Kholisa Dwi Hutami
Her bedroom was not spacious and she could only stretch her arms once before they touched the wall. It was small and packed but it was the space she asked for. Every day, after those long days, she would immediately go straight back to her house. Looking forward to her very own home for almost 15 years, inside the house. She was forever grateful for the bed below her body, the roof above, the dimmed lights, and every little knick-knack that she never knew where it came from. It was never about the space anyway, or budget; it was about comfort, familiarity.
She and her bedroom had shared many secrets, even emotional days together. The muffled screams out of happiness, the crazy karaoke sessions, the late-night crying, the long overdue depressive episodes; her bedroom was the only companion. For that, she never felt like she needed any more space, let alone somebody else. Outside her bedroom, she never wanted to go to new, strange places. She also would make sure to keep her distance with people, even family and friends.
One late night, while she was sleeping safe and soundly, there was a knock on the door. She peeked and there he was. He looked drunk and she was afraid of anyone going into her territory, above all, a drunken man, so she locked the door and went into her blanket. However, the next morning, he still stood there. For days he stayed. She never knew who he was; he never got the chance to introduce himself. Weirdly enough, she never felt threatened. When he was around, rather than strange, she felt safe. So she let him in.
That cold Saturday night marked her first night of having another company in the bedroom. They both sat at the edge of the bed and started talking. They exchanged stories; childhood, forgotten dreams, comfort foods, how he fitted in everywhere and she did not. He listened, he understood, he made her feel heard, and it worked both ways. She knew he felt the same because over the course of two weeks, they became intimate and inseparable. She was over the moon, she no longer looked forward to her bedroom now. She just wanted to be wherever he was. He gave her something her bedroom could never do, new feelings, experiences. He made every strange person, every new place, easy for her.
But tonight, it was different. He barged in, he was furious and started throwing things. She did not understand because what happened was he promised her something and she asked him about it and he got upset. She cried in the corner and it only made things worse. He started calling her names but she hugged him. He punched her and she remained. She was frustrated but she didn’t want him to leave, so she stayed and let him be. All the pains and ruins yet he was still familiar to her, same feeling. She forgave and accepted it.
Weeks and months went by since that accident. It happened quiet frequently now, but nothing changed for her. She still wanted to be wherever he was. No matter how he had been to her, then and now, it never mattered. It was never about that. It had always been about comfort, familiarity.
Word count: 550