Day 2: In Space
Okay, it’s only day two and already I want to skip ahead. I am so not into space and astronauts and all that kind of stuff. I actually hated the movie Interstellar despite really wanting to love it. Then again, it’s not that I’m not into space, I’m more just into science fiction. The physics and factual part of it just goes so far over my head I can’t even attempt to keep up. But I guess, since this is my own blog and there are no rules, I can do whatever I want, hey? Which would seem like a good thing but actually isn’t.
This is where the anxiety sets in, where the “this is going to suck, you can’t do this,” comes into play. And why? Really? Who cares? This is some silly little exercise I have placed before myself that I am stressing out about it. Actually freaking out. I CAN’T DO THIS! Let someone who is so much better than me figure this one out, use their creativity to imagine the perfect day in space…not me. All I can picture is an astronaut floating about wishing they were one of the Guardians of the Galaxy but really being trapped with Sandra Bullock in Gravity.
Alright, stop stalling, avoiding, procrastinating.
This was me in school. Blank page in front of me while everyone was writing away, overthinking the exercise and paralysed by my fear of inadequacy.
So I’m just going to do it. I guess with any day you start at the beginning, right?
You are an astronaut. Describe your perfect day.
It was dark when I awoke, being too far from the sun for it to have any effect on us. We’d been living in complete darkness for the past six months. All I wanted was a little light and a coffee, but we’d run out of both months ago. Our navigation systems had gone haywire and we were drifting aimlessly, waiting for some kind of landmark with which to set us back on course. But there was nothing. Had been nothing. It was like we’d fallen into some kind of black hole in which we’d never come out.
My partner was moving about the ship, quietly, methodically, checking all the instruments, as he’d done every single day since we took off nine months ago. I moved in behind him, floating across to the other side of the ship and doing my part of the routine, the part that always started here, him beginning it, me taking over. We exchanged a touch, a simple good morning, having gone beyond any need for words at this point.
I didn’t mind this, actually, apart from the fact that we were lost in the Universe and running out of supplies and facing imminent death if we didn’t figure out where the hell we were soon. If I let myself forget the facts, I actually enjoyed where we were. Working side by side with this man day in and day out, floating about the ship with little thought to time or direction, simply waking each morning to see what the day held for us. We knew where we stood, with each other and, in the grand scheme of things, with the Universe. We’d been subdued by its power and somehow managed to come out within its flow. We’d become one with our ship, with each other, and seemingly, with ourselves.
Sure, I didn’t want to die. But what could I do? We had no where to go, no way to get there even if we knew which direction to head. At this point, we hardly knew if we were even in the same galaxy in which we’d left. So what did it matter where we were going? Our fate had been determined the moment we’d been sucked into the darkness, all that was left was for us to go with it. If there was a destination, we didn’t know what it was, but it would be there whether we searched for it or just waited for it to find us. Which was all we had left at this point.
And then it happened. A light appeared. A bright, white light at the end of a long tube of darkness. It was faint at first, but when the only thing outside your ship is the deepest, darkest black known to man, you notice when that changes. You notice even the slightest of greys. But this was more than a different shade, it was something different altogether.
It only took a word and my partner was beside me, staring out the window, his eyes pulled in just like mine.
As we moved closer, the light intensified, touching the edges of our environment, allowing us to see just what we’d been inside for so many months. A long, dark tunnel, like a hallway, with no exits or doors or turns. Until now.
“Where do you think it leads?” he asked me, leaning in closer.
“Does it matter?” I replied.
He shrugged. “I guess not.”
We began to speed up and the light got bigger and brighter, the closer we got the stronger its pull.
I didn’t want to, but I had to turn away, the light became so intense that I feared it would burn my eyes. As I moved, so did he, wrapping his arms around me as if to shelter me. I looked at him, his face alight, and saw it clearly for the first time since we entered this darkness.
“You’re different,” I said.
“So are you,” he said, touching my face.
I touched my cheek self-consciously. “Older, probably.”
He shook his head and I knew I was wrong. I knew that however he had altered, so had I.
“Younger, actually,” he said. “Lighter too.”
I touched his skin which had ceased to become skin but more light than anything. “Like you?” I asked.
He touched my cheek but it wasn’t my cheek. The ship pulled harder. We went faster and faster. His hand was no longer a hand but particles of light spreading and expanding away from the form of a hand and into the air. We both looked down. There were holes in our coveralls, the light inside us had been called out from its container, we were pushing ourselves out and through the material holding us in. Soon, we were no longer holding onto each other but becoming each other, expanding into one another and into everything around us.
I could not see him anymore but I knew him, knew that he was me and I was him. He knew this too because I could read his thoughts, I was his thoughts and he was mine. We were no longer separate beings working together but millions of light particles moving into one being. We could not have stopped it if we wanted to. The light no longer blinded us because we were becoming the light. We were the light.
As we were pulled further and further into the brightness, a tiny pinhole with the force of the entire universe pulling us into it, I knew we had become something else and that once we went through that light we would break apart once more, our particles rebuilding themselves into something different, into another form. But we would never be separate again. There were too many tiny flecks of light not to get mixed up in one another. When we came out on the other side of this tube, we would be mixed together in a way that would never be broken apart. Whatever we would become, wherever we ended up, we would bring a little bit of the other with us. And that was how we’d find each other again, because the light of me that had mixed with him and the light of him that had mixed with me would always be calling to one another. I knew we’d spend a lifetime searching until we came together once more, in whatever world we were about to enter.
The ship broke apart as it got closer, it not being of the substance to make it through. We left behind that darkness and entered the light, twisting and twirling around each other, through the exit that had become an entrance. We hurled ourselves at and into whatever was about to come next.