Once, when I was sixteen I confessed to the former soul-sister, my desire of wanting to run for the Head Girl position. Not because I think I have much to contribute via that position, but because I had wanted it for so long.
Now here I am, almost twenty-one and mulling over a future path. One that I understand is too unpredictable, too sketchy, too vague to want to try making sense and reason at this point in time. One I understand is not yet worth mulling over. One that is… that has… that will… one that could morph itself into a number of different outcomes and none I could predict in this given time.
In other words? No matter my desire, no matter my hunger and dissatisfaction, no matter my obsession – it is not within my control.
But I wanted to tell her that is this where she and I – this is where we’re different. Because I am not only extremely driven, I am also not one of those girls, and trying really hard not to be, one of those girls who plan a life against a phantom of a man who may or may not exist in my future life. I am not one of those girls, who at the end of the day, secretly dreams of picket fence and a house full of kids. She would say, “you never know.” I would nod in agreement, though maintaining silent.
I wanted to tell her that this is where she and I – this is where we’re different. Because in her mind, she’s always had marriage on her mind. Even back then, she was never even truly alone anyway – there was the boyfriend of 10 years, then the now-husband. There were tough, dark periods of course, but she was largely, companionship-wise – never alone. The cards she was dealt with and the cards I have laid out, some still half-opened, are different.
I wanted to say aloud, yet now I wonder why I didn’t – I want to try defying tradition. Expectations. Norms.
All of twenty, almost twenty-one right now, I wanted to admit to her that I will sacrifice marriage, if that is what it takes.
Yet she posed the question, “what if you keep with the plan, do everything in your power to get back on that path … and then you finally, actually fulfill it. It happens exactly as you always wanted it …but then you realize it doesn’t make you any happier. It’s like you’ve won a battle, but you feel like you’ve lost. What then?”
I stayed silent, holding back tears.
I miss you so much, the you who used to feel so familiar. I want to ask, “whatever happened?”
Yet I can’t, because it is incredibly foolish and selfish of me. The question I ought to ask – if I wanted to so badly – is “whatever happened to you, yourself N?”
My heart, it hurts so much. I feel like I’ve lost a sister to a concept I cannot, for unknown reasons, accept, no matter how I try to think differently of it and therefore, myself too.