Warning: angst incoming. We’ve all felt it. Honestly, it’s a pretty good emotion for writing. As we grow up, we don’t experience it quite as much. We mature. We learn. But we also remember all the different flavors of feeling that make up angst.
The prompt that gave life to this rather short piece is one that, after a quick glance, many people like to take in the direction of love. Or perhaps the lack thereof. Upon reflection, my piece could also be interpreted as one of these. But mine is not about romantic love. I will let you decide for yourself what kind of love to file this piece under.
Prompt: My Heart in Your Hands (from the Tale Foundry Writing Group)
It is finally finished. You’ve spent months on this project. You worked on it and cried over it and went to sleep thinking about it. Now it is finally done. Now you can share it.
This project means so much to you. You decide the first person to share it with should also mean a lot to you. So you find them. You ask them if they can take a look at something. What do they think?
You present your creation to them. Your heart beats in anticipation, your palms are sweaty. They take it from your hands and inspect it. You watch their face, looking for a sign, no matter how small, that they have found some pleasure in what you’ve created.
But there is nothing. There is no smile, no raised eyebrow, no tilt of the head. They hand your project back to you and return to what they were doing as if your masterpiece was nothing more than static. Over their shoulder, they offer you some false congratulatory comment regarding it. You pretend that it means something.
You set your project on your desk and stare at it. This thing that you put so much of yourself into simply wasn’t good enough. They didn’t even care. You wonder why you even bothered as you knock your creation into a drawer with all the others. So much work went into each one and not a single one was enough.
The tears gather in your eyes. You blink and tip your head back to hold them at bay. Perhaps you will try again. It won’t be today. It won’t be tomorrow. Once you gather enough pieces of yourself to put into another project, maybe then it will finally be good enough.