I’ve always been curious about the way people interact with each other.
Before my class clown phase, I was that timid kid sitting at the far back corner of the classroom. Timid to the point that I’d hold my pee in until recess because, I didn’t have the courage to speak up and ask if I could use the washroom.
Being a shy kid allowed me to acquire observations skills at a young age. During lunch, I sat and watched all the kids play around with their friends.
I noticed how quick we are to associate ourselves in groups. At the age of seven, children knew that they had to stick with a group or they’d be a ‘loner’. If you’re lucky another lonely kid will sit beside you and BOOM, you’re best friends.
But most of the time, it was either join a group, or be alone.
The Point of this Post
You may be wondering where I’m going with this.
If I’m being honest, it has nothing to do with children in a playground. But it does have to do with the way people interact with each other. More specifically, the interactions between loved ones.
When I lived in The Gambia for two years (a country on the west side of Africa), I woke up one night to the sound of muffled voices outside my bedroom. Confused, I glanced at my phone tucked underneath an unused pillow. It was around 2am.
My parents usually fought until this time.
Sluggish, I hopped out of bed and slowly opened my door fearing to make a sound. I remember the tiles feeling cold beneath my feet. As I tip-toed closer to my parents bedroom I was surprised by what I saw.
My mother sat on the floor holding something in her hand, her voice was shaken and hair scattered.
“I will take another one”, she proclaims at my father who sat upright on the bed.
“Go ahead then”, my father replied nonchalantly.
To my surprise I watch as my mother pops pills into her hands and proceeds shove them in her mouth. I remember running into the bedroom and snatching the pills out her hands with such quickness, that even I didn’t know what to do next.
I stared at my mother and father confused at the type of interaction they just had.
Never once had I thought about how many pills my mother might had already taken, or why my father would sit and watch my mother swallow God knows how many pills.
All I knew was that everything I had just witnessed was undoubtedly
That same night, my mother packed a suitcase and left the house. The moon had lit up the street in front of our house into a light blue hue.
Keep in mind, I was in The Gambia so there wasn’t power all the time. Most nights, especially around 2am, the moon had enough power to light up the whole country.
That night however, the moon was brilliant.
I took note of my mother’s shadow as she marched, suitcase in hand and all, to the main street to catch a taxi to the airport.
Why I Write About This Now
My mother never got into that taxi. Our kind gateman was able to convince her to return home.
I have always wondered about this moment; how two people that started out so in love, could end up living in separate homes or different continents for that matter. What drove my mother to leave the house that night, and what allowed my father to sit and watch as his own wife tries to kill herself….right in front of him?
How does two people get to that point?
Maybe they were never in love to begin with.
If that’s the case, they sure sold a lovable story in their wedding pictures.
All their smiling and kisses. “The Beginning of a Love’s Tale”, would have been the name of the movie if one of their wedding pictures was a movie cover.
To simply put, their dynamic just shifted.
I’m writing this in hopes to understand how the interactions between two people can sometimes shift. It’s startling how quick someone who we once loved can become a stranger.
How does someone that we once admired so much, become intolerable?
I wonder if we cause these shifts ourselves, or if we ignore all the signs that leads to them.
Maybe it isn’t for me to find out.
Perhaps this is how we people are.
Thank you to everyone that has been reading and supporting this blog! Whenever someone reaches out about a post, I feel full. I am inspired to produce more, not just for myself anymore, but for those that are reading. You are all appreciated xx