I’ve been to the past, I’m already back, the decision to go was made long before I had the ticket. Clinging to bits of my past, my memory is ensnared, addicted to the thought of fine tuning mistakes made in the precedent. I saw myself, surrounded by friends, looking care-free, embracing each moment. So naive, any greener and I would be one with nature. I could see the glimmer in my eyes, the way I looked at people, seeing a radiant light within strangers; no walls around me. I was done spectating, I needed to talk to myself; this was my long-awaited chance to right the wrongs I had made; making poor choices obsolete. A conversation in the mind with my past self, my only means of direct communication. I told him, without pause, to get hardened, to lower expectations, to blow out the well-lit candles I saw in strangers. Much to my surprise, he was not listening; his hands were in his ears.
Don’t you know who I am? I asked, only to get a gentle smile in response.
You need to listen to me, I’m here to help you. He told me he already knew that, but how? it did not make any sense. Six years ago, how could I have known that I would see myself?
“That’s easy, you’ve been here, five times to be exact”
Five times? How was that even possible, I only had one ticket.
“I’ve already said no four times, trust me, you’re not gonna change my mind” , he paused and smiled, “Besides, your times’ up”
-and just like that, I was back. Was it possible, that through five separate alternate realities I had opted to go back and change the past? and failed?
I sat down, trying to soak in what i had just witnessed. Maybe all along I had been looking at everything the wrong way; maybe I’ve been fooling myself from the start. I’m not stronger, I’m not more perceptive, I’m just broken. In a battle with life, i had fought multiple rounds, but lost. My past self, he was focused, repellent of negative thoughts, ready to take on anything and everything thrown at him.
All along, I had been thinking I’m fighting what life has to offer, but in truth, I was running away; unable to cope, accepting defeat. With such a realization I could not help but laugh at myself and how weak I had become. My views of a future self being wiser, just like the movies, had been watered down; never in a million years would I have thought I could learn something from my young and immature mind. Looking at myself in the mirror, I see a small glimmer in my eyes, its faint, but I see it returning. I’m smiling because I know what it means, I’m about to have one more battle round with life.