I lie in bed, too awake to drift to sleep, yet too tired to expend any energy. I find no sense of peace here. No solace from the world. Wind whistles outside of my window, echoing haunting notes throughout my room. Harsh words make their way into my restless mind. I know I should be able to block them out. I should be strong enough to appease the voice inside. Yet I can’t. The frightening side of me approaches, and a sense of dread fills me. Disturbing, intrusive thoughts that I try to erase from my mind creep inside.
Tap tap tap tap… Tap tap tap tap…. My pointer finger gently taps a four-beat pattern on my mattress. The temperature of the room seems to fluctuate, bouncing in between a sweltering summer afternoon and a crisp autumn night. A sense of hollowness begins to fill my body. I look down at myself. My eyes settle on the scars. Not any physical scars, but the scars that the whip of my words has left. I can see them as though they were tattooed on me.
There in my room, attempting to calm myself, I feel a strange sense of dissonance. A strong sense of being a foreign object in my own home settled on me. At the same time, there has never been a time where I feel more like myself. The four soft beats I tap on the bed resonate in my ears. They release the pressure in my head. They begin to silence the incessant verbal attack within me. I finally start to feel like myself.
The wind has concluded its dark symphony, leaving a deafening silence in its wake. And as I lie there, a realization comes to me. Only at night can I finally remove the mask. Only after the curtains are drawn on the performance of my day can I finally drop the act of who I pretend to be. The facade is over. But it will begin again. I know that as my alarm beckons me to wake up, pulling me away from the freedom of finally being myself, the act will begin again.
This is a short piece of creative writing I recently wrote. I don't aspire to be a prolific, ground-breaking author. I simply write to help myself and help others understand the things I cannot bring myself to say.
Small Town, Kansas