The first time I spilled tea on my dress was when I first met you. I recognized you, a loner, and in your eyes I saw myself, a dreamer whose nights filled with images of ordinary life. I was wearing a white frilly flower dress, and we were drinking green tea, and I was so nervous under your dark, piercing eyes; my elbow made contact with the cup, and it fell.
I felt embarrassed and klutzy, but you just reached for a towel and pressed it gently against the white hem. The stain never completely came off, but no-one ever noticed it from behind the floral pattern – its faint edges were the same shape as the grass at the background.
Because that is how it goes in the world. A damsel, often in distress, and a man who affirms that everything will be all right. How easily we slipped into those patterns, and how easy it was for me to ignore the signs that told me of the danger. That you would be my distress.
The second time I spilled tea on my dress was when you first made love to me. It was black tea, seasoned with blueberries, and the tea splashed over when you pushed me gently against the table and kissed me passionately. The tea was lukewarm and didn’t leave a stain to the dark grey fabric, but our kisses were searing hot.
Even in those long, dark summer nights, when both of us were sweating and not even the night wind was cool enough to dry us, I would have exchanged everything for one more burning kiss. I think it was back then, when I saw your expression, that I knew it would end.
Our kisses were hot, but our words were too – I rejoiced when I saw women climbing to the lead positions, or when minorities were finally recognized. You lamented about the judging state of the modern world and wanted to go back to the good old times. I understood some of it, or I thought I did. In hindsight, maybe I just wanted to understand.
The third time I spilled tea on my dress was an accident. It was an awful, awful accident on both sides. After all, you would never hurt me on purpose. You just lost your temper and didn’t realize it would hurt. I was holding a teacup, my favorite, and when it fell it poured red tea all over the Celtic pattern and scalded my legs.
You didn’t apologize. Instead you explained that none of it would have happened if I would just have been more, and less, and more vocal, and more silent, and more expressive, and more obedient, and so much less of everything.
It was not the first time you explained all this to me. But it was the last time.
The world had changed around us, and it would continue changing. You thought the change was a statement on what was right, and were furious when I didn’t change, too. You watched the blue and red swinging in the wind, a bright-colored background for the orange words echoing from the faraway past you idolized. The winds of change, promising to me that every progress that had been made in the past decades, was now in danger.
The fourth time I spilled tea on my dress was at my computer. I opened and closed one social media account after another. Each time I typed your name and made sure you couldn’t contact me anymore. I was holding a cup of tea. My favourite teacup was not the only thing that broke on that last time.
When I had blocked you from every channel, all strength escaped from my hands. I felt just like the way you intended for me to feel – powerless, weak, guilty and shattered into millions of little pieces. I know you will find another victim, and you will torment them rather than face the fact that you are the antagonist of this story, just like you were to those people who came before me.
I told this to you. I told you how wrongly you treated those who came before me.
I told you how wrongly you treated me.
The memory flash of your response was what stole the last ounce of strength from my hands, and the cup fell on my lap.
The tea was lukewarm and stained me, but it was all right. I was at home, I was at a safe place, and everything would be all right.
Because, my love, I have always known how to fight. The world has belittled me since I was born, trying to make sure I would always know my place. I know that the changes for better have happened and will keep on happening – that this time of history, as painful as it is for all of us, is nothing more than echoes from a dying world.
We will endure.
And, from the ashes of our dignity and ruins of our happiness, we will build a better world for our children.
WolvenWriter observes the connection between the human animal and the nature, to bring out the primal magic and to connect us to our inner animal. This connection must be free from all oppression and pretentiousness, because we are all connected to each other. We must all stand up for each other. You can support WolvenWriter on Patreon.