In holding my breath I have learnt that I can hold my ground. I used to think of myself as a panicked, flailing kind of person. I’ve learnt that I’m a lot calmer than I realise. I think of myself, holding my breath, staring at the ceiling, trying to see how far I can count until my chest burns, or my vision blurs. I just lie there, not gasping, perfectly at peace. Partly because of this, I know that if need be, whatever else life throws at me, more often than not, all I’ll ever have to do is hold my breath, and lie perfectly still until it passes. Continue reading Taking stock, 2020
And then there are cracks. Moments that should ordinarily be a quick tear when I encounter something that moves me but my body malfunctions and my grief flows out in barely contained guttural screams. It’s contained quickly. But it’s still a swollen river: it can only deviate from its course; fuck some shit up. Continue reading Little sorrows
I’ve been thinking quite a bit about community. In little blocks. Lately, it’s been a building block of community— friendship and trust. The cyclical nature of friendship and trust. How trust is implicit in building a friendship and later in maintaining it. It’s almost like, the earning of trust is beside the point, giving it is where it’s at. I don’t know, there’s an earnestness … Continue reading Isn’t that how love works sometimes?
I’ve always thought I’d die young. For most of my childhood, it was an unexamined thought sitting in my subconscious, quietly accepted, yet to be complicated with the arrogance and hysteria of young adulthood. I had no concept of “gone too soon”; unaware of my potential, untainted by ambition; not jaded by hope and dreams. I read Bridge to Terabithia and thought, “that makes sense.” … Continue reading Heartbreak is the only way these things make sense.
I am excessively aware and terrified of my heartbeat. The strength of it; the fragility of it;the aliveness of it; the finality of it. How it sums up the seemingly shrinking but yet expansive ordeal that my life has been this past year. Whilst people can gesture and make lists, I only have to sit really still for a moment. Everything that I am, everything … Continue reading My heartbeat and I, we got this.
Once your death sits on the floor with you, it never quite leaves no matter how hard you scrub the floors. I am constantly out of breath. I will always be out of time. Continue reading But at what cost?
Survival. I love the word survival, it always sounds to me like a promise. -Audre Lorde. A few weeks ago, I cried. Like, really cried. It is a Saturday evening and I’m scrolling down my Twitter feed, distracting myself, trying not to cry. I have been dangling tears since I left my surgeon’s office. The doorbell rings, and I hear my aunt’s voice asking … Continue reading Survival.
For a while I was convinced I wouldn’t make it past twenty eight. I can’t tell why, I just didn’t think I would. Lately however, I find that I’m excited to turn thirty. I just turned twenty three and I was actually more excited that I’m closer to thirty than anything else. I sit and fantasize about my career and my house when I’ll be … Continue reading 23 and counting (surprisingly)
Mid-morning on a seemingly non-descript day in August 2012, my mother discovers a tumour on my upper palette. I’m sitting by the kitchen-door watching my mother cook chapati, because it is a miracle that she is cooking anything at all. I was ten when my mother dragged me to the kitchen and made me cook ugali and since then, she only goes back to the … Continue reading Delayed Grief.
You know when you are stuck in traffic and you look at the window and the women in the matatu beside yours just arrests you with her beauty? You feel this knot in your intestines, you smile it off. The matatu starts moving and the knowledge that you’ll never see her again makes you uneasy. Why though? What is it about her beauty that makes … Continue reading I don’t know if I’m gay.