While browsing Pinterest for pictures of Taylor Swift to use for my Taylor Swift Drinking Game, I came across a quote that really spoke to me. It talked about “The Bad Guy”, it implied deceit and although quite obvious, it implicated that the “Bad Guy” isn’t always the stereotypical “bad guy” we have in mind. Quite recently I’ve had some experience with a villain of my own. The bad guy I’m talking about is a lot like the one Taylor refers to; he doesn’t wear a cape or a mask, he smiles at me, he’s made me laugh, he’s wiped away my tears. When you assume the best in people, as most of us inherently do, it can be easy to make excuses for the “bad guys” in our lives.
It becomes far too simple to justify the bad guy’s villainous behavior, to give up inch by inch by inch of your happiness, of your spirit, of your “whatever” until suddenly you look back and wonder who you have become. The bad guy has pretty eyes, and can charm you with lies. The bad guy knows all of your weaknesses and soft spots and doesn’t kill you quickly with a sword, but slowly over time using your own insecurities and short comings to ruin yourself. The bad guy is just subtle enough and just “good” enough to keep you second guessing yourself, to drive you insane, to make you wonder if maybe he isn’t the bad guy but you are instead.
The battles with this sort of bad guy aren’t always obvious. The bad guy has no trouble lying to you, going behind your back, or doing everything he can to crush your dreams, to hurt the people you love, to isolate you from them. But the bad guy doesn’t do it the way they do in fairytales, he doesn’t lock you in a tall tower far away, he doesn’t send dragons to hold you hostage, he doesn’t turn your family into frogs right before your eyes. The bad guy is much tricker than that. One day you think you’re frolicking through a meadow of wildflowers, falling hopelessly in love with the beautiful world around you, but slowly over time you look around and realize the meadow you’ve been prancing in is filled with thorns and you’re barefoot. It’s getting dark and you don’t know your way home. And then suddenly you are locked in a tower and you do feel alone, and that person you trusted, that person you thought wanted what was best for you, that person you maybe even loved…that person makes you feel afraid.
In hindsight everything seems obvious doesn’t it? You can look back on every sweet gesture, every subtlety, and see what it all adds up to. Every beautiful bouquet’s toxic aroma lingers in the air around you. The tower you’re locked in is filled with Tiffany’s boxes and chocolates and all the treasures you could possibly lust after, but it’s still a tower, and you’re still trapped and alone. You followed the Bad Guy into the woods on your own, you climbed the stairs to the top of the spire step by step and you watched him lock the door behind him, before realizing your fairytale wasn’t going according to plan.
Sometimes our fairytale doesn’t have the happy ending we’d hoped for. When the mask comes off, and we see the bad guy right there in front of us, it seems easier to imagine him into the prince charming we wanted him to be. But you’re not his princess, this isn’t a fairytale.
The only thing left to do is to climb out from the tower’s window, even though it’s high, even though it’s scary.Kick off your heels, turn and run as fast and as far as you can from that place.
& Never look back.