More Than Ink Stains
I woke up today, and said to myself, “I want to write.” Yes, I wanted to write. I knew that I had run out of stories, and probably ran out of words too, but I knew I had to make do, like you used to make do with instant coffee when your coffee machine refused to work, because you were addicted to coffee. I am addicted to writing.
So I sat down, opened my favourite notebook, loosely gripped my favourite pen, closed my eyes, and started thinking about you like I always do when I sit down to write these days. It has been years since you left me, and I have hated you ever since. Could you have been any more selfish? Do you know that after you left, I spent the next nineteen months under therapy because I wouldn’t eat, or sleep, and kept rambling about how much I hated you all the time? I cannot tell you how I felt when your face flashed in front of my eyes every time I closed them, while all I wanted to do was forget it. I wanted to forget the small bindi that you used to wear, the few locks of hair that you could never tuck into your bun, or the way your hand felt on my forehead when you wanted to check if I had fever. I have never hated anyone as much as I hate you. You had no right to ruin my life, you know? You had no right to shatter me and take a few broken pieces along when you left. I have been searching for those pieces ever since, but they are not there in between the pages of your favourite book, or in the folds of your favourite cardigan. They are gone forever, like you.
You know, whenever I think of you, I force myself to be angry instead of being sad, because there are so many things I don’t want to admit, not even to myself. I do want to tell myself that it was not your fault, because there was nothing you could have done. That makes me feel sad, that makes me feel more helpless. If I blame you, I at least have someone to hold responsible for everything that happened, someone to be angry at, instead of blaming myself for being so weak. There’s something I have never admitted to myself, you know? I miss you, Maa. You had no right to leave like that. You had no right to die.
When I looked down at the notebook open on my lap, the page was still blank except for a few teardrops, which told a lot more than ink stains could ever have done.
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