Another debilitating argument and we're left stripped down and starting over, finding scratch from which to build a life on. Finding something that reminds us why the fighting is the least important part of us, and maybe is a painful way to grow and nothing more. Everything holds even when the words cut so deep I think I'll bleed out before I hit the ground and instead of having the courage to be cruel in return I fold like a birthday card, flat on the table.
Not a pushover, I'm just not a worthy adversary. Everything disappears and I can't focus and the world becomes a blank white void, cold and desolate. Then the fear rushes in like the wind and I can't catch my breath. The focus shifts to surviving it and then gradually the color floods in like ink in water, clouds of hues I haven't seen up close to know they were this beautiful before.
Loch caves in, regret washing over him in inky blacks and blues and red. He thinks he's being generous when I am stupid and selfish, I guess but really I'm just trying to breathe here for the fear, oh the fear. Make it stop because I think it might be killing me.
What are you afraid of, Bridget? It's Jake's voice in my head and it makes my eyes sting and burn. I can see his face, smiling gently, helpless and yet still trying to help because he didn't know what else to do but organize perpetual rescue and none of it was ever enough and I look up into Loch's green eyes and wonder if I'm going to destroy him too and I don't want to do that. I don't want him to end up like the rest and why can't I breathe?
His promises echo-bounce off the walls and around the room like a magic trick and I stare at him, gulping in lungfuls of oxygen while he wonders what the fuck he did that made me like this.
(It isn't you. It isn't you. It isn't you. I can't not be afraid. I can't find familiar things. I can't believe a word of this life. I can't manage at all right now please don't look at me like this but don't go anywhere either please. Pleasepleaseplease.)
He works around me, my hands clenched into the front of his shirt, bunching up flannel and t-shirt and pure heart. I can't let go but I've tried. He puts my headphones in my ears finally and finds a playlist and presses play and I let go when I realize I can grab the melody instead, hanging on for dear life. His arms go around me and they form a sort of full-body armor and then just for those few minutes the fear subsides. The promises hold. The fight is over.