The thing about being in any kind of emotionally abusive relationship is that while the relationship is on-going, or even when it's long ended, the scar, though invisible, never fades.
You begin to believe that there's something wrong with you and you can never quite shake it. You realise that you must be the crazy one, the one with all this hurt and anger congealed within and that must be the reason why people feel that way towards you or why it never worked out.
You wake up breathless, wide-eyed and ramrod straight in the middle of the night, that scar still throbbing, wondering if you'll ever be right again. If the twisted, mistake side of you has been creeping over your heart while you were asleep.
And the worst of it all is wondering if anyone could ever really love you for who you are - needy, temperamental, pushover, stupid, slut - the lot.
A rubber band on my friend's table today. I picked it up while she talked on the phone about cars and manipulated it.
Lost in thought, I didn't realise what my fingers were doing until I looked down.
Like clockwork, by touch, twist and hook, they'd produced a phantom of times past. I stared, unseeing, until my tired eyes stopped swimming and the vision clarified.
A star within a star. Well I'll be. I'd forgotten I knew how.
Yet, that's muscle memory for you. Unseen and indelible. Just like that goddamn scar.