‘The further I get, the easier it’ll be’
That was the only thought swimming inside my head as I ran.
Nobody shouted after me, they had barely even stopped the festivities as the door slammed shut behind me.
The only thing keeping me company as I ran down the pathway was the soft glow from above that embraced me as I passed.
‘They didn’t care’
I knew it was a bad idea.
I knew the second I thought about it that it wouldn’t turn out the way I wanted.
I thought my mother would at least sympathise with me.
God I was a fool.
Their faces were engraved into my mind.
The slight crease of my father’s brow as he looked at me.
The perfect circle my mother’s mouth made as she quickly covered it with her hands.
The slight smirk on my brothers face as he watched our family slowly fall apart.
It was a disaster to say the least, the warm laughter that filled the house quickly faded as I became the centre of attention.
“How dare you”
Were the only words that left my father’s mouth as his eyes bore into my own.
“I paid your tuition fees just for you to decide halfway you didn’t want this anymore?”
“I never wanted this, you did”
I fell to my knees.
The Ice crunched from the impact as I gathered myself into a corner against the wall of the convenience store.
I didn’t want this, you did.
My eyelids closed softly, the tears that stained my cheeks dropped onto my dress as I sat in the cold.
“Get out of my house”
My hands trembled as I undid latch on the door.
I knew it would be the last time I would be welcome in that household.
I left Harvard half way through the doctoral program.
I had started seeing a counsellor during my first year on campus.
“Why are you here?”
My hands twitched slightly as I fiddled with the hem of my jumper.
“I don’t know”
“I think you do”
The first session was tough. I sat on the couch, my lips shut tightly almost like those of a clamp.
I was scared, terrified in fact.
“You don’t want to be here?”
“No, I don’t”
It took six sessions for me to admit it out loud.
“You realise how many people would give an arm and a leg to go here?”
My eyes widened as I looked to the lady in front of me.
Her hair was tied up neatly in a bun at the back of her head, glasses loosely draped upon the crook of her nose as she looked at me.
Patiently waiting for an answer that I wasn’t willing to give.
But it wasn’t that I wasn’t willing, I realised in later sessions.
It was that I was afraid.
I don’t know when I decided to stop playing the role of the perfectly composed rich girl.
But one day I just stopped.
“I don’t want to be here. I’m sick and tired of everything, of everyone”
For the first time the tears that slipped down my face were not those of sadness but those of relief.
“I came here because that’s what my family wanted. My father, my mother”
I took a deep breath, closing my eyes as I continued to talk.
“They want me to be a doctor, I don’t. I spent hours upon hours pent up in my room because I was so afraid of letting everybody down and by doing that the only person I’ve let down is myself”
That was the first time my councillor ever gave me genuine advice.
“The only way you’ll ever be happy is to undo the clamp your parents have given you. Birds fly because they are taught how, not by jumping out of the nest in hopes they’ll soar”
The Ice slowly started to take affect as I realised just how cold I was.
I sat up slowly using the wall as a guideline as I pushed myself up.
It didn’t matter where I was going.
It didn’t matter how I was going to get to where I needed to be.
But for the first time ever in my life I was finally free and even though my wings were coated in bright white snow they were also bathed in the glorious light of the streetlamps that lit the way