First Things First

On some days you wake up in the flooded apartment. Your living space is filled with cold still water which dims outside light and muffles all sounds. Even bright summer sun seems dull and cold through the massive body of water around me.

And then there is pressure. Constant, unyielding, massive downward force of the ocean on my shoulders. It makes it hard to move. The brief trip to the coffee shop outside seems like a fearless but doomed expedition in a cold and unfamiliar world. It’s almost impossible to get out of bed and face this underwater reality. It’s unimaginable to ignore it.

On some of these days, usually on second or third in a row you gather all the strength of your oxygen-depleted body and try for the surface. It’s a tedious, excruciating, all-consuming work. You cling to the idea of an open sky and warm breeze and swim for you life. Since you know that more you spend underwater, more your insides are crushed by the monstrous pressure and more they will bleed when you finally get to the surface.

Every day in this cold depth is a day of your life lost forever. A day which instead of moving your life forward has added more weight to the burden of insecurity and bad memories that you will carry along the road.

And during your days on the surface you pretend that these floods never happen. That there are no hatches leaking underground at this very moment. You conveniently view any incident as a thing of the past that would never repeat itself even if it was happening once a week for many months. Because you are safe and dry and warm, how can you be wet and cold again? There is no reason to be. Everybody knows that people live on the surface, not at the bottom of the ocean.

And then you wake up underwater again.

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