via Daily Prompt: Flames

Flames are untouchable. They are impossible; each fragment destroyed by a drop of water or a cool breeze, yet powerful enough when combined with others to burn a city to the ground. You can’t hold a flame by itself. For one thing, you’d burn, and for another, it’s not solid. Flames are also nearly impossible to draw. They are ever changing, finicky creatures, and therefore something that can’t be captured by even the pencil that can manage to catch the spark of life in an eye in it’s masterpiece.

Flames are emotions and opinions,strong enough to start wars, but something that can be threatened by a well designed attack from the opposing side in the form of a sentence, sentence fragment, or even a just a single word. Love is a flame, whether familial, platonic, or romantic. It is bright and beautiful, and when it is gone, it is gone forever. Even if you reignite the candle, it is not the same flame.

I love very few people in this world. Currently, it may just be my mom that I love. My dad loves me, or at least he says he does, but I do not love him. He didn’t care and wasn’t there when he needed to be, and now it’s too late. He lectured and yelled at me whenever given the chance, but never praised or apologized. He picked me up from studying for a science competition the other day, and as we were walking out, one of my friends (who is a guy) called out “See you tomorrow!” I said “See you then,” and my dad said “Heh, we’ll see about that.” My friend then asked “Are you still coming over to my house to study tomorrow?” to which I responded “I think so,” and my dad once again said “Heh, we’ll see about that.”

When we got back to the car, my dad asked me who that boy was. I told him his name, and my dad said that sounded like a girl’s name. He asked me why I would be seeing him the following day, and I told him we have a class together. My dad said “Sure you do. What about the whole part about you going over to his house to study?” I told him that I might be going over to study with his sister for an event for the science competition, and my dad said “Uh huh. Sure you are. I wasn’t born yesterday, I know what “studying” really means. If you’re going to lie to me, at least come up with a less stupid name for the event.” I insisted that I wasn’t lying (I wasn’t, and not even in a “it wasn’t technically a lie, I just left out a few details” sort of way). He told me I was grounded. Finally, when we got home, he talked to mom, and realized I told the truth about everything. This happened five days ago. He still hasn’t apologized, and probably never will.

Instances like this are why that flame of familial love is gone. When he started yelling at me and never giving me any sort of positive feedback, I shut the door. It hurts to have someone you love verbally abuse you every day, but he can’t hurt you if you don’t let him, and the way to do that is to stop caring. When my dad says goodnight to me on the nights that he’s home, he used to say “Love you,” before closing the door. About three weeks ago, I stopped saying it back. I know it hurts him, but I don’t care. If that makes me awful, then so be it. I was told not to lie, so I won’t.

There were two guys who I loved platonically. The first one I talk about quite frequently. He’s the one who I swore I would never talk to again, then talked to, and am now annoyed with because I think the only reason he talked to me was to try to convince me to nominate him for something. I used to love him, and couldn’t imagine life without him, and then I realized how much he hurt me and how little he cared about me. I couldn’t give him that power over my mental stability, and so I broke my own heart and moved on. It hurt, and still hurts a little bit, but not nearly as much as the emotional damage when I loved him.

The other guy I loved platonically is still someone I would like to be able to call my best friend. The problem is, he has his own mental issues, and lately hasn’t left the house or wanted to talk to anyone. I worry about him almost every day and wish I knew how to help him, but he hasn’t answered emails and I haven’t seen him in person. The only reason I don’t say that I currently platonically love him is because I still have a really difficult time trusting people after certain events, and so while deep down I know that he’s still my best friend and is probably just going through some hard times, I can’t fully convince myself because I don’t want to get hurt.

Finally, there’s the most fun kind of love; romantic. I don’t think I love anyone right now, but there is one guy who I’ve had a crush on for about 4.5 months now, and studies say that if you like someone for six months or more, you’re already in love, so in theory I’m coming pretty close. He’s incredibly intelligent, really kind, and a good conversationalist. I went to a homecoming dance last weekend that he was at, and he asked me to slow dance on the very last song of the evening. It was amazing.

I met this guy at a leadership camp at the beginning of the summer. Homecoming was the first time since then that we saw each other in person, but we had been talking over the internet all throughout the time in between. Right now, I haven’t talked to him in about four days because he hasn’t been online, which I’m guessing has something to do with the fact that he’s the lead mechanical engineer for his robotics team and all the hardware stuff has to be finished this weekend. I really like him and wish I knew how he felt about me, but because I only really talk to him online, the only way I’ll know is if he asks me to prom, or something similar that allows the subject to come up naturally.

Anyways, that was my long-winded spiel on love in my life. It’s all just kind of a mess, and more sparks and tendrils of smoke than actual flames right now, but hopefully that will change soon. Maybe that guy who I might love platonically will come back over the edge of the world he fell off. Maybe that guy who I really like will ask me out one day and it will be perfect. I don’t know for sure, but I do know that sitting in a dark room next to a bunch of dark candles, dead matches, and empty fireplaces all still giving off faint tendrils of smoke and nearly jumping for joy when the slightest orange dot of heat appears is not, nor will ever be, a healthy place to sit. I need to leave before I get lung cancer.


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