Selfless Misery

“Tcih, my birthday doesn’t seem to spark excitement to me anymore”

It’s already morning but the sun which supposedly comes out is hiding behind the gloomy cloud covering the horizon. As if it’s already defeated. The sound of the rain could be heard faintly from the room. It won’t stopped since last night. I hate it. I always hate rain. I couldn’t recall any good memory related to rain. They are always bad ones. I also hate why among 31 days in October, it is today that the rain must come pouring down the misery soil of mine, why? I don’t know why, but, it’s always raining when my birthday is around the corner. It’s the eighteenth. Today I’m turning eighteen, but something special about it, is just a million years away from me, nothing is different neither is changed. It feels like my time stopped in that year, the earth ceased to revolve,

A noisy sound from the first floor retracted my wandering thoughts. My gaze accidentally landed on the picture framed on my desk. Two boys could be seen smiling wide wearing a couple white shirts. One of them holding a water gun and the other one holding a water hose. They look so happy. As you guess, that’s me and my brother. To be exact my twin brother.

“Pew pew pew, I shot you hahaha, you should be down”

“Your water does not even reach me, you shot the air and you better be prepared, because my hose is a laser gun, pew pew pew”

Silly conversation lingers around my mind again, recalling from that picture, time when everything was intact. I hate this memory. If my life is a misery now, I want it to be a complete misery at all. Happy memory from the past hurts me, knowing I can’t get that back.

“Your friends are coming, right?”

“I have invited them, some are already confirming to come, I don’t know about the other yet”

“Okay then, all the family is coming too, they want to do a barbeque party”

“Okay mom, it’s nice.

“It’s nice, hahaha” My inner self just can’t help giggling. I really want to tell them the truth about what I feel, but what power do I have, what freedom do I have, to tell them what I truly feel. No, I just can’t, and I hate it.

Night comes eventually, family are preparing the party, my friends are on their way. Meanwhile, I am busy faking a smile.

“Come come, join the party, you own this party you should be the center”

“Ah yeah aunt Mary, wait a second I will just grab my glasses first”

“Look at our future doctor, the heir of the family, your brother must be proud of you”

“Ah yeah hehe I’m flattered dad, don’t do me this”

My father, always my father. He is a proud doctor, he had been shaping me and my brother to be like him because of the family tradition. Since the very beginning, I never showed any interest in becoming a doctor, and my family knew it, especially my mother, she has always understood me. She knew what I truly want to do in my life. She gave me a notebook and a pack of pencils of different varieties on my thirteenth birthday because she understood me, she knew I have always been into writing. My brother otherwise, showed huge interest to become a doctor just like my father, and since we both were different from the beginning, and due to my father being extremely busy, he then decided to just focus on my brother to inherit his status as a respected doctor. But everything changed since that day.

While being heavily overwhelmed by the noise of people, and the burden to keep hiding my true feeling in front of my family, I walk inside of my room to grab my phone which I left on the desk. A faint smile appeared on my lips as I, once again, see the picture of little me and my brother and I recall the memory of five years ago, but as the images rushed in, the smile suddenly disappears. Five years ago was the turning point of our happy life. The fifth day of October, I can’t possibly forget. The day when I lost him.

“I miss you so much brother”, I slightly whisper. I wish you were never gone, I wish you could still be here, and I don’t have to carry this burden all alone. You were always the family’s favorite, and it was fine for as long as you were happy and so was I for doing what I truly wanted. But now that I have to live in your shadow, carry all the burden on my shoulder, leaving my dreams behind, this is slowly killing me.

“Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you”

“Ah you are all finally here, thanks for coming guys”

“Sorry we are a bit late, John was a slow snail to wait for”

“Yeah fine, we all know as always, classic John”

My friends are here, well at least they can be a distraction for me a bit. And at least, there are people who truly wish me a happy birthday, because, to me, my family is celebrating my brother’s birthday through me.  I then immediately prepare the buffet for them to eat, Lisa, Jennie, and Robie are helping me.

“Oh yes of course I have talked to the director about it, I will immediately enlist him from now, so when he graduates everything is already prepared for his future”

I slightly overheard my father talking loudly about the Health Department he always wants me to enter when I get my doctoral education done, which I don’t know when exactly.

“Hey, I have read your new blog post and it’s good, I like it”

“Oh yeah thanks Jen, I took about three days to compose it, glad you like it”

Jennie, my love interest who I am not really sure just yet whether she likes me as well or not, but I like her because she is the only person I share my true feelings with, and she always be there to listen. She is a nice girl.

It’s been five years celebrating my birthday and condolence, in the middle of the trauma I have had since the day my brother passed away, and the burden to fulfill my father’s ambition to shape me into a successful doctor as he is. Every day I hear my family is talking about being a doctor, doctor and doctor, how they glorify my brother’s intelligence and push me to have the same quality, the same motivation, it is just sickening. I had to throw away my passion, my dream only to become something I never ever wanted to be in the first place. I don’t know when will this get better, I honestly have no hope. I am slowly giving up, knowing my birthday will most likely be the worst day of my life every year, for my entire life. Every night I am asking myself, what is even the point of living if I don’t live my life the way I want to, what is the point of living if it is only in the shadow of someone else.

As the party is over, everyone is going home. My friends are saying goodbye, and Jennie taps my shoulder before she leaves, asking: “So how’s your birthday, are you happy tonight?”

With a miserable voice, I slowly answer:

“Tcih, my birthday doesn’t seem to spark excitement to me anymore”

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