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I sit silently reading memories, triggering emotions I’ve managed to tuck inside.
I cast away the tears. You are strong enough to bear it.
How long until the dam crumbles and the wave of emotions swirl around me?
When will the water wash over me, carrying me away?
Will the tears ever locate their way out of the maze in order to escape?
Tears themselves, are so light, too beautiful to be correlated with sadness.
Yet the ache inside increases along with my heartbeat.
I won’t let myself do this. Not now.
I grew up in a household where crying was a sign of defeat.
I felt raw as the tears traced their way down my cheek, landing on the photograph.
The image that exposed a world I no longer belonged in.
A world I had been cast out of once I stepped on the plane.
A country almost 7,000 miles away.
Tears were foreign to me. So delicate. So intense.
My confident smile always hid the quiver of my lip.
My bright eyes always camouflaged the drop of shame.
My face was always cleverly navigated to stow away any hint of sadness.
It’s just not a part of my nature.
With trembling hands, I carefully inspect the photograph of someone I no longer recognize.
Time managed to wipe away my recognition and distinguished my tiny piece of recollection. Feeling the creases, I remember that I have felt pain.
And for that, I have identified unbearable measures.
Family is forever, they say.
Yes, but even forever has its boundaries and I’ve managed to step outside the lines.
Once you cross the lines, you’re isolated.
Unable to locate my way back, I run frantically half awake and numb with sadness.
They’re only a phone call away.
Yes, but I yearn for a family my eyes can inspect and my body can feel, instead of just what my ears hear.
Their voices feel deceiving. They don’t portray my memories.
Love isn’t measured by distance, ya know?
Right. And distance doesn’t measure love, just its strength.
However, distance only made the love intensify.
It made me crave family and for that, I am weak.
I slouch when I walk; bow my head down in defeat.
Lower my eyes to the ground; resist any moment of pain.
Swallow back the tears and instead engulf myself with laughter.
It’s the love that managed to make the distance unbearable.
And the distance in return made the love unbearable.