My Love from the Star

A few weeks ago, I wrote a short story called The Struggles of Immortality. I had only a few hours to meet a deadline so the story was something I came up with in a hurry. Normally I take the time to sit down and really feel the things I write, but due to the shortage of time, all I did while writing those words was think about how I should be feeling instead of actually feeling anything.

I had no idea that what I was writing actually had a similar plot to a show that I was going to be watching in a few weeks’ time. And today, I finished watching said show: a k-drama called ‘My Love From the Star’.

I knew I lacked emotion when I wrote the story. But I never knew the depth of those emotions until I watched this show.

So today, I cried. I cried so much more than I’ve cried in a really long time.

I cried for the characters and how much they loved each other. I cried for the amount of people the alien lost. I cried for the love he lost centuries ago. I cried for the years he spent distancing himself from humankind because of that loss. I cried for how he finally loved again but the timing was wrong and he was forced to leave her despite everything.

I cried for the time they wished they had but would not get. I cried for the time they had already lost. I cried when he eventually did disappear and how adversely it affected her. I cried when I thought of the struggles they went through. I cried for the years they spent apart.

I cried because for a few hours, their heartache was my heartache. And I cried because they deserved so much more.

I realize that these are fictional characters. But that’s when you know that the show you’ve watched or the book you’ve read is really good: it makes you feel very strongly and it makes you cry and it makes you want to die a little.

So I regret the time I wasted on not writing my own short story well enough. I regret not feeling everything better while writing it. I regret not doing the characters any justice. And I vow to do better next time, to be a better writer next time.

Here’s to the amazing writers and people involved in making this show: you’ve made me feel a plethora of emotions in a short amount of time and this show killed me a little on the inside. In other words, I loved it so much.

Thank you for this show and everything it made me feel. It helped me realize my shortcomings as a writer. I’ll definitely try harder.

© Ashes 2018.

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In Another World

When shadows overlap,

they merge to become darker,

denser.

That’s what we see, at least.

But what if

in another world,

their merging created a story;

something deep and meaningful.

What if,

even for the briefest of moments,

somewhere out there

something magical happens

when two shadows meet.

So maybe,

just maybe,

in another world,

our short time together

lasted an eternity.

Maybe in some other world

I made your heart race

like you always did mine.

Maybe our love was pure

and deeper than the Mariana Trench.

Maybe I finally made you happy.

Maybe, just maybe

there is a place

where our love was true,

where the words ‘I love you’

made an impact:

made the stars align;

created galaxies;

were felt by every soul in the universe;

and they maybe even

meant something to you.

© Ashes 2018

~~~

Artwork by Aliza Razell

Originally published on The Literati Mafia

Fickle Things

Oh what fickle a thing time is.
We think we have all the time in the world so we keep putting things off for another day. We wait for the time to be just right, for those “special” days, and in doing so, we miss out on a huge chunk of our lives.

Oh what fickle a thing feelings are.
We think we’ll love someone for a long, long time and will never be able to get over them and then circumstances change and force us and our feelings to change as well.

Oh what fickle a thing timing is.
We realize certain things at some point in our lives, but when we try to act on them, we find out that it’s too late, and that if we had realized them just a few days, a few hours, or even a few minutes earlier, things would have been different and maybe in our favor now.

But I guess it’s because these things are so fickle that we actually take some action in life. We never know how much time we have left so we try to make each moment count.
We never know what obstacles will be thrown our way and how they’ll affect our relationships with the people in our lives so we try to give each relationship our all and not take the moments for granted.
And we never know whether the timing is “right” or not, so all we can do is try our hardest in every single thing we do so that no matter what happens, we don’t have any regrets or dwell on the what-ifs when we look back on everything.

© Ashes (2018)

~~~
Artwork by black-3G-raven

(Originally published on The Literati Mafia)

Solitude

I’ve never had a problem being alone. In fact, I used to crave the solitude. I used to yearn for the quiet moments alone when I was surrounded by a noisy crowd.

But it’s been different lately. Being alone isn’t what it used to be. While I still yearn for the quiet moments, I can’t seem to find the same kind of peace in those long stretches of silence as I used to.

The things I loved to do alone now seem daunting without the company of someone else. The inactivity that was once relaxing only makes me restless now. Sleep seems like a nightmare and a waste of time. In fact, the thought of sleep just makes me anxious sometimes. I have problems with sleep like nightmares or disturbing dreams, yet I still find myself wanting to run away from the pull of unconsciousness.

And so I seem to be at a loss of what to do lately. The people around me ask me what’s wrong. How can I answer them when I myself don’t know what’s bothering me? How do I avoid the probing questions that make me uneasy when I have no answers to them?

I wish I knew.

~~~

Artwork by Si2

Untethered

Things have been at a standstill lately. Actually no, that’s not true. What’s at a standstill are my sense of creativity and my ability to write.

Things in general have been moving way too fast and I feel detached, as though I’m watching everything from a distance.

I feel untethered, like a ghost that can’t move on from this world because it still has unfinished business.

I guess if I did have any unfinished business in this world, it would be the people I care about, and the problems they have that I don’t want them to face all on their own.

Is it sad that I am more involved in my friends’ lives and their problems than my own? Maybe it’s a good thing that I have no problems of my own right now.

But it’s also concerning. Maybe I should focus on myself for a while; make some new memories and explore the world around me. I don’t want to wake up one day and regret not having spent even half the time on myself that I do on others.

I might just start in the morning.

 

 

The Struggles of Immortality

People always want what they cannot have. More often than not, they just want time: time to live, time to heal, time to love, time to enjoy, time to breathe. As someone who has had nothing but time in her life, I’d like to shed some light on the fact that having unlimited time isn’t always as great as it seems.

The natural order of the world is that we are all immortal souls in mortal bodies, meaning our bodies all have to die someday. I happen to be an anomaly though. I don’t know if what I am would be called immortal or I just have an extremely long life-span. Either way it’s not easy being one of the only such creatures on this planet, if there even are any others, that is.

Most people find their purpose in life. Once they accomplish it, they become satisfied and can rest easy. I thought I had fulfilled what I was meant to do as well once. But then I found out that I still had an eternity to live, and that I wasn’t done in this world yet, nor would I be any time soon. When you continue to live a life after you’ve fulfilled what you thought was your purpose, everything becomes harder. And what is most bothersome is that finding purposes seems to be the only thing I can do with my infinite number of days, and it is very tedious.

If a person were dying, they would most likely have one main wish: to have had more time. They would have many regrets and would wish they’d spent their days differently.
My hearts breaks for them. I only wish that I could lend them some of the limitless time that I’ve been given. I would gladly do that.

Some would say that I am ungrateful and should do something positive with the time I’ve been given instead of whining about it. To those people, I would say that a part of me does agree with you, but I have also learned that no one has the right to judge another person until they’ve walked a mile in their shoes and know what they’re talking about.

So, it’s time I finally talk about it and let my story be heard.

Frankly, immortality has been both a blessing and a curse. I have already done so much with the unlimited number of days I’ve gotten to live. Some were good, some were bad and some were average. I’ve gained a lot but I’ve lost a lot too. And that’s always the hardest part: the loss.

The worst part of immortality is that you have to watch so many of the people you care for die. They no longer exist and unlike them, you have to carry the weight of the loss on your shoulders for eternity and it is so exhausting.

I envy the people who get to grow old together and die together. When you have an endless life, love seems like a burden than something that fulfills you and sets you free. There is always so much fear in you for the inevitable future where the people in your life leave you.

It must feel so wonderful to have found someone to spend the rest of your life with and to not have to worry about outliving them. I’ve lived a very long life already and I’ve loved a great many people, which by default means that I’ve had to lose a great number of people as well. No matter how many times it happens, the death of someone you love shatters you and you carry the pain with you for all of time. It is not the kind of pain you get used to after a few times, since every soul is unique and every bond you form with someone is special in its own way. Every loss is different. The only constant is the pain that follows it.

So far, the loss has come in many ways. I’ve sat next to one of my closest friends when she was on her death bed and watched the life leave her eyes. I’ve answered phone calls that informed me of the death of someone I care about. For a while, I would get scared every time the phone rang in case it was about another person I had just lost. But those were the involuntary losses which couldn’t have been helped. There were other people in my life who saw the challenges involved in befriending an immortal and decided for themselves that they did not want to associate with someone like that. I can’t really blame them though. After all, it must be disconcerting to know that someday if you live long enough, you’re going to grow weaker and more wrinkled while your immortal friend will still look as young and robust as she did a century ago. Oh, how I wish I had the luxury of walking away, to not be the one left behind. It gets very lonely.

Most people are fortunate enough to only experience a handful of heartbreaks and losses in their lives. But when you have all the time in the world, that number multiplies several hundred times. Each time you lose someone, the pain is so raw and intense that you feel like you’ll never recover from it. But eventually the pain fades into a dull ache and you start to live again. You never truly forget that person though. You just don’t remember them as often as before.
It pains me to admit this but I’ve lost so many people that I can’t quite remember all their names and faces. It makes me feel ashamed of myself. It feels like an insult to their memory, even if they existed hundreds of years ago.

Among the people I care about is my family. Thinking about them always makes me sad though. Not because I miss them per se, but because I miss the idea of them. I miss the idea of a constant in your life that is always there when you need them. I lost my family a very long time ago. I don’t even remember what they look like. I don’t remember the person who birthed me, if that even is how I came about in this world. I’m not like everybody else, I know that. But because I have no one around me who remembers my past, I don’t know how I came about and reached this point in my life. I don’t know where I was born, where I grew up, where I lived and for how long. There are so many parts of my life that are just a blank and of which I have no recollection.
I envy the people who have someone around them who asks for them and are always at home waiting to hear about their day. I envy the fact that they have someone who they can ask questions about their childhood. I wish I had that as well. It would make me feel less alone on this planet at times.

Another inconvenience that immortality has caused me is that I’ve forgotten what ‘favorites’ feel like. Those who have favorite things are so fortunate, because having a favorite thing in your life means that whenever you come across it, you feel happier even if just for a little while. You experience a sort-of high. And sometimes, that high is quite large in magnitude and that moment becomes one of the best moments of your life, something you fondly reminisce for the rest of your life.
But when you’ve lived for centuries, you have too many favorites in your life to keep track of and eventually too much time passes by for that something to remain a fond memory anymore, so it loses its preciousness. Of course, new favorites come along the way. But they all end up in a forgotten pile in your memory when too much time has passed. And it’s sad really, because a lot of things in life begin to lose their luster and you don’t feel excited about the little things anymore.

I miss the friends that are no longer with me Everything seemed more exciting with them around. Whenever something great or awful happens, I think to myself, “Oh I can’t wait to tell him/her that” and it takes me a few seconds to remember that the person I thought of has already been gone for many years. Yes, I make new friends and share deep moments with them too, but eventually, they all end up becoming distant memories. Some days I wonder if caring for people is even worth it, since the end result is always the pain of loss. I continue to persevere though.
I try to keep track of all the people I have ever held close to my heart. I keep journals where I write about important moments in my life, because each and every person I encountered and befriended has, at some point, meant a lot to me even if I don’t remember them well anymore. I feel it would be an insult to their memory if I let myself forget about them completely.

I wonder where they all are now, and if Heaven and Hell really do exist. How many of the people I knew made it into Heaven and how many didn’t?

There were times when my immortality was exploited and used against me. Those were the worst experiences of my life. Some horribly insane people caught the truth about what I was and they tortured me for their own pleasures. The beauty about mortality is that there’s only a certain amount of pain your body can handle before it gives way to the blissful silence of death. With my immortality, each time they inflicted pain on me, it was excruciating but eventually I would heal completely, only to start the torture all over again. Those were the worst few months of my life.

I don’t remember how I escaped or if someone helped set me free. I just remember running away and not letting myself stop for hours upon hours, lest someone was following me and caught up to me. A part of me believed that I must have done something really bad in my past life, so I was resurrected as an immortal to suffer immensely. But these thoughts only materialize in my worst moments. So, I try very hard to be a good person, to always have courage and be kind, so that maybe I could make up for the person I once must have been.

I don’t even know how I came to be this way, or how long my immortality will last. Maybe I’m not immortal and I just have an extremely long life-span. Isn’t God supposed to be the only eternal being? Either way, no matter what I am, I don’t think I’ll be dying any time soon. So then, what is my fate? Where will I end up? Will I be able to make it into Heaven? What will become of me?

The truth is that if I were given a choice between life and death at this point, I would most probably welcome an ending. Maybe then I could finally have something to live for, something to strive for. I’m not very religious but when I do have rare moments where I pray with all my heart, I pray for a satisfying ending to my long and tedious life. It’s not that I wish for death, I just find peace in the idea of an actual ending, so that maybe I can work hard to only do good until that time comes. Maybe then it will all have been worth it.

I often wonder if there are other beings like me out there. I wonder how they’re faring, if they have similar thoughts as mine, and if they tend to feel just as lonely as I do sometimes. Maybe we will find each other one day. Whether or not we manage to do that, I would just like to say a few things to them which I wish someone had said to me as well:

I know immortality isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. Like anything in this world, it has its pros and cons. We’ve had a long journey and there’s still a long way to go. But eventually, our life too will come to an end. I don’t know how or when, but I just have a feeling that it will. Maybe you do as well. Until then, let’s do our best to spread joy and strength to those around us. Our time will come. This too shall pass. So, let’s experience more, live more, love more, laugh more, and cherish the good, the bad and everything in between. We will find a way back to the ones we care for. And who knows, we might finally find our family and get to start anew. So, till then, please hang in there. And remember, that I am immensely proud of you.

~~~

Artwork by Sephiroth-Art

 

Set You Free

images (2)

I’m sorry for trying to cage you when I should have been setting you free, letting go for both your sake and mine.

I’m sorry I tried to imprison you in my own bubble of wants.

I’m sorry I selfishly only considered what I wanted and not what you needed.

I just wanted to say that I’m learning from my mistakes. And maybe I can’t fix things with you but I promise to be more careful with everyone new that enter my life.

~~~

Artwork by jasinski

Poem: Is Love Worth Fighting For?

Fighting for love is worth the pain.

I think I believe that

somewhere deep inside,

too deep maybe.

Because every time I see it happen,

whether to a friend or a stranger,

my heart shatters all over again.

Each time the pain intensifies,

not just because it kills me

to see them get hurt,

but also because it reminds me

of a time where I was the victim,

clutched in the deceptively warm embrace

of a love not meant to last.

I see them fight

for those that they love.

I admire them greatly.

But they also remind me of a time

where I tried so hard

but failed,

where all my hopes

were futile and farfetched.

Sometimes I yearn for the numbness.

It feels better

than the storm raging inside me,

than the feeling of my heart

being grabbed at roughly,

crushed into a million pieces

only to rebuild

and start the torture all over again.

Sometimes I think

that it’s better not to feel at all

than to feel the agony of a heartbreak.

Even though my time

has come and gone

and the pain doesn’t

constantly plague me anymore,

I still relive it

every time I see a heart break,

every time I see someone

make the effort for love

and watch it blow up in their face.

It’s worth the pain, maybe

but the numbness is also addictive.

Sometimes I think

that to not be able to feel

is a very enticing reprieve

from having to feel

all the damn time.

Questions of the Heart

I remember a time when I was at a low point in my life yet I would still find, even make the time for both friends and strangers, and the only thing that kept me going was being their shoulder to lean on. That was all I knew.

Now after months of therapy, I find myself giving more and more time to my own needs, and consequently not being there for people as much as I used to.
A part of me knows that that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because if anything, giving yourself time and space is incredibly important for your own mental health.

But another part of me is scared. It fears that a part of me is now broken, rather than fixed, because of all the time I take off for myself. ‘It’s for self-love,’ I think to myself. Well I don’t feel like it’s self-love anymore, I feel like it’s selfishness.

I don’t know what to make of the feeling I get when I find out a friend needed me and I couldn’t be there for them. There’s a lot of guilt of course, but it’s lesser than it used to be. I don’t know if I like this newfound diminished version of my guilt. It feels foreign and incomplete. I feel like my mind is healthier now but my spirit has grown weaker. I seem to care less than I used to, and that feels like a betrayal to every person I have pledged my friendship to.

How do you draw the line between self-love and selfishness? How do you be there for people as much as they need while simultaneously giving your mind the attention that it needs, especially if the amount of that attention is a lot?

Did I lose a part of myself in the process of putting my pieces back together? Did I accidentally erase a part of me that I loved and never wanted to lose? Has the medication helped me or ruined me?

~~~

Artwork by Karol Bak