I think we’re allowed to let the monsters die
and yeah, I know, it stung when you pried your limbs
from between its teeth – there are
bruises on your joints that still ache years later
might never stop
and you’ll carry that pain
wearing it like a name tag,
like a reason.
you climbed out of the beast on your own
it might remember your taste but it can’t
bite down and
feel your skin against its tongue anymore
it is too old to chase after you
its teeth are rotting, sliding between chapped
lips onto the ground – unruly headstones – still peppered with
memories of you,
and you lived.
I’m not one to complain about happiness, but I am bewildered by it.
I’m more afraid of the dust settling than I am of the storm, you know? There’s something comforting in the struggle – something familiar. Even the loudest crashes of thunder become white noise if you hear it long enough.
But now… life is quiet. Life is peaceful. I have a job that I enjoy, I’m in a healthy relationship, I finally found a space of my own, and no one who wants to hurt me has access to me anymore. And that should feel freeing. I’ve successfully run from every abusive situation. I got away. Not everyone does – and I’m so grateful. I never imagined I would get this far.
So why can’t I relax?
I’m still scared. I wait by windows, watching the clouds, almost desperate to prove my happiness can’t last… almost wishing to dive back into the eye of the storm. It hurts, but it’s supposed to hurt.
I’m afraid of how badly it will ache when this happiness ends. It’s almost paralyzing. I look at the happy little details, the beautiful moments, and I don’t know what to do with my hands. They’re hungry – they want to seize every second, to feel the texture of my life scratch against my palms. But I worry that my grip is too tight, my hands too greedy.. I worry that I will ruin everything I touch, if only given time.
I have to keep going, right? That’s the only way forward, the only way to build the life I didn’t know I could ever have. I’m going to let myself be afraid until I stop flinching. It hurts, but it can’t hurt forever.
I’ll be okay.
The bruises in the palms of my hands have just healed.
The skin had speckled and only recently has the purple hue faded from my skin. There is pain in growth, always always always, but this time it was my own stubbornness that hurt.
I’ve spent a solid 12 hours building fairly unimpressive furniture for my new apartment. I live here, by myself, with the cat I grew up beside. My boyfriend is often here too. It’s beautiful, a slice of a dream that I never imagined fulfilling.
Happiness has an edge of vulnerability and discomfort. I’m never quite sure how to hold it. This time, I’m trying to let it wash over my hands – never grabbing, never demanding more, simply enjoying the sensation as it flows.