I am what others may call an empath. Empaths are people who are so aware of the world around them, so much so that they are aware of others emotionally and physically. For example if someone were to fall, in a sense, I feel their pain. At least, I can imagine it. The point of contact where their body hit the ground, the movement and soreness that comes when they stand back up. They assure to everyone around them that they are okay, feeling the adrenaline through them, that it didn’t hurt. But I know how hard they hit just by watching them.
One day I found a loose string amongst my clothes. I didn’t think much of it, so I pulled on it. I imagined what the sweater must have felt when I pulled on the string. That slowly, you were being torn apart. That if I were to keep going my shirt wouldn’t be recognized as a sweater anymore. I kept pulling and pulling until the intensity I felt was too much.
Though, this felt different.
When I broke off the string, so I could discontinue my actions, the feeling kept going. I brushed it off. If I had a string attached to me and someone else were to pull on it I would too have a lasting pain. A part of me would be forever loose and open to the world. That is how I thought of it. Nothing more. Eventually the feeling went numb.
A few days later the feeling came back. It wasn’t as intense or raw as it would have felt but, I was feeling a bit sore. Usually my feelings wouldn’t last this long. Though, I brushed it off again seeing that things have been going strangely.
Before long I noticed I had another string hanging off of me. Not learning from the last time I pulled on it again. Though, this time, I didn’t stop pulling.
As the string got longer and longer the feeling of sweater slowly being ripped apart continued to increase. The pain I was feeling was intense, I knew that once the sweater was gone that I wouldn’t feel this way anymore. It increased so much that the pain was almost unbearable.
But I didn’t stop. I kept going. And going and going and going.
The string kept getting longer and it began to pile in front of me. I didn’t care if my sweater got ruined, I was too focused on the feeling I was getting. It just kept increasing and increasing. I wanted to see what would happen when I reached the end.
After a while, the pile of string grew higher and higher, I didn’t even noticed when it grew taller than me. I didn’t even noticed when my legs were gone. I didn’t even notice that the color of the string didn’t match my sweater. I didn’t realize when I pulled the last of my hand away that the string I was pulling was me.