What If We Were Given a Third Chance?

I don’t believe in alternate realities or universes. I don’t believe in fixing broken relationships. And I don’t believe in getting back together. But what if we were given a third chance? Is it okay for me to find solace in imagining that we never needed a third one? Or that this third chance brought us happiness elsewhere?

We used to dream of a life where our paths continued to parallel each other. We used to fantasize of overcoming easy obstacles to achieve our happy ending. And we used to make plans to persist in this world together. When did growing up with each other slowly become growing out of each other? When did our parallel paths diverge? When did we find ourselves in the opposing paths of a crossroad?

It’s been almost a year and I still struggle to travel on my lone road. My independence periodically falters when I begin to reminisce on the photographic remains of our story. I’ve had to consistently persevere through daily reminders of you. I’ve had to observe your life through frozen frames of you on my phone screen in the darkest hours of the night. But the most grueling was I’ve had to relearn basic actions that used to require the both of us.

Relistening to the songs we used to keep on repeat.

Sitting in the middle of a seemingly large couch.

Cooking and grocery shopping for one.

Drifting off in a half empty bed.

And existing alone in the monotonous hours.

I find myself struggling to cope with these forcibly outgrown habits. I find myself manifesting curated angel numbers in the form of 333 and 777. And I find myself writing stories in my daydreams of a love that I wish to still be extant. 

You’ve become an eternal existence in the unconscious parts of my thoughts, resurging as you please in opposition to my conscious efforts to submerge you. This ongoing process of grieving a living you causes me to repeatedly cycle through four of the five stages of grief without ever grazing the stage of acceptance.

Someone great once said, “When something breaks, and the pieces are big enough, you can fix it… sometimes things don’t break, they shatter. But when you let the light in, shattered glass will glitter. And in those moments, when the pieces catch the sun, I’ll remember just how beautiful it was.” Do you think what was us has shattered, or do you think the pieces are big enough to fix? I think fumbling with shattered glass is less painful than with shards of glass, yet I still find my fingers being cut trying to piece back our broken remnants for a third chance.


Overachiever Magazine was started by Rehana Paul in October of 2018 to give a platform to all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities.

Our name is poking fun at the stereotype that all Asians are overachievers, especially Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. It’s also in recognition of all of us who have had no choice but to be overachievers: managing societal expectations, family obligations, and educational opportunities, all while fighting the patriarchy.

We have grown since then, putting out bimonthly issues (we are contributor powered: apply to write for our next one!), and weekly reviews of culture, and news that is important to us.

You can find announcements, more news, and get to know our staff on social media: give us a follow, and learn how you can get involved today!

We do not claim to speak for all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. We are just here to give them a place to speak for themselves.

We hope you’ll join us.

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