Friday, August 23, 2013
I woke up with a start. I had been having a nightmare, details of which vanished the moment I was on the brink of lucidity but the horrible feeling lingered. I put a hand to my forehead but there were no perspirations and my hair wasn’t matted to my head. I lowered my hand to my chest and expected my heart to be racing a thousand miles per second but it wasn’t. So I just laid there trying to figure out if I was indeed been having a bad dream and tried to recall what it was about but failed miserably. Even when I closed my eyes real tight, which seem to work sometimes, but not tonight.
However as I lay there with my eyes closed, trying to put together invisible pieces, I realised I had indeed been scared. Although it wasn’t the type of fear that would cause you to dampen your pillow case with cold sweat or the one which causes your heart to feel like it was about to beat through your chest. No. This is the type of fear that causes your heart to ache so bad that you feel like running down to the kitchen to get a knife or anything sharp enough that you can plunge into your chest, cut it open and yank the aching heart out hoping that it will stop hurting. The only thing that’s stopping you is the sense of hopelessness that has somehow slowly crept through your whole body, while you were unaware, paralysing your limbs because deep down you know that even death cannot stop the pain. Some people call it loneliness but I know this fear is worse than that.
As the fear and panic rises from deep within me and formed a lump at the back of my throat, I realised I couldn’t breathe. I was gulping mouthful of air but I wasn’t breathing. Ironically, my heart began to beat faster. As hot tears began to trickle from between my closed eyelids, I felt a familiar touch on my hand. I opened my eyes and saw the face of the man I love staring back at me. He smiled his sweet, sweet smile, wrapped his hands around me and went back to sleep without saying a word. Disappointment replaced the fear for an instant but I knew just having him there was more than I could have hoped for.
I wrapped my arms around him tightly, burrowing further into his embrace and breathing in his smell. As I lay my head on his chest and listened to his heartbeat, I realised that he is real thus all the fear began to ebb away.
As I was drifting back into slumber, the soft, distant ringing of my mobile phone brought me back to reality. With eyes still heavy with sleep, I answered the phone. Hearing the familiar voice of the man who loves me on the other end filled my heart with a new sense of fear and dread.
“Sweetheart, are you coming home tonight?”