What makes me anxious.

Dual Citizen, Shanequa Gay (2016)

I am burdened with many things:

guilt over things that are, and those that aren’t but could have been.

isolation from the collective euphoria that gives a reason to live another day.

and worse, isolation from the nameless man inside somewhere I have learnt has many names. Let us call him self. Seeing it is a startling thing, knowing it is a thing requires an alienation I cannot accept is meant to be human.

I am burdened with anxiety. The kind that melts away with a glass of wine, and too the other that settles in the soul. That rattles and creaks every time I think about doing. The kind that thrives in silence, and roars in the chaos of a crowded room.

And so I sit here knowing I have too many things, many things that do not belong to me.

I realize there is one thing that belongs to me but has no home, has no one to call it its own: the voice in my head telling me that I have nothing to lose. That I have nothing. That having is nothing. That the thing it speaks for, me, is mine, and that this all means nothing at all.

There is a place in my heart that I have been trying to find since the first time I met him, the voice. I know it’s there. I feel it in my chest and can’t figure out what to do about it. He tells me sometimes that the most important thing I can do right now is to find the person I am meant to be with. Sometimes he says I just need to find the person I am meant to be. Each time, though, he fails to tell me where, or how. He fails to tell me why, and so he fails to tell me.

It’s been so easy to stay here listening to him. Because he speaks non-stop, knowing it goes one ear and out the other. I don’t have to think about things when I’m with him. I can let life, my life, happen to me. I can be spontaneous and happy. I can just enjoy the ride. But then he starts to shout. He always does. He stands up, stretches his arms around me and hugs me, then shouts in my ear.

I wonder if he is the one.

I wonder if he is the one that is supposed to be with me. But he doesn’t show up all the time. He is unpredictable. He will leave me and I will wonder if I’ll ever see him again. Then he comes back. And I get anxious.

I wonder if he will stay. I wonder if I should let him. I wonder if I should let him go. I can’t seem to decide if he is my one or not. I think about him.

I think about what it will be like to be with him.

I wonder if it will be good or bad. I think about what I want. I wonder what he wants. It’s not fair: I am torn. I don’t know what to do. I wonder if he feels the same way. He is so hard to find. I know there is something in me that needs him. I know there is something in him that needs me. I know there is a connection between us bigger than ourselves.

Still, I know he will always be here. I know I will always be here. I know we will always be together.

And I think more than anything, he is the thing that I fear most. He is the thing that makes me anxious.

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