Water by Shereen

Posted on March 3, 2015 by

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The first thought that came through my mind when I found out we’re assigned to write water was a day of the summer I spent on the drowning side of the world.
It was a few hours past midnight and I’d just finished my fourth cup of caffeine-it usually helped, the caffeine, I mean when I’d be busy writing burdens off my body parts. The news mentioned a typhoon on the way so electricity was going to temporarily escape until all was clear, so when the power went off, I lost everything I wrote. I was angry, but not quite as angry as I was at the world.
I went out to inhale fresh air that would somehow purge my lungs filled with toxins and sorrow and anger; the sea kept calling my name until it had me under its control.
The thing is every time I’m at close contact to water that can engulf my body, something in me triggers my brain to let go of my body in a way that all the nerves connected to my muscles turn off on their own the way street lights do on an early morning. It was different then; half of my body was under water and I still kept taking baby steps away from shore.
I kept contemplating how there’s no one around so I can guarantee no rescue.
And I thought about how old my heart-felt.
And for some reason I kept counting diverse thoughts from the back of my head:
One
the number of times I kept myself away from swaying waves, pacing rivers, and disintegrating waterfalls
Two
the number of times I almost got out of my own skin for good
Three
the number of times lifting my eyelids up felt a lot like lifting up weights
Four
the number of times I’d throw punches at walls instead of people so that the pain would give my chest a break
Five
the number of times I tried to convince myself to stay alive a little more
Six
the number of times getting through a day felt like dragging a corpse that weighed twice my weight
Seven
the number of times I thought I was a coward for not being able to pierce through my skin for hating myself, whilst others did it to engrave fake lovers’ initials
Eight
the number of times strangers noticed red eyes and burns and bruises, but my parents couldn’t
Nine
the number of times my heart hurt when I’d start to feel okay like I had no right to be
Ten
the number of times I got tired of getting saved

And when I got tired of counting, I thought about the lessons they taught us in school about water:
I. Water is transparent. But they forgot it turns into dark shades of crimson or light shades of skin tones when audacity strikes hard.
II. Bodies are composed of about 60% water. But they forgot to mention that there will be days when it’ll be hard to swallow water and days when it’ll hurt one’s guts.
III. Water is needed for survival. But I think they forgot to mention the second part of lesson number one.
I forgot more than three-fourths of my body submerged under water, but I was conscious enough to hear a voice call my name and yell “are you trying to get yourself killed?”
I’m pretty sure there was a continuation to that question, but that’s the only part I held on to because it reminded me of the first and only time I clearly stated how I felt, and it disappointed listeners because wanting to die isn’t bad enough, you have to show them that you mean it too.

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