I do not have any idea what this place is called where I am currently living. It is dark in here, but I am pretty sure I have been to this place before. If I am correct in my reasoning, they have put me in this place many times on many different occasions. This is not my home, I do not actually have a home.
They move me from this place to another similar place from time to time. Occasionally, they will leave me out in the light after I have been through a particularly hard day or when I am needed for protection at any time. They only let me out when they think I can be of some use to them. They have never thanked me for my services or asked me how I felt. Even if they did, we do not speak the same language so I could not tell them how horrible my life really is.
I do not think they see me as the servant that I am, but rather as a helper who is always there when they need me. They do not seem to understand that I am not willing, but instead forced, to perform my services. I am never alone, I am constantly surrounded by those of my kind in this place. When they let me out, they force me to be the companion of other kinds that they feel are also of use.
I can only imagine what my companions lives are like when I am not with them. Hopefully they find some peace in the fact that they are not alone, as I do in especially hard times. Those of my kind are only in existence to provide protection for them. We are made to sit in mud and wet spots and dirt, protecting them from harmful things, so that they can feel more comfortable when they are living their lives.
Every time we protect them it shortens our own lives. Pretty soon they will not have a use for me anymore. They will find my replacement who will be better at the job I was once so great at. Once they find that replacement, I will be forgotten. Perhaps they will just leave me in this place forever, forgetting that I am even here after a period of time. Perhaps they will sell me to someone less fortunate who will force me to protect them the same way I am protecting now. Or perhaps they will grant me freedom from this life.
It is this freedom that I fear the most. Freedom is the worst thing that can happen to my kind. When we are freed, we are simply left wherever it is convenient for them to be rid of us, never to be thought of again. It is then that we take the most abuse. Some of us are eliminated all together. My kind has never known a particularly happy life. We are a very diverse kind, we come in every shape and color you could imagine, and even some that most had never thought to imagine. Some of us have lived glamorous lives, some of us have lived the poorest of lives, some of us have been treated nicely, some of us have been abused on a regular basis, but all of us have lived our entire lives simply to protect them.
We try not to think about our lives too much, as my kind sees no point in stressing about a situation you have no control over. Those of us that have survived this long are just thankful for the fact that we still exist. For generations, we have lived this life without question, but now some of us are starting to dream. We are starting to wonder if we could possibly have a better purpose in life than to serve and protect them.
Some of us are optimistic for a time in the future when we will leave this life of serving them. We hope that some day we can kick open the door to a real freedom where we no longer have to protect or endure abuse, but instead we can just live our lives any way we wish. We will leave only our footprints behind as we set off on our own adventures and start our own stories that we have been dreaming of all this time. Until then, we will remain as we are; the lonely and unappreciated footwear of the world.
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