genderfluid (they/them if you're unsure)
call me phy
frying pan/drawer/writer/reader
has a tendency to forget abt social media sometimes

"everybody has opinions but it doesnt make them true"
- i'd rather be me (mean girls)

Message from Writer

thanks for reading! i'm open to any feedback/comments/suggestions/etc. and uh, don't mind any errors and stuff; i probably wrote and edited them at some point late at night without my glasses.

capitalisation is also a thing that i tend to forget to do, oops

- phy

I'm Alive

October 13, 2020


Breathe in. Breathe out.

I'm alive, I'm alive, I'm alive.

It's 11.46 pm on a school night and your heart is racing.

It's not regular, not like the pounding of thirty pairs of feet as you run on the track with your classmates for your physical test. 

It's erratic, like fingers on a keyboard when you're not entirely sure what's coming out of your fingertips but words are still flowing out of them nonetheless, even when you have to take a break to collect your thoughts and re-read your words. Erratic, like when you try to brush your hair in one smooth movement, but your hair's too thick and too tangled for that, so there's a variation in speed and movement that you can't predict because it's just whatever fits best at the time. It's not the motorcycle that speeds past your bedroom window every night without fail, at approximately 11 pm. 

Erratic, not regular, irregular, unusual. Like when it's English class and your teacher is giving out the final assignment of the year because the English department is strange and you've done your final paper (paper versus assignment) a month before and the assignment is a to write a personal essay and the rest of the class groans but you cheer internally. Your first instinct is to write it in second person like you always do but your friends know you so they point it out to the teacher, who has to specifically inform the class to write in first person only because of you. When you finish your first draft of the essay when your teacher's given task is to write an introduction and your classmate's drafts are blank. When you're told to centre your writing around something, so you write yours around your sister but your classmates all write around events and so little people write their personal essays around other people that your teacher has to take you out of class to tell you what to watch out for. When your teacher tells you to submit your drafts and your draft is two hundred words above the limit but your classmates' are two hundred below. When your teacher returns the drafts and there, written in red along the margins, is that you have to use less description and paint things more concrete and it reminds you of your first personal essay that you wrote and the reviews told you that you were too poetic. Then you look at your classmates and see; their recommendations are that they should write more descriptions. When the teacher allows for final submissions, and you're done - been done for a week already! - so you submit an entire week before the deadline while your classmates rush to submit it two minutes before the deadline.

It's not light, not like the breeze as you climb the open-air staircase, up to the fifth floor, to your classroom. 

It's heavy, like a schoolbag full of books, two days before the end of year papers and all your materials are in that bag because you haven't studied, haven't prepared for them yet. Heavy, like the weight in the way you look at your friends after they tell you they're having a difficult time in school, and they're extremely prideful so it must be bad, for them to take the initiative to tell you. It's not the way you used to be able to lift your younger cousins into the air and spin them in your arms on the rare occasion that you can meet them because they live in Malaysia and you, in Singapore.

It's a feeling, lying there on your bed and closing your eyes but feeling like you've just ran laps around the track and you're dehydrated and exhausted and about to faint. Your head is pounding (but then again, when is it not?) and the world is spinning and you're not moving but (where people say that their heart is beating out of their bodies) you don't feel like you're in your own skin anymore - like you've jumped right out of it. It's normally at this point when your closest friend starts to lead you to your water bottle or your teacher tells you to go sit out because "You look really pale, are you okay?" but you're at home and it's not 11.46 pm anymore, it's 12.04 and there's no one around.

It is not soft, not like the whispers you and your deskmate exchange during class.

It's loud, like when you're in the middle of the crowd and the student leaders are gesturing for everyone to start cheering, and your best friends are enthusiastic and have no volume control and, most importantly, are next to you. Loud, like when you're sitting at your seat at the front of the classroom and you've been in the same class as these people for two years, so why are your thoughts screaming that one of them is going to harm you, literally, while your back is turned? It's not when you're standing at the front of the class and your assignment is to recite a soliloquy that you've memorised, front and back, but you're staring at the people in your class and they're staring back and it's so silent you could hear a pin drop and there's no words coming out of your mouth and you think maybe your vision is blurry and you need new glasses-

Loud, like your sister when she bursts into your house, declaring that she's learning the digits of pi in school. She challenges you to learn the first hundred faster than her and you're competitive so you agree, but change the conditions to faster and more accurately and wow, thank goodness you did because apparently, she's already learnt up to eighty. It takes three days of pouring over the song that you're using to learn - the same song you know your sister is using - but you do it. And so now you can count the first hundred digits of pi through song and instinct and it's the one thing that's able to calm you down some days.

It's your heartbeat, and you don't need to feel out your pulse points to feel it, because it rattles through your body, right down to your bones. You can feel it in the tips of your fingers and you can feel it in your hips, which is honestly a pretty weird place to feel your pulse. 

It's a word that you've just read up today. Word is debatable, but it has characters and a definition so even if it's not in any official dictionary, it's a word to you. And you're aware of your pulse like it's very definition, and it's unsettling just like it's said to be, and the world keeps spinning because even this realisation doesn't stop it.  

Because when you take a feeling and give it a word, it makes the feeling real. You're not entirely sure whether it's a good or bad thing, because if it's real, it means you can't escape from it, but it also means that you're not alone.

You're tired of feeling alone.

It's 12.17 am and no one is coming into your bedroom until you have to wake up and get ready for school at 6. You finish up your words, put away your laptop, close your eyes and try to sleep.

Breathe in, breathe out.

The world keeps spinning. Your heart keeps beating.

I'm alive, I'm alive, I'm alive.
Using similes and metaphors to tell stories inside a story. A little clunky, but it is what it is. (Over a thousand words of late night thoughts and the knowledge of a new word.)

The word is Rubatosis, from the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows.


See History
  • October 13, 2020 - 11:19am (Now Viewing)

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1 Comment
  • (sk)eyesofocher

    this is amazing, utterly amazing! Welcome to WtW Mellon!

    5 months ago