#125 – the first goodbye

hello!!

wow i really do only sit down to write when i’m sad… this is slightly depressing…

anyway, to preface this, today was a great day — i went to CSB to hang before i met with Tiffy for lunch (at Real Food! i had a vegan lentil croquette burger with 3 onion rings & vegan potato salad), then we walked & talked & i had a mango ice cream scoop from Pong!! we ended the hang with me walking her to her physiotherapy appointment & i went off to meet Fish, Ma & Pa for a quickquick bite.

found myself walking down a very interesting street to a little, little cafe at Telok Ayer Street, where we sat on high chairs and ate/talked/messed around for an hour or so.

during this short, short hour, it transpired that fish was swimming away from us, and that today was fish’s last day. had i not accepted the spontaneous offer to join them (who had also spontaneously decided to get a meal), i wouldn’t have discovered this very important piece of news till it was too late.

my reaction to this is probably melodramatic, as i’ve always known that no one at CSB would stay forever (i mean, everyone is ridiculously young — they have so many options and so many avenues to try out, so why would they stay at one place?), but something about my friend leaving right in front of me hit me hard.

i always looked forward to seeing fish. every day i walked through the back door, my instinct was to check the kitchen to see if she was there. if i saw her i’d get a surge of joy, of excitement that my friend was here and that i’d be spending at least a few hours working with her. if she wasn’t downstairs, i’d trod on up, hoping to see her there instead. some days she was, some days she wasn’t. i’d go on all the same. it never affected me — i think as humans we deceive ourselves by believing in permanence; in forever.

one of my other co-workers once said that “there’s no such thing as forever”, which, yknow, is very true. some things are lasting, some things are fleeting, but nothing’s gonna persist for an indefinite, infinite amount of time.

we see the world through hopeful, idealistic glasses when we talk about forever. when we talk about permanence. then something changes and it shakes us more than it should. we were always prepared — so why does it still hurt? are we hard-wired to subconsciously believe in forever? so that we can carry on with our routines, so that we can anchor ourselves to a comfortable period in our lives?

i’ve talked about how the constant changing motion of society calms and excites me simultaneously. it means that there will be progress. it means that there will be obstacles. it means that there will be solutions. stagnation scares me to no end.

but it still hurts. it still shocked me to learn that my friend, who i believed would be with me till i left for university, was leaving when i’d just barely begun to know her.

of course i wish her well — all i want is for her to be happy, and if she has to leave to find happiness, then i will hug her goodbye and miss her presence for weeks.

a new norm will worm its way into my life. it’ll never be the same (where can i find another fish so enigmatic and beautiful?), but a new norm will come to be. i know i’m being too dramatic, too exaggerated. all that sits in my chest is a quiet melancholy that will go away halfway through the night when i’m trying to beat my MOTN insomnia, and when i wake up tomorrow morning i will be fine. i know this.

and yet.

i’ll miss fish. i never doubted that. i’ll miss everyone eventually, because that’s life and that’s how we function.

so i’ll miss her, and i’ll be okay in the morning, and i’ll go to work as usual and feel the usual things. i’ll stop by the kitchen to see if the rest are there, say hi, and trod on up to see if they’re there too.

if i don’t see them for weeks upon quiet weeks, i’ll swallow the dismay and plonk down as usual, and miss them, and so on and so forth.

i’ll see you with another post soon.

-sonia

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