By: Natasha Navarra
Days forced to be forgotten flood back from the crevasse of my brain, peeking through like burning sunlight through the half-open shades of the window of memory. Some of the recollections of the past are merely silent films which I’ve chosen to place away in the corners of my mind while others remain so embedded in my synapses that I have come to accept them as part of my being. I strayed from any meaningful self-examination and instead chose to bury the burdensome time capsules of my life only to find them dug out from under me. Unresolved trauma is a cut from your past that scabs and bleeds haunting us and manifesting into shadows that follow us until they completely swallow us whole. The pain we carry lives in the graves within us digging their way out when we least expect them to rising us from the sleep of numbed abyss.
My earliest memory was one which I chose to reflect on with strange humor veiled in denial making the bitter pill easier to digest. This I’ve come to realize only works for so long before you are bombarded with the missiles of the inevitable truths which you choose to paint in pastel colors to fit more manageable realities. I kept most of my demons tightly chained far from the foreground of myself. In the midst of loss, all of your demons break their chains and run rampant.
The passageway out of the depths to which I created proved to be tumorous since I stayed underground so long. What can appear at first glance to be a band-aid can eventually become a crutch, one which does not help bare the burden of walking upright but can completely remove your ability to move forward. Therein begins the black hole that pulls you in ripping all sense of familiarity and normality in its path. My sense of self-entangled with the roots of my pain. Suppression was my medicine and food for the unwanted thought. I soon learned, as with all things I lost my tolerance and my fragile construct once strong in structure began to break at first limb by limb until it all came crashing down into a stew of hard gravel. I search for security as a lost child searching for their parent in a crowd.
The time capsules I buried, resurfaced. The photos of memory flickering on and off an old film on a movie reel coming in and out of focus. The armor I created once indestructible began to so break, a crack slowly expanding with enormous impact hit by the brutal force from the ball of my being. The fear of feeling comes without hesitation; death is no welcomed guest. The heirloom of my sense of self-began to blur and fade merging into the unrecognizable. The path to my way back was not to which who I was before but who I was meant to be. Rocky and tremulous, the road back was dark, my eyes blindfolded leaving me only to my senses, hills formed one after the next and it was then I was forced to climb.
The pixelated view before me began to come into clarity slowly day by day, hour by hour and tear by tear. Blinded by the light after the ever encompassing darkness, as the tears streamed down, as many as a thousand microscopic slithering swords began stinging my eyes from sight, and dropping to the ground as miniature soldiers ready to battle, the war that is me. The blurry horizon before me slowly gave way to help me find myself again. I began to turn tears into ink just after midnight in the stillness of every passing second.