Posts tagged tears
Posts tagged tears
“You don’t get it. Everyone depends on me, everyone tells me their problems because they think they have none of their own. They think I run this thing and they think that the smile on my face is a real one. But it’s not. And I don’t say anything. Because if I break, who’s going to hold the rest of them up? What would happen if one day I woke up and said, fuck it. Do it yourselves.”
She’s sitting with her arms wrapped around her knees, staring out at the tents. The rain has slowed to a slow drizzle and it’s sunset. She’s been sitting out here for just over two hours.
“I feel that way sometimes, you know. Like throwing in the towel. Like sitting in the corner of the truck and closing my eyes and refusing to move. Like letting the world go to hell without me because I can make my own way there. And every so often I look at letters from home and I cry harsh, hard tears. Not the dainty crying that ladies do, it’s a strangled cry and it gives me a nasty fucking headache afterwards. I sob till there’s nothing left inside, and then I wipe my eyes and carry on. It’s a cleansing process. I don’t tell anyone about it. Well, not till now.”
Dead ends of cigarettes litter the roof of the truck and the one in her hand shakes as she perches like the sole guardian of this travelling show. Her dark hair is plastered to her forehead and her thin jumper soaked through to the skin.
“I have trigger words for my tears, four of them. I want my mum. I say those words over and over and over again and my throat closes up and I feel so fucking alone that I cannot believe it. It’s the only time that I ever let myself face the reality of what I’ve become. I’m alone. Yeah, I have the show and I have my sister, but I’ve left everything else behind. My education, my family. My mother. And the worst thing is that if I turn back now she would welcome me back and not blame me for anything that I have done to them. For abandoning them. And I couldn’t do it, I couldn’t go back there because I can’t stay in one place, I can’t be stuck somewhere because the truth is I think I will fail. If I keep moving I can’t form attachments and I can’t get hurt. I just hurt everyone else.”
She shivers. Presses a saturated sleeve to her eyes, sniffs and carries on.
“If I let myself think about what I’m actually doing, I panic. That’s the real me. Racing ahead and ignoring all my problems because if I face them head on I will collapse, more so than now. I don’t sleep properly. I have the worst nightmares available to mankind and I get up in the morning and hate what I see in the mirror, I’m jealous of everyone who’s prettier than me or who seems more in control than me, anyone who is loved because I wish I could do that. I wish I could give up. Just go home and hug my mum and have her tell me everything will be okay. Just leave everything behind. But that’s the cowards way out, isn’t it?”
This isn’t the girl I know. The one I know is smart mouthed and always grinning. She punches walls and spits insults. She doesn’t cry. She never cries. And this is the first time I’ve seen her anything other than utterly self assured.
“Or maybe the cowards way is to do what I’m doing. Not facing anything. Running away from my problems. I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing but I can put on a good enough front that people trust me. People think I can do it. And the truth is that I’ve never been so out of control.”
It could happen to anyone. You get home and walk to your room, and push open the door to find that it’s not yours anymore. Someone else is in there. There is no clutter. No mess. The books on the bookshelves replaced by DVDs, no desk to write imaginings on, no colours on the walls. It is someone else’s room now. And you stand and you stare, and there’s that feeling like you’ve missed the top step going upstairs, but you just keep falling. And then you start to think, is anything mine anymore? Your family treat you the same, but you can’t shake the feeling that you don’t belong. You’re a guest now. Your place at the table seems contrived, the bed that you sleep in is your brothers, not your own. And so you leave early from the two day visit, wait till everyone is out of the house and then pack your rucksack, walk out of the front door. Leave your keys deliberately on the sideboard. And you pause. Your hand lingers on the latch, knowing that if you close that door, you cannot get back in again without the help of someone else. You will be leaving for good this time. And you leave the door ajar as you do the compulsory check for your money, your phone, your passport. And with a final sigh, you pull the door closed. The sound seems to echo.
A dog barks. You walk. You jam your headphones over your ears, attempting to block out the sounds of the street you live - lived - on, wanting to lose yourself in the music. But every song speaks of home, speaks of belonging and it takes a great deal of effort not to run straight back again. You don’t. You flick through to music without lyrics, music that is just beats and synthesisers, hardly music at all, and you fall into step with your own heartbeat. Don’t look back. You feel like the street is disappearing behind you with every step that you take. You turn down the cobbled cut through to the train station.
It doesn’t matter what train you get on, as long as you get on. Pick a platform at the last minute, jump on a train and find a seat. Ask for a ticket to the end of the line, not a return journey of course. Your head is trying to convince you that this is the break you need, this is what will be the making of you. But you cannot ignore the fact that every fibre of your being is crying out for the train to stop, for the conductor to haul you off and send you back home, for your mother to be at the next station to hug you and tell you there’ll always be a place for you there, at home, but where is home now? You’ve grown up. Outgrown home.
There is no home for people like us. It’s not what we do.