The words this week were provided via Elephant's Child care of Margaret Adamson & Sue Fulton:
This month the prompts will be published here - but are provided by Margaret Adamsonand her friend Sue Fulton.
This weeks prompts are:
I didn't know how gullible I was until it was too late. I'm sure he wasn't intentionally insidious. Nearly sure. If he were that cruel and managed to appear that oblivious for so long I could've been in bed with a prized secret agent. As it is, he was never smug; despite his beauty, his genius, his supposed selflessness. My care and love slid off him like cold rain on a window. He was too occupied despising himself for such softness, yet burrowed into my tender heart like a prickly weed. Oh, how old thistles sting.
His past was off-limits. The tidbits given to me bits of bread luring me closer, as if I were an innocent bird. Entranced by his pluck and tales of abusive parents, growing up without money and then a winning lawsuit lining his pockets just before his high school graduation made me think he was a success story. It was a confusing dichotomy; shopping at discount grocery stores and ordering expensive electronics off the internet, but I followed his directions. I changed my status quo to fit into his twisted, fantasy realm, always feeling not quite enough or off balance. He played a victim to maintain the upper hand. How was I to know?
I couldn't see the manipulation or name the sickness coming over me as we dated. He was the modest genius and I let myself be proven wrong until I didn't have an opinion, until I began to dissolve. His love was killing me and I simply thrashed in the water believing he was my lifeguard as he stood by and told me how to drown. He feasted on the fear and pain, it sustained him, some backwards side effect of his abusive childhood that I couldn't comprehend.
The depression sunk deeper into me each day, dark logic driving me to cut my wrists and wish for my own death. I avoided friends and family, cried and trembled alone waiting for him to tell me how to fix myself. Waiting for him to tell me how to be loveable again.
I was wandering blind to my demise until one afternoon I had the duct tape ripped from my eyes. A friend set her jaw and told me what she saw: how I had changed since this man entered my life, how he had knocked me asunder not enveloped me in caring guardianship. "Where is the Hannah I used to know?" she shook me me with her words as if she had gripped my shoulders and thrown her weight behind the motion until my hair danced back and forth, my head jerking as I was wrested back from the ledge.
I escaped. It took many tears and I was never quite sure of myself only sure of the all consuming pain and sickness I felt. Something had to be done. I pulled up roots and quit my job, moved out of the ramshackle house I shared with him, fleeing for my life. I uprooted all that I could, wrenching on that prickly weed of affection he had anchored in me until my hands bled. Today the thistles it left behind still bristle and sting me from time to time, but maybe one day I will have each and every tiny thorn removed.
Or at least all but one.
Not entirely factual (he had money from selling some discovery or chemical process he had developed during community college not a lawsuit) but not entirely fiction. I don't think I've ever told the whole story but longtime readers will know that I went through a bad relationship in college that left me a little scarred. Quite a contrast when I think of my wonderful husband.
Those words didn't inspire me at first, but now I'm glad I took up the challenge and got this thistle out!
Thanks for reading. Happy Hump Day!