I’m burning down my shadows…

You saw yourself through my eyes and you loved it…that image of a strong, loving, bright, handsome man. You saw the hero in you…and you wanted more with every moment…

I was always afraid, you know? Afraid that I’ll say the wrong things, afraid that I’m not good enough. I was wrong. It wasn’t about me, not a single moment. It was all about the fragility of our love. A castle build on quicksand…

And you were honest from the very beginning. “I need to be needed.” I ignored your words, just like I ignored everything that didn’t fit on my perfect picture of the perfect love…

A hopeless love. Falling in and falling out our own fantasies. I needed you, just like you wanted…But our precious moments faded into banality and the fantasy was broken. And it broke my heart along with it.

Please remember our last moment. Please…don’t ever forget what tore us apart. I need you to remember while I need to forget. The touch of your cold hand and your eyes…hungrily searching deep into my soul…and you found…nothing.

“Where once was love, now is just an empty place. And I don’t know what to do. Please, help me…” -my words-

(love me…

hold me…

tell me that you really care…

want me…

fight for us!)

But you just looked away.

And I gave up on us.

“WOW. No faith. Absolutely no faith at all.” -your words-

And these words exactly killed the remains of our broken fantasy. Along with my heart. You know…you had every right to blame me. I took away my love. I asked for more when you thought you gave me all of you (you were wrong). I wanted to be about us…more than about you. You had every right to blame me…

But…you had NO RIGHT to talk about faith. Something so precious…on your lips it sounded like a blasphemy. And I blame you for that.

So I took my murdered love along with the faith you claimed you never witnessed in me.

I raised my head and I walked in dignity.

And you desperately followed me. You turned my head so you would look into my eyes for one last time. And you thought (how naive) you’ll see The hero. The savior. The powerful. The wise, strong, handsome and bright.

Oh no…not this time.

This time we’ll face reality, my love. Look. Come on, I dare you. Look deep. See who you are. Face the truth,

my beloved Shadow.

P.S. You’ll never read this letter and I couldn’t care less. I’m burning these memories and I’m facing the light. Be well and be careful…another shadow may need you to need it…

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Chasing illusions that you’re longing for…

Her eyes were lost somewhere, far away…in a world I couldn’t see. Not anymore. Her trembling hands were cold, too cold. Too pale.

“She’s already gone…that’s why we called you. Her last words were “Call the princess. Tell her to bring the magic mirror” and then she entered in this catatonic state…We’re losing her. So we thought…considering the connection between you two…”

Sister Isabel was almost crying. I knew how she cares for Eleanor…and the guilt kept growing inside my heart, like a huge shadow. I encouraged her to tell me the story…and now she’s trapped in the same story she created so beautifully…

A story where I’m The Princess…in love with The Shadow. A story of passion. He wants me so he destroys me. He speaks of eternity and serenity and faith but he creates wars inside me. So I fight. The rebel in me finally awakens and I come back home. A hero. A brokenhearted hero…

-I’m here, Eleanor…can you feel me holding your hand?

Princess.

Was it real or was it just my imagination?

-How do you feel? Sister Isabel told me you don’t want to eat…we’re all so worried…Eleanor…

Magic. Mirror.

That’s how she named my laptop. In a world where technology brings us closer…she felt alienated. She felt unsafe. Knowing that a window to another world can open anytime…

-It’s only me and I miss your stories. I miss your poems. I miss you. We all do…

Shadows. Are. You. Real? Real? Real?

The nurse tells me that she needs rest and she hears. I see tears on her face and it makes my heart ache. She repeats the echos in her mind.

Real?

-We’re all real and we all care for you. You are safe. Sister Isabel watched over you every day and I came as soon as she called me. Please tell me how can I help.

Her body suddenly stiffens and I see her fighting. I see her trying to stand. I hear her voice, weakened but still strong.

I had to cross the bridge, Princess. I had to meet the Shadow. I looked into his dark, cold eyes. He looked back and now my soul is frozen. And I’m back but I’m not back. I’m here and I’m there. And he wants you to know. He wants you to feel. You belong to him. We are all shadows…

She shakes her head so violently and her voice is unrecognizable.

No, don’t bring me back. I want to be where silence is stronger than pain. Princess…when you chase your illusions, he knows what you’re really longing for…

To believe the lies and to fall into the deception. And it’s only natural for the shadow that you are. But don’t…We need you to rise. For LOVE.

More of Eleanor’s stories:

https://betweenthelines2017blog.wordpress.com/2017/07/16/remember-me-to-the-one-who-lives-there/

https://betweenthelines2017blog.wordpress.com/2017/06/06/thats-how-you-reshape-destiny/

 

And nobody knows it but me…

“Can I cry a little in your arms? And then, I promise…I will tell you everything. Every little detail of my haunting nightmares.”

I’m in the train, looking at the window, contemplating a devastated world. Everything turned into ruins. I wonder if that’s the end of the world and I feel like crying. But I wear a brave smile. My children are with me and my little one is holding me so tight. I will be brave for them…

Dust and stones everywhere outside. The train itself looks like it has been hit by a grenade. People in the train are tired and defeated. Some are hurt, but no one complains. No one cries. We’re all silent, a silence that makes me tremble inside. My little girl is playing silently and I want to believe she’s safe…

It all happened in a second. She jumped from the train and I followed her. The silence was broken. I heard a very clear voice. “Let her go, save yourself. If you jump from that train, you’re not safe anymore.” It was a matter of choice and I choosed. 

We’re walking on that field that once was green…People are lying down, my girls are asking me if they’re dead. “Yes, they’re probably dead.” We’re not scared, we’re not sad, we’re not cold anymore. What I feel is beyond any human emotion. Is a void, a deep, dark void. I’m passing along the dead bodies.

This woman, I know her eyes. She just turned and grabbed my arm. “I thought you’re dead.” I hear myself saying the words and I still can’t feel anything. She looks deep into my eyes. 

“Here is the place where the living ones are waiting to die. You just take your place. Do nothing, feel nothing. In time, you’ll believe you’re dead and you’ll act like it. It is so easy, just lay there and wait…”

I see my place among the others. I go there with robotic moves and I lie on the floor. I cover my body with a white sheet. I try to feel nothing and I feel everything. I’m cold, I’m afraid, I’m sad, I’m horrified. I’m suffocating. I’m alive.

And I wake up crying.

He holds me so tight and it feels warm and safe. “Oh, baby…I’m so sorry…I love you and still…I allowed your inner world to become a devastated place. The war between us, my love…this silent war between our hearts…you, making heartbreaking choices…”

He kisses me like he didn’t kissed me for years. And I just cry. He’s wiping away my tears and whispers soft words in my ear. He tells me it will be okay, we will be okay. And I feel I was given a second chance. I am alive. I am right where I belong. He’s still the love of my life.

“Your love is the most precious gift…to hold you, to make love to you, to feel the soft touch of your skin on mine…this is a dream, baby.”

A cruel light is violently pulling me out of his warm, loving arms. I’m back on the train, I’m cold and I know this dream. I know it by heart. And all I can do is to make the choice. To wear a brave smile. To pray that I’ll break out this circle. Knowing that his loving arms wont be there waiting…

And I wake up crying.

 

With standing ovations!

Truth or Dare? Okay…don’t say I didn’t warned you! So, when was the last time you did it?

I looked at his playful, sparkling eyes and I started to laugh from the bottom of my heart. Like I didn’t laughed for years…

-Oh, God!!! Look at me, I cry from all this laughing! You made me cry!!!

Well…you’re also red like a tomato! Dirty mind! I was only asking about the last time you hugged your favorite toy! A toy…like a child’s toy, you know? Not what you imagine!

Without thinking, without analyzing, I found myself hugging him tight. So tight, like I was about to lose him…

-Right now! I’m the happiest child in the entire world! And I’m hugging my favorite toy!

Okay, kiddo…the toy feels pretty happy too…even if…a bit awkward being objectified like I’ve just been…Nooo! Don’t let go!

-I wish…

A part of me just wanted to say the words. But that part…never wins. That part of me brought me here…and still, it never wins.

That was a good start. You wish. And now…tears. Don’t cry! Anything you wish, it’s yours! 

-Can I make a list?

Only if you stop crying.

How do I tell him, without breaking the magic? How do I say the words? No…

I know…it makes me cry too…almost. But I never cry, just like you never stop playing your role. You’re always on the stage, the lights are on you and you’re charming! The curtains never fall and when they do…you just pretend you’re still on the stage. So that you can continue playing…

-You’re hurting me.

Why? 

-You just called me “fake”!

I called you “desperate”…

-Whatever…I was wrong to come here. You know nothing about me. Nothing!

I know what you wish…

-Really? Let’s see…

You wish you could love him. Just like you pretend, in your every waking hour. Just like you play it…so damn well, with so much talent and dedication. Don’t worry. Lights are still on. Go back to the stage, the public is waiting. With standing ovations.

I woke up. The bed was empty. So was my heart.

 

 

When words are all we have…

His words pierced the silence “Oh, if I only had a gun!” and, for a moment, she looked at me with her blurry eyes, in an unspoken prayer…

-Miss, please…

The falling rain was simply aggravating my own sensation of sickness. The dirt, the stains of blood on her clothes, the horrible smell of alcohol, her hand touching my arm…

Her hand clinging to my arm. It was enough to drive him over the edge. He pushed her and she fell down on her knees. In the mud.

“As I said, if I only had a gun…”

-Please don’t say that, you don’t know what you’re talking about! I could be…her.

Come on, honey…

-Do you remember that storm, that terrible storm in Budapest…

…we were there, laughing and talking and the sky was sunny and clear. It happened so fast, twenty minutes or even less. I found myself running terrified with our baby in my arms. I fell…my clothes were wet, filled with mud…our baby girl started to cry desperately…

…a branch fell and hit me and I saw the blood running down my forehead. I was afraid I’ll die there. Trees were falling, a chair almost hit the baby and you were nowhere…

…and I begged for help, with tears in my eyes, knowing that they can’t understand me…like I can’t understand them…I was just a stranger with clothes covered in mud, with a baby in my arms, scared, desperate, hurt…

WHAT IF THEY HAD A GUN?

“You are being melodramatic.”

…someone came with a blanket and they took us into their home. Without understanding our language, they gave us dry clothes, a glass of hot milk for our girl, toys, cookies…they helped me clean the mud and the wound on my forehead. And then you came…

“And I thanked them, remember? I offered them money but they refused.”

…that old lady hugged me.

“Babe, that’s irrelevant. I mean…well, why do I bother anyway? If that stinky creature touches you again, she’ll wish I had a gun!”

With blurry eyes, the woman pointed at me in a silent prayer. So I went to her and I helped her stand. I gave her my umbrella and the little money I had over me.

She said nothing. Then suddenly and unexpectedly she spitted towards him.

“Great, just great…Where’s that GUN when I need it!!”

-You have a gun. Please don’t use it to hurt an innocent one…

“So now I have a gun? Where is it? And where’s the innocent one in all this?”

Your words are your strongest and most dangerous weapon. They can create hate…So, please, don’t use them to hurt someone. That someone could be ME someday. Or YOU. 

So, why are we wasting time when we have so many bridges to re-build? Through words, because that’s all we have left to give…

 

 

Tonight, for the first time…

His fingers were warm and their gentle pressure on my lips made my heart race. The smell of tobacco filled my lungs, a sweet intoxicating scent, making me painfully aware that I’m on foreign territory.

He wanted me to stop. His simple question needed an honest answer, but all I was able to offer were my pathetic attempts to explain, to make excuses, to make a fool out of myself…And he was right, I needed to stop.

“Why are you here?”

He repeated the question with an almost childlike curiosity. His fingers were slowly lowering the pressure and I was relieved…I took a deep breath. His eyes were glowing in the darkness…the eyes of a predator. My lips were burning, the absence of his touch became unbearable.

“I’m here because…I needed a place to escape.”

He came closer and the anticipation made my knees tremble. If he were a hunter, I’d probably had no chance…is he a hunter? Am I his prey? A sudden move and our fingers crossed. My wedding ring was burning on my finger. The circle of trust…

“Does he love you?”

“He thinks he does.”

I whispered the words so desperately that the pain became physical. The wall behind me was cold…If I’d say one more word…The fire in his eyes burned my exposed soul. He knew how to read me and he knew I can’t lie…And it seemed to be enough…

“But you need more. And you know better, isn’t it?”

I looked down, trying hard not to cry. Not to be the lonely child, the lost little girl, the broken one. He let go of my hands and I covered my face. This stranger. This room. This darkness. This emptiness inside me. I wasn’t ready to face them all…

“I just…want him to…make me feel like…”

He made me look into his eyes. His deep dark eyes, filled with empty promises. Or maybe…had I just seen the reflection of my own heart? He cupped my face so there was no where to run. No place to look away…

Then he laughed. A bitter laugh.

“A woman’s greatest desire is to feel desired. That simple. You hide behind words but all you really need is to feel like you’re the only one for him.”

He wiped away my tears so tenderly, so slowly, like all the tension before was just a mask. To protect himself from more heartache. To protect me from my own self destructive decisions.

“So maybe it’s time for you to go home and to tell him how you really feel.”

“Who are you?”

“Just consider me…your conscience. Or better…your guardian angel tonight. Just for tonight.”

So I’m leaving the chat room and I’m closing my laptop.

And tonight, for the first time, I’m not looking at my life with anger, resentment, fear or sadness. I remember our best moments and I hope…

I hope to see the light in our sunset…

Nothing to kill or die for…

“Not even for a broken trust. In fact, that’s the silliest reason to kill for…So he betrayed you, so he played with your mind, so what? Isn’t the grass just as green as always? Aren’t the birds singing the greatest serenades of life with the same passion and joy of living?”

-I know you are right, but the anger I’m feeling inside…You speak of green grass and birds singing…I see a deep dark forest and I just want to get lost inside it. There, where my demons run free…there is my peace!

“You call it peace, I call it bitterness. You’ll lose your minds is this swirling storms created by your own restless emotions. Look above you…see the blue skies…”

-Leave me alone with your blue skies! I need my storms so my rage could howl into the night! And that voice, I promise you, will be stronger than any hurricane! And more devastating than the infernal flames of hell!

“How about your faith? Are you ready to throw this away too? Like every gift He gave you?”

-He will understand! He must.

“Don’t leave yet…don’t let your eyes be blinded by hate. Don’t let your soul feel the terrible taste of revenge. It’s still time. Don’t kill it, set it free…Your inner child did nothing wrong. The little girl inside your heart…

-…I hate her…

“She committed no crime. She does what she knows best…loving, trusting, believing, carrying…Don’t punish her because someone, somewhere took this trust for granted and smashed it to the ground! Don’t…”

Too late. I’m running into the deep dark forest, thirsty for revenge. Hungry for the feeling of self-inflicted pain. I run with my demons and I whisper cursed words. I’m ready.

And she is there, innocent as always, smiling as always, happy to see my hate-transformed soul. The little girl I’m going to kill so I’ll finally have peace.

She looks into my eyes and gently touches my face.

“It wasn’t your fault, you know? My brave hero, how I waited! For years…for you to be angry enough, desperate enough, lost enough…to come into the deep dark forest. I thought you have forgotten about me…”

Little did she know that my demons pushed me into the dark and I was that close…of losing myself for ever.

So I take her in my arms and I run again. This time, into the light. This time there will be no shadow. I’m setting her free so I’d be able to love again…

and to trust…

more than my shadows.

NOTE: This is a fragment of a therapy centered on healing the inner child. The metaphors I used in this context may seem dark, but they only express the path we need sometimes to walk on, in order to find healing. Because, too many times, the unexpressed anger kills more than our inner child…

Would you die? For the one you love?

Sitting on the edge of my bed, he took my hand and looked into my eyes. With love, a love I wouldn’t expected. Anger, resentment, harsh words…I was ready to face them all. But love…how do I handle this love? Where do I hide its light when the darkness inside me is calling me to deny it?

How will I explain this compassion, this gentleness, this great forgiveness to my hardened, rocky heart? That knows nothing but bitterness…

And this voice, the song of all songs…

-What pushed you so far away from me? When and how have I lost you…? When all I did was waiting here, like a beggar, for just a little sign that you’re willing to open your heart…

The guilt was building inside me like a dark flame. He wiped away my salty tears. I tried to say “I’m sorry” but he stopped me.

-Don’t…I know your heart better than you know yourself. You want to leave and you are free to do it. You said I’m the one to blame. I wasn’t there. I didn’t listened to your crying. I didn’t cared…Oh, if you only knew how deeply it hurts. Don’t look down…look into your heart.

And I’m looking…

I see myself falling and I see him…lifting me up.

I see myself tired and I see him…carrying me home.

I see myself in the middle of a nightmare and I see him…holding me tight when I sleep, chasing away the shadows around me.

I see myself betraying him…and he’s in pain.

I see myself hurting him, shouting at him, hating him and I see…his love growing.

-And now, look into my eyes. This is the promise I’m making. This is why I came for you.

His love, his protection, his ever lasting light. And I can’t…I want to run so I wouldn’t face this guilt anymore. But my feet hurts, everything hurts and I fall. He holds me once again and my lips can’t move, but my heart is speaking out in pain.

“I am sorry…I am so deeply sorry…please forgive me…and never stop loving me.”

-Do you know who I am?

“You’re my Lord, Jesus Christ.”

-Do you love me?

“I love you. I’d die for you, my Lord”

Then live for me.

My head is hurting from crying myself to sleep again. It’s 4 am and the raging storm is howling in the darkness. I look at the pills and I remember the miracle. With trembling hands I empty the small bottle into the trash. And with a trembling voice I speak into the darkness.

There’s no way back now, Lord. I will live for you.

 

 

 

 

 

I had no choice (but to become a warrior)!

“You have no faith, none! You don’t know our Holy Bible, you’re immature, selfish and self-centered! And not even now, in our last days…because, hear me out, these are the last days…so, not even now, you’re not willing to repent! May God have mercy on your soul!”

15 years ago…

I leave the church in tears and, as proud as I am, as stubborn as I am, there is a shadow of doubt…what if he’s right? What if this is who I am? What if I’m unlovable because I’m immature and selfish and self-centered.

My mind is starting to recite, by heart, all of my sins. The huge one, the capital one, the one that made me run frightened…what was it? The relics of Saint Anthony were still there…I didn’t touched them. I didn’t worshiped them…I refused to stay in that line of people, all waiting. What for? If I didn’t felt it in my heart? Why would I do the ritual?

My feet are hurting, but my heart is in pain and my eyes are burning. He was one of the people I admired the most. He’ll never tell me the words, never again…

“You are special.”

Here I am, paying the price for this illusion. My illusion or his illusion?

“Admit it, you have a crush on him.”

Someone told me and I denied it in such an aggressive way…But still, here I am, my feet are carrying me back to the church. The church where I met him. The church where we prayed together. The church where I fell…No, I did not fell in love! And here I am, waiting on that line. Willing to do whatever it takes. Even if I don’t…believe…?

I’m 22 but I act like I were 12…that’s how blind I became. He’s my age, but he seems more mature with his faith, his philosophies of life, his untamed trust…And I keep disappointing him. I hate this, I hate waiting on that line…

The relics of Saint Anthony are still there, looking back at me. I imagine that the Saint knows what’s in my heart and I’m starting to cry. HE saw me. He saw me waiting on that line! He comes to me with the most beautiful smile I ever saw.

“See, little one…it’s not that hard to believe. To recognize the weakness of your soul. The lack of love and faith…”.

The lack of love? My soul is on fire and this is more devastating than the flames of hell itself. The Saint looks back at me with an encouraging smile. Go ahead, child, tell him!

And I do…God, I do it!

“You have no love, none! You don’t know your own heart, how would you know mine! And you never truly understood our Holy Bible! And not even now, in our last moments together…because yes, these are my last words addressed to you…not even now, you’re not willing to open your heart. And your eyes! So, goodbye.”

I stumble on my way out of the church. And I remember and I almost yell at him.

“And I loved you! You…may God have mercy on your soul, because I really did loved you!”

And I run away, fast, very fast…running out of this circle of victimizing myself. I never look back…maybe once or twice, when I need to remember…

that Faith is all about love, forgiveness and tolerance. 

About understanding at a deep level how One’s sacrifice saved our world once. 

And only our LOVE could save it once again.

 

I want to be where no memories mar…*

Our eyes met and I knew deep inside my heart…this is destiny…We needed no words, but he wanted me to know, to hear and to remember his voice…

I saw you before…in every princess from my childhood’s books. And I was the hero…your hero.”

He listened to me and, no matter how brave I was trying to be, the tremble in my voice was more than he could take…

“If something would ever happen to you, I just can’t imagine…I’d rather lose my freedom and I’d freely give away my soul if that’s what it takes…to keep you safe…”

He laughed and kissed the traces of my tears.

“So you made a mistake, so what? So you’re not perfect…that’s absolutely wonderful! You’re mine! My woman, my love, my sweetheart! Not some cold, untouchable, perfect porcelain doll…”

I guess I said it out loud…I spoke about my fears…

“I’m not cold, I’m rational. And I think you’re overreacting…anyway, I can’t always stay behind you like a babysitter. If you’re afraid to walk on dark streets, you’d better take some self-defense classes!”

He raised his voice and, for the first time, I felt the need to defend myself…from him.

“I can’t stand it! You’re accusing me of things you’ve done! Your mistakes and yours only! And I have nothing to do with them!”

The door closed behind him. I look around me…everything is so familiar and yet so strange…I’m home, but I feel I’m surrounded by strangers…

“Well, you don’t really like anyone, don’t you? You’re perfect! That’s why you’re so lonely…”

-I love you.

I love you too.

-I don’t feel loved.

I don’t feel loved either.

-Your words can cut as deep as any knife.

-I don’t remember saying these words. I never realized how they sound.

-You don’t remember and I can’t forget. What will we do? I still want you in my life…

 

Emotional abuse is just as painful as the physical one. Use your words gently, wisely, loving and tenderly. Especially with the ones you love.

*This post was inspired and dedicated to a very special lady, who overcame the consequences of emotional abuse and learned to heal others through her words.