Open Thread Highlights, Vol. 6: Apologies to Ourselves

Every few weeks, we post an open thread with a brief writing prompt. Here, some apologies to ourselves — for sushi and boyfriends and blue-green eyes— from last week’s open thread. Thank you for sharing your apologies with us.

I’m sorry I’ve told you to grip things so tight. That if you unclench your fists you might lose everything. I’ve misled you to believe that ancient pain is a worthwhile souvenir and your writing is best kept hidden and illegible. — Sam Zimmer

It wasn’t a particularly cold night, but you pulled the blankets up to your chin anyway. Although you weren’t touching, you felt him there next to you — far away in the heavy depths of drunken sleep. I know you wanted to go home, be alone, let shame settle into the quiet corners of your mind like snow. — Tonya Malinowski

Sorry about the sleepless nights, the ridiculous experiments with overrated substances, and all those boxes of Entenmann’s. — Lisa Renee

Forgive me, or don’t. You’re going to be the one who has to live with it. And we both know my hesitance and fear of failure got us to where we are today. It gave you something to conquer, something to overcome. It motivated you, inspired you. It made you you. — Ryan Hussey

I’m sorry you’re just another piece of history in other people’s pages. — Justin Faith Ng

I’m sorry I deprived you of sushi for so long because the first time you had sushi, in high school, your boyfriend fibbed and said the roe were some kind of seasoning, like ginger. — Stella J.

I’m sorry that I let your light burn out. I’m sorry that I left you alone and afraid in an unforgiving night. — Abby Norman

The world is not dark and bleak. I’m sorry it seems that way. I’m sorry for now, but you and I will gain the insight one day to understand what is happening around us. — Ethen Kauiers

I’m sorry I was so hard on you.

I’m sorry I convinced you that the two days of gut-wrenching abdominal pain was anxiety and that you were over-reacting.

I’m sorry that when the doctor explained what a spontaneous abortion was I was yelling at you for being so stupid, so careless and so irresponsible that you got pregnant.

I’m sorry that I refused to let you grieve that lima bean, I didn’t let you have the space to breathe and absorb what happened and accept it.

Tia Jackson

I am sorry I let you walk away without saying goodbye. For letting you crumple into a heap by the door as though you could make yourself small enough to slip under it. For stuffing your emotions into a little Roman candle and then standing there, taunting you with a lighter. — Evelyn Oliverada

I’m sorry I spent the first half of my life constantly apologizing for myself. — Karen Kilbane

I’m sorry I emptied your head of its lovely tapestries, slapped FREE signs on your hopes and ambitions, and chucked them to the curb. I’m sorry I wallpapered your skull in a-million-and-one Post-It reminders of how much you suck at everything you ever try to do. To be fair, you know you’re stubborn. Telling you once would never do. — Kiki Turrin

I’m sorry I didn’t believe in signs, in coal mine canaries. I believed in trudging through; in doing the right thing in place of the true thing. I made you knife-fight your way to imaginary finish lines in races you didn’t want to run. — Bare Bones

When you were in pain, I threw pills at you. When you were tired, I put a cup of coffee in your hand. When you were weak, I shamed you. — Nicole Tavares

I’m sorry for all the nights I kept you up,
Thinking you would never amount to your own standards of success,
While you paced the kitchen floor,
Nauseous,
At sixteen. — Julia Avila

I am sorry that I never told you this before: it wasn’t your fault. — Heather Nann

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