You’re sick and tired of having people tell you that once something is broken, its gone forever. You still like to believe that no matter how bad things get, there is always a way to patch things up and live despite having those painful memories at the back of your mind, reminding you of what took place then, and the wounds you had to suffer because of it.
It feels as though everything would have went smoothly by, if only you hadn’t done what you did. Maybe you should have given in, and let life take its course instead of arrogantly pressing on. Its not easy to negotiate with our desires, because the heart wants what it wants, and gives no reason for deciding to pursue it. Desire narrows our vision down to only see what it wants.
And we’re filled with dread whenever things don’t work out the way we plan it, and can even drive us insane because of the ridiculous amount of investment we made in trying to realize that dream of ours. So when reality kicks in, you regret putting in the time and effort you invested to actualize a dream that was bound to fail. You stare back at all the silly things you did out of desperation, to get to where you are now, only to realize all of it was in naught.
This could be having a happy family, a successful career, a loving relationship with your spouse, or an expensive perfume bottle.
And that’s exactly how I felt when I stared down at my mother’s expensive perfume bottle which was in pieces.
How it All Began
It was a bright Sunday morning, and my mother decided to go out shopping with me.
Or my mother dragged me out of the house to be precise, because there was a sale in the mall nearby. I never liked shopping, but I also never liked starving to death, so I went along with my mother.
She needed someone to help her carry all those discounted goodies back home and never use them.
We entered the mall and started piling our trolley with lots of discounted stuff, and as I pushed the trolley about, trying to keep up with my mother, I noticed others of my age who were in a similar situation. I felt a little relieved seeing them, knowing that we were in this together. We’d pass by and nod at each other, to keep our heads up and march on. Despite being victims of child labor, we still had each other to rely on for emotional support. As you can imagine, life was tough for the young folk.
Our first stop was the jewelry store, because my mother had a thing for unnecessarily bright looking things. My eyesight would dwindle each time my mother asked me how the sparkly stuff she hung around her arms and neck looked. She deliberately tried to handicap me, lest I plotted an escape.
Next, we dived into the perfume section, and my nose was immediately assaulted by numerous pungent odours. I wasn’t given any sort of gas masks I could use to cover my face with. There was nothing that could protect me from its emission. My days were numbered.
And something interesting happened there. For the first time, my mother actually bought something from the perfume shop (that is, after trying all the samples). I was just as shocked as the shop assistant was, since we were regular window-shopping customers. I assured her that this was no dream she was seeing, and that my mother did in fact decide to purchase that perfume. Looking at her face I knew she didn’t believe me.
My mother gently placed it in the trolley, and motioned towards me. She said “This perfume will make me fabulous! Oh, and if anything were to happen to this perfume set, I’ll sell you off for another one”
My mother really cared.
For the perfume bottle that is. I’ll admit, it made me a little jealous and I resented taking that thing back with us.
Home Sweet Home
After reaching home, my mother took the perfume into the bedroom and placed it on the shelf above the cupboard. I didn’t really care about the perfume, because the way I saw it, that perfume was a one-way ticket back to the slave traders market. So I kept my distance from it, like any self-respecting religious person would, paying his respect to a force beyond his understanding.
But like the sinner I was, I got curious about the perfume like how Eve had gotten curious about the fruit of knowledge. Also, I was pissed at my mother for threatening to sell me off for some stupid perfume, all in order to ‘feel fabulous’.
It was right then that a stray thought assaulted my conscience, “What, can’t I be fabulous too?”
Like how Adam and Eve were tossed out of the garden of Eden for disobeying God’s command, it was my responsibility to carry on this millennia old practice, all in the name of tradition.
I carefully brought the perfume down from the shelf and laid it on my lap. As I slowly opened the bottle, the perfume snaked its way into my nostrils, captivating me with its intense- naah, that didn’t happen. I was actually disappointed, because it didn’t smell any different from the other perfumes my mother used. Just the same old fruity scent.
Right then, I heard a door open behind me, and I instinctly jumped. Actually, it was a neighbor next door that opened his door, and not mine.
I heaved sighed of relief, thanking God that it wasn’t my- *sniff sniff* the perfume’s scent has gotten a lot stronger now. I didn’t know it was this potent.
Something made me look down. I tried to zero in onto the carpet which looked a little wet, “Where did all those glass pieces come from? Did someone take a bath and decided to rub himself dry on the carpet? With those glass piece lying around? Isn’t that a little extreme? And whats with this smell! Its getting really hard to breathe in here…”
Then it dawned on me.
Tears started rolling down my eyes while beads of sweat gathered around my forehead. They were competing to see who would reach the finish line first. Some joined hands but most of them ran their own course.
It was rather admirable of them to set out on their own, and conquer lands unbeknownst to mankind that laid hidden in the carpet realm…But I digress.
At Death’s Door
I’m dead I’m dead I’m dead I’m dead, I’m dead, I’m dead, Imdead, Imdea, Imdea, imda, imda, imda, IMDA? Hahaha Haaaa!
I know knew what insanity was. I even knew what it tasted like as the words that rolled out of my mouth stopped making sense. That didn’t make any sense either.
I was broken. I didn’t want to face reality, I tried to look away from it, hoping by doing so that what has been done, will be undone.
Mom the Reaper
I hear the door slam again. “Imda?” I growled.
With my vocabulary now reduced to the phrase ‘Imda’, I tried to make sense of the situation I was in, but before I could do anything, my mother stepped into the room.
I couldn’t bear to look at my mother’s face, knowing how much that stupid perfume meant to her. But before I could say anything, my mother told me to pick up the broken pieces and place them into a plastic cover.
It seems she wasn’t as interested in the perfume as I thought she was. Trying on all the samples at the store confused her into thinking the perfume she bought was different. She noticed it on her way out of the house. She wasn’t too happy about me trashing her brand-new perfume bottle, but decided to purchase another one. It was a vicious cycle.
Was I relieved? You betcha.
Will I avoid trying something that foolish again? You betcha.
Did she whip the living crap out of me? You betcha.
Is she planning to sell me off?
You betcha I sure hope not.
And that’s why you can’t patch up broken glass. You’ll get your ass whopped and handed over to you with those broken shards sticking out of them.
Buy another perfume bottle instead, it isn’t worth the hassle.