Thought Catalog

I Was Stolen, Handcuffed, And Spanked By My Billionaire Husband’s Biggest Rival

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 08:30 PM PST

Handsome American billionaire Mark Dexter looked down at the pretty woman draped frontways over his desk, her hands tied behind her back with his fine silk purple tie and her skirt around her waist. He continued pulling her black silk panties down to her ankles and over her feet kicking in high heels which, to his amusement, didn't reach the floor.

"You can't do this. You can't just spank me like a child. Let me go now or I will scream the place down," the woman shouted in her upper-crust English accent, doing her best to wrestle her small, curvy body off the desk onto the floor.

He pulled the panties away from her and rested his hand on the middle of her back in an effort to calm and steady her.

"I have every right to discipline you. I caught you stealing documents from my office. I am ruler of my domain, Ms. Sumner," he said with some amusement in his tone. "And I don't tolerate spies and thieves."

Mark cast his black eyes over her pert pale bottom lifting off the table toward him. It reminded him of a juicy ripe peach he wanted to take a bite out of.

"I had no choice. He sent me. He made me." There was a plea in her voice.

"I can imagine. But you could have come to me. You know that. I am going to send your husband a message. He is messing with the wrong man. I won't let him ruin my business and steal it for himself."

Mark nodded at the second man in the room, who was a member of his security team. He held up a smartphone to continue filming the scene with a grin, homing in on the billionaire James Sumner's wife's bare bottom being prepared for a firm spanking.

Mark smoothed the back of his hand against one ripe buttock, loving the feel of her skin against his hand. He'd wanted to see the woman naked and beneath him in his bed for a long time. She was married to a brute of a man he'd been forced to do business with, and Mark Dexter had dreamed of a way to get her away from him and into the security of his own arms. He hadn't expected her to betray him like this. He still held her panties in the other hand, and as she continued to bleat, an idea struck him hard. Pulling her body up off the desk by her tied hands, he scrunched the silky material up and pushed the garment in between her lips to gag her.

Grinning at her mumbles against the makeshift gag, Mark exchanged a satisfied look with the man filming the proceedings. He placed his hand in the middle of her back once more, and standing to the side he raised his hand to deliver the first slap. Drew Sumner's body tightened and jerked, lifting into the air with the first hard strike. Her bare bottom wobbled and shook with the force. The billionaire hit the opposite buttock, delighted when the reaction was reproduced. He then spanked the seat of her rump.

Drew whimpered, cried, and squirmed as he increased the pace of his strikes, diverting his attention momentarily to the tender backs of her thighs.

"This will teach you not to be a naughty little girl and sneak in people's offices to steal information," he mocked in a fatherly tone. He looked into the camera, another idea forming in his head. "Maybe next time you can come and confront me yourself instead of putting your wife at risk," he told James Sumner in between the thwack of his hand against Drew's buttocks. "It's time someone taught you a lesson. If you want your wife back, return the documents and contact book you made Drew steal the last time she was here, or this video goes all over YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and other media. Until then your wife is mine. Consider her stolen." TC mark

Read the rest in Arabella Kingsley’s new book Stolen, available here.


50 Severely Hot Sexts For Men That Like It Rough And Wild

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 08:00 PM PST

1. Your back is going to be covered in scratch marks soon.

2. Come over. I have handcuffs. The fuzzy pink kind.

3. Should I wear leather or lace tonight?

4. I have enough rope to tie up your wrists and your ankles.

5. If you keep acting like a bad boy, you’re going to get a spanking.

6. Fuck me so hard that I’ll need a pillow to smother the moans.

7. I’m already on all fours. Get in here and get behind me.

8. Lube? Check. Lingerie? Check. Cat of nine tails? Check.

9. Buy more condoms. You’re going to need a lot.

10. Think about the most inappropriate place we could possibly have sex — and then fuck me there.

11. Tell me what to do to you and I’ll do it.

12. My pussy gets wet whenever I think about you pulling my hair.

13. I have a dog collar with your name on it.

14. I want you to fuck my face.

15. I’m not going to wear anything under my coat tonight — except a garter belt.

16. Tie me up. And then go down on me.

17. Don’t speak. Don’t moan. Don’t move. Unless I tell you to.

18. The sex toys are already lined up on the bed.

19. When you come over, you better bring a blindfold.

20. You get to pick all the positions tonight.

21. I have an idea of what I want to do to you. But it might be too kinky for you.

22. Please tell me you find dominatrixes attractive.

23. I want to feel those strong hands wrapped around my neck.

24. I need help putting these nipple clamps on.

25. Orgasming isn’t as fun without you here to spank me.

26. I don’t care where you cum as long as I get some of it in my mouth.

27. I’m at an adult shop. Anything you want me to pick up?

28. I hope you find crotchless underwear sexy.

29. I’m in the mood to be tossed around like a fucking toy.

30. Where should you cum? Surprise me.

31. I want to feel your dick hit the back of my throat.

32. Call me your dirty little slut.

33. I want you to dominate me.

34. Rough sex is my favorite type of sex.

35. The second I see you, I’m shoving you against a wall.

36. You look sexiest when you take control.

37. Pin me to the bed and fuck me hard.

38. I want anything except missionary tonight.

39. I’ll be the cop if you’ll be the criminal.

40. Spank me as hard as you can.

41. I’ll stick a ball gag in your mouth so the neighbors can’t hear us.

42. Kiss me softly and fuck me hard.

43. I’m in love with your muscles.

44. Come over. I can’t wait any longer to taste your cum.

45. You get to give the orders tonight.

46. I want you. All of you. Right now.

47. Fuck me like an animal.

48. I need to be punished.

49. Kiss me. Bite me. Scratch me. Hard. 

50. I’m into bondage. I’m also into you. TC mark

This Is What A Good Night Text Really Means

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 07:00 PM PST

 Annika Boron
Annika Boron

Good night beautiful. Sleep well.

It's a simple few words really, at a normal hour, when people in her past might not have done the same.

But it’s more than words. It’s letting her know, 'You are the last person I want to talk to today.' It's letting her know, 'You are the last one I'm thinking of before I'm going to sleep.'

When you can't be there next to her, it's a few little words that tell her, 'I want to be if I could.'

And you turn over in your own bed, imagining when she was right there next to you, looking forward to the next time she is.

You imagine a future where you don't have to say goodbye but rather good night or good morning in person.

But until that day comes, a text will have to do.

It's a genuine compliment that makes her blush and something that might be the highlight of what could have been a rough day.

It's a small indication to her saying, 'I can go to bed at ease now.'

It's a little reminder that you are still hers and your heart only beats for her.

It's more than a good night text.

It's a simplistic action saying, 'you matter to me.'

It's easy to get caught up in busy schedules and forgetting little things. It's easy to put people we love on the back burner. It's easy to take people who we know will always be there for granted.

But one text at the end of a long day comes to mean so much. It freezes every stress and everything that went wrong and she smiles looking down because there's a confidence to you and someone who puts an effort in things that matter like her.

It's you making a choice every day.

Because as much as there has probably been trial and error of dating in your life before each other, somehow despite everything that could have been different, you've found one another. But more than that you choose each other too.

A goodnight text is saying, ‘I chose you today and I'll choose you again tomorrow and every day after that.’ TC mark

The Brutal Truth About Why You Haven’t Found ‘The One’ Yet

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 06:30 PM PST

Tracey Shaw
Tracey Shaw

Let's talk about finding the "one" – you know that magical person that is your soulmate. Your other half.  The one who completes you.  The one that you will run in slow motion through a field of sunflowers to and when you kiss fireworks will go off!

Okay so you probably detect a bit of sarcasm. And the sarcasm isn't there because I am jaded or don't believe in love. I LOVE romance and love.

What I don't love is the some of the misunderstandings around soul mates and the pain many of us endure when it comes to romantic relationships.

Why are romantic relationships – everything from the pursuit of them to being in them to break-ups – so painful sometimes?

These are the questions I answer in this week's podcast episode with Michael as well as share one of my personal experiences with seeking "the one".

Do you relate to any of the following:

  1. Are you longing for a soul mate so much so that it is causing you to suffer?
  2. Do you keep dating the same person over and over again with a different face?
  3. Could old issues from your childhood, specifically unmet needs from your parents, be impacting who and how you are dating?
  4. Are you in a fantasy-based relationships? Could it be time to take off the rose-colored glassed?

I will leave you with this:  When you truly fall in love with yourself and know you are the "one" you have been looking forward, you will see that everyone is a soulmate and the only one that completes you is you.  And when you truly know that, you can draw in a relationship based on your values and where you are headed, versus your issues and where you've been. TC mark

The 3 Most Important Relationships You’ll Have In Your Life

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 06:00 PM PST

via Unsplash - Everton Vila
via Unsplash – Everton Vila

We all go through those relationships in primary school when a boy's friend runs up to you and ask you ‘Do you want to be *boys name*’s girlfriend?’  You giggle ‘Yes’, you play with them a few times. Perhaps receive your first hug, kiss or gift, then he likes someone else and so do you and it magically ends for something else to start. Times were so much more simple weren’t they?

The problem is as life progresses there are so many elements that begin to make it seem that little bit less simple year after year. But really it is still simple you need to take away the emotions and go back to basics to reveal the true message the universe is trying to send you. "With each end is a new beginning"

 There are 3 major types of relationships in your life and if you find the right one the first time, you’re lucky, very lucky. But majority will need to go through these 3 steps before life really falls into place. 

1. The right one at the wrong time.

This is the relationship we all have, the perfect boy/girl who makes you happy, you grow with them, you learn with them, they make you happy but then there is too much living to do so you go your separate ways telling yourself ‘there’s too much living to do, you can find this again one day, maybe.’ You smile and wave not knowing that by not embracing what you had, you just entered the most difficult phase of your life.  

2. The wrong one at the right time.

Now this is the relationship that rips you up, turns you inside out, teaches you who you are, who you want to be and what you’re not. The relationship when you are 110% ready to close the chapter and start a new one but the page just won't turn. This is the relationship where you learn, my god do you learn. You learn what you like, love and hate. You learn how to be brave, forgiving, honest, strong, rude, sad, mad and happy all at the same time. This relationship will turn your world upside down and inside out to only lead you in the right direction. (Which may I add is not backwards!) It will lead you to the 3rd and final most important relationship in your life, the one you 'thought' you had but really how could you have this until you find out who your truly are.

3. The right relationship at the right time. 

This relationship comes only after the first 2. This relationship is the one you have with yourself. It’s where you learn to find your morals, your values, who you are and who you aren’t. The past seems to all fit together to perfectly make a puzzle you had been trying to finish for so long. You finally just love yourself for all you are, all you’ve done and all you want to do. This is the most important relationship you’ll have in your life. For only after this relationship will you attract ‘the one’ who compliments the relationship you are currently in. 

Too many of us are chasing someone to ‘complete us’ not recognizing the track life has you on to ‘complete yourself’ to embrace your 3rd and final relationship so that the show can go one. Those out there in number 2 trust me, the show does go on its just time to run as fast as you can into number  because only after you complete yourself does life begin to get truly amazing. TC mark

How To Get Your Health On Track (Even If You’re Not Feeling Totally Inspired — Yet)

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 05:30 PM PST

Kayla Itsines
Kayla Itsines

Setting off on a new lifestyle plan can be a little bit daunting. I often speak with women who have hit a 'mental roadblock' and really don't know where to start, or sometimes, how to keep going. So today, I thought I'd talk about breaking down some of these changes into small steps.

Perfect your squat technique and do them everywhere

Don't waste those minutes you spend waiting around. Learn how to do the perfect squat and start doing them whenever you have a free moment. Brushing your teeth? Do a couple of squats. Blow-drying your hair in the morning? Do some squats as you go. If you're feeling brave, do them in the office as a way to get your blood pumping after sitting for awhile.

Sit on an exercise ball

To stay balanced on an exercise ball, you're more likely to be using better posture. As sitting on one of these balls isn't quite as stable as a chair, it requires a lot of hard work from your abs! Over time, stronger ab muscles can help reduce lower back pain too. Just make sure that, as the day goes on, you maintain good posture and don't slouch!

Stretch. Every. Single. Day.

A good stretch can help increase the flow of blood to your whole body, which may make you feel more awake. It can also help with fine muscle coordination, range of motion and tension relief. It's quite easy to reap these benefits when we stretch regularly, which is why it's so important to make time for it, even on rest days.

Get creative with your downtime

A whole weekend spent in front of the TV isn't all that good for you. I'm not saying you need to give up watching TV, but don't let it be the ONLY thing you do on your precious days off. Instead, look for fun new ways to get out and be active. Hire a kayak and paddle around some waterways, or go for a hike. Catch up with friends by joining a social sporting competition instead of meeting for food. That way, you'll squeeze in a little extra exercise here and there and will probably feel better for it!

Add more veggies to your plate

If veggies are taking up less than a quarter of the space on your dinner plate, it might be time to overhaul. Vegetables provide you with fibre, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to keep your energy up and fuel your body's processes.

Try out different preparation methods if you find vegetables a bit boring!

Buy a spiraliser and make zucchini noodles, or roast some vegetables and season with fresh herbs. You can also try some of my healthy vegetable recipes for some more ideas!

Eat at the dining table

When people eat in front of the TV, chances of overeating are much higher. Our favourite shows are such a big distraction, we don't realise how fast or how much we're eating. Sitting down at the dinner table with no distractions helps you to practice 'mindful eating', where you are more aware of when you're starting to feel full and how much you're actually eating.

Swap white rice for brown rice

To get the 'clean' white look, white rice can go through a lot of processing, removing the outer layers. Unfortunately, this processing can sometimes strip a lot of nutrients from white rice. Brown rice, however, doesn't go through the same level of processing, which means it higher levels of nutrients are often retained.

If you're not a huge fan of brown rice, try swapping white rice for quinoa or whole grains instead!

Curb your sugar cravings with a piece of fruit

Instead of reaching for snack foods that are full of sugar, take the edge off with a piece of fruit. Eating a banana or an apple with a little nut butter can take care of that sugar craving, while also providing you with some extra nutrition, such as fibre

These sneaky changes can help keep you on the path to better health. Small steps really do add up over time, so it's definitely worth trying this approach. TC mark

You’re Not Really A Couple Until You Survive These 23 Awkward Moments

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 05:00 PM PST

Joel Sassa
Joel Sassa

1. When you bump into one of your significant other’s "old friends" and you can tell from the way those two interact that they've definitely slept together and you can’t help acting like a crazy jealous person about the whole thing later.

2. When you think you’re safely out of sight but your lover turns their head just in time to see you flick that boogie on the floor.

3. When you're feeling super sexy and you debut your look expecting to be showered with compliments but your partner’s expression immediately crushes all your hopes.

4. When someone comments on the floating turd in the toilet as if it’s hilarious but the other person’s just not ready to go there yet.

5. When one of you gets diarrhea and there's no escaping the foul scent of liquid poo infusing the air.

6. When you're staring into each other's eyes romantically and one person just can't help pointing out the other's pimple or blemish, instantaneously ruining the moment.

7. When one person gets too drunk and says something wayyyy too truthful, even for a pair of lovers.

8. When you realize that your partner was probably lying to you when they said you looked amazing the night before because the photos definitely say otherwise.

9. When they come home earlier than expected to find you singing your face off while holding a fake mic, or touching yourself and moaning like a grade-A porn star.

10. When they walk in on you blatantly checking yourself out in the mirror, making a lame duck face or popping a zit or something.

11. When one person trips and falls on the sidewalk and they’re not in the mood to be laughed at but the other can’t help cracking up.

12. When either person farts during foreplay or sex.

13. When one person tries really hard to seduce the other but their plan falls flat because the lingerie doesn’t fit quite right or their target isn’t in the mood, like at all.

14. When you try a new sexual position with so much enthusiasm but it ends up mostly hurting.

15. When someone gets caught checking out a stranger and the other person can't help fuming with jealousy.

16. When you accidentally call each other by your lame pet names in public and someone rolls their eyes at you for being that couple.

17. When someone accidentally reveals something to a friend or family member that the other was hoping to keep locked in the vault for good.

18. When one person shares a hilarious story at a group dinner that totally embarrasses their partner so the slighted party fights back with an equally humiliating anecdote and it just gets weirder from there.

19. When they catch you standing in front of a mirror, blowing out your belly just to see how big it can get or doing a funny little dance just because.

20. When someone expends a bunch of energy preparing a meal and they can sense as their partner takes the first bite that their creation is the opposite of delicious.

21. When one person accidentally injures the other and the victim just can’t suppress their temporary hatred for the cause of their suffering, even if they realize the whole thing isn’t their partner’s fault.

22. When one person insists on hearing every detail about their partner's ex but they can't actually handle the truth and end up weeping and/or feeling incredibly resentful.

23. When someone gets called out for faking it because they do such a shoddy job of it. TC mark

12 Things Girls Accidentally Do Because They’ve Been Hurt One Too Many Times

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 04:00 PM PST

1. We’re downers. Our best friend met a new guy? We want to be happy for her, but instead we’re searching for red flags. Trying to save her before he hurts her.

2. We sabotage our own happiness. We’re used to the misery. The tears. The disappointments. Happiness is foreign to us. We expel it from our bodies like a germ.

3. We make assumptions. If a boy seems interested, we’ll assume that he’s either leading us on or is using us for sex. We don’t consider the possibility that he wants an actual relationship. Since when does a boy want to date us?

4. We laugh at romantic gestures. If a man uses some cliche line on us about how we’re an angel that fell from heaven, we won’t find it sweet. We’ll find it sappy. Unrealistic. Stupid as shit.

5. We can get a little nasty. Our motto is: hurt you before you hurt us. We’d rather leave your texts unanswered than wait for a reply that’s never going to come. We’d rather be the ones in control.

6. We fall hard for unobtainable men. Mostly, celebrities that we’re never going to meet. Men that don’t have the ability to break our hearts, because we understand that they’re never going to be ours.

7. We keep secrets. It doesn’t matter if you’ve known us for years. There are some stories we’ll keep hidden from you in order to protect our hearts. You don’t need to know everything.

8. We don’t take love seriously. When someone asks us why we’re still single, we’ll say that we’re planning on dying alone. Or that we’re holding out for a sugar daddy. We feel like love is a joke, so we might as well treat it like one.

9. We flirt with everyoneWe don’t expect anything to come of it. We just want to have some fun. Besides, it’s dangerous to focus on only one man, because then he has the potential to hurt us.

10. We point out plot holes in movies. It’s hard to enjoy a film when the fuckboy on screen decides he’s going to give up the single life for the ‘perfect’ woman he met. It just doesn’t feel realistic. We can’t take it seriously.  

11. We put up with toxic people. It’s not unusual for us to get drunk and text our asshole exes. So what? They’ve hurt us before. They can hurt us again. We’re used to it.

12. We have hope that things will change. Despite all the pain love has brought us, we still want to believe that it’s out there. We’d never admit it aloud, but we’re still expecting to find Mr. Right one day. TC mark

You Are More Than Your Failures

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 03:00 PM PST

Timothy Paul Smith
Timothy Paul Smith

You have faced rejection at some point, and you do not want it to happen again. So you push yourself too hard and avoid mistakes as much as possible. You cannot fail this time. Not now, not ever. Every action must be perfect, every decision must be correct. You do not want things to be just good—you want them to be great. You cannot settle for less. Not anymore.

You know the pressure more than anyone else. You understand every bit of it. That's what makes you crave for success even more. The pressure gives you purpose. It propels you to places you have never been before. It motivates you.

But it also rips you apart, tears you down. It breaks you into pieces. Because nothing is more painful than not getting what you want despite giving everything you got.

You have spent sleepless nights working on it and there were so many that you lost count. You devoted every minute of your life for the purpose of achieving it, and maybe you have sacrificed far more than you should have. Because you believed that at the end of the day, good things come to those who work hard for it. Your blood, sweat and tears will be all worth it.

But it wasn't.

Deep down you know you are not alright, but you act like you are anyway. You do all sorts of trying—trying to comprehend what happened, trying to convince yourself that you are okay. You want to feel numb, but you feel these emotions all at once. You want to make it stop. You want the world to come to a halt.

You find yourself asking what went wrong. What could you have missed? What could you have done better? Then you begin thinking of "if onlys". If only you have seen that coming. If only you have practiced better. If only you have read it thrice, or maybe even four times. If only you have known what would happen. It feels horrible.

And you know you cannot blame anyone but yourself.

Because more than anyone else, you know how much you want it—how much you need it. Whatever it is that you are trying to attain, it gives you validation. It is a way of congratulating yourself for pushing through, for fighting for what you believe you deserve. Because at the end of it all, it is you who worked hard for it, it is you who wanted to prove them wrong. And you were almost there. You were that close to the sweetest, grandest thing you ever wanted. But all of a sudden, you are not.

And now you are so exhausted of hoping, because you discovered that expecting has the power to turn dreams into nightmares, to transform desires into aches. And you learned the hard way.

But slowly you learn to let go, to accept. When you fall, you rise up—no other options. The light inside might have stopped for a while, but you are still working. Sometimes we need to repair ourselves, because not all steel are unbendable. You have gained incredible strength and spectacular courage along the way to conquer all your obstacles, so who says you cannot do it again?

We know perfectionism has its limits, and one of them is that it can only be so good until someone gets hurt. And that's you. In our quest to greatness, sometimes we forget that we are allowed to make mistakes, and that we are allowed feel bad about ourselves. It is normal to feel down after a defeat, because what is important is how you pick up the pieces after losing. Do not lose sight of yourself, and do not look at the world through someone else's eyes. Do the things you love simply because you love doing them. Your journey is only yours to take, and people can only watch from the sidelines. Remember, this is your life.

The path to victory is not easy, you know that. That is why you are willing to give it your best shot. Do not stop. Do not be scared of trying, and continue being the warrior that you are. Keep fighting your battles even when it gets rough. You will always need your fighting prowess, because the combats will get harder and harder each day.

Remind yourself that you are allowed to feel weak, and that you are entitled to your emotions. You tend to push people away when you want to be alone, because grief is not exactly what you decide to share to anyone, or at least not right away. You need to express your sorrow one way or another, so do not be ashamed when you find yourself spilling your heartaches to someone who might understand. If you are not ready to talk, find an outlet that will let you convey pent-up emotions. One of the worst feelings in the world is being disappointed in yourself, and the only time that your heart can mend itself if when you let it.

One more thing; learn to forgive yourself. You are flawed, just like everybody else. Sometimes you do not get want you want, no matter how hard you strive for it. Maybe it is not for you, maybe it is. Maybe it is all about timing. You will never find out if you cease trying. So set your eyes on the prize, even if this might be the last time.

Your greatest enemy is and always will be yourself. This is the same person who whispers in your ear the biggest lies about yourself. Do not let your insecurities bring you down. You are more than your fears. You are more than your shortcomings. In this very moment, you are enough.

I hope you find reasons to begin again. More importantly, I hope you learn to love yourself once more. Because when all else fails, the person who's going to be there for you, is you. TC mark

To The Person I Used To Be, This Year Will Be Better

Posted: 28 Dec 2016 02:00 PM PST

Jake Ingle
Jake Ingle

The inevitable inconsistency of life does not and should not make us incapable, but sometimes, it shrinks us that we want to go incognito.

Hey, how was 2016? Yep, I am talking to you. Let us put a line between the general 2016, which are the things that everyone (almost) know; and the specific 2016, which is all about you. In times of inexplicable variety of "shows", I am enlisting those that I have felt, have grieved, have ugly-cried, have solaced, and have settled inner peace with – acceptance and letting go. Maybe you could relate, maybe not. But life, when shared, helps us gain. So, we begin.

Life is not a word to define, but a meaning to be found. This year, I have sought things I thought were worth fighting for. Do not get me wrong, I still think that they are worth it. But when we have exhausted all that we could do, what else is left but to relieve yourself of that exhaustion – let it be. Because I have learned that for certain milestones to be found, all we need is to stand firm – so long as we keep that posture, even if we are confused, answers just find their way to us.

I walked tall, but still fell short. Who never felt disappointment? Who never felt cheated?
Who never asked for vengeance? Who never actually plotted against somebody, against a group of people? Were these things easy to do? Were they within a man's capacity? Of course! Though, however feelings make us do, if love and inner peace are with you, you can just say – "One day, it will all make perfect sense." Sure, it's hard to be "haunted" by some actions we thought we could've done, but it's even harder to be "haunted" by the things we would've done out of anger or whatever but never fully understood their repercussions, until the right time comes, and repentance will never bring anything back.

Some may think they have taken everyTHING away from me, but not everyONE. Yep, noticed? Things that people take from us are superbly replaceable, but not the people we live with. Besides, people around our sphere of influence aren't easy to count out. At night, before we lay ourselves down, when our emotions shrink to the quietest, loneliest part of our hearts, and once peace consoled, we could just say – "God, thank you, for letting them take almost everything away from me. It made me realize having less is having more."

Deception is a reception based on half-blinded people's perception. We tend to believe what we see, what people make us feel, what the world makes us habituate into, but the truth will always find its way home. While there are people who deceive, there are also people who perceive, assess, and infer. It is in allowing darkness that light can be recognized amidst all turmoil. Pervert can be reverted, y'know.

Love is not blind. Sometimes, fog around us just makes us turn our backs but really, that person sometimes is there, sitting right under your nose. Well, a book author said something like – we want and dream of a love we thought we deserve. We will always find it interesting to be with somebody. We see a great spark within, and sometimes we aren't really sure and that is okay, because the vehicle to finding love is taking paths and a lot of times we get hurt in the process, but it doesn't make life unfair. Acceptance that everything we meet is a lesson makes it easier. Even at your worst, love at your best.

I am not even half the person I used to be, and that is completely horrifying, but not strong enough to break me. I am not the ever-achiever person anymore. In fact, I feel so vulnerable these days. A lot of things have changed. Regardless of these, one thing I am assured of – that what I have within are still with me. But the greatest thing sometimes is unlearning everything that made me tough. Because when we allow vulnerability to take its place, we learn the ability to love genuinely, not thinking of everything that we see as a mere business that needs to be fulfilled with measurable targets and produce a defined outcome. Life was never like that. I was never a business. I am a human.

Hey – are you okay? That was okay. You were okay. You are still okay. You are getting by, passers-by still bump into you, you still smile randomly to people you never know, and you are still walking tall, my former self! Sometimes, indignation gets into us but I think it gets balanced with dignity and principle that we live by. It's easy to lose sight of things when we are saddened and belittled by our own emotions at a certain moment, but if we keep going, no matter how random and hopeless it may seem, we will find what we are looking for.

I know, you don't want to be alone.
I know, you are afraid. More than ever, this time of your life is far more certain of who you are and what you could offer, but having more uncertain people coming in is threatening. Worry not, things always get better in time. So, what if people use you for their own sake? Nobody is perfect anyway. Well, what I'm saying is – don't be harsh on yourself. As you mentioned, you are not the same person from your past. Well, congratulations, you just released yourself from the shackles of a dark past. But heed this – you will never be able to walk past to the future if you keep on perfecting your present and thinking restlessly about what lies ahead. It wasn't about plans, you know that, alright? Sometimes, you have to be a lone soul to survive, but you were never alone.

2016 is more than you could take
, according to you. But you still breathe, you still laugh, you still have your loved ones, you still know your craft, and you still have a person that makes you happy. Maybe, this is not a letter to your former self – maybe this is a letter to your future self, that one day, when you are able to read this again, you will have mixed emotions and say – "Lord, had it not been for pain, I will never be who I am today; for every pain, there is gain; for every gain, there is glory; and for every glory, there is peace."

So go, and live. TC mark