it may be scary at first, there is no shame in reaching out, talking about what you are going through, and asking for help. In fact, you might be surprised by how willing the people around you may rally around you, and hold your hand as you get through this.
You may feel alienated, but you are not alone.
I know that you may feel like it won’t ever get better, that this darkness won’t pass. But it does. It does get better, and this will pass.
I know that it might not be what you want to hear, or something that you have grown weary of hearing. But l have to say it because it’s true – you will be okay.
You do not have to go through this on your own.
Please remember that on your darkest days, you are not alone.