by Ang Kia Yee

It occurs to me that every day I wake and try to forgive this new self. Forgiveness is the wrong word. I wake and try to come to terms with this steadiness, waiting for the anxiety & low mood to return. But it does not. I feel something like guilt, confusion, being ripped out of one life and placed in another. I am afraid I am merely dreaming.

I have been slowly meeting you, my new self which feels more like a new life. So much has been shed in the last ten years (maybe more), and here we are now, you and me. I am continually surprised by your ease, your confidence, your steadiness. Who are you? Me, yes, but you’re so thoroughly different from who I thought I was. Your calm rhythm, your general lack of self-hatred, your ability to let go more quickly that I’ve ever been able to… continually astounds me. It shocks me out of my body, causing dissociation. I seem to have changed sharply and suddenly, almost overnight.

E’s suggestion that it’s kind of like a chemical reaction, where every day a few drops are added to the solution and one day, suddenly, there’s enough solution that the reaction happens, makes sense. The catalyst here is also clear. The other possibility is that I’ve been changing into this new iteration for some time now, but I’ve simply not noticed. Perhaps I assumed that I had grown as much as I could have in this life, and taken some past self as a state of permanence.

I am not un-grateful, merely still in a state of light shock and disbelief. Surely time passing will allow this feeling to come to pass, as I, again, become my own evidence of what I want to make possible in this world.

It has been interesting to encounter new people and experiences like this, to come to know how they perceive me and how I make them feel. The disjunction can be felt there too, where they seem to be describing someone else. Either way, I like where I am/ seem to be. I just need more time to sit and settle into it. This new sense of clarity, self-assurance, power.