‘Not Today’: How She Defeated The Demons To Find Her Saviour, The Only Hope Life Could Promise
“You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it”
Shattered. She was left in the trenches for the dead. Distress settled all around her like a dense fog on a winter night. She aspired to have the sun shine on her face again. To have the clichéd feel of wet grass underneath her bare bruised feet, the cool wind blowing her dust-laden locks. Yet somehow, the more she struggled to climb out, the deeper she sank. One step ahead was 10 steps back.
It’s a sadistic way of nature, to weigh down on those that have held up for the longest. To continue to bludgeon those who’ve been weakened the most. To hit the vulnerable should be a most cowardly act, yet it happens most frequently. Even fallen warriors are allowed a chance to get up on their feet to fight back.
She sat there in the shadows and continued to curse her luck, for choosing to be so scarce when it could’ve been plentiful. Why couldn’t she be one of those people who are always surrounded by rainbows and butterflies, to have blessings brought down upon one after the other? She pulled at her hair, cried a huge cry. Shouting expletives into obvious oblivion. She sat there in the dark for what seemed like an eternity.
Her entire past flashed back to her, playing on a loop. Disowned by her family, stabbed by the people she considered her friends. Having been taken advantage of in ways that would move the cruelest of mercenaries. She had become a lost wanderer. She’d travel for days till she found a place where they would offer her some work to do in exchange for a temporary roof over her head. Then, after a few days, she’d feel suffocated beyond control and would be on her way again. She couldn’t remember the last time she slept in complete physical and emotional peace. At the start, it was like a cruel game her mind played on her. Like a reflex her most pain-inflicting memories brought to the front, followed by a string of other events. They kept hitting her like a train, one after the other, till she became numb.
Having been reminded of her most unfortunate past time and again, she yearned to have death mercifully take her away so she could fall in an eternal slumber. The coldest gush of wind blew her hair off her face and she could see a faint hint of her reflection in the pool of mud beside her. It left her mutilated. She struggled to search for a face she could recognise, but she only saw a worn down face that had aged decades.
Muddied and distraught. Exasperated and tired. Just so tired. It is second nature to us, as humans, to let our emotions befuddle us, but for it to happen time and again was something she felt she had specialised in. Yet, seeing her blurred reflection in the puddle pried open a crack inside of her. A new sense of awakening, a reincarnation of sorts started budding.
She had rediscovered herself in the depth of despair by some miracle. She felt herself like the punchline of a terrible joke that fate pulled on her. To have forcefully made her hit rock bottom, face first, only to instill in her a new rekindled spirit that would ultimately be her salvation. But she still felt a void inside of her. A gaping wound that years’ long grief had only made worse. She inadvertently found herself looking for a reason to keep herself alive. A reason to live. Perhaps an old image of herself even, a face she recognised and could retreat to.
She searched through her memories endlessly and in what felt like a quest to recover a needle from a haystack, she ended up finding something infinitely more precious. She saw herself not too long ago. She saw a body, her body, lying in a pool of blood and tears. An encounter with a man twice her size, to whom she refused. She saw the man punch her and she felt a tooth loosen. Succumbing to the intense pain, curled up in the fetus position, she lay still. Blacked out….and then she saw a hand. The most beautiful hand she’d ever seen. She held it and found her strength to stand back up. Her quivering legs betrayed her multiple times till she finally regained her balance.
She dusted her clothes all the while staring back at the kind eyes that had showed her mercy when everyone around her had kicked her down every time she struggled to get up. She yearned for recluse in those bright beautiful eyes. She wished time would just pause in that moment which seemed too good to be true.
And, in that moment, she knew she had found a reason to live, a reason to breathe again. She found her ray of sunshine and she clung on to it for the longest.
She held on and she started her ascend. Pushing the sharp thorny branches to the side. Making her way up and out of the seemingly bottomless trench. She looked up and saw something that resembled the kind eyes that she found solace in. The warmest embrace that she hoped would never end. Her feet slipped off the rocks carefully balanced between the still wet clay, but she refused to give in. She climbed and she climbed till her sore feet could climb no more, till her now bleeding hands refused to hold on any longer and then she climbed some more. All her demons came rushing at her, pelting her, hindering her from reaching her destiny, yet she turned a deaf ear to all. “Not today” she said as she kept moving further. She climbed and she climbed till her bloodied hand touched something that wasn’t a rock. She struggled up and she felt the wind now could carry her weight for her. She stood, with eyes still shut as to not get overwhelmed by what she had just accomplished. Then carefully, just as she grew sure, she opened them. One at a time. And there she saw smiling back at her at a distance, the same set of eyes. The eyes from where she derived her hope when she was at her lowest. She started to make way towards them. Running back to her only abode. To feel the embrace she had craved, and she vowed to never let go.