Nothing in life comes easy; I am a living testimony of that. Moving and living in another country has had it’s fair share of ups and downs but last night it came to a boiling point; the pressure got to me.
For those who may not know, I live about 2.5 hours on the train away from London (where I go to university) and have classes this term, only on Wednesday and Thursday. I have to leave home Tuesday night so I can make it to my class Wednesday morning-which is a commute in itself. I hardly get to enjoy campus and make new friends because once classes are done at 7PM, I am burned out and have to make the commute back to my aunt’s house. So yesterday was the first time I was able to socialise with my peers and professors but once again I had to catch the train to get back home. Only having 30 minutes to sit, drink a glass of water, taste my appetiser; I was sprinting out the door. Not caring about the whispers, hushed laughs and stares that fell upon me, my determination was to make my train and meet my bed. As time dragged on and delays on the Northern Line on the underground took it’s course, I missed my train home.
Gutted and determined to make it home that night, I bound the next train available knowing full well that I didn’t have the right ticket nor did I have the funds to pay for a new one. Saying a little prayer, I took a seat. I called my boyfriend and told him the bad news; he wasn’t going to leave me stranded so he got in the car and took the hour journey to come and see me. The whole way on the train I was stewing in my thoughts…this week at school wasn’t my best emotionally, mentally or physically. I couldn’t call my mom to vent, Nicole was not close and all I wanted to do was cry. Reality was settling in and moments like this only expounded on that feeling.
“This strong girl, how can you be tired?” my uncle asked. I smiled weakly and replied, “I am not tired, I am weary.”
Some of you may be wondering, school just started how could you be tired already and for that I would say you are right. However, this journey of mine started back in April and since then I’ve had no time to breathe, relax and enjoy the ride. If it weren’t money issues, then it was breakdown in communication, if that was fixed something else was bound to stress me the hell out. I haven’ t had a legit break in months. Yes, I’m strong but sometimes I’m tired of putting up a front as if I have it all together. I don’t have everything under control and there are many times at night, I lay awake and question if I did this right.
I wanted something and I got it and yet stress won’t allow me to enjoy it? God Forbid.
Nervously awaiting my stop, the ticket guy approached me and I had to pull him aside. Thanks to my American accent, I was able to speak my way out of a pickle and fortunately he sympathised with me and let me ride for free. Still burdened with anxiety, I did not know what state my boyfriend would be in especially since he took a mini trip to see a friend an hour away earlier that day. Here I was now requiring him to spend 2 hours on the road to gather me. Stepping out of the train, I lugged all my things and briskly walked to meet him. My body was aching and my stomach was grumbling but how could I bring that up, when he was getting ready to unwind for work in the morning an hour before I called? There he was, standing there… worried and tired as I
sluggishly sheepishly moved towards him in a weak one-sided embrace.
Was he mad? Was he going to tell me off? What kind of car ride would this be? I pondered.
Silence set the tone and I knew that this wasn’t going to be a comfortable ride back home. It was now 11 PM and we were setting off for the hour journey and all I could think about were the past few days that I endured. Everything that could go wrong, went wrong and I was exhausted. Small conversation filled the void that was growing every mile and all I wanted to do was scream. No, I wanted to run. Run where? At that point I didn’t care. There was nothing that I could say to rectify the situation and there was nothing that I could do to silence the thoughts in my mind. I wanted to apologise, I wanted to ask if everything was alright, I wanted to see him crack a smile…something but my mouth wouldn’t allow me to. Fear? Pride? Combination of both? Maybe. But I wanted him to reach out to me and he didn’t.
The look on his face said it all- he was worried.
When you’re in a relationship, there is no longer “I” but “we”. October is a bit rough for the both of us but it’s not a hump we can’t get over; especially nothing that would warrant what happened next. By the time I reached our flat after sitting in total silence the majority of the trip home, I was livid. The one person I wanted to see was not speaking to me. I was coming home to a cold reception; disappointment could not describe the feeling. How could I be mad and irritated with someone who doesn’t know what I am thinking and what I am feeling? Not being a mind reader, I allowed myself to be carried away with my emotions and now I was transferring my feelings to someone I cared about.
“Is everything alright? Jen, is it me? What’s wrong?”
I could hear him talking to me and all I was doing was withdrawing farther and farther from his voice. I wanted to hide….hide from it all, especially him.
“Give me a couple of minutes, to cool down. Please! I need a couple of minutes.”
Rummaging to find my things, I stripped down and hopped into the shower. Hoping that would cool me off and give me some time to collect my thoughts, I felt it coming…tears running down my face. Wanting to stop them, I hopped out and started to get dressed. There it was…staring me straight in the face and I wanted to punch it, slap it, abuse it…deathly silence. All I wanted was a hug but why wasn’t that coming across? Why am I so angry? It was staring at me, beckoning me to even utter a word.
“I’ve had a rough few days and I am really tired, frustrated and annoyed.” As I continued to tell my boyfriend what I was going through and how my perception of his behaviour affected me, he quickly jumped out of the bed and I knew that tonight was going to be a night that I was silently avoiding.
Words were said, tears were spilled and all I could do was ponder how did it get to this point? We were both tired, stressed and not knowing how to appease one another, things quickly escalated. I felt horrible. I didn’t want to come home to this let alone have a slight fallout with someone who I wanted to see since I left for school. However, I was still unable to convey what I was feeling without deducing his own feelings; I was in a dilemma. If I spoke further, I was causing more confusion, if I stayed silent…well, it wasn’t helping either. I was stuck in my emotional torment.
Cold was the description I called myself. Cruel was the synonym to be used; hurt was an understatement. Communication breakdown was happening and the only little control I had, was completely gone. Here I was, standing at the doorway staring at the one I love, begging and pleading to see everything I felt that I couldn’t utter and yet I was met with stares back. The conversation transitioned into the living room where I broke down completely. My words were still being misunderstood. I couldn’t win. Not tonight, maybe not even tomorrow. Restlessness was now taking over and the feeling of running overtook me. I hurriedly looked for my sweats and was met by my boyfriend.
“The one thing I want right now, is for you to come to bed with me.”
As tears ran down my face, I was tired. There was no more fight in me. I crawled into bed and was met with his arms surrounding me. That is what I wanted from the beginning and now hours later, I was saddened that it took all of that to get to this.
Writing this is therapeutic for me, not because I hide my faults but exposing them is freeing. I don’t have it all together and I make mistakes. I can be a bonafide BITCH and will cut you…deep, when I am hurt. My defence mechanism is no longer defending me but hurting me. Sad state of affairs to be frank. When I am hurt, I withdraw get silent and to others they may find that rude, heartless, inconsiderate but to me, it is my opportunity to reflect and hide within myself. I am a work progress, I don’t have all the answers and there will be times where I F*CK up majestically and there will be people like my boyfriend who call me out on my shit and yet, still embraces me.
I don’t take people like him for granted. EVER.
For those who may not understand me, it’s ok. You aren’t meant too. The one’s who know me, truly know my heart.