i feel like i can take on anything with you right by my side

On our last night together, we got ready for bed and held eachother close. My body rested on top of yours, while you held me very tight and I pressed my face into your skin, breathing in your smell.

What’re you thinking about?

You replied

Just about this. And trying to remember how good this feels.

You squeezed me tight. My eyes welled up. I was speechless.

The heavy hearted sobbing that I had stifled back the night before welled up again, threatening to break the dams and spill over onto my cheeks.

How did i get so lucky with a boy like you?

I brushed my teeth and crawled back into bed with you, relishing for the last time what it felt like to slip into the soft cocoon of your bed. We held each other tenderly, and I whispered to you.

Are you scared? 

You replied

Yes, but I think some of the best things in life are scary. It means we’re doing the right thing.

I asked

What are you most scared of?

 You replied

Growing apart from you and losing this. But we’ll both try our best to not let that happen.

 I sobbed.

I’ve never been great at controlling my emotions, and the next couple of months was going to be a huge test on my emotional stability.

I’ve never spoken this softly.

I just need a little help with judging how much is too much. I’ve never been great at finding the right balance of emotions.

You replied

I’ll be gentle, I promise.

 A couple days ago we were talking about our greatest weakness. I confessed that I didn’t really like how emotional of a person I was.

But don’t you think that’s your greatest strength as well? I love how emotional you are. You feel things very deeply.

 Shit. I don’t know how I got so lucky to deserve this.

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waves of goddamn nostalgia

the other night i had one of my recurring dreams about losing teeth. the kind of dream where your mind goes into unnecessary detail about how excruciatingly painful it is to have your adult teeth crumble inside your mouth.

with the events going on in my life right now, it makes perfect sense.

yesterday my family had to take my cat to the vet, where he was diagnosed with kidney failure. after 15 years of pretty perfect health, he just suddenly couldn’t take it anymore. he stopped eating, keeping food down, or even drinking water. it was heartbreaking to see his dejected body laying in the sunlight of our house.

his constant companionship while i was growing up is one of those things that i definitely took for granted. he was there through every major life event and every scrapbooked memory, and has always cheerfully greeted me at the door whenever i came home from college.

i guess the major cleaning that we’ve been doing to get the house ready for renting really stressed him out. since my little brother is finally going off to college in the fall, we’re cleaning out our entire house, which means sorting through 18 years worth of stuff.

so much stuff…

while i was cleaning out my room, i found my box of memorabilia from my high school relationship. man, was that a literal skeleton in the closet. though i still remember how intense and vivid the breakup was for me, it really took going through all of those letters and pictures to relive it all.

i’m not sure if that was a good idea or not.

among the dozens of prom pictures of me and my friends, the anniversary presents and the little trinkets i kept over the years, i found two folded up pristine white 8×11 pieces of paper.

these were the last two letters we wrote to each other before we finally broke up. god, i can’t believe i kept the letter, let alone both of them together. reading them one after another was just enough to open the wounds again.

in my letter i wrote winding paragraphs about how madly madly madly in love i was with him, and how utterly devastated and upset i was that we were breaking up. i remember furiously writing the letter while listening to sad music (much like i’m doing right now) and in complete shock that it was actually happening. i wrote about how much i was going to miss spending time with him, how angry and upset i was with him, and how ultimately i hoped that we would stay on speaking terms.

in his letter he wrote about how much i had changed his life; how he knew breaking up was the right thing to do (even though it seemed shitty at the time) because it would let us grow as people; and how even though we were broken up at the end of high school, there was still a possibility of getting back together after college ended.

he had one of those things right. it wouldn’t have been right to interfere with our growth in college by staying together.

in another reality, i would probably jump at the opportunity to rekindle whatever we had in high school. but in this reality, we’ve both changed so much to the point that current me and current him aren’t romantically compatible. we’re just such different people that it doesn’t make much sense to go back.

it’s like going back to your childhood bedroom and trying on your favorite moth eaten and stretched out blue wool sweater. it doesn’t fit, and you shouldn’t keep trying.

i was driving home from the peninsula at 2 a.m. and weaving through the empty streets of my hometown, blasting modest mouse (our song is by this band) and trying to keep the monsters at bay in my mind while a million billion memories came flooding back into my mind about every single thing we ever did in our short existence together.

every single adventure, every momentous date, every walk home, every drive somewhere new, every fucking memory from our time together came crashing back on me, washing over me like waves of goddamn nostalgia that i thought i had control over.

i guess what i’m trying to say is that there’s something bittersweet with losing something, even if you’d said your goodbyes years ago. i’m not sad anymore about the relationship ending. rather, i’m more sad about the fact that so many years have passed.

 

the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog

it’s been a rough fucking quarter, but you’re almost finished. i’m so proud of you. you came back to school not really sure what you were getting yourself into. you were so excited to finally be back that you might have bitten off a little bit more than you could chew.

you met a lot of people, even though you were a little anxious and worried deep down about whether any of this was still worth doing. it’s okay.

as one of your good friends told you, friendships, relationships (and all those other ships) are worth pursuing — even if you only have a year left in this wonderful city — because they’re what make life meaningful and make the memorable experiences that you’ll ultimately look back to in the future.

so what if two relationships didn’t go the way you wanted them to? it’s okay. it’s happened before and it’ll probably happen again in the future (for pure experience purposes, i sure hope it does).

ever since you first started getting romantically involved with people, it’s been one experience after another, where you tried molding your life around someone else’s. that’s not how this game works, unfortunately.

i know it’s only been a couple days since he left, but don’t get too down about it. of course, feeling crummy and emotional about it is totally valid. just take the time needed to decompress and focus on yourself.

it’s one of those rare moments you haven’t experienced in a while, where you can just relax and not focus on anyone else but yourself.

and knowing you, you’re such a compassionate and type-a kind of person, that it’s almost insulting to tell you to focus on yourself.

but trust me, you need it.

this isn’t even in a bullshit “fuck everyone, you deserve it” kind of cliche pep talk.

take a while to just savor waking up, completely alone, uninhibited and ready to do whatever. you. want.

for the past couple of years, all you’ve been worried about is jumping from person to person, seeking validation and wholesomeness from someone else.

i think it finally took getting your heart broken for the 20 millionth time to realize that’s not a sustainable way to live.

here’s what you’re gonna start doing:

  • dressing bolder, it makes you feel more confident
  • exercising regularly, esp yoga. your body will thank you later
  • spending a bit more money on good food. it takes so little to make you feel so good

i know that it’s difficult for you to just ~*~exist~*~, but maybe that’s what it’ll take for you to get out of this funk. your *go *go *go attitude isn’t having the best effects on yourself right now, so even if its wildly uncomfortable to go into things blindly and without tangible results right now, it’ll be okay.

just trust me.

old clothes

last wednesday i broke up with a boy i’d been seeing on and off for over a year. i’d been dreading that moment for months, because deep inside i knew the end was coming. i just didn’t know how or when it was going to finally happen.

i was dreading that moment because:

  1. i really really liked this guy and the unique dynamic we had going
  2. it was one of the last “ties” i had to my “pre-european adventure” self

that sounds like a silly thing to worry about, but i’m a sentimental person. i was scared to end things with him because that would mean i’d finally have to tilt my head up and face reality — that i’m getting older and college is almost ending and things don’t look quite as pretty in the light and that not every boy you kiss will love you the same way you loved him. every day i curse the fact that my mother gave me too big of a heart that keeps getting me into trouble.

and so i slipped on the all too familiar sweater of breaking up. i retreated into the refuge of my bed, my eyes bloodshot and my head too heavy to lift off the pillow. i say that heights are one of my biggest fears, but i’m more afraid about ending up alone.

when i saw him for the first time since coming back from my year in europe, it felt like i was a changed person — with all these stories and experiences and new appreciations — while he stayed exactly the same. it’s like when you step back into your childhood bedroom and find your old favorite t-shirt that doesn’t quite fit anymore. you wish it’d fit, but it’s moth eaten and old and stretched out in all the wrong places.

when reality hits that it’s time to move on and leave someone behind, that’s when the fear sets in.
—-
i went to a house show last night on the other side of town, where a band played off tune jazz music in the living room of a huge home. my eye caught on two sharp blue eyes near the door.

i know those eyes.

i wracked my mind to figure out how on earth i knew him, and then it clicked. it was someone i’d slept with three years ago.

three years ago.

holy shit, talk about ill-fitting clothing. i spent the rest of my time there debating whether i’d go up and introduce myself — for the second time.

i’ve come so far since freshman year, from dealing with depression (and now anxiety), to confronting my identity, to fostering a love for my studies, to practicing self love, to hitting rock bottom, to rescuing myself, to going on the greatest adventure of my life, and now being able to look back.

part of me is terrified because the hills and valleys i’ve experienced up to this point are nothing compared to the mountains and canyons that i have coming up next, but i guess half the fun is not knowing, right?