Apr 21, 2012

you have to come to a closure before you forget

We all want to create something beautiful. Sometimes we spend all our time and effort making this masterpiece, piecing together the stained glass, carving intricate patterns into the little stone pillars, decorating the walls with gold. You put your life into this artwork. Your flesh begins to fuse with the glass; your blood mixes with the paint; but you're proud of it, because it just shows how much you've given to this work of beauty.

You look at your creation and your heart bursts with overwhelming joy. It's beautiful, indescribably beautiful and you've finally experienced this happiness that lasts an eternity. But slowly you begin to realise that you've been using the wrong materials. All too fast your masterpiece falls apart and the gold beads spill out onto the floor like your tears. It's no longer a work of beauty. It has fallen, fallen; now it's nothing but a mess.

The huge mess on the ground is scattered gold beads and cracked stone walls and shards of glass and your own flesh. What was once beautiful has been reduced to nothing - worse than nothing; a mockery of your wasted effort. The memories of the glorious past are stained with the blood that oozes out from the hole in your heart. Nothing but pain now.

You leave the pile on the floor, try to run away. But every time you turn your head you see that pile of nothingness staring back at you, and the memories engulf you again. Memories of pure beauty and sheer joy, now screaming with the bitter aftertaste of regret. All the time and emotions you invested, all gone to waste, gone to trash.

Forget about this, you tell yourself. You'll never get it back now. Remembering it will only bring you pain. But you can't bear to go near the mess again, so you take the easiest way out - with a broom you hastily sweep the mess into a corner and cover it with a rag. There, now you won't see the mess anymore, and maybe this way you can forget. 

You acquire the skill of careful avoidance. You stay away from the corner. Be careful not to think about it anymore. But no matter how hard you try to make it disappear in your mind, you know it's still there. Weeks pass and the stench in the corner begins to grow. The stench of your rotting flesh that was fused with the glass. It catches hold of your heart once in a while.

Slowly, you begin to realise that there's no way you can truly forget unless you deal with the problem once and for all. Facing the rubble of your disaster is the hardest because you have to confront the painful memories again. You have to take that rag away to uncover the trash in the corner again, look back at your tragedy. You pick up the stone pieces and glass, your own rotting flesh, hold them in your palm. You're so close to them now. You can't help but cry again, remembering the beauty of before, the beauty that only you knew.

All the pieces of shattered glory in the palm of your hand, you carefully place them into a box. You take one good last look at them, relive the memories that still pierce your heart now, tell yourself that you must abandon all memories of this masterpiece, because they will only hold you back. It's time to create new memories. Create a new piece of art.

You take the box out, dump it into the big collection bin, watch as the trash collectors come and take away all the beauty you've ever known.

It's only when you've dared to come face-to-face with the pain and the tragedy again, and truly dealt with the problem, that you can move on. Stop fooling yourself. We all need closure. There's only so long we can continue avoiding. There's only so long we can cling onto the memories of pure beauty. We have to let go. We have to get rid of the pieces that still lie around somewhere in our mind. Come to terms with finality and move on.

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