I see three ghosts from my past in a day, people I haven’t seen for ages. In a time long gone, I was in unhealthy relationships with two of them – for reasons I don’t understand anymore. The possibility of a confrontation makes me feel uneasy, but emotionally I’m unaffected.
The unjustified accusations of being needy and emotionally dependent, the control imposed over me, the self-esteem I lost because I was too young to know how to defend my boundaries, the tears of despair I cried over and over again, the hopeless attempt to love someone who was pushing me away and down – they are no longer part of my present. Seeing them was not pleasant, but it makes me happy to realise how far I’ve come. I’ve moved on, no negative grudges or cold feelings cling to my heart. It has taken years to get me here. It’s great to feel nothing, not to care.
The third person was a high school crush from nine years ago. Back then, I was 11 and he was 15. Crazy, how young we were. It ended in a disaster that was a huge blow for my non-existing confidence – but it also shaped my life in some positive ways, eventually leading to me being together with my love. And there the guy who had such a big impact on my life stands next to me, unknowing of how much he changed my life. I wonder what he’d say if he knew.
In the evening, I meet up with my circle of friends from high school, a mixed group of nine, with all kinds of personalities. At the beginning it’s great to be around them again, but at some point I can’t help but to notice that the magic that once welded us together is gone. We are on different paths and left the common ground that bridged the differences of our natures. Some conversations that used to be meaningful are shallow, people who were once close to me have become strangers. We are trying to hold on to the magic, to bring it back, but I wonder if it’s not too broken to be fixed.
When should we try to fix something that’s broken instead of throwing it away? How can it be fixed? When is it better to move on?
The next evening, another concert, Kodaline. One of my favourite bands since I’ve come back from Asia last year. Their music feels intimate and like Keane’s, has the power to reduce me to tears. My heart is full of anticipation.
First comes the supporting band, All Tvvins, an instrumental rock trio from Ireland. They rock the stage and motivate me to work hard and to never stop believing in my dreams. Inspiration is everywhere, there are so many diligent and talented people around us.
Then comes Kodaline, my heart has longed for the music of this band. But something’s off, maybe the girl who dances crazily to tender songs in front of us or because I’m struggling to get a good view. They perform songs I don’t know very well, I’m waiting for my favourites and when The One comes, the heartwarming song that made me rediscover the band, the singer sings it without accompaniment to make it more sound heartfelt, but to me it sounds wrong, I can’t let go and the music doesn’t carry me away.
I feel disillusioned. Maybe because I expected them to be different, more down-to-earth, a bit more magical. Maybe it’s because their music is so intimate and personal for me that I don’t feel comfortable being in a crowd that loudly cheers for them. I don’t know.
I leave the concert with an uncertain feeling in my gut. It’s Sunday evening and the new week awaits me with some challenges I’m not ready to face.
Models: Andrea, Dominique and Vera