Editor: Khaled Mohamed
I wonder what a real distraction feels like. I wonder if everyone around me feels out of place, or if it’s just me. I wonder when the right time to not be distracted is, and why I needed the distraction in the first place.
So many of these questions rushed out and filled up my empty head, right as I switched my phone off and glanced outside my window. I looked up at the sky. I noticed the clouds; it’s been a while since I saw them. It’s been a while since I saw the houses that surround mine. It’s been a while since I saw my favorite tree, or stared at that one special flower. I just noticed that that flower had died, probably days ago. When was the first time I thought about leaving the world? When was the first time I decided that I’m going to hide from reality behind a screen?
I want to know what I truly feel watching live videos of people talking, laughing, grieving and even dying. I don’t know how I feel about them, because I have no idea how I feel about my own life. I don’t even know what distracted me in the first place. I feel like I’m no longer in control of my feelings, I feel like my phone is the one putting the rules, and I’m just obeying them. I feel like I have no reaction to the real world anymore. I feel like everything has started to become unreal, vivid, and blurry. Going out with my friends feels like a dream, because when I get back home and lay on my bed, I feel nothing.
I feel like I didn’t even go out; it’s as if I’d just been daydreaming. I’m scared that, one day, I’ll be gone, and other people will think it’s over too. I’m scared that, one day, everyone is going to become a slave to their distractions, leaving the real world behind them. Leaving behind love, pain, and joy. I’m scared no one is going to notice that I’m gone.
I can’t stop un-noticing things. I can’t stop delaying my plans just to lay on my bed and watch people’s lives. I can’t stop thinking of what I don’t have. I can’t stop stopping this. I just can’t. Life is moving too fast, and I lost track of everything. I lost track of what changed and what’s changing, I even lost a dear friend and didn’t bother to cry, because I’m distracted. But, I wonder why I’m chasing this so badly? I wonder if life is tricking us by giving us more reasons to distract ourselves? Because nothing feels real.
Closed windows, dead trees, weird buildings and strangers; all of this happened while I was distracted. I forgot to look outside my own window. I forgot to check on my mother. I forgot to text my friends and check on them, too. I forgot to say goodbye to my dearest friend. I forgot to tell everyone how much I love them, and I forgot to live. All because I was just too distracted, and I wish I weren’t.