I’m difficult to love, and, no, I don’t mean that I’m a fabled damsel in distress, mystery, or one of your romanticized tragedies.
I’m simply an emotional rollercoaster with a gripping intensity interspersed with awkward nothings and an unprecedented need to escape. And, mind you, love is not just romantic love.
I’m bad at small talk. I can’t remember the color of your car or the way to your house or what your dog had for dinner. I can’t go to beautiful places and remember to get you something from there.
No, I’m not absent-minded or careless or detached. I simply can’t equate your personhood to the events of your day. I want to know how you react to things, not your things. I can’t love things around you. I can just make love to the subtle nuances of your existence and to the womb and the graveyard that your heart is.
I want to sit with you away from the energy-draining habits and the toxicity of this world, detangle your web of contradictions, ease out your existential crisis, and bite your lips out of words you wanted to say but couldn’t.
I skip to my imaginary world every once in a while. In the worthwhile middle of a conversation with your gang of friends, you would suddenly find unfathomable conflict marking the corners of my face. I know this is a turn off, but, in a world that constantly runs floods of negativity and futility, my imaginary world is the only place where I can dance naked on the streets of New York, skydive into worlds where love is the only norm, and where I can make love to men who don’t remind me of their blood-stained hands and mouthfuls of cigar.
I can’t promise you my time but I can promise you a good time. Yes, I want you closer than the distance that marks the boundaries of my breasts, but I’m gripped with the realization that I have a bigger purpose in life beyond my love for you. You might be the center of my universe but I will visit its periphery more often.
I have lives to change and places to go, and an innate desire to love one and all like a gypsy on overdrive, without letting one person acquire all of me.
My home is the tears that roll out of my eyes every time I know I changed someone’s life. My home is the fireworks in my thighs at strange conversations with strangers in strange cities. My home is the world of eternal possibilities, imagination, and love.
Yes, I know I’m weird, perhaps unlikeable. These are the parts of me that have helped me stand still in the face of colossal storms that wrecked everything I once knew as home. Parts that have helped me pump lifeblood into hopeless souls. Parts that I embrace so wholeheartedly that they are no longer just parts but the whole of me. So, no, don’t tell me to be a little less weird. Instead, make me more of who I am.
I don’t see how you can love me. But you could, oh you could numb this over-thinking mind with your calloused hands, rough and all consuming. Build unshakeable fortresses on these sheaths I call my skin. Break this ribcage and reach out to my heart, melt into the nuances of my cranium, climb on the crevices of my back, explore parallel universes in my eyes, supply my veins and arteries with your lifeblood. Live like a warrior without a sword but with my heart clawed up in your insides, fill space in my soaked sheets, be my spotless shadow, rising with my yawn at dawn and settling onto my skin into the unexplored corners of the night.
I’m sorry for not becoming so many things that the world wanted me to be – for making a show out of my forbidden and terrifying parts.
Forgive me for loving you so much that I mess up the only sweet things I know: my words. I’m sorry for not needing maps to know where I need to be. I’m sorry for having “unrealistic” worlds in my head and for making them real. I’m sorry for being as draining as I am giving. I’m sorry for being so feminist that all other parts of my identity seem inconsequential. I’m sorry for my perpetual strangeness and abstraction, for not fancy-dressing my ugly issues using temporary fixes, and for being so whole by myself that I might just scare you.
I’m sorry, because I’m not really sorry at all.
Avnika Gupta is a 19 year old female writer based in New Delhi, studying Sociology and Psychology at Lady Shri Ram College For Women. She believes in unleashing our hidden human potential by connecting to our raw nature through art and promotes using theatre, poetry and dance to heal the world, as these are those fireworks that fill our damp eyes with the reassurance of shared existence, which break our romanticized idea of wandering as solitary beings.