Every day, every hour, every second.
At school, at home, at the grocery store.
When I’m with family, when I’m with friends, when I’m with me.
It nags at me.
Even when I’m doing what it wants me to do,
It’s never satisfied.
It always wants more, more, more.
If I don’t do what it wants,
It drags me to the very edge of life.
It slowly clenches my lungs and creeps up my neck.
It circles around my ribs and crawls up my spine.
The hairs on my arms and back stand at attention.
My temple begins to perspire and my body begins to tremble.
Tears tickle my eyes and fear tickles my throat.
I’m helpless, waiting for my demise.
It finally shoves me underneath with a sudden wave of power.
No, not finally.
It lets me resurface to grasp at a breath before it washes over me once again.
I can’t see, I can’t breathe, I can’t hear, I simply can’t.
I open my eyes.
It pulls me up from the ground with a jerk and sneers at my weak frame.
I can’t look into its eyes but I know it’s glaring at me in disgust.
Pathetic, it calls me.
When can I be rid of its chains?
When can my mind and heart be free of its clutches?
When will I get to inhale crisp air and see clear blue skies and feel lush grass under my bare feet?
My answer comes in a chilling whisper in my ear.
I know it is right.
I’m not its only prisoner.
I see other prisoners every day, every hour, every second.
I see other prisoners at school, at home, at the grocery store.
I see other prisoners when I’m with family, when I’m with friends.
Some of the prisoners abuse other prisoners with their chains.
Some of the prisoners trade in their lives to be rid of their chains.
And still yet some prisoners hide their chains under a smile.
Maybe the ones who smile are incredibly strong or maybe they’re incredibly stupid.
Whatever it is, it doesn’t make a difference.
Because since the birth of humanity and until the extinction of humanity,
It has and will always win.