I & II

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I

An afternoon, like many others before it. Rain droplets landing at my window while I watch them make their path to the very end. I flick over a couple of news channels a couple of times to realize it was the same as always, the assassination of someone significant to a certain political party and that party threatening the ones that committed it. It has always been this way, in Lebanon. Always wearing black mourning our dead loved ones and we never seem to change. I browsed through my mail to see there was nothing new. I decided a book had to be read on such a rainy day, so I went to my shelf and extracted the only book I thought brought me joy, The Alchemist. The author Paulo Coelho always spoke about dreams, taking chances, loving with no regrets, but I never seem to be bold or brave enough to actually attempt any of it. After finishing a book of his, I would be so encouraged to want to explore the world of love and riskiness, but then reality seems to slap me square in the face and drag me back into its arms. It's frustrating really, never getting what you actually want but settle for what there already is. It was the day I go back to Tripoli, I had taken an early leave from my job as a professor teaching a course in basic biology and another in basic organic. After studying pharmacy for 6 years, and opening the pharmacy I had been dreaming about ever since I graduated high school, hired a few interns left it to teach in one of the most prestigious universities. I currently live in the capitol and returning to my home town. "

To everyone it seemed I had almost everything, including a fabulous surgeon fiancé as a testament to a successful life. An education, a career, a ring. But ever had that feeling where you know despite all you have, it seems to be insignificant or rather...a waste? I went into my bathroom to see the condition of my face, and the pale condition of it did not reassure me, so I applied a bit of blush and mascara. I honestly saw no point in bettering my appearance since I was going to my parents', but whatever. I hear my phone vibrate so I take my time in answering it, "hello" obviously the first thing you say when answering a call

"Honey I have been trying to call you for quite a while and no answer, something wrong?" My overly adoring fiancé hovering as always, people just can't take the hint, when I don't answer it's on purpose not accident.

"No dear nothing wrong normal as ever." I sounded unenthusiastic.

"Oh good, how about lunch at 3 I have a break then." Obviously as always, missing the hint of sarcastic grim in my tone.

We met in college, the story repeated many times, met through friends in college waited for each other to finish university and got engaged. He was funny, ambitious, handsome, wanted, and oddly enough he loved the sarcastic girl with the loud laugh, me. We adored each other, I still like to think we do, that's basically the reason we are staying in the relationship, adoration. Lately however, I guess it has become clear we just lacked that spark I thought we had as if we are just staying for appearance-sake. He was my best friend, we studied together, had a few dinners, late night talks, then by passing years I guess we faced the question of do or die, so we did, as in got engaged. I forgot what made me love him, honestly his obliviousness and constant hovering weren't his best qualities, but he was a great person with a lot of love to give, the way I used to be. I guess he still has his spark, I'm the one who lost mine.

"Dear I'm going to my parents' today can't make it." His optimism will be the death of either me or him if I meet up with him.

"Couldn't you wait till tomorrow, we will go together I need to visit my parents too and visit yours."

"Well think of it this way, I will go ahead and meet you at your parents' for lunch, how about it?"

"Babe that's just fine, I will see you, love you darling"

"Yeah me too, bye"

That's how it is. We go together, we dine together when possible, and we visit each other's parents. A deadly routine which has taken its toll on me. He is always there, and I'm always there with him. His social events, my social events, his parents' house, my parents' house, and I'm too young to pursue a 40 year Old's routine.

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