Title: "Promise"
Summary: Change your expectations.
Notes: For Sheila, for getting it.

"I am dying from the treatment of too many physicians."
-- Alexander the Great


What a fucking curse. 'Everyone' has great promise. 'Everything' has great promise. Promise, potential...it's like you can never get past them. I am so fucking sick of always having this great 'promise'. Promise as a student. Promise as a writer. Promise to better myself 'cause my folks didn't. Promises to everyone and everything to not fuck up my life, to never make a mistake, to never falter. When has my promise been satisfactorily delivered? And why can't someone, anyone, tell me, just once, not that I have great promise, but that I've done something worthwhile? There are too many expectations and too little time.

Promise has worn out its welcome as far as I'm concerned. I've started so many things- too damn many things...and none of my poems, none of my short stories, published. Just another promise I've failed to deliver. Just another chance for the world to say that I shouldn't be out of the gutter, that I was aiming too high. That a promise was all I was ever going to be.

Like it's everyone's business what my talent is and how I use it. Everyone's a fucking critic, especially when it comes to everyone else's life. Let alone that their own lives are so fucked up that they don't know whether to fight or die, but they have the gall to tell me of my promise and expect me to deliver on it, just to give their lives a little more breathing room. If I deliver, then they don't have to. I make them feel smug and superior, these cognizant strangers who sit back and watch my struggles with a disinterested gaze and wait for me to fall. Just another promising thing laid to rest -- can we go have a drink now and celebrate this waste of human talent, of a human soul crying out for help, for hope, for a shred of confidence?

And everyone has that audience waiting for them to fail, so they won't feel too bad about their own plastic existence. Goddammit, at least I try to go after my dreams and I try to fulfill my promise. Most people just roll over and go back to sleep, screaming inside, but content to go on with a helpless attitude of 'I can't change things. Why bother?' Why bother. Why bother?! Because it's your life you're toasting, not some fucking game show you can always turn off if the questions get too hard! Do something -- it's your life, your promise to be fulfilled, your untapped potential to explore. Not the teeming masses who stalk you like so many hungry vultures and wait to devour you like raw meat.

Go after that dream -- do something wild. Let go and lose a little bit of that tight control. Life isn't waiting to be controlled; life's meant to be savored and experienced. Life means letting go. Demolish that refuge that's turned you captive.

Live. Or die, Knowing that you did nothing. That your promise was just that. Promise -- not reality.

Live. Or die. It's your choice.

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