The color of royalty. This I learned from a book series revolving around a preteen egomaniac, who treated her friend group like her personal empire. Purple sheets, purple walls--she insisted on being royal at all costs.
Purple doesn't suit me. Either it's lilac, soft and sweet, or it's vibrant and pigmented, fitting for a queen. I'm neither of those. However, nor am I the darkest shades, which find themselves on the nails or eyelids of the rebellious and angsty.
Hospital scrubs can be purple. So can bruises. Purple's usually relegated to flowers, and those without gardens have yet to experience it.
Purple is the warmest of cool colors. That doesn't mean much.
Purple exists between sadness and rage. Melancholy? Mild irritation? It's not exactly clear. Purple feels fuzzy, hazy, and pale.
Purple's an enigma.
Now, my eyes aren’t the eighth wonder of the world. Not the conventionally appreciated blue or the rare green, but hazel. Caramel brown mixed with green. Other eyes are more striking, but I love mine.
The right eye contains a bit more green than the left. The brown in them matches my skin. They’re large, and crinkle when I laugh. Even beneath my glasses, they’re noticed.
I love my eyes and others love my eyes. Or, I love my eyes because others love my eyes. I’m not sure which one it is.
Makeup isn’t my forte, but every day I ensure that my eyes are lined with shadow, mascara, and liner. I think, Why not make them stand out more? I’m not sure who I do it for, but it makes me happy.
One of the few things that does.
Though I’ve just entered my twenties, I’ve never been in a relationship. That fact used to make me angry, or embarrassed, but the more I fantasize about it, the more I realize it’s good that I’m not in a relationship.
I know there would be many problems. Sex, self-esteem, but most importantly--communication. My imaginary boyfriend throws glass at the wall, screaming that he regrets ever approaching me. I stand there sheepishly, knowing that it’s all my fault.
At home, I felt transparent, like everyone could see all of my problems. That’s because they could. My mother hoards compulsively, and anyone who sets foot in our home instantly understands that there’s something very, very wrong.
I became used to feeling humiliated, ashamed, and having everyone know our family’s problems. I went to college, and one day my roommate surprised me by stating how calm and collected I always seemed. It stunned me.
My anxiety and my self-hatred apparently wasn’t written on my forehead. That was news to me.
Other people have viewed me as distant, cool, or collected like my roommate says. The relationships have never been close, because I’ve never communicated that well.
Even now, I’m perpetually in the state of transparency in my head. I expect everyone to know my fears and my doubts, and when they don’t it still surprises me.
Gradually, I’ve dipped my toes in the water, revealed slightly more to every new person I come across. But still, I’m unsure of how to completely fall in, and I hope people can understand that I’m not cold.
It just takes time to melt the barriers.
“Don, you’re a fucking slutbag.”
It took five years of watching and rewatching to suspend our disbelief. Yes, we actually heard those words leave someone's mouth, on international television, as the winner was officially crowned. No confusion, the words were clear as day.
If uttered now, the Twitter timeline explodes. Everyone reminisces on where they were when our king was crowned for the first time. It's basically a holiday now, one which earns us a myriad of strange looks when we try to explain it to everyone else.
The Unfair Universe
Sometimes, I hate God.
Not for any particularly contentious reason do I hate him. He hasn’t been preached to me since I left the womb, nor has he ever made me feel like he doesn’t love me. The only way he’s slighted me is by creating this big, unfair universe.
He filled it to the brim with things we can never touch. What must it feel like to touch a star? How would it feel to fly on a planet with impossibly strong winds? Our fragile human bodies, for as exceptional as we think we are, could never handle such mysteries and live to tell the tale.
If you fell into a black hole, the entire universe would collapse inward until the billions of stars and galaxies would just appear as a dot in your vision. In the blink of an eye, you’d see thousands, millions, even billions of years pass before you. It’s quite possibly the most poetic way I could imagine dying, yet tragically, I can never experience it.
The universe is becoming lonelier, too. It’s expanding in every different direction, fast, and day by day we see fewer and fewer stars. At some point, all around us will be blackness. No sun. No galaxy. We’ll never be able to look outside our small slice of the observable universe, never know just how big or small we are in comparison to everything.
We’ll never know what the hell everything even means.
It hurts more than it should. God’s tempted us with the promises of unfathomable galaxies, planets, and life forms, but they all rest beyond our reach. Maybe when I die, I’ll be able to live as a ghost, and I’d spend my enternity exploring all the realms we could never see.
I just hope it’s something fantastical, something well worth the wait.
Your wrists burn. You know they must be purple by now. You welcome it all too willingly when he finally unties you. He’s freeing you. Freeing you to aimlessly walk around this dark hole in the ground, but it’s liberty nonetheless.
He talks. When you wouldn’t listen, the words were harsh, threatening to kill. When you gradually started to lose the energy to run, his voice softened to hush whispers. He insists that he had to do it. You’re precious. He needed you more than others did. After an eternity of hearing nothing but one voice, you have no choice but to see through their lens.
He makes himself sympathetic. He cries. He’s scared. Scared of losing you, scared of being sent to prison, or killed. You see this frightened boy, and your heart leaps.
He feeds you. Monsters and devils don’t feed others. They surely don’t do it as gently as he does. They don’t free you. They don’t rub your wrists. Their eyebrows don’t knit together worriedly. His do.
You have to accept him. With no one else around, he really is the only one who cares. You depend on him. You depend on him.
That’ll become a less frightening idea the longer you go without seeing the sun.
You can still smile at one another. You can speak, without shuffling your feet or your eyes falling to the ground. You aren't scared.
You can be kind to him. But more importantly, you can be kind to yourself. You can wake up, brush your hair, eat. You can admit your shared failings, but you don't have to scream it from the rooftops.
You can still love one another. You can still wish for their happiness, even if their happiness isn't you. You can breathe.
You can remember the good times fondly.
You can let yourself fall freely into another's arms.
Your family swears it’s not like you. They’ll make thousands of stories that put you in thousands of different positions, none of them true. They’re the directors of your life, trying to edit and snip away anything that might disturb the final picture.
You’re a lily. You’re sweetness, spring, and vibrant. You bring life to others. All he brings is death. It’s not like you. Opposites are supposed to fight, struggling to subdue the other. There’s no battle here.
They still insist you’ve been stolen, brainwashed, programmed to say these things. If you place a flower in his hand, it rots. His realm is dark, full of tortured or freed spirits. You shouldn’t exist here, but you do. You shouldn’t love it, but against all odds, you do.
You come to understand death and suffering. He comes to understand laughter and warmth. Maybe you’re not opposites at all, but two sides of the same coin. Always in tandem, always inexplicably interlinked.
It’s not like you. Except, it really, really is.
Infinite Time, Baby
Falling into a black hole the way I want to go out.
Not a small black hole, though. If you fall into one of those, your body will stretch into a thin line like a spaghetti noodle, and you'll die instantly. Instead, I want to be thrown into a supermassive black hole.
You can survive for much longer in a supermassive black hole, and what you'll see in the hours before your death will be incredible.
As I fall, I'll look up to the stars. Tens of millions, even billions of years will pass before me in an instant. If I die in a black hole, I'll be the last person to ever live, since time inside it passes so much slower than the outside. Who knows, you might be able to experience the entire age of the universe before you croak, watching stars explode and seeing space expand until there's total darkness, and then silence.
To me, that's the best ending I would ever be able to see, and that's why it's my go-to death sentence.
For the Friendless
The word 'friend' is hard to say. Your mouth usually forms 'aquaintance' or 'person', never friend. At some point, you think you've had friends. But you doubt it.
Friends trust one another.
You remember being fourteen, your last year of innocence, and having a few friends. Your closest one was Gia, the last person you'll ever call a best friend. You like her, and you tell her everything. She likes you, and she tells you nothing.
You'll never forget the time that one of your mutual friends was going through a rough patch. You ask Gia, and she gives a faint smile. She says that she can't talk to you.
Your next friend was Reyna, who invited you to her quinceañera. She left you alone the whole time to talk to other people, her better friends.
You're never the 'better' friend, or the confidante. You're the last resort, the final player to be drafted to a team.
With new friendships, you question everything. You don't think they want to know about you, or be around you. You may come off as cold, or uninteresting. To say your favorite color feels like a death sentence, because you can be judged for anything. You make less and less friends, more and more 'aquaintances' or 'people'.
You wonder if you'll ever be able to let yourself fall, to ever love someone completely and unapologetically like friends do, and let yourself be loved in return.
You can't say. Now, it's ingrained in you like an instinct--to always catch yourself before you fall.