Sheila sat on her phenomenally tiny bed in her extremely tiny room, thinking of the ever so tiny lifespan she had lived and the not so tiny mistakes she had made.
She couldn’t care less about her accommodation as she was caught between the cobwebs of making right her mistakes, not of room selection but of something a little more voluminous, relations.
As she held her phone, which was currently the centre of her respiratory system, trepidation seethed into every inch of her being. She had to get it right this time.
So far, they were accepting her apologies better than she dared imagine, they actually seemed happy to know she loved them and that was something new to her. Her heartbeat relaxed just a little as she was wrapping her head around handling the next person.
She was in a tight spot, she wanted him back in her life, but she loathed how his easy charm always translated into gilded maliciousness in her life. She was sure she could deal with not having to be reminded of his existence, but could she handle him popping on her cell phone, because of course she blocked him from any other avenue of contact, text after text, apology after apology? The truth was, she couldn’t.
So she types, sentences that even her friend with ADHD wouldn’t be able to comprehend. Yes, no, this, that, here, there, whatever, something, anything, as long as it made no legitimate argument, anything.
Another, “I’m truly sorry, I didn’t realize how much I hurt you, I feel so stupid.” She took another large swig from the bottle in her left hand and let the opaque distortion implode, and then settle.
She picks up her phone and dials her newly attained old best friend, “I hate him”, she says, there was no hello, but he would understand, so much, she knew.
After placating her woes and scarfing eleven months of his love life down in an hour, she cut the call, breathing a little easier.
“Text me”, her phone blinks again, and now she smiled, allowing the all too familiar warmth of a best friend engulf her whole. She had more surprises on the familiar front coming her way though. It was twelve a.m., her night had just begun.
As she picked up to reply, her phone blinked yet again, and continued to vibrate in her hand, with the cold familiarity of a distant country code.
Anyone on this planet could have told her what her inner voice said, Don’t you DARE pick that up. With another swig and a deep breath she decimated her inner voice and could have done so to all the voices in the universe in that one moment of passion, turbulence and confusion. Why? Why was he calling?
“Hello”, she said, I could be an actress, or those people who do voice overs in animations, she thought, the same thought that sprints across her mind every time she covers an emotion that is booming under her voice.
“Hello!” he chirped, she hated that he chirped, that he could chirp a hello when she could barely breathe and that he could leave without a goodbye when all her million words of farewell chased to embrace him, diminishing into nothingness, unheard, unsaid. WHY did she pick this call?
“What’s up?” she continued, the stoic rhythm unperturbed.
“You are such a drama queen”, he piped out of his hollow chest.
“I’m not, I haven’t even talked to you after my last text. You didn’t reply, you know.”
“I got busy, you want to be friends, I understand, you don’t need to say everything a hundred times, drama queen.”
Maybe she did talk too much, explain too much, expect too much, but it was him, obsessing was all she knew.
“So what are you up to”, boomed his voice interjecting her thoughts.
The conversation rode up the awkward slant to a pristine zenith. They spoke, just like the old times when she would lay on her large double bed, legs up in the air, just because and gaze at the flickering bulb on her false ceiling at home. It was everything nostalgia should be, sans the overwhelming need to rush back into his arms. It was the closure she needed.
Somewhere between the splintered beginning and the peak of closure, they talked about Jacob, his best friend, whom she had been on plaintively uplifting speaking terms with. He whispered into her ears the truth behind Jacob.
He was a childish wanton, a loud, untoward, alcoholic, little prick, and she was better off with complete knowledge of his X files. She joined in too, Sheila was no angel, she gobbled and un-gobbled gossip when and where she could take it. Besides, Jacob seemed to spark a fiery conversation flow between the exes inept of any real intelligible speaking material.
The talk spiralled from Jacob and his so many flaws to his lady love, whom the current speaker was in possession of as la girlfriend. They waddled across those waters with ease, Sheila feeling ever so proud of herself because she just realized as she set her phone down that the booming emotion behind her pallid voice box, was no longer there. She was over him. She smiled. It was four a.m. as she pulled on her covers and drifted right off to la la land.
Needless to say the conversation was repeated a dozen times to those who cared to listen to her joy, no, her euphoria. Each time she let out a silent word of gratitude for Jacob and his misgivings, the force that rolled away the roadblock in her conversation with the man she had once considered the love of her life.
She spoke to Jacob a couple of times since the night, and found it very strange that there was no awkwardness, there was no feeling of betrayal after she realized he wasn’t who he always portrayed himself to be, there was nothing but easy flowing conversation, she didn’t grasp the nuances of this. She was Jacob.
She beheld so many of his vices, he lied, she hid, he rattled, she was a traitor, a turncoat, she couldn’t feel wronged because that would be irony that mocked no one but her. She didn’t wish to be mocked. So she decided to accept Jacob, because the truth was he was the only one who was on her side, he was the only one who unknowingly knew her, who was her, and so she said a silent apology to him for her tattles and tucked it away in her heart. They would be friends.
When it comes to passing judgement upon other people, I think the best thing to do is to not do it at all.
Alas! We’re humans, not a species that can agree with that mumbo jumbo.
So the second best thing is, don’t judge someone until you have walked a mile in their shoes, or drowned a day in their vices, fought a day with their demons.