Alice

by Hansini

Screenshot_2014-08-25-13-23-39 A lovely,little girl called Alice looked up at her father, begging him to buy her a candy just this once. The man towering over this little girl shook his head and roughly pushed her away. He was stuck with this tiny human for the rest of his life. Alice missed her mother,  a beautiful, wide smiling woman who used to take her out every Sunday to the park for a special treat.

It just didn’t feel the same without her here.

Alice was 18 when she decided it was time to let go . It wasn’t really a decision since it felt like this was the only option left. Over the years, she tried really hard to improve things with her father, who seemed to hate her for reasons best known to him. She gave up after a point.

She told a boy, “hey, I really like you”  and he had burst out laughing. He didn’t understand. He looked disgusted. So, Alice let go. She let go of everything she once dreamed of. To be seen. To be held.  To  hear someone whisper “you’re beautiful”. To mean something to someone.  To be loved. she let go because it felt safer not to feel anything. She knew she would not be able to feel happiness anymore but she wouldn’t feel the pain too – to live in neutrality.

But the human heart was never meant to let go . Ever.

Now Alice is 30. Never got a degree. Still lets her father call her a useless, good-for-nothing bitch. She wears her hair really short. Hides her face in an oversized hoodie. Watches the most violent series on tv. That way , she sometimes feels a twitch in her stomach.  A sign of emotion. Just to remind her self how it felt to feel. How she once used to be someone who would laugh out loud and cry.  Her memories were her new dreams.

But you never really let go. Those who tell themselves they dont care, care the most.

Today, Alice walked to work, the cafe just around the corner. She turned up the radio as she slipped behind the counter. It seemed easier not to talk to people when you pretended to listen to it. Her gaze, always hasty. Her movements always strained. Like a volcano was about to explode and she would have to run and hide. Like a bomb was gonna explode and she was gonna lose her head. Like every single person here was here to kill her. Like there could be a knife planted in her back, any time now.

 

Then a man walked in, a regular with big , round questioning eyes, the perfect haircut but something about the way he dressed,  reminded Alice of her father. He ordered the special.  Alice nodded. She hastily turned around and prepared his drink, all the while avoiding his reflection in the mirrors that hung up behind the bar.

When she turned back, he was still staring at her. She felt dizzy. The only time a man would stare at her would be out of disgust, she thought. Pity. Mockery. She held the edges of the counter to keep herself from falling. Stop staring at me- a constant scream in her head.

“You remind me my mother”,he said at last,  “she was just as beautiful as you.”

Alice frowned. A million thoughts flooding her head. How to run. How to brush off this comment. Was he really that cruel? Pushing her buttons just to play around.  Or was he genuinely nice?

“I just wanted you to know”, he said in a soothing voice and went back to working on his laptop as if what he had said was no big deal. That day Alice left early for home. The man had left her a huge tip. And the brightest smile, Alice had ever seen.

 

She had waited over 20 years to hear something like this. Of course,  she didn’t believe it was true, but there was something about his sincerity that struck her. Almost as if it were true.

When Alice got home that evening,  she sat in front of the mirror and looked at herself. Not at her flaws.But the beauty that she was.  She laughed. She cried. She sat there the entire evening. Getting to know herself.  The girl she had avoided for so many years.

That was the day that she truly let go. She let go of the constant fear that lived in . Of the endless attempts to hide herself from the world. Although Alice would still be scared, feel pain and be misunderstood but she let of the idea of letting go.

She vowed to let herself feel again. Because if she could survive the bad feelings,  there would be more room for the good ones.

—————–

When you see or meet someone like Alice,  know that they care. Just that they are scared. Afraid.

With a few genuine words , you might be the only shining star in their night sky, even if it’s just for a night.

If you feel like Alice,  remember that the world not only holds bad and painful things but beautiful stuff too. If you are willing to open your eyes, you can pull yourself away from the bad , dark night. That’s the beauty of life. When you feel like you’ve touched rock bottom,  things can only go up . So smile.

and never. ever. let go of that hope.

 

Lots of love peeps 🙂

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