Tempting Tasty Words
Sunday Confessions are hosted by the one and only Hot Ash from More Than Cheese And Beer.
She throws out the prompt and bloggers who jump in interpret the prompt any way it strikes their fancy.
Todays prompt is temptation.
I know it well.
There are clear moments burned into my memory where I can easily recall the siren that is temptation leading me astray.
When I was seven I stole for the first time. I was nonchalantly going back into my house nicking change out of my moms purse, to buy the turtle my next door neighbors were "selling".
The punk teens were trying to see how much the dumb kid would be able to give them before getting caught and I would have never gotten that turtle.
Turns out, I'm not a good thief.
Third time I was back in the house my mom caught me.
Let's just say her disappointment and my burning ass never prompted me to never steal again.
In that moment of desire, I discarded everything my mom taught me, threw out all her rules and manners she showed me because I thought I needed that turtle.
I think we've all been faced with things we want, what we think we need in our lives and feel like we'd do whatever we could to attain it.
I used to romanticize temptation.
Thinking it was one of the most beautiful things in the world.
Affairs. Drugs. Food. Shopping. Violence.
Whatever it was, I thought it was amazing and alluring that something could make you lose yourself, lose control. Not necessarily healthy mind you, but found it to be so intriguing.
The irresistible pull of needing that something to validate them. The idea someone would sacrifice everything they built, worked towards, gained so they could have ten minutes of self gratification with someone or something who sets their soul on fire, I thought that was beauty.
I know better now.
That's impetuous, selfish, and rude. It is showing that you have little to no respect for yourself or others.
Giving into temptation can destroy a home, divide a family, and demolish someones heart.
Temptation makes you feel alive when you give into it. Like you're doing the right thing, that it's helping you get back to the basics of who you truly are.
But in most cases, it simply exists to test us. See if we're strong enough to avoid it.
Sometimes temptation doesn't come in the form of an open cash register, a moment alone with the hot guy at work and the knowledge your hubby will never know, or easily accessible substances that make you feel like your alive when it's actually killing you.
Sometimes it presents itself innocuously, with familiarity. Quietly whispering into your ear you're not good enough, not smart enough to be strong, to stay away from your inevitable downfall.
For me, temptation reminds me of who I used to be. Telling me I'll go back there one way or the other.
It lays out the words on the floor like bait, waiting for me to come by and snatch them up.
Not good enough.
And I want to reach for them, just to look at them.
Maybe even put them in my mouth for a little bit.
Roll them around on my tongue, causing me to salivate over their delicious accessibility.
Always there for me, waiting, wanting me to use them. Wanting me to define myself with them.
I debate it now and then. Going back to thinking I am worthless, stupid, hopeless.
I know better now, have good reminders in the form of friends and family but once in a while l let myself get carried away with old habits.
My husband and I were talking the other day. A rare moment of rambling and cuddling when that tawdry tease of temptation presented itself and I foolishly grabbed at her and accepted the gifts of low self-esteem and doubt.
"Don't you just wish you had someone worthwhile? Someone pretty, someone skinny, someone smart?" I whispered to him.
The playful mood left the room,sucked away by the insecurity that was now overpowering.
I felt his body heave with a sigh. He knew too well that I wasn't simply fishing for compliments but rather wondering where my worth was, if it even existed.
"You are beautiful Jennifer. You are smart. There is no other person I want to be with", he fiercely said into my hair.
I should have let it go. Accepted it. Known it to be true.
But that damn temptation. That tradition of self hatred doesn't just evaporate over night. We laid in silence for a moment.
"Really? You wouldn't want someone prettier? What if I existed just prettier and skinnier-wouldn't you want that me and not me me?"
He got off the bed and kneeled around the side so I could look into his eyes.
Clearly, enunciating every syllable he told me he wanted me, needed me, wanted the girl who made him laugh and the woman who challenged him. He had no desire for anyone else and by now I should know this. By questioning his loyalty, I was hurting his heart.
Giving into temptation usually ends in pain for ourselves, but we forget the effects it has on other people who love us.
That giving in takes us back many many steps.
That listening to that treacherous seduction can create disharmony and pain for those we love.
Giving into temptation is not trusting ourselves to see our goals through. It's not having faith that we are the people we think we are. It's choosing the easy way out.
It's settling for way less than what we are worth.
I am in no way shape or form saying it is possible to stay away from anything and everything that tempts you.
Nor do l believe that it is healthy. We need to find our limits, push our boundaries, learn who we are by what we do and expierence.
Sometimes giving into temptation shows us who we no longer are.
If we want to be someone, do something, meet a goal, we have to be dedicated, willing, open and honest with ourselves that we may be side tracked with laziness, distractions or temptation.
It really does not matter if we give in.
It is what we do afterwards that counts.
Are we going to get lost in that ugly little mean place in our brains or uncover the beautiful, supportive heart we have?
Are we going to get stuck in a lost relationship full of pain and started in dishonesty or have the courage to say no until we bring up the temptation and reasons why we wanting to stray to ourselves and our significant others?
It is always our choice what we do, who we are and have the responsibility to accept the ramifications of our choices.
Give in to the temptation that you are good enough, that you can make a come back, that your mistakes do not define you.