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An Extract from Five Selves, by Emanuela Barasch-Rubinstein

            I stretch out my hand towards her. Grandma is indifferent to the panic her tears create. She holds me with a slightly shivering hand. The makeup that melted around her eyes makes her look somewhat clownish, for a moment I think she is wearing a white mask with black and blue eyes. But her solemn expression and the strained look overshadow the blending colors, she lowers her voice and says, enough, let go of the insult, you are wearing it as if it was a long warm coat and you are unwilling to take it off even on hot summer days. Let it go, it doesn’t protect you but only makes you a heavy, clumsy woman. I answer that it is not easy to ignore an insult that is born of love; I can’t take Dori’s words, his reservation, our break-up. Skeptically she looks at me for a moment, her eyes are roaming the room, and then she says again you are looking for support, but this time you are clinging to pain. Again you are leaning on love and friendship, only here it is about the lack of them. Time and again another person becomes part of you and not a separate entity; here it is the absence of Dori. If you had stayed his partner you would have become his shadow, a mirror reflecting his life. Dori is sinking into you, you are looking at yourself through his eyes, examining yourself and finding so many faults. Get rid of him, you don’t need him. When will you finally see yourself through your own eyes? Believe me, you will see many shapes and colors you never knew existed, and you will see yourself like you never did before.


Five Selves was published in 2015 by Holland House.