We allow ourselves to be drawn to what we’re used to. At age 17, he treated me like an option. Only needed on his terms. He was everything I’d ever wanted one day and everything I never wanted the next. No matter how hard I fight it, I’m always drawn to those people. Even when I’ve kicked the habit, built myself up, started to feel independent again, I get these moments of weakness.
I know it’s bad for me. I know these people are bad for me. Yet I allow them to feed me meaningless words. Half-truths. Sugar coated lies. They feel so right at first and yet the more I dwell on those words, the more they curdle in my stomach. You see, words are just words. I’m a writer; I should know.
Words have a power that actions don’t. They bring with them imagination, hope, and yearning. Left in the right place at the right time, words can mean everything or nothing, depending on who is listening. There are people who use their words as weapons. Their conniving artistry slowly overtakes their victims, making them doubt themselves just as much as they doubt the wordsmith.
These words live in our heads for years. Nearly a decade ago, a boy engraved words into my heart, my mind, and my soul. These half-truths have lived with me ever since. At first, the words meant everything. Then, they slowly turned to ash. Only embers remain. I find my mind so busy trying to recreate those words, those feelings, those moments… because my heart still believes they were real. They’ve become my standard, my normal.
I find myself doubting everything I know to be true because of these carefully crafted words. These half-truths. These poisonous syllables that create a fervency in my being. Yet I know, somewhere deep inside me, that these words are just a mask. A cover for a sociopathic existence that lurks in the shadows of his every move. That these people and their words should mean nothing. That their half-truths shouldn’t affect my sense of self.
Yet, here I sit. Overanalyzing words. Trying to convince myself that one day I’ll be able to accept that those half-truths are meaningless in the grand scheme of my existence. I know it’s time to stop running now. It’s time to acknowledge these people and these memories for what they are. Half-truth or not, they don’t matter. All that matters is where they’ve taken me, who I’ve become, and what I’m going to do next.