A Promise Is Nothing More Than A Future Regret by Patrick Trotti


The promise of a new year filled with drunken assertions of ways to better yourself. The lingering regrets from a year gone by wasted by procrastination and laziness. Stray pine needles adorn the scuffed up hardwood floor. Patterned wrapping paper thrown about showcasing the impatience of a holiday gathering.

Over the course of a week’s time you found out if you were naughty or nice and kissed a stranger under mistletoe. Such a cluster fuck of imagined holidays always throws off your equilibrium. This time of year makes you feel like you’re trapped in a perpetual loop of some Disney movie, where despite the false starts and obstacles, you’re hoping for a happy ending. But deep in the background, if you look close enough there are signs. Warnings of an unsatisfied life spent going through the motions.

As the hangover from the first day of the New Year wears off you’re left wondering what to make of your decisions. You reassess your future, attempt to contextualize your past behavior and remind yourself to utilize the present to the best of your ability. By mid month you’ll be back with your ex, dependent on him, clinging to his every word, wondering how you could make the same mistake for the countless time.

You’ll go looking for answers in all the wrong places. It sounds like a country song but that doesn’t ease the pain. On internet message boards, holed up under the covers trying to stave off the cold gusts of an impersonal winter storm outside. You’ll even ask Yahoo and comb through pages of a Google search wondering why you’re back with him, why you’re so content on settling, and what that says about you.

The lack of answers scare you at first but as the winter storms mesh into one large, continuous attack you realize that you’re being your winter self. Burrowing into a comfortable life, draping yourself in familiar surroundings. He’s not what’s important after all, it’s the mere act of hiding; closing yourself off from the snow and ice, that’s what’s important.

You stay indoors; content to make the best of it, like an animal trapped in their dwelling, waiting for the break of spring. Until then you gaze out the window and count the snowflakes as they slowly cascade towards their inevitable death on the dirty sidewalk.

You and him are sort of like that you think to yourself. You the beautiful, innocent snowflake, and him the dirty pile of brownish winter accumulation below waiting, ready to swallow you whole.

Each day is one closer to freedom, to the ability to break out of this winter sluggishness. As the drips of the icicles outside your window splash against the ground below you count, count the ways you’ve done wrong, count the days until January melts into April.
Your spring self is becoming anxious to shed your winter mistakes.


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