I’m not going to pretend anything. I could easily tell you I go on for days and days without being reminded of my own past but that isn’t true. When you have a past that resonates with you so much – -when you have faced something in your life that so deeply affects everything you do – then you tend to wake up reminded of it every single day, at least once. You think about every single failure you have ever had in life and feel you can attribute it to that one mistake – the one thing that, had you not done it, could have had a hugely negative impact on your life, health and well-being.
I could pretend right now that my life isn’t in a tailspin right now of confusion, stress, worry, and above all, one fundamentally terrible idea. I could pretend right now that all the things that bother me are not weighing me down tremendously to the point where I feel like a stranger in my own life – a life that was once populated with people I loved, fun every weekend, and waking up every day not knowing what I was going to learn, what was going to happen, and how much promise lay before me when I was in a world that was very uncertain yet very, very carefree for that reason.
I could pretend that I’m still creative, I’m still trying, I’m still striving to win, to publish, to set out to do that which I was born to do. I could pretend that I’m fighting for what I believe I deserve in this life. I could pretend that I am fearless and unafraid to fail. I could pretend to be inspired fervently every single day. I could pretend that suddenly, the world is full of brilliant ideas that no one has ever seen or used before, and it’s my position to be fruitful and multiply and stretch my creativity to its full capacity and potential, to bring good ideas to nurture a hungry world. I could pretend that I see for myself, a world of satiated possibilities, a world where I have explored all avenues to success and met dead ends and failed navigation with a laugh, a smile or an even greater desire to find the right path, rather than be defeated by the moments in my life which cause me a great deal of unnecessary negativity.
I could pretend I don’t miss you, or you, or you. And that your three absences only continue to improve my standing. That every day when I’m working at being happy, I’m not working at how to erase memories, make good with the past, or better yet, erase the past in its entirety and pretend it never happened. Because if the past never happened, neither did the lies I believed, neither did the negative words and negative actions affect me, neither did those people who I loved so much have the power to hurt me as much as they did.
I could pretend I forgive. And just forgive everything. But then I remember the one forgiveness I can never grant, ever, because I don’t feel it will help me or him or anyone else. And I realize that my life is not made up of forgiveness; that I am a terribly unforgiving person and I have my reasons for that. Because with forgiveness, you are either all in, or you are all out, and my brain is not wired to pick and choose which forgivenesses to make and which to dismiss. And at the end of the day the reason for this is, I cannot forgive myself. I cannot forgive my naivety, my flaws, my own pain, my blatant stupidity for trusting those who I love and respect with everything I can possibly give only for those people to turn around and take advantage of what I’ve given them. I can’t pretend not to be affected. I try and try and try, but it never works. I could pretend that’s not true, and I do. I even succeed sometimes.