i have been thinking about the way we, in love, give power to others. this sense - i am allowing you enough room that you could set the house on fire.
when i was younger, people used to tell me it was going to be different after-your-first-love. it has been. it's been easier, most of the time. i know who i am. i used to think it was romantic to say i gave him everything i am. now i know that the right people will not ask for that - they don't want to take from you, only to help you build. i used to think it was lonely, the way adults said we have our own lives. now i know what it is to have that other-life be separated - how wonderful, to have someone i can share with, and someone who celebrates my life and the way i have grown into it.
people said: after you have been hurt, it will be different.
this is true about most things, after all. my experiences were branded on my body. i don't talk about the scars, and you're too smart to ask, and we're both healing. i used to be able to do certain gymnastics tricks - but i fell once, and i haven't been able to get over the mental barrier since then.
the thing is - we learn these stop-measures because someone took advantage of us first. we learn how far is too far because someone forced us too-far. as a kid, i thought there is no too far was romantic. i didn't know better.
it took me a very long time to rebuild parts of my life after him. it took me a very long time to rebuild parts of my character. i think i probably still have rooms without any floors. places that only go down. ceilings full of spraypainted warnings.
i have been thinking about the ways new love comes in. and we crack open each sealed door together, one-at-a-time. and i hear myself in front of her, nervous, saying if you start a fire, please keep it contained in here, it's a place i can afford to lose.
and i hear her, time and time again, utterly confused: why would i do that? it's beautiful in here. i don't want to hurt you.
the way we know it can hurt, and we love anyway. the way we walk the thin ice and say - the risk is worth the skating.
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