Vulnerability became my strength


It was my second class of the creative writing course, they told us to get in groups and write about a painful moment. I wrote, I erased, I wrote again and I erased. I couldn’t write anything, it wasn’t time. I can only write about certain things when I am over it, so I wait until I have moved on and I finally write about it.

We sit on a table looking at each other, it felt like we were betting on who was the most vulnerable, they should call it ‘vulnerability class’. I wanted to be the last one to read what I did not write, lol… so I could have an excuse that the class was almost over. I sat there listening to other people’s pain pretending I care but I wasn’t giving them my full attention. Then I heard this girl seated on my left saying “the man I thought I was going to marry almost killed me…”. That’s literally what she said. I guess she won! I looked at her and she kinda looked relieved that it happened, weird right? I could relate to her feelings of going through pain and surviving, this feeling of becoming a new person. It feels like you are reborn and I can assure you that this person will love even harder. I guess that’s the difference between me and you, you will probably be cautious and bring your resentment to your new relationship but not me… I will love another person deeper, crazier, desperately.

I wanted to ask her more but I did not know what to say. Before I could open my nosy mouth, she told me “I don’t remember exactly what happened…”. Do you know when people are involved in accidents and they say they can’t remember what happened? The pain is so strong that your memory does not dare to go there.

I kept thinking about that night when you told me to my face that you had moved on, I tried to go back and analyse every word you used to kill my spirit but I can’t. My mind shuts down every time to protect me.

I wonder how it feels to have someone try to kill me. I stared at her for seconds, trying to understand what she did to make someone try to end her life. That’s the problem! We women always think we did something wrong, it can be possible that we did but what can be that bad that can make you unleash so much anger. Why are you so angry? I wonder what happens for them to flip from being a prince charming to a monster. How can someone be so good at being good and bad at the same time?

I always wondered if there is something about me that makes men eager to hurt me. Someone once told me that I look superior and unbreakable… and for some odd reason it makes a man want to test my so called bravery or ego. Well, if that was a test, it worked! You broke me into pieces…

I know I am dramatic and fascinated with suffering but I need a reason to come here, sit in this chair and write about something so I can be a bestseller one day. I guess all this suffering I always sign myself up for is a strategy to take me to my goals.

It’s funny how this whole thing turned out to be about a stupid girl who does not have goals and follows a man. They said I didn’t have real life goals if I was choosing to move to another country because of a man. Well, I didn’t and I don’t care what people think. I believe people should do whatever makes them happy and that’s what I did. I chose to follow a man that was healing me… Period!

But now how can you recover from someone that was healing you? How? It really hurt me… it did! Does love hurt? My mom once told me that love exists but only certain people can afford to experience it. She told me that she could not marry for love because she had bigger responsibilities. When her dad died he told her to take care of her siblings, therefore she could not revolve her life around something as shallow as love. If I am privileged to love, I might as well give my all and love as much as I can. Maybe that’s why it hurts so much, knowing that I am fortunate to love and yet be told that I am loving too much. But I don’t know how to love another way.

Whatever I felt for you, it hurts knowing that will never grow…I can’t plant, seed or take care of the feeling… it’s dead. I saw so much potential in my feelings for you and I really believed you were someone who really deserved my heart. I haven’t felt this in a long time and I remember I didn’t want to come back to this place. It feels like a hangover, you promise yourself you won’t drink anymore but you still do it again. No matter how good I am with metaphors, I can’t find words to say that I wanted to love you more and longer, so I could suffer more…

Maybe the problem was me, maybe the problem was you, maybe it was us… it does not matter anymore but I did love you with my whole heart and I wish you had more faith in us. I loved you like I was normal, like my closest friends did not talk sh *t about me, like my mom didn’t put me on a diet when I was twelve, like my ex did not send my nudes to his friends, like my friend did not die when she was sixteen, like my own blood did not hate me, like in high school they did not call me ugly and chubby, like I did not use to make fun of a girl and one day she told me she had autism and I hated myself…

Now, I feel all those wounds re-opening…everything coming back, all those memories come alive. I know it’s not your responsibility to save me… you have your own pain and wounds to take care of. I understand that you are just another soul, collateral damage of this world. I don’t know what is left of my feelings for you but I know I don’t have any anger or resentment because you have given me exposure  and strength. I needed to let my pride die and stop using it as an escape and a parachute. I faced you and let you break me completely, mercifulnessly, shamelessly…

I am proud of how brave my heart has become. The more I write the more I can feel you leaving my body… and soon you will be gone forever. I don’t know much about what is out there but I can only tell you that if he is good he will be good to me anyhow. He will be good to me when I am broken, conceited, insolent, difficult, distressed, flawed, vain… And then I will sacrifice my goals and everything again to feel this feeling because just the thought of loving someone again makes me stronger.

Featured image| Ouch |  Nick Fewings | Unsplash 

The views and opinions expressed in this piece are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Best of Africa.

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