5.56: Pain

Y’know, it’s kind of funny how much time can change things. Or change us, I guess.

My Ur-Oma Mari died last week, and I have a few really tough anniversaries coming up. Shittiest timing in the world, right? And I guess it all just has me doing a lot of thinking.

Thinking about time, like I said. And about… Okay, this is gonna make me sound like a weirdo masochist or something… But pain. And how it’s so fleeting, I guess (I bet Dr. Hall would love this one… I’m getting all deep again).

Like, even after all these years, I still remember how much it hurt when my parents died. But my memories of back then are so foggy now… It’s almost like I was watching it happen to someone else. I definitely remember the fact that I was sad and scared and confused about the whole thing… But no matter how hard I try, I can’t really remember what it actually felt like in the moment. Know what I mean?

I guess it’s like when the fire burned my face too. I remember seeing the flames falling toward me. I remember screaming. I remember that it hurt so badly. Probably the worst physical pain I’ve ever felt in my life… Can I remember the actual feeling though? Of course not.

But even if you forget how the pain felt when it was fresh and new, that pain can still leave behind scars.

And those never go away.

So I guess losing Ur-Oma adds a fresh new scar to the collection… And officially makes August the worst month in the entire world. She died on August 1st. My parents died 24 years ago on August 21st. And on the 29th, it’ll be exactly one year since Hope and I broke up.

I guess it’s times like these when I can feel those old wounds starting to flare up again — red and angry and ugly, even after all this time…

I’m trying so hard not to think about any of that though. I saw Dr. Hall yesterday, and he’s helping me try to focus on the good stuff. And I know that’s what Ur-Oma would want right now.

And I mean, I do have something pretty fucking awesome to look forward to — Something that might help break my August curse once and for all…

Just ten more days, and I’ll be co-owner and head chef of my own restaurant. Jesus, even writing it feels surreal!

I mean, I’ve been dreaming of this day for so long… And now that it’s almost here, it just seems too good to be true. I feel like it all happened so fast. Just over eight months since my first meeting with Greg. That seems fast… doesn’t it? Like we maybe rushed things? I dunno.

He says it’s pretty typical. And I guess he knows what he’s doing – he owns half the restaurants in Windenburg! (And a few other businesses too, actually). I guess I’m just a little nervous. None of this is exactly what I’d expected it’d be like, y’know? But he seems pretty confident everything’s gonna work out okay for us.

He loves to make those big dramatic speeches of his about hard work and perseverance paying off and all that crap… But sometimes it feels like empty words. Like he’s just saying that stuff so I’ll stop questioning things. Don’t get me wrong – Greg’s a really nice guy. He can just be… overbearing? And I don’t even think he means to be, really. It’s just who he is.

If I’d tried working with him a year ago, I probably would have bitten his head off and quit by now… And I still have my moments where I want to. It’s still hard for me to deal with people telling me what to do. I can’t help it — There are just times when it still makes me feel like they think I’m weak or something… But I’ve been getting so much better about that, thanks to Dr. Hall.

I’m finally getting what I’ve always dreamed of, and I never would have been able to do it without Greg. And I can’t forget that, no matter how over-the-top he can get sometimes. He’s smart and he’s really driven and he definitely knows business. I’d be totally lost without him. I’m not too proud to admit that.

Sometimes I wonder a little though. I mean, Ur-Oma always had kind of mixed feelings about him. She never met him, but I got to tell her a lot about him. She thought it was great he was helping me too. But she kept saying the same thing over and over again – “Just don’t lose sight of your dream”.  I promised her I wouldn’t, obviously. And that’s a promise I intend to keep. Especially now that she’s gone.

Tante Joce and grandpa kinda feel the same, I guess. “Don’t let this be another Denise,” grandpa keeps saying. And the other day when I went over there, Tante Joce brought it up again. “Just promise you’ll stand up for yourself if you have to.”

Of course I will. I’m not the same guy I used to be when I let Denise walk all over me. I know I’m not. Doesn’t Tante Joce see that? Am I still just a helpless little kid in her eyes?

Sometimes it still makes me so mad. I kinda snapped at grandpa about it last week. And I didn’t mean to. I’ve been so much better about losing my temper lately. But I guess we all have bad days, huh?

But I know they mean well. They just want to help. They’re supporting me, just like they always have. And I’m really grateful for that.

Anyway, I’m sure a lot of this is just nerves getting to me. I might not sound like it, but I’m really excited. It’s just a lot to put into words, I guess. And I don’t even think it’s totally hit me yet anyway… It probably won’t until I’m actually standing there on opening day.

And even though I’m scared shitless, I really can’t wait.

It probably makes me sound like an asshole, but I can’t help feeling pretty proud of myself for coming this far. For a while, I never thought it’d happen. I really, truly didn’t. I thought I’d dug myself too deep of a hole to ever climb back out again. But I did it.

And I know I never could have gotten here if I hadn’t gotten so much support. From my family, from my friends, from Greg, from Dr. Hall… And from Hope too.

She’s just been so amazing and supportive, especially since Ur-Oma died. Hope always got along so well with her. I think she really understood just how special she was, y’know? And I think Ur-Oma felt the same way about Hope too.

I still haven’t seen her in person since she left last September. I haven’t even heard the sound of her voice. But ever since she finally texted me at Christmas, we’ve been talking to each other more and more. At least once or twice a week… sometimes even more than that.

It’s taken a long time, but it’s really starting to feel like we’re becoming friends again. And that was something I really thought I’d never be able to say. But I’m so glad I can.

And I’m so, so proud of her. I almost can’t believe how amazing she’s been doing. “Supermodel” is such a cliché term, but… Well, she’s everywhere now. Magazines, billboards, commercials… It’s incredible! This is her dream, and she’s finally living it.

And with any luck, I can say the same in a couple of weeks.

Can I be honest though…?

I’m so happy for both of us right now… But even after all this time, there are still days when it’s just so hard. When it hurts so damn much. When that scar she left starts acting up and the pain comes rushing back all over again.

Don’t get me wrong — I love that we’re finally getting what we’d always dreamed of. I really do.

I just think I’ll always regret that we didn’t reach those dreams together.

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51 Responses to 5.56: Pain

  1. julyvee94 says:

    I really feel for Zayne. And I hope this Restaurant thing goes smoothly. I’m kinda scared greg will screw Zayne over somehow..m

    Liked by 3 people

  2. azzywoods says:

    Very nice to see smiley Zayne…only to go back to sad Zayne after he remembers Hope.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Bugsie2016 says:

    It’s ok Zayne, take the time you need to yourself. Your Ur-Oma was right, don’t lose sight of you dream. I’m glad your so close to your dream. I’ll find some of my fave motivation quotes for you:

    ‘Everything has changed,but yet I am more me then I have ever been’
    ‘The only time you should ever look back is to see how far you’ve come’
    ‘I am not a product of my circumstances, I am a product of MY Decisions’
    ‘Take every chance you get in life as some things only happen once’
    ‘Never stop doing your best just because someone doesn’t give you credit’
    ‘A river cuts through a rock not because of it’s power but it’s persistence’

    That was a lot more than I expected. Can I go post the rest on the forum?

    I hope nothing goes wrong, August is not a good month already for Zayne but if it goes bad with the restaurant then it might make him go back a few major steps. Although i’m more proud he’s been working so hard.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      I’m glad you’re so proud of Zayne (I am too!) Thanks for the motivational quotes too haha

      Like

      • Bugsie2016 says:

        You’re welcome, ill take that as a yes to posting the rest under a spoiler. (Warning I have about 40 of them that I gathered between January and March? this year.) I promise not to post that many though. 🙂 Don’t worry.

        Like

  4. Arrowleaf says:

    Jesus. Greg, I’m warning you buddy, you better be nice to Zayne. Hes been through too much to get unnecessary stress from you. Keep him on track but dont control him.

    And I’m conflicted about Zayne and Hope keeping in touch. I think it could really prevent him from moving on. :/

    Liked by 2 people

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Yeah, Greg is a tricky guy. Very business-focused and a bit intense! We’ll see how he and Zayne work together moving forward!

      And I understand your conflicted feelings completely! Time will tell whether being friends with Hope helps or hurts things…

      Like

  5. DanaColourful says:

    I don’t like this Greg guy. I feel like he’s going to screw Zayne over. Didn’t like him even before the comments from Mari and Joce. Or maybe I’m just being paranoid. It may be the suit and the hair 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Hahaha Greg definitely has that cold, business-like appearance! We will get to know more about him soon. He’s a pretty nice guy, I can tell you that much! But he is definitely all about business and making money too haha

      Liked by 1 person

  6. peaoorko says:

    Glad to see therapy is paying off and I’m very curious how Zayne’s going to do with a running restaurant. I hope for the best, but I know it can be tricky when you think you’ve made it, but there’s still a lot of work to do… Optimism and motivation are limited resources. Much like Arrowleaf I’m conflicted about Greg and Hope.
    Oh and I agree with Zayne’s reflection on pain and memory. I ❤ insightful Zayne.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Hehe I love insightful Zayne too! He surprised me while I was writing this one. All that stuff about pain was not planned, he just started talking and I listened :p (wow, I sound crazy! LOL)

      Glad you’re hopeful for Zayne’s future! Though I do understand your concern about Greg and Hope. We will see in the future how Zayne’s relationship with both of them will affect him going forward!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. *Staring at the ship just outside the HoZay Submarine*

    Okay, shipmates, the ship is looking better. It’s obviously still sunk, but at least we are getting it fixed and righted. There’s plenty of holes we need to work on. The fact that he hasn’t actually CALLED Hope, and they’ve only texted is a problem that needs to be addressed. He has 10 DAYS, 10 DAYS to invite her to the big opening! It will look good for him if there’s media spotlight, and what better way to have a huge supermodel show up? Hmmm? That would get the restaurant’s name out there, and her review will also help his restaurant in the long run…not to mention it will help our ship’s cause, and we can start patching things.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. sourocha1 says:

    I thought the name of Zayne’s theraphyst was Dr.Hell when I glanced at first! Id good that Zayne is getting his stuff together, and controling his temper! Only lost it one time! Is progress, all right…And like I said before, let’s just let’s things go with the flow, I hope Zayne don’t let his emotions take over, and when they are finally friends, he says something like: ”Oh, well, I still love you.”

    Liked by 1 person

  9. audreyfld says:

    Zayne is making progress. Yay! 😁 And soon he will be opening his restaurant.

    Yes, I am a little worried about Greg like everyone else. I hope he doesn’t cause Zayne to move backwards.

    Speaking of backwards, I hated that last line, “I just think I’ll always regret that we didn’t reach those dreams together.” That was your fault buddy. Stop the pity party – you are getting better. No going backwards. Only forward!!! We need nooboos!

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Haha I don’t think Zayne is denying it was his fault at all! That just makes it hurt all the more. Because he knows it was his fault and he’d give anything to go back and change how he did things. So that last line isn’t really self-pity, but rather sadness and regret over his mistakes. I just wanted to clear that up a little! 🙂

      Glad you’re enjoying Zayne’s progress. We will learn more about Greg soon 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. skcaga6 says:

    Thanks for kicking me in the feels.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. OnyxRaven says:

    I’m so glad Zayne and Hope are becoming friends again. And there seems to be some good progress with Zayne. I always have the awful feeling that something terrible is coming, though. Why do you do this to me, Citizen???

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Seeing as how Zayne​ still hasn’t learned to listen to the wisdom of others with a sense of gratefulness, I’m actually glad him and Hope are achieving their dreams separately. Because she’s just like his family, she would be helping him to see warning signs and pushing him to do the things he’s scared to do or doesn’t know enough to do. And they’d still be fighting. So I think it’s better this way.

    Also, I’m so freaking excited about his restaurant opening! I really really hope you have a chapter dedicated to it so that we get a really great tour of the facility, and we get to see how people like it. And maybe even a restaurant credit giving it 5 stars!

    Ah, who am I kidding? If his restaurant opening goes smoothly, I’ll be surprised.

    Like

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Hahaha I respectfully disagree that he’s ungrateful for the wisdom of others 🙂 But I respect your opinion!

      No big fanfare chapter for his restaurant coming, sorry! Haha but we will get to see it a bit in upcoming chapters 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • He has a funny way of showing that he appreciates what they’re saying. But I suppose he has to learn things the hard way, and just tell himself how they mean well while he ignores what they’re saying, haha. Reminds me of several people I know, he’ll listen eventually.

        Boooooo, but I wanna see the restaurant! You have to imagine that last sentence in a whiny voice. Like, imagine the waitress hasn’t brought my lemonade and it’s been 25 minutes 😉😉.

        Like

  13. maladi777 says:

    It doesn’t taste as sweet when you don’t have who to share your accomplishments with. 😦
    I really hope Greg isn’t bad news.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      So true 😦 That’s part of why it hurts so much. But Zayne is learning to heal! 🙂

      And we’ll hear more about Greg in the future! 😀

      Like

  14. Jes2G says:

    Your lack of total confidence in Greg is very disconcerting, o mighty Brat Prince. I’d have to agree with your family. And…sorry for your loss…and, glad you and Hope are friendly.

    Zayne’s issue of constantly thinking that people telling what to do or warning him means they see him as weak or a little kid baffles me. However, it probably always will because I’m not constantly in the position of being the youngest. The youngest children always have issues I never understand lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Hahaha yeah, I think it’s a combo of being the youngest person in the family (well, those in his generation) like you said, and also how babied and coddled he was as a child. He was always the poor little orphan kid to like, every adult in his life and I think he will forever carry this obsession with proving to the world that that’s not who he is. He’s been getting better with therapy, but I feel like it’s something he’ll never completely shake.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. sonniejj says:

    Yay for Zayne slowly getting better!

    I really don’t trust this businesspartner of his. He seems like the type of person to screw over the people he works with if it’ll be for his own benefit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      His baby steps are even bigger now! ^_^ We will see what happens with Greg. 🙂 Thanks for reading, sonnie!

      Like

  16. superkyle221 says:

    I just wanted to say that I found this legacy about two days ago and I’ve already read through all of it… I’m pretty emotional, especially after the chapter before this one. Nice work. I really love Stefan/Zayne/Clara/etc. and I can’t wait to see what happens with all of them.

    I also love that this is set in Germany as I grew up over there and so I love when there are chapters with entire German conversations.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Oh thank you so much! This was an awesome comment to wake up to this morning ^_^ I’m so happy you’ve enjoyed my story so far (and impressed you read it so quickly!)

      That is so awesome that you grew up in Germany! I have actually never been, but I’ve always wanted to!

      Liked by 1 person

      • superkyle221 says:

        I only just got the Sims 4 after years of not playing it – but with the school year winding down and me wanting to avoid all of the professional certification work, I’ve been reading a bunch of stories. I don’t remember how I found this one, but it was one of those things that (especially once we got to Mari) I found myself reading all day/night. I’m having a good time reading it so far, I can’t wait to see what’s next in store for the family (and I’m super upset that I can no longer binge, as it were).

        Liked by 1 person

  17. lisabeesims says:

    Sniff … I hear you Zayne

    Liked by 1 person

  18. lisabeesims says:

    I was using voice to text and I don’t know what I was thinking I think I was jumping back-and-forth while reading other stories LOL

    Liked by 1 person

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