Uncontrollable by Nina Malapitan

Every morning I ask myself,
“Is this what you really want to be doing right now?”
Every morning I reply,
“No.” No, because it’s inevitable to always doubt, to always think otherwise. It gets harmful when these thoughts start to mould the important ones about self and security.
But I’m already at the stage where I can’t find the fine line between the two. So whenever I get up, I ask myself a question that I already know the answer to. It’s so sad to be so sure about such a sad thing. This lack of power and control forces me to feel helpless every time I shake the drowsiness of escape. The second my eyes flutter open, I feel an incredible weight dropped on my chest and it crushes in more ways than one. It even eats through my mattress, right through the floor and onto the poor elderly man living on the floor beneath me.


I miss it all—the youth and the effortlessness of smiling. Beth taught me how to smile. I miss her most of all. I feel possessed by my past and I can’t shake this jaded grip of better times. Every morning my mind has to pry my eyes open since the muscles have atrophied. Every morning my mind is too slow and I’m jolted awake by a dead weight that seems to fall right from my ceiling fan onto my chest.
In the beginning, these rude awakenings actually made me hopeful—I could see my fingers intertwining with hers. I could feel it as I ran out of breath. Then I learned that it would just crush me daily without giving me anything in return. It would just strangle me half to eternal sleep and then move on to the tenant below my floorboards.


I miss it all…and I just don’t have the power to change anything about it. Just when I feel myself finally sinking into sleep, something above me falls from above to punch my chest hollow. I feel the veins in my blushing neck bulge; my forehead proceeds to do the same. I can feel everything stop; all of the movement and energy around me drains from the spots they hold in my light-filled room and into me. I burn up just like the sunshine that submerges my room. My heartbeat quickens to a suffocating level and my hands fly up to the neck as I hear someone—me—gasping for the air that doesn’t exist. I am awake. For a record of sixty-eight hours. I can’t do anything about it.