By Guest Writer, Theresa Ramirez
Feet pounding, heart racing, she ran full speed ahead at the wall. As soon as she was just close enough she used all of her strength to leap, right foot outstretched as she went flying forward. Her foot met with the stones and she immediately kicked herself off of the wall, flying backwards and hitting the creature right in its ugly head.
There was a satisfying “smack” as her foot met with its flesh.
The creature was stunned but relentless. With outstretched arms it came at her again.
She ducked, lunged forward and wrapped her arms around the thing’s midsection as her force sent it flying backward.
It landed in the soft earth with a thud and stayed down. She rolled off of it and got up to look at it.
Man, was it ugly.
Sharp, crooked teeth protruded from its mouth. Ugh, its mouth. Its mouth was the worst part. It took up a third of the thing’s face. It had three beady black eyes and a small nose, but that mouth, it was huge.
Without warning, the shrinking figure sprang up again and came at her once more. She kicked, but not hard enough, as it didn’t seem to faze it.
She threw a punch, but the thing grabbed her hand and squeezed her fist with it’s large dewy hand. Its claws dug into the back of her hand as she struggled not to yell out in pain.
Pulling her hand free, she realized that fighting this thing was not in her best interest. She’d never win this way. This creature, after all, could not be defeated. No matter how much she hated to admit it, it was a part of her and could never truly be killed.
She stood there as the trees surrounded them, and closed her eyes, staying perfectly still. She heard its footsteps as it ran towards her. And then, it just stopped. She took a breath, opened her eyes, and regarded the creature. It stood in front of her, staring at her in curiosity and wonder. Then it smiled its evil smile at her.
She smiled back and said, “I’m not afraid of you.”
The thing continued to look on at her in curiosity.
“I’m done fighting,” she breathed. “You are a part of me. This, I cannot change. But I’ve already begun to defeat you. Once you were a giant, and now you are nothing more than a persistent troll of annoyance. And I refuse to allow you to even be that big.”
The curiosity in the thing’s eyes began to shift from wonder to fear as she opened her mouth to work her magic.
She laughed at the fear written on its face and began to recite powerful words,
“I am strong enough.
And I am good enough.
No, I am more than good enough!
I am perfectly capable.
I am talented and I am skilled.
I am smart.
I am good at what I do.
No, I am GREAT at what I do!
I will be relentless in obtaining my goals.
I love myself and others love me, too.
I will not let you reduce me!
I am bigger and stronger than you!
And I will move forward despite your efforts!”
And as she said these words the creature shrank and shrank and shrank until it was no more than a couple of inches tall. It yelled out nasty lying things to her, but its voice was too small to be heard. And she wasn’t listening anyway.
She smiled at her victory and picked the thing up from the back of its ripped jacket. She put it up to her face so that it was at her eye level and said, “boo”. The thing cowered.
She laughed and put it in a jar, closing the lid tight. She slid the jar into her bag as she knew this was something that she couldn’t simply be rid of. Leaving it in the woods wouldn’t work. She couldn’t ignore it. She’d keep it close so that she could keep it in check. If she so much as heard one lying filthy word from the creature, her Inner Critic, she’d let it know who was in charge right away. If not, it might get big enough to break out of its jar again.
And she would never let that happen again.