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Comes and Goes (in waves)



Throwback to when you were ten and it was your team’s trial to hide in the least expecting places of your school yard. One, two, three. Your size is a powerful resource, allowing you to merge into the nature’s most beautiful wonders. Twenty-one, twenty-two. Your heart beats fast, with the adrenaline of racing to the starting point faster than your opponents and winning the title for your team. You were always good, you know? At playing hide-and-seek. An expert in the hiding section.

You are still good at that. I remember interacting with you from time to time, either when you would start to read the first questions of the exam you were just handed, or when you were about to go to a doctor’s appointment.  You should not take me wrong, though, we shared good experiences as well, like that feeling of butterflies skitter down to your stomach when you got a good grade, or trembling hands when it was your time to look around the yard for your friends. We were good, a team. I protected you when I thought you needed, and you would do whatever you had in your power to guarantee that we were in a good position.

Every fairytale has a moment in time in which the rainbow turns gray and it looks like the witch is going to win. That was our time. In an attempt to protect you, my trembling hand started to hit the alarm button often and severely than normal. The butterflies turned to a whirlwind, and the excitement that use to run through your veins was replaced with fear. What once fitted like the puzzle of a landscape portraying a Spring day was now cracked and cranked, and the image was no longer a flowered scenario, but rather a cold, eerie picture.

The role of protecting you got out of my trembling hands, and I saw through foggy lenses as you started to experience what I was avoiding the most - fear. I could sense your body activating every mode of safety, trying to fight the fear that was consuming you in a persistent momentum. The clock that once danced in slow moves was now running from the numbers, and that feeling that would last a few seconds was now gobbling you for hours, days. Every little thing was dangerous, I would scream into your mind. Every little thing can be a threat, I would cry out. I wanted to protect you, but I lost myself in the way of doing that.

Our story kept being written with dark and wounding colours and I watched through a cracked screen in a room full of spider webs as you bear up the mental and physical scars I put you through. Reasoning would try to argue that it was the right time to search for a helping hand, but I fought against it with every sword I had in my power. I was the one supposed to help you, not them. Not someone who did not know what you had been through. We had been through.
The podium you have yourself in is low, the lowest it could go. I have watched with sadness the hours you have spent self-deprecating yourself, picking up every flaw with your quiver hands and enhance it with the stronger markers you have. You say you are not strong. You say you are not brave. I say you are not looking at yourself.

It felt like a nightmare at the time. How you got up, walked up to me and said “No more”. How you ran to the door before I could hold you and you shouted for help. That word, that word that I was fighting against. You say you are not strong, but that was one of your bravest moments.
I like to peruse through those moments every now and then - of you coming clean to your loved ones, of you calling for help, of you saying it out loud. My fear, marked through the pages of your books, of being broken down the moment you said it aloud… It disappeared. When those words came out of your mouth I realized you weren’t just helping yourself, you were helping me too. I had lost control, and you were fighting for both of us.

When you handed over your thesis, these words came out of your mouth “I am proud of myself for the first time ever”. It pains me to know the true underlying in that sentence, how you have always ignored the pride of your conquests, of your fights. And now, as I am looking at you fighting for yourself for the first time, putting yourself first, believing you deserve better, that is one of the best feelings I, an unpleasant disorder that lives with you, could feel. Throughout our book of life, there are pages I wish you could omit of your mind, but I know now how time is a wonderful thing and how it was what you needed to come clean with yourself. Mundane voices say “Things get better” and the reason is within them. Things do get better, specially when we start to believe we deserve better. You took some time, too long, to believe you deserved better, to wash all the wrong assumptions, the dark beliefs, to clean the grimy mirror you looked at yourself through. But one day, it was as if you heard a little voice in the midst of the alarms I had sounded, and you had discovered that the voice you kept hearing to and ignoring was your own. It was your own voice telling you to believe you deserved better and to, for the first time ever, to fight for yourself.

And I am really glad you are.

Ava. x

Rise Up


Ava: A variation of Eve,
originating with the Hebrew חַוָּה (Chavah/Havah – chavah,
to breathe, and chayah, to live, or to give life).


The space is quiet, with the only sound being the melody of her resisting the force of the hindrances that grow on her path. Her touch reaches for the firmness of the brown, yellow and white grains laying there beneath her. Her eyes - big and deep, a metaphor for the mystery that consumes her entirely, but slowly - crave for more and wonder the history that lays here, the same place her roots are starting to dig on. She is different tones of blue - dark blue, like midnight, hiding her deepest secrets and fears deep within; a medium blue, showing off her sense of adventure and wish for wandering; light blue, an anthem to the stories she has yet to write; and white, the dream she keeps on dreaming. Her colours ally with the melody created by the birds flying around her, the soft colours of their feathers merging with the blue and pink that lightly paint the sky she is under. The sun is starting to emerge, and the birds dance in a synchronized choreography, as she tries to accompany them. Coming and going, coming and going. Each moment, she comes closer to touching the human within her. Coming and going, coming and going. The white in her hits the wind, in a battle for more than dominance: ease. Coming and going, coming and going. The victory underneath her immensity and strength is shadowed by her fear. A sense that a stronger force is coming to light. Her touch senses it, her eyes witness it. There is something that has been in hiding, and the clock reaches its reveal. The small white and brown rocks harden, the wind allowing those far from her to twirl around each other. She knows she will not be darken and her colours will sway alongside the light that is reaching within her. Her fear starts to dissipate and a strange desire overcomes her - not hers, but the force’s. A desire to… breathe. To breathe in. To breathe out. And to finally take a step forward.

Her name is Ava, and she is my anxiety. And the force? Her name is Catarina.

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