I know, this is my 3rd entry of the day. But what can I do? I'm stuck at work (okay, 12 hours. I have been here for a total of 12 hours now) - and not sure when I can go home. It's time for me to distract myself again.
This post is about something that I experienced in the past. Well, not just one experience. I had a de ja vue moment this past Sunday of an experience that I had 3.5 years ago, when I was still living in San Diego, CA.
I went to the mall this past Sunday morning. I had nothing to do - plus I was hungry. So, I went to the local shopping mall, to have lunch and shop around. Very unusual, that I ended up purchasing 3 shirts and a pants. (Normally, I'd just walk around, do window shopping) - Then all of the sudden, I saw someone that made me stop my steps. For a moment, I was frozen. Pulsed. As if I'm just one of the actors in a video, and someone had pressed the pulse button. There were no sounds, no movements. My attention was strictly focused on the man in front of me…
On a slow Sunday morning, in San Diego, of the year 1999. I was at Fashion Valley Mall in Mission Beach. Same thing, I had nothing to do, and no one to hang out with. I went to the shopping to kill time. And of course, had lunch and window shopping. Since it was rather a hot day, I decided to head into Macys. I needed the air conditioner.
I walked pass though the women's purse and shoe section, walked passed the Lancôme counter, and decided to head down to the basement level, where the men's section is located. As I was approaching to the escalator, I saw the worst dressed, and the most unattractive person that I have never seen in my life.
Why in the world is this person doing in “Fashion” valley? I mean, the shirt that this guy was wearing totally didn’t match the pants… and the shoes. The colors are plain nasty. And the face, I mean, this guy should have at least spend some time in the morning shave and comb the hair. The face was dirty, the hair was a mess., and there are really dark circles around the eyes… His face was white and pale. The lighting inside of the mall made the lines on his face clearly shown. I can see the shadow formed by the lines down and around his nose. This guy dressed worst than the homeless men on the streets. He looked awful. Very awful.
All of the sudden, the movements around me stopped. I felt like someone had put ear-plugs in my ears. Someone has darken the stage with only one spot light focusing on the man standing in front of me. It was the moment where I realized that I recognize this person standing in front of me.
My heart froze. My heart stopped beating. My pulse stopped. My eyes were wide open.
“Ah” – was the firs thing that popped in my head.
Then I was awaken by a wave of cold breeze that rushed from the bottom of my stomach up against my chest.
I felt like some electric current had entered my body.
The noise that people made returned. Everything came back alive around me.
And there I stood.
In front of a mirror.
"How can I not recognize myself?"
For the first time in my life, I was disgusted with how I look. I never knew how ugly and horrible I look. I never knew how much I have made myself wanting to throw up.
My heart started to pound against my body. I felt each pulse rushing up against my neck. My body was shaking uncontrollably. I was scared. I was really scared. My heart continues to pound against my weaken body until I have arrived at my apartment. I went into my room and buried my face in my pillow.
I was in the state of shock.
On a Sunday in July, 2003. History repeated itself. I had tears running around my eyes.
No. The tears were just running around my eyes. They didn’t fall down. They had no reason to.
Myself in the mirror started to squeeze a fresh cut lemon on top of my heart. Felt like its melting. Pressed. Squeezed. The sourness penetrated through the wall, and my heart absorbed every drops of it.
I gave myself a hateful look in the mirror.
I took a deep breath.
I forced a smile on my face.
And headed out toward the parking lot.