How can you dump your bags on the doorstep and say “It was awesome” when you come back from a holiday? How can you feel happy about the journey when you’ve gotten out of that shit and faced home and are grinding through drab, everyday things you now feel alien to? How can you enjoy a happy slice of life after it’s chewed up and long gone down your cerebral gut?Is happiness an illusion? Is it one of those bits of shit created by society to hone us into the streamlined slaves we are? Most pressing of all, why is sadness labelled as negative?
The memories that haunt my darker days are by no means a baleful recollection. They’re not a pile of legal papers that take you back to places that make you cringe. They’re not a box of photos you’d rather eat the keys to than let out. They’re good; they’re happy. Too happy to be true. Happy to the point where they become a bully, flashing the middle finger and daring you to get your shit together. They’re too high, too sparkly. They’re like the proverbial candy you get from shady strangers waiting outside school gates. Too beautiful to look at. Too dangerous to taste. Too irresistible to refuse. That’s how most of my past is really. It’s a parody, a whimsical extension of happiness, a high that crested long ago before the inevitable fall. They’re too conflicted with my present. That’s what makes them sad. The happiness makes them sad.
Maybe it’s cuz I’m no longer able to think of the past and smile cuz it’s so much better than my present. Maybe it’s cuz I’m too chained up within my paperweights and lawnmowers and blue ponderings to really take a ride to a yesterday that was once bright, sparkling yellow but is now turning sickly orange from lack of summon. Or maybe ‘I’ is not the thing that’s happy or sad. I don’t know who or what is, but it’s not me. I don’t know. But something in there makes me deal with every day of my life the way I deal with it. It isn’t something I can fathom, something I can assign meaning to. I don’t know.
As times flip shades and one remarkable day follows another, it’s not the days that morph in form and feel, it’s my ways of handling them. They’re an unfinished base of pizza, a blurry mass of reality waiting to be modelled. A bright, overwhelming sun. A warm, inviting dinner. A blue sky. A guy with a smile. An awkward exchange with a stranger I accidentally brushed past. My choice, really. I can turn them bright as the sun or dull as the evening, and believe me, there truly is a choice. Happiness hurts; it hurts more than what it’s worth. Sadness is overhyped already, so you get the chance to brace yourself before it hits you. And because you’ve been chanelled to expect pain, it doesn’t cause you any more pain than what you anticipated. It’s more of a luring comfort, sadness is. A tangy wafer, a rough jog around the hills, a raunchy lover. Hurting to the point of pleasure. Hurting to the point of addiction.
When I get up every morning and push the curtains aside, I feel the full force of the world as the Sun burns through my skin and makes me soggy for all those days when I didn’t feel suicidal or depressed. Sadness has almost become a companion for me; a supple thread of my personality that I must carry through the lows and highs of my character. It’s suppressible, but only so much. It fleshes out towards the dip and wanes when days get yellow, but it’s never fully gone. It’s there. There as a leading emotion, there as a losing foe, but there. There as silent prison I can come home to and lock myself up in when the days get too happy for my own good. A bunch of insecurities, an hour of depression, a hint of tears- that comes free. Happiness? Needs to be paid for. I’m sad, yes. Not something to be pitied, but something to be accepted and moved on with. It’s in my blood, sadness. Everytime I’m put in a happy situation, it jumps up on my heart like a practised lion, never letting go until I’ve appreciated its existence. Sad memories are too terrifying to delve into; happy memories too sad to. Sorrow terrifies me and happiness saddens.
All that said, it truly elevates me to find someone that shares the same shit as me, or someone who doesn’t judge me for what I do. But I can’t stay with them for long, cuz then I become insecure and self-asserting. A dick too. I need a robot, basically, that can feel for itself and give me whatever I want without forming opinions about me. I know it’s crazy, and in the heart of my heart, even I’m pretty sure I’d love to be around the right kind of people, but for now, I’m sad, and I’m okay with it. And once you get over the fact that sadness is well, sad, it can give you the required desperation to do stuff. Happiness stagnates you. Sadness propels. Make sure you have the right amount of it, and it does you more good than you’d give it credit for.