Flash fiction: “Nothing you ever do”

”Nothing you ever do is good enough” My father used to tell me when he came home after a night of drinking.

Somehow, in his mind, it was my fault the way we had to live.

“You’re useless” He used to yell as he pounded on me with his fists.

All my life I carried those words with me. Nothing I ever did was good enough.

I did everything I could to please that man. Everything. Even after he passed his words stuck with me and I tried to make it right.

“Nothing you ever do is good enough.”

It wasn’t until I finally sobered up and started talking to you that I’ve realized that it wasn’t my fault. That I am good enough.

“This is real progress, Terry,” The man sitting in front of me said, “I’m glad you can recognize that.”

“Yeah well, it wasn’t that hard to figure out. The man was an asshole.”

“I think it was. You just don’t want to admit it.”

I had been stuck here, talking to this guy every day for the past couple of months. I guess he’s been good for me so far.

“So, I’ll be out of here soon?” I dared to ask him. I really need to get out of this place.

“I think with the progress that you’ve made that we can have you out of here in a matter of days.”

I can’t describe how good it felt to hear those words. Soon I’ll be out of this place and back in the real world. Back where I want to be.

Soon I’ll be allowed to drink again.

This time without my father’s words hanging over me.

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