tonight, as the harsh cool night breeze escapes to my window, i find myself staring at my monitor screen again. reading my thesis, which is a week pass its deadline, for the hundredth time. and all i could do, was just to patiently wait for the right words to come.
i decided to take a break for the warning of an upcoming headache is at sight. i took a box out from my resting bag, opened it up and saw a couple of cigarette sticks. my brain already developed dependence to the dizziness a puff brings. i wonder, until where it can bring me tonight.
behind my cabinet were piles of fresh clothes neatly stacked and just like me, they too, were also waiting.
i lit my first cigarette and took a deep sip. but for some reasons, flashbacks instantly flew like pages of the already staled book in front of me.
i remembered the very first stick i had almost a decade ago. it was the sweetest stick i ever had, no wonder i still could not drop the vice until now. or perhaps, it was more than that.
perhaps its the search of having the same experience again. the thrill and excitement of not getting caught and called a newbie; pressured by new peers in an entirely different place. trying to be cool, pretending i am not.
unfortunately, when i was already in the group, it was already too late. i was completely caught tangled with it. i just hate when i am not in control, especially of something that pertain to myself. i guess there is no longer any way now, but to claim it. nonetheless, i am still hopeful that someday i will surpass this--- that i will totally overcome this addiction.
when i felt the heat crawling near my lips, i forcefully smashed the dying flame on the ash tray as if holding the very stick responsible for me, losing my own control. but then i took the box again and saw my last. i laughed at myself, realizing it was actually a wish stick. i laughed because of the realization that i am almost a decade smoker but i am still doing the same routine: still believing that i am entitled with something before finishing a pack.
honestly, i already lost count of how many wish sticks i had and how many wishes i had said. but if there is something that i am certain about, it is the fact that i have been saying the same wish for myself (other than whats for my parents and close friends) over and over again.
a couple of years back, i used to ask my friends or someone i knew, how it feels like to be 25? what did they do during that time? or what they should have done during that age?
but for some reason they would always give me that strange look and awkward answer. basically, they would always say its irrelevant and insignificant to who they are now, that its just the same, nothing really special.
but i remained unsatisfied with their answers. probably because, i just couldn't stop myself from escaping the realization that i am already nearing that corner of my life; that i am always in competition with time; and that i would be stuck with my own uncertainties and unfulfillable decisions of staying in a profession that i really do not like nor imagined myself for the rest of my life.
at the age of 23, i was already torturing myself with these kinds of life dilemmas. instead of enjoying things as they come and go, like i would always tell myself, i tend to wonder with the things that are miles ahead of me, otherwise. i guess, thats what the film boy culture meant, its difficult to live this kind of life for you think like you are already 40 even though you are just 14. but how can you blame them or me, if fear, in its full bloom, is (still) lurking around our presence.
last july, i just turned 25, still unemployed but blessed with a supportive family and circles of friends, ever understanding and supportive. nonetheless, i knew that it was still not enough. thus, i was then determined to take the risk, to change and make this something special. so without even thinking, i signed a job offer that is way more than what i used to earn despite my pending debts, due bills and even my rent.
suddenly my phone rang again. i answered it and heard a familiar voice.
"prepare your things. we have already booked you a flight. you are going to bicol." then the line dropped.
in an instant, i opened my email, printed my ticket and copies of my tasks. closed my laptop, approached the neatly stacks of fresh clothes behind my closet and put them inside my sack. i went out and hailed an approaching cab. then on my way to the airport, i felt a very uncomfortable thing bulging inside my pocket. i took it out, found the same cigarette box and saw my waiting wish stick inside. for a second, i caught myself staring at it. flashbacks instantly flew again. but in my surprise, i slowly closed it, put it aside and told myself,
it had to wait. i still have to come up with a new wish.