You’d think being alone and friendless is the worst thing in the world. Hell no. The worst thing is choosing to be alone and friendless because you’re just too obsessed with something that has taken over your entire life. But I didn’t know what I could do to change that. I was consumed by this affliction and now there was no going back. Even if it meant I risked losing everything. Too late…
It was staring at me from my bedside table, that wretched little thing, beseeching me. I could almost hear it mimic my best friend’s voice: How could you? You’re actually doing this? I tried to ignore it and returned to my addiction. But that restless feeling wouldn’t go away. The beseeching voice in my head grew louder and louder until I realised it was actually coming from my bedside table. Urgh! That wretched object again, I thought, and I finally picked up my cell phone.
The ringing stopped before I could answer the call. I realised it was my best friend calling me. Yet again. I had already noticed her messages, not having dared to read them for the fear of blue ticks (and finding it too obnoxious to turn them off). But I knew what she wanted. Let’s plan to meet!
Now, I am not anti-social. Our busy schedules left hardly any time for us to meet over the week and hence Saturday mornings would be flooded with messages across all group chats to meet up and “chill”. And normally, I would be an enthusiastic, sometimes over zealous, supporter of these plans. Not anymore, though. My affliction had taken absolute control of me and regular episodes meant I would have no human contact unless absolutely necessary.
I tried to make excuses, cover for my problem as much as I could. But there were signs. Physical signs. I was almost always tired, puffy eyed, woozy brained and sleep deprived. Sometimes, I went through bad episodes at work and felt restless for the remainder of the day. And then, there was always one during the night. Even my mom had begun to notice how inattentive I had become, absolutely uninterested in going anywhere or doing any household chores. More than worried, she was annoyed that I chose to confine myself to my room rather than do something about it. But what could I do, really?
The sound of keys in the lock jostled me back from my thoughts. Shit! Mum was home! I sprung from my bed and frantically began straightening everything in my room. I had just been through a rough episode, the intensity of which made me realise how badly affected I was by this disorder, and I didn’t want her to get mad at me for not doing the chores I was supposed to finish. The door opened and there she was, mummy dearest, scanning my room for signs of misconduct. I had thankfully managed to straighten up everything and was expecting her to just leave me alone when—
Mom: What were you doing?
Me: Nothing. Just, chatting on my phone.
Mom: Don’t lie. I can see it on the table.
I looked in the direction she was pointing at, and my heart sank. In all my efficiency, I had forgotten to dispose of the main piece of incriminating evidence. Bollocks!
Mom: I told you to stop, didn’t I? Why don’t you ever listen to me? For 9 hours straight? Have you lost your mind? Do you have a life or not?
As if on cue, my phone rang again. Bestie calling. My lack of interest in answering my phone drove my mum over the edge.
Mom: Why aren’t you answering it?
Me: It’s a friend… just wants to go out but I am not in the mood.
Uh oh. Rookie mistake. Should not have said that.
Mom: Of course! How would you be in the mood? Your life is all about one thing lately! I swear to god if I see you at it again, I will throw away that laptop of yours!
She shut the door on my anguished face and walked away. I grabbed my laptop and hugged it.
They could never understand the severity if it… the desperation… the complete helplessness in the face of my predicament!
The phone rang again. Exasperated, I decided to deal with it.
Bestie: Where the f*** are you?
Me: Hey. Ssup?
Bestie: Wanna meet up? In an hour?
I unlocked my laptop and stared at the time bar of the media player. There were just 10 minutes of the season finale left. I could make it if I wanted to… But no. I couldn’t bear to part with my obsession.
Me: Naah. I am not feeling so good. Mom told me to stay in and rest. Later?
I put the phone on silent mode and back on the bedside table where it reminded me of the lie I had just uttered. I heard mom’s bedroom door close, which meant she was turning in for a little afternoon nap. The coast was clear. I was ready for another episode.
One season down. Five more to go.
I am a nerdy drama queen and these are my confessions.
(To be continued)