Crumbling Constructs

Retreat

birthdayI listened to the boom of the woofer and was mildly pleased that the sound system was working. Like finally. I looked at my cousin staring at the screen of his phone without letting go of his breath. Such fascination. Much ignorance. He would wake up in the morning all hyped up for breakfast and once that is done and over with, would beeline towards the router and disappear behind the screen till ‘Lunch is ready!’ is called out. Endless videos, (I still have no idea what he watches on YouTube), Instagram, Facebook and sheer boredom would aptly describe his state of being at any given moment of the day. Except when he tosses and turns in the night. I looked away allowing my mind to dwell on everything that had gone wrong in the past week, month, year and as far back as I could remember. The collective force of years of pent up anguish seemed to be on the verge of spilling over. I blinked my eyes and told myself, ‘Not now, not here.’ I decided to try and sleep and turned to face the wall. I curled up and pulled the huge crimson comforter over my brown body. Sleep will not come because sleep does not will it. That’s a line from Laura Marling’s ‘My and Manic and I’. I heard him leave the room and I immediately got up and locked the door. I stared at the room for a minute before the flood of tears came bursting out from beneath my tiny eyelids. I pulled the blanket closer and held my body as it shook violently from the lack of air in my lungs. I let the tears stream down my face and fall on to the patterned pillow as I rocked my body to and fro. I reached for my phone and returned to texting the last person I had been messaging.

“I hate today.
Worst day of the month
Ever.”

“okaay”

“I hate happy days. Wait. Those don’t exist.”

“You hate forced cheerfulness”

“well put. Yea.
That.”

“Everyone does
I sulk”

“I cry.”

“Same thing”

“Why are tears salty?”

“Salts”

“Is it the same things we add in out food?”

“No”

“Okay”

“When you cry, the tears are salty. … Actually, all the fluids in your body are at least a little bit salty. All of them have some salts dissolved in them and always a little of the commonest salt, sodium chloride. (That’s the one that tastes the saltiest.)”

“Ahh. Okay. Thanks.”

“Don’t cry”

“I can’t stop crying”

“You’ll run out of it soon”

“Why do we lose our breath when we cry?”

“You curl up
Lesser lung capacity when you are curled up”

“Makes sense”

“Plus sadness is similar to anxiety in that way
There are some hormones that spike
Which lead to the sharp breathing”

“Never knew that
And the head hurting?”

“I don’t know”

“Ohh. Alright.
I stopped
I think”

“Your face feels much more comfortable because you’re tear gland is empty
Crying causes you to lose water from your body and painful headaches are often a sign of dehydration. Stress caused by whatever is making you cry can also lead to tension headaches. *Prevent headaches when crying by avoiding dehydration”

“In short drink water when sad.
You looked it up 🙂
No one ever does that.
I appreciate it.”

“I learn too”

“Ha. Ulterior motive.
Why does the body heat up?”

“My whole body heats up”

“Hmm. Well, my face, and neck especially”

“I don’t know why”

“Okie”

“Did it help?”

“Did what help?”

“All these facts”

“Yes. Yes it did.
It made me think. Which made me stop crying”

“Wasn’t thinking the reason you were crying”

“Erm… well, I started thinking about the process of crying”

“Yeah”

We trailed off into other irrelevant avenues of banter as my mind calmed down and retreated into a sand fortress.

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