It’s 1:00 AM now, thoughts are running a million miles an hour in my mind. The clock’s tickling is infuriating yet astonishingly soothing. I work my way out of the safety of the duvet to subconsciously sit at the table with a cup of tea that serves as a heater to my corpse like freezing hands. I try not to let my eyes linger on the picture hung on the wall right beside me. It exists in a glaring manner, as if silently disapproving my choices.
It’s 2:00 AM now, the picture is still there, and I’m itching to run away from its scrutinizing gaze. It’s me, with a massive smile etched to my face which you could hear its echoing giggles if you tried. My shoulders were sagged due to the lack of the never-ending stress, and my eyes were bright due to the absence of caffeine. It wasn’t taken long ago, or perhaps it was, but the memory of it is still carved deep down and I can’t help but smile at the faint traces of it.
It’s 2:34 AM now, but I’m still lost in my train of thoughts. It doesn’t seem to have an arriving destination, at least not yet. I allow myself a short trip down the memory lane, and get up to save that one photo album from the dust sheet which concealed its once vibrant colours. I let my eyes wander through the pictures, each becoming alive underneath my gaze and the voices are softly coming back to my mind.
That day I learnt how to ride the bike for the first time, but fell mere seconds later, causing my best friend to burst into a fit of laughter. The time I went swimming with my siblings and was horrendously bitten by the sun rays as a punishment for neglecting protection. My eyes then divert to this picture of me and my cousins hidden under a familiar huge bed with the look of surprise and pure ecstasy plastered onto our faces when we were found. A tyrant tear betrays me and escapes from the furthermost corner of my eyes, but I smile nonetheless.
It’s 3:00 AM now and I’m everything but exhausted. By now, I’ve relived more than half of my age, and I vividly remember the minutest details. I remember the first tooth I bade farewell, and the endless time I spent outdoors doing anything but sulking in the confine of the house. I remember my first monthly allowance and how careful and giddy I was with it. Also, the toy store which was a heavenly visit, and how my eyes were as wide as saucers while I skipped from one aisle to another not being able to prevent the feeling of wanting every single thing. I remember the genuine content that used to fill us up as kids and the myriads of nights we slept with peaceful minds and hearts devoid of heaviness. I look at these pictures and remember delightfulness, purity, innocence, and love.
It’s 4:47 AM now, and I’m supposed to be bidding the last of my dreams Adieu and getting ready to wake up to start the day ahead of me. Instead, I’m sitting at the table, with an empty cup of tea, warm insides, bubbling excitement, and a wide smile on my face. I send a Salute to the picture on the golden yarn hung on the wall and a promise to reconstruct these radiant days, then get up to resume the day with a fresh mind of a child.