I have a secret to tell – I count my steps literally in my head. I am not sure how or when it started but whenever I need to take the stairs or if without music and face with having to walk, I will start counting in my head: one, two, three…
Either my brain was too tired or too bored to think of anything that I have to keep it occupied. Am I trying to block my mind from my crazy thoughts? Maybe, but I guess I just got used to it that I really do not mind.
Working in travel, I always recommend my clients who explore the desert to wear sandals and be prepared to exert more effort when walking. Walking on the desert requires more effort because as you step on the sand, gravity tends to pull you backward that the two steps you make eventually equal to one. I had the exact feeling when my decade-old relationship to whom I thought I am going to spend the rest of my life with ended.
Where do I start? How can I forget? Every two steps I make forward, bring me one step backward.
I talked to many of my friends who have gone through the situation and they have been patient enough in offering advice. I also googled ‘how to move on’ and found countless forums, books or manuals out there available for the healing process. I even believed in horoscopes that I checked three different sites a day hoping that it can answer my questions. I have the desire to move on, but I was desperate. I was hanging onto any kind of thread that would keep me afloat.
I also did what I could to fill as many distractions into my life as possible. I made a list of people I have not seen for a long time because there was no better time to fill up my schedule but then. Most of the time, I found myself laughing and feeling blissful, something I have never felt for a long time during the relationship. I felt strong, inspired and empowered.
Some nights – I wasn’t so lucky. It would get cold with loneliness swallowing me whole.
Next thing I knew, I was doing the most stupid thing ever – browsing through old photos and asking myself what went wrong. Old memories flashing through like it all happened yesterday that all that’s left to do was cry myself to sleep. Of course, coming back was and never will be an option knowing that I have gotten this far.
My family let me move in back again and ever since, I have been sleeping on my brother’s top bunk bed. They were my witnesses on how the story started, progressed and how it led to its demise. My family had treated him like a part of the family, thus I wasn’t the only one who was trying to move on. It took them a year to finally accept that I wasn’t going back because they thought that we were just cooling off. Still, I don’t think I would ever survive without them. They helped me continue counting, one, two, even if shit happens.
Writing this book was not to relive the past love even if it all began from our story.
Looking back was not the intention but these words needed to be released. I wrote this as part of my journey, to fully understand and to create something tangible for all these emotions; to illustrate how we continue living.
What I was trying to create, I had no idea. I was simply a fish going with the flow. There were plenty of times when I couldn’t write a single word, but I did what I could.
It has been a long process – moving on and writing this book. It was only a year later when I stared at myself in the mirror, and despite the dark circles forming under my eyes, I smiled.
Do I love what I see? There was no need for further explanation.
Damn, I do.
I love what I see.
This book is a love story but not with the past or present love, but rather the one that we owe to ourselves – the love that allows us to heal. It may sound cliché, but we ought to learn to love ourselves before we are able to truly love again. Easier said than done, but it’s possible.
You just have to continue counting.
This is an excerpt of One, Two, Shit. Click here to purchase an e-book.