I’ve always wondered what it must be like, being trapped in one’s own mind. I know I am not like that. My mind is perpetually travelling through perspectives, skipping from one mindset to another, trying to understand the bits that make up the understanding of others. But I couldn’t say the same for his. He was trapped. Initially, I admired it. His fly attitude about the world, the charismatic public appearance loaded with appreciation and gratitude, his ignorance of all things craving society’s approval. His approach to life was my dream existence. Naturally, I wasn’t alone.
But all of that changed, slowly and steadily, at it’s own graceful pace. The horror didn’t come shoving in my face; rather it sleuthed its way into our home that had started to feel more like a house since the day we got engaged. I didn’t break down or create a ruckus or anything that went against the subdued aura of our lives. I just started becoming conscious of my own awareness.
I noticed that his disregard for things, which earlier impressed me, was now becoming a nuisance since he was habitual of extending the same courtesy towards me. He loved me. I was sure.
But I was just another outsider, and would always be so, in the world around him. Don’t get me wrong. He had been one of the most progressive things to happen to me. I had grown as a person, professionally and personally, because of the bond we had formed. But it still lacked a kind of warmth I grew up with. I should not compare, I know. Merely because I had no basis of comparison; he had always been this stranger and I didn’t know him in an otherwise situation. But things had only gotten worse lately. The lackluster feebleness could initially be overshadowed by the magnanimous amount of social precedence we accommodated in our lives. But it was getting impossible to continue living that way.
I had spent days submerged under the uncertain tectonic activity taking place in my mind. I was in a whirlpool of doubt, dignity and anticipated tragedy. But it failed me worse than I knew. After months of wholesome, consuming spying and hoping, there was nothing, or rather, no one to be found.
No other woman in his life. I was his one and only, just like he’d always say. And I know that should have brought me back to the safe haven I wanted.
But that’s not what happened. Because now I knew the problem was deeper, darker and bigger than just the two of us. Infidelity would have been the easy way out. Infidelity is a cheap price to pay to get out of relationship that is only going downhill. It is simple and requires zilch effort on either side. There’s a simple act of give and take, walk away or stay that has nothing to do with the people involved. It is circumstantial beyond imagination. And secretly, I still wish that had been it. Because infidelity is tangible and absolute; it can be dealt with.
But something like this, an undefined situation of detachment varying over distinct magnitudes cannot be dealt with as easily.
This is hard. And it was only going to get harder.