The Piercing Axis

It always felt a little blasphemous to dissect a new relationship. In a festival of hormones that turns your days into a rollercoaster of oxytocin highs and abstinence hollows, you don’t get a chance to take a bird’s-eye view. At least I never took the time to reflect on it.

Only when I realized that everybody goes through the very notion of affection differently, I stopped to observe my own process with a (masochistic) scientific curiosity. And came up with what looks to me like a pretty accurate metaphor. I hate math for the most part, so naturally it’s mathematical.

Now, imagine your life and your psyche as a bunch of axes. Not the ones they used to chop off heads, but the linear stuff that your math teacher drew on the board. The X, and Y, and Z. And more if you made it to high school.

The one on the left, mkay.

Draw like 50. A whole pine-tree of axes. Imagine there’s a plane going through each two axes. Each plane is a tiny part of you. Your interests, your job, your friends, parents, aspirations, dreams, fears. All that rotates infinitely around one of its axes and the whole thing moves like a giant geometrical durian. It will make sense, I promise.

In my head it looks somewhat like this

You live and develop in this chaotic, mesmerizing way. Some planes rotate faster, some slower, some stop or rotate backwards. They’re completely independent and yet all of them are you.

Then, one delightful summer morning someone you kind of liked likes you back and it feels nice to be around, and you start falling for the person. At this point, an unfortunate thing happens to the robo-fruit. A single searing axis pierces the whole thing and it hangs on the burning edge like a petty kebab for a while, motionless.

The helpless kebab

When the plane-creature (that would be me) comes to her senses, it starts rotating again. Only this time around a single axis, the new one. For some reason simply going back to normal and adding the relationship as an additional plane doesn’t work, even if you have the rationale to try. The sappy songs are disgustingly relatable because it literally feels like “life makes sense when I’m with you” and it very much doesn’t when I’m not.

It’s a one way street now, baby.

Thankfully, chemistry doesn’t like disorder for too long, so the new axis fades with time and you grow back into the good old multi-rotation. But while it’s still in kebab fashion, the gnawing discomfort of not being yourself is unnerving. I’d like my head back, if you please.