The weight of long days at work numbs my senses and showers usually mellow this pain of nothingness for me, S.
Long spells of hot water streams seep in through the dry pores of my flaky skin. Inch by inch, I feel this osmosis – a tingling sensation that calms my dormant nausea.
I usually find Sylvia Plath’s four-cornered ‘God’ staring at my naked crooked body from a bit afar, unwilling to reciprocate any of those sensations.
These are the evenings I feel the presence of these uninvited guests. Only a couple of days back, it gave me an eerie feeling when I realized that another question is crawling behind my neck just as I soaked myself in the warmth of my fresh towel.
I have overheard people mumbling at the grocery store about ‘me’ being the ‘daring’ person moving into this haunted house located in the middle of the city. I dismissed these as ‘rumours’ at first. Even when I did notice some things that could be called ‘strange’, I referred to these sudden changes as figments of my curious and imaginative mind. Here are a few of those changes that I have made a note of on a crumpled tissue paper:
• Weather changes – from bright and sunny to suddenly trembling cold
• Constant ‘knocking’ like noise in my head
• Sweating on the coldest of days even while having comfortable conversations
As the days of these ‘imaginative changes’ pass by, I can now feel strange eyes gawking at my body, my every move, and even my every thought. I wouldn’t lie S., now, I do get terrified while sensing the presence of these lurking monsters!
These creatures (and their eyes too) appear to be of various forms and sizes – Ranging from a tiny work email query disguising itself as a malware of ‘overthinking’ to an enormous and winged phantom of existential angst which followed me from the cinema theatre when I suddenly contemplated about my troubled relationship with ‘happiness’ and ‘contentment’.
Then, there are these groups of bugs that plague me with the ‘hallucinations’ where I create various scenarios for my own future. I become paralysed – an easy prey for all of them to devour my psyche.
In those moments S., I can see their glowing contours behind the wooden rustic doors, on the slightly crumbling old ceiling, and within my own shadow attempting to reach towards me.
Do you remember the book your friend gave to me before I moved in here? Honestly, I first laughed at the title – ‘Exorcism of your own being’ and put it in a remote corner of my charming revolving bookcase.
With the recent developments, I was curious to read and rushed through the pages until I stopped on this one earmarked paragraph. I read, re-read, and still could not digest these words -
“These are indeed real creatures existing in the reality of your own being even though you will be told otherwise. The only way to survive with them is to acknowledge their existence first but not indulge with them. You will need to find the ‘other’ creatures to talk to from your reality. The ones who take you to the world of liberation – who talk about kindness over warm coffee, the ones who gaze into your soul to nurture it, ones who find a smile to share even on the gloomiest of the days. Otherwise, these ‘anxiety’ crawlers could creep in like walls closing in on you”
Mind you S., even as I write this, I am still being watched by these ghosts who co-habitat my self-doubt. Here is one almost taunting me as he grins –
‘Are you again writing to her? Why do you write letters to a ghost?’
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About the Creator
One of those members of the human race who carry milder version of stendhal syndrome within them, I breathe poetry, cinema and stories. Sometimes, all that I exhale finds its way onto paper :)