"Don't be too late tonight, I really want to spend some time with you."
"I won't. It'll be an early hunt. I'll be back before the kids go to bed. I promise."
I promise. Right before we exchanged I love you's, this was one of the last things I heard Jeremy say to me. I've played it out so many times in my head, it gets very muddled now, and I don't even remember the exact words, but I promise always pulses through. Because when I hear it in my head, it can still make me hurt and even make me angry.
I hear people constantly throw around these two words. I even find myself doing it once in awhile when I'm not thinking. I heard my children promising all kinds of things to me and their siblings the other day, and it triggered my emotions. There have been other times in the past where I've heard 'I promise' and it triggered vicious tears.
I now have an aversion to the phrase 'I promise.' Not because I don't think people don't mean it, but because I've waited on a promise before and watched all my hopes and dreams come crashing down as that promise was broken. And it wasn't intentional, but broken nonetheless. I know at the heart, people want to be trusted and confirm that they'll follow through on something, but those words still sting in my heart.
He made a promise he didn't know he couldn't keep.
Now, I can't trust a promise.
They say don't make promises you can't keep. But people think they're invincible. We here know differently and we take and make promises with a little more caution because we know a promise can be broken in the blink of an eye, with one phone call, with one breath. Anytime I hear the phrase, it's like I can hear Jer's voice through it and the promise suddenly sinks into my gut.
So, I try to be careful about what I promise to people. Because I never want to leave those words unfinished on someone else's heart.