The truth spills out of me just like the bottom of your morning coffee does as you empty it down the drain before seeing me.
Although we have to distance ourselves because of the virus in the air, the coffee beans grinded between your teeth still manage to travel towards me with every ‘mhm, and how do you feel about this?’.
But I’m scared to let my coffee spill down the drain, just like yours, because I keep thinking and thinking of the what ifs.
What if I spill it on me?
What if I spill too much?
What if I’m not finished?
What if you don’t like my coffee?
I was never good at making coffee; Mum, Dad, Nan, Grandad would always grit their teeth and smile through the bitter taste. The image of them scrunching up their face but telling me ‘No it’s good, thank you.’, has stained the bottom of my mind just like the coffee grounds stain the bottom of the cup in a deep ring-like shape that seems almost impossible to remove.
Just like how it seems almost impossible to remove the image of their faces, and the stains at the bottom of my cup.
My brother makes good coffee. People prefer his coffee.
Whilst mine stays stagnant at the bottom of the cup, as you leave it on the side, unfinished. Acknowledged, but it’s not as important.
We both know there is better coffee out there.
So as you sit me down and ask me the mandatory questions,
I add a bit more sugar to my coffee, to sweeten it up.
I soften the first sip, so I can avoid seeing another scrunched up face that’s full of doubt. Because I know you’ll doubt my coffee.
I add a few more sugar cubes and drops of milk until you give me a smile and as you swallow it whole, you tell me in confidence ‘I don’t think you need these sessions anymore’.
And I take my coffee, which now tastes even more bitter than it originally did because I’m left with a complicated mixture that if I spill, I know will not come out.
So I carry it with caution, because as I am walking away with my back turned to you, I realise I added way too much milk back there and now my coffee is swishing about, lapping over the edges with each step.
Ready to spill.
Drops falling onto my white shoes, they are stained now, useless.
A few more falling onto my top, that’s stained too, useless.
But it’s spilling too quickly as it drops onto my sleeves, coating them along with my hands as they scorch in the liquid trying to wipe away as much as I can whilst my hair falls like a curtain in front of me and sticks to my blushed face.
As I try quickly to take what’s left of it around the corner so I can empty it all down the drain… ‘Hey, are you okay?’
In that tone.
I knew right then, that my coffee was going to spill.
The words pushing my cup right over, drenching me in the bitter taste I was trying to avoid.
This is why I don’t share my coffee.
It always leaves me in a mess that I have to clean up by myself.