Don’t Take My Demons Away

“You’re trying to save me, stop holding your breath.” – Rihanna (The Monster)

Some people need rescuing. Some people need a savior. You are crushed by the swarming violence inside. You drag your feet every day but try to keep a good face for the world to see. Until someone gets close. Until your walls come down without notice and someone has gotten close enough to break you. But instead of breaking you, they draw out your inner emotion, hurt and turmoil. They rescue you from your demons and all is right in the world.

But not me. My monsters are comforting. They are part of me. Nobody will separate us, nobody can. They are not my friends. I don’t love them, I don’t even like them. But they make me whole. They remind me daily that I’m human. That this is my struggle and not the responsibility of someone else to rescue me. There is no person who will save me from myself. I don’t need saving.

My demons live everywhere. They’re on my bookshelf, in old photographs and written in letters I never sent. I hear them every day in my music. I see them every night in my dreams. I taste them on every kiss from a stranger. They’re memories, regrets, mistakes and sins. I can’t conquer them, I don’t want to, but they don’t control me.

My struggles are not scars, they are tattoos. Permanent, intricate and overt. Scars have a negative connotation and an implication of being healed. My skin has healed, but the everlasting ink is still there under the surface, often hidden by clothes and other facades. There are times when they show and surprise people who thought they knew me.

Maybe I hold onto these ghosts because they are the only ones who have never left me. As long as I accept them, they won’t go. They’re like ivy growing on a wall. I don’t know if I could push them out now even if I tried. If I uprooted them I would be left exposed and afraid. Uncertain of how to proceed with a clean slate. They are my sole companions because they live in the deepest place within me. My dark side is known to them and they don’t run away. They stay and make me feel alive.

Please don’t try to help me, as if you have power over my silent, internal struggles. Please don’t act condescending as if your road is flat, straight and easy. Life can be a hell on earth and sometimes we need a hand to hold or a shoulder to cry on. But never expect to carry me because it will never happen. I may want you but I will never need you.

I’ve made peace with my demons. Make peace with your own before trying to rescue me. TC mark

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