My best thoughts come to me at Twilight.
Those waning hours of the night when the world is quiet.
When my company is limited to Maggie's soft breathing as she sleeps next to the bed.
The hum of the aircon, the only other sound within these four walls.
It is in these early, or late hours (depending on how you see any of this), that I think of the existential questions that plague me.
The questions that tug at my strings.
Such as, why am I thinking of her at this hour when I could be slaving away at an edit or blissfully dreaming of a time beyond the pandemic?
She isn't one person.
Depending on the day, season, or the retrograde in my horoscope it could be an ex, a friendship that was never more or crushes long past.
Somedays it is reminiscing the good old days.
A walk through Phoenix Park looking for a lost set of keys, a glance across the table before taking a bite out of my sandwich, or a date at a plastic exhibition that found its way into the first story I ever put out.
Then there are others; memories filled with regrets for things unspoken or things done that are all too late to take back.
The ‘What If’ taking centre stage.
I’m fascinated by romance. As a younger, and more naive version of myself I often plunged headfirst into it.
Reckless in my ways.
Granted, and you’ll see this as a common theme across a lot of these essays, therapy served as a catalyst for this journey that I am on.
I find that the more I have been aware of the self, the more I find myself drifting towards what the future might hold.
There are lessons from those reckless years of my life.
Yet, as cringe-inducing, as they may be, I am grateful for those embarrassing / over the top displays of affection.
The learning that followed.
Don’t get me wrong! I’m very much the oddity that I am.
Yet the journey has changed me.
No longer chasing.
No longer afraid that I will die alone.
I find myself at peace, yet pondering the future.
The pandemic has been a time of self-reflection.
Lately, I find myself wondering about the kind of father I’d like to be.
The kind of partner I’d like to be.
What having little shits of my own might mean. Reflecting on the journey of building a home within and what translating that to a home of my own could look like.
It is 4:30 AM, and I am thinking of her.
But her, today, isn’t one person.
She is my hope.
An amalgamation of the ones I have come to know and those that are yet to be.
A big jumbled mess that I'm wondering, dreaming, and wishfully pondering about as I hope to record this very real, very vulnerable piece of word vomit.
There are things that I'm drawn to.
The very conscious ways that she lives.
Forever in admiration of her sense of care, not just for the self but for those beyond her life. The sense of responsibility she feels and yet the ease with which she goes and marches for the cause.
Her compassion and empathy for those outside her bubble.
My equal in making sense of the world that's been handed to us, and doing some good for it.
I was raised by a strong mother and grew up surrounded by women that were challenging the norms.
Killing at life.
It's no surprise then that I’m drawn to strength.
When I think of her, I see myself ringside, cheering her on.
There are foundations that I seek in her.
A never-ending love for all things comic book would be ideal, but you know, can't have it all!
So I'll settle for a foundation in friendship.
I see a friend in her.
One of the kindest I know.
An anchor to the best of me and yet an invitation to grow.
A friendship where we hold the mirror for the other.
The antithesis to my heart on the sleeve.
The calm to balance the over-excited being that I can be.
It's funny how all-consuming I thought it could and should all be: love, relationships, intimacy.
How ridiculous it all seems to me now.
When I think of her, I don't envision a love all-consuming.
But a love that gives us space to be.
Living and expressing our unique selves through our individual lives.
That individualism giving water to our hearth.
A relationship where we meet in the middle.
I recognize I'm glorifying this.
The pandemic does anchor those hopes in reality.
I'm also losing the plot of what I intended to say.
But is it any surprise?
I lose track often when I think of her.
Drifting to a mix of memories and daydreaming; a walk through the streets of the somewhat simpler times praying for a local chipper to be open.
Sitting on the couch across from each other, talking for hours.
Twilight mere seconds away by the time we say goodnight.
Redecorating the apartment, reading the instructions for a coffee machine and giving up in frustration.
Working through the arguments, growing through them, and then losing all plot as we find our way back to the sheets.
Oh, how I wish to have conversations over a glass of wine or wrapped up in a blanket on a couch while we gorge on some ice cream.
Sitting across from each other, the room bathed in sunlight, lost in our own worlds.
A quiet afternoon, with a book in hand and the sound of a kettle boiling in the background.
And someday, perhaps, a little furry friend to call our own.
As I write this, the sun is slowly creeping through the curtains.
It is time for the world to rise and for my dreams to rest.
These are odd times to be alive.
Oddest that any of us have lived through.
The pandemic blending a fine concoction of wishful thinking and nothingness.
The irony of writing about connection in these times isn't lost on me, neither is the futility of it all.
And yet, the tangible ways that I daydream for the intangible things, are all that many of us are afforded in these times.
The promise of tomorrow akin to the light that creeps through my curtains.
Contained in an endless imagination, affording hope, of perhaps what could be when all of this is over.
I don't long for her.
I just place my faith in the promise that tomorrow holds.
Some wishful thinking and months of compounding reflection.
For desire that reflects in the eyes.
Communication that goes beyond words.
Warmth, the kind that transforms brick and mortar into a home.
To hold in those waning hours of the night when a blanket just won't do.
To share a bed with, to make out till the late mornings and early evenings.
To live a life outside of each other yet build one of our own.
Hope, for a love that feels like home.
A healthy mix of goofiness.
Just hope in this twilight, for a love that meets in the middle.
Note: Hello! If you've made it to the end then I just want to thank you for reading through this. This was an interesting piece to write not only because of the vulnerability but also because I attempted to write this through one sitting. Granted commas were added, typos fixed and paragraphs spaced to ensure maximum readability (Is that a word?) but what you just read there was a one-take of sorts. So, if you liked what you read, or didn't, and have anything at all to say, I would really appreciate the feedback!
You could either comment below or reach out to us on our social media @thewriteupproject. Thanks again and hope you and your loved ones are well in these uncertain times! :) Pran