Why Words Matter

[sel-fish]

adjective
1. devoted to or caring only for oneself; concerned primarily with one’s own interests, benefits, welfare, etc., regardless of others.
2. characterized by or manifesting concern or care only for oneself:
selfish motives.

This isn’t the first time you’ve been called that, although you’ve never been in the habit of withholding what other people ask from you. If someone asks for help, you try and help them. If someone has a question, you try and answer to the best of your ability. Sometimes, you wonder if this is what selfish really means: that the world is selfish, because it asks everything from you, everything you can give, and it still won’t matter because it won’t be enough.

It was worse when you were younger. You imagined yourself as made of glass, a vessel to be filled by other people’s problems and emotions and words. You knew there were so many people speaking, one voice over the other, a cacophony of voices rising up and down and surrounding you with sound. You wanted to be a still place, a quiet place. It was the only way to keep your mind sane. You knew that if you started talking, you would never stop, and then you would end up saying something you’d regret.

You knew that everyone had problems, that yours wasn’t special. Everyone suffers in this world. It didn’t matter that you were suffering too. What was important was that you listened to others – because they needed it more than you.

[bich]

Slang.
1. a malicious, unpleasant, selfish person, especially a woman.
2. a lewd woman.
3. Disparaging and Offensive. any woman.

You try and reserve the swear words for when it really matters – when the person really deserves to be called that. You know how easy it is to hurt others with words; you’ve done it yourself.

To be called by someone who you thought was someone to be respected and cared about and loved… well, it became a different matter altogether. You didn’t know why the people you cared about the most enjoyed hurting you, but then again, it never really mattered, did it?

You know you’ll forgive them eventually. (What a selfish thing to do.)

[ig-zawst]

verb (used with object)
1. to drain of strength or energy, wear out, or fatigue greatly, as a person
2. to use up or consume completely; expend the whole of

You have nothing left to give. You gave it to your job, your loved ones, the causes you care about. You no longer write for yourself. Nobody really cares, anyway, you know that. You sound like a broken record. You sound like everyone else. What you say does not matter, will not matter, will never matter. You can conjugate every verb, and time will still flow through them like water through stone. You know that you are scraping the bottom of your own emotional barrel. You will return to glass. And then you will break, and then the world will still go on – perhaps all the better because you will no longer be in it.

(Stop being so dramatic, you selfish bitch. Nobody cares.)

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