Past Curiosity

Tonight I came across old pictures and videos, some that had you in them (unsurprisingly since we were together for a while). It was a little odd looking back on that time in our lives, but some part of me just couldn’t stop staring.

Then I looked through old emails, from the good times, the bad times… and the end. I’m surprised with how profound and mature our responses were at the time. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t tear up a little, so I just won’t say anything.

I wonder what it would be like now. The you that I knew in that era is appallingly similar to who I have become now. I think of how much I have grown, of what I expect to give in a relationship. I say give because I’m not sure I have many standards for what I receive in one anymore, which is a sad thing to say, and I know that past you would be disappointed by that information. I wonder how you have matured. You always seemed a few steps ahead of me in maturity, in belief development, and so I wonder if, now that I feel I’ve caught up to you, would you still be a few steps ahead? A few years down the road just waiting for me to catch up when I never will?

As a writer, my mind jumps to the fact that this could be the most inspirational love story ever told. Boy and girl fall in love, go through hell, go their separate ways, find each other again years later once they’ve grown and matured, and come back together for their happily ever after. Such dangerous thoughts, but I blame the idiom that you never forget your first love.

All I know is I wonder, and I wonder if I will ever find out.

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Fuzzy Feelings and Blurry Pictures

Yesterday was a magical day all around. A warm February day, warm enough for me to wear shorts comfortably, I did some homework outside, my time at the gym felt incredible, I painted (!!!), did some yoga with Alex, and had an unexpected visitor (yes, the one I write about all the time). I was up for an adventure, and he was willing.

We spent the night as we usually do when we’re together – curled around each other, sprinkling kisses on each others’ skin, and laughing every step in between. I love the pattern we’ve fallen into, remaining independent, but coming together for special moments alone.

There were many moments I appreciated, but I think my favorite was I had turned over to finally go to bed, and he grasped my face, turned it toward him, kissed me, and said goodnight. An easy way to send me into some sweet dreams (though I can’t remember any because he kept me up with his snoring…).

The moments continued into the morning, wrapped around each other, him exploring his new surroundings for the first time. We rustled the sheets (sensually and otherwise) into the late morning. He was drifting off again, my head on his chest, his hand finding mine, when I told him we needed to get up and go to lunch if I was ever going to allow him to leave.

(Realistically, he needed to go home and enjoy a day off with his dog for once, and there was a lot of affectionate cuddling that depicted how neither of us wanted him to leave, so we had to spend as much time on each others’ skin as possible)

After lunch, I drove him back home, his hand finding my leg or my free hand (“mine,” he said) as he drifted back off to sleep on such a gorgeous day. I reminisced about how I loved sticking my head out of the car window when I was younger because damn is that wind exhilarating! Something that fueled my love for amusement parks.

It was a short goodbye and a “see you in a few weeks”, and for some reason it was really hard for me. I wanted nothing more than to stay in Middletown, go hiking, spend the afternoon with him, curl up on the couch after such a nice lunch and just continue the cuddling. I’ve grown to love being independent and having my alone time, and maybe it’s because I’ve been single for so long, so I’m hoping that slipping into any kind of relationship, titled or otherwise, doesn’t also send me back to being a more dependent person.

Anyways, it’s hard not to enjoy the days growing warmer (at least for the moment), and the feel of nature and fresh air on my skin is absolutely addicting. It reminds me of endlessly playing outside when I was younger, fresh air, a thin layer of dirt and sweat that clued you in to the fact that you just had an amazing day connecting to your friends in the presence of nature. With Phoebe and I going on our backpacking trip (July 5th!!), I can’t wait to douse myself in that feeling for two whole weeks. I really think it’s going to do my soul good.

Unfortunately, I can’t seem to focus on my schoolwork due to the beautiful weather. I just want to sit outside, but College Park isn’t really conducive for just sitting and relaxing in nature (another reason I think it was so hard to leave my little mountain town today). Thank god I’m in my last semester, otherwise I don’t think I could make it.

I’m not even sure I want a white-collar job. I can’t see myself waking up for the morning commute, sitting in a little office, staring at the road in boredom while sitting in traffic on the way home, and doing it every day while trying to have a life and family outside of it. I personally have always loved blue-collar work (and workers). People that aren’t afraid to get dirty, people that are good with their hands, people that are fun! They don’t have to take work home with them, stress about the next project. They leave work at work, throw back some beers with friends, unwind, have a good time with each other! That’s what I want to do, and going to college may have been a mistake as far as that goes for me. Maybe in the future I will find a mix between my degree and what I do with my life. As with most Americans, I just don’t want to feel like my job is useless. But I do also want to keep bread on the table, while at the same time pursuing my interests and hobbies.

Clearly I’ve been itching to get out there and explore more of the world and of myself. I’m so close to that freedom! Life is good! Even sad emotions are signs that you are feeling and interpreting the world around you. Love that energy, embrace it. It makes the world better.

Love

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Remember that life isn’t always about the clear pictures. An honest, true, lovable life has blurry pictures that sometimes are more important. This one just happens to feature some of my favorite people in my life.

Chirping Birds and Sunday Mornings

My eyes are heavy with sleep and dried mascara. This morning I woke up to your snores, shoved off to the side of the bed, shoulder to shoulder with you, fighting your dog for space on the bed.

I was groggy, as is usually the case when I stay at your house, but a small smile twitched to life on my lips. I closed my eyes again and rolled over, lulled back to sleep until the sun breathed life into the room, slipping over us like an added blanket. You rolled over to me – not far, since I had a tiny portion of the bed, and you held me close, falling back to sleep yourself with me as your security blanket. Your ease melted into your breaths, my mind too aware of your consciousness to drift off itself.

You shifted, I followed, I moved, you held on to me, an endless swaddling of each others’ comfort, magnetic skin melded together.

As we began to wake, we murmured to each other, gently warming up our voices. Murmurs turned into kisses, eyes closed, finding a forehead, a neck, a cheek, a shoulder. Skin was salty and plentiful, our clothes on the floor like forgotten present wrappings. And I nuzzled into you and you smiled, your eyes shining brighter than I had seen in months, since the night your drunk eyes ogled me in your clothes. And you kissed my forehead in appreciation.

As the morning drew on, our murmurs grew louder and the sheets became more rustled, limbs twining and tangling together with kisses, tickles, and loud smacks. Eyes alight, smiles bright, and laughter so lighthearted we might as well have been flying.

You’d climb on top of me, bearing your weight on me in calm, like a massage against my skin. I’d try to get out of bed and you’d pull me back down, back to you. And when I conceded, which didn’t take much more convincing than your manhandling, we were pressed against each other, belly to belly, your hand gently grazing my back. I opened my eyes, found skin to kiss, and pulled back to look at you. You opened your stunning eyes, and I told you how distracting they were the night before (and always). You, who rarely accepts compliments without fighting them, smiled and stared because you didn’t know what to say. Your lips demonstrated all that you couldn’t say.

The morning’s tranquil energy turned fun and flirtatious, and I didn’t want to leave. I said I’d leave if you got up, and you promised you’d stay there forever, pulling me into a cheesy, be-proud-of-me-I-said-something-cute hug.

I rubbed your back, lulling you back into a sleepy daze, and memories of the year before spun through my head; I had been here before and I longed to be back there.

As I laid there with you, I thought to myself what a wonderful Sunday morning, and why can’t it always be like this.

 

 

Australian Kisses and Tequila Ramblings

I wonder how many posts I have written without some kind of alcohol in me, be it from 10 seconds ago or as I’m sweating it out from the night before. I guess I see how Hemingway could get in the moment through alcohol to write his beautiful thoughts. There’s something about alcohol that just releases them all.

Anyways, what a trying and beautiful time in my life! I’m a senior, and there are plenty of changes going on in my life, but that’s to be expected. Lives that don’t change are just boring. Firsthand experience: I never have any idea what to say to/ask Cliff or Zac because their lives just remain the same. No offense to them at all, I think part of it is that I don’t like to seem fake and ask questions to which I already know the answer, but for the most part their lives are so stagnant that they have no news to share and I have not questions to ask.

I’m discovering more and more about myself. I think this summer will be incredibly trying both to my physical body and my mental spirit. I don’t want to jinx anything (because I’ve never been more excited for anything in my life), but I’m planning to go backpacking in Wyoming with one of my friends in July. Now, I’ve never even been camping, let alone backpacking, so I’m both terrified but also incredibly excited. I know I will be tested, and I think it will be a life-changing experience.

***

Interesting moment today. For my intercultural communication class, I learned that I tend to lean more towards Eastern Asian tendencies moreso than my own US American culture. It’s something as simple as what we focus on when looking at a picture and evaluating a problem, but it was interesting to think that I could be more connected to an Eastern sense of beliefs and culture than my own. It’s a collectivistic culture, which I think makes sense as to who I am. I focus on the whole picture instead of the main character (though I will not pretend that I haven’t been primed as a US American to notice certain things over others.

***

Sometimes I think I’ve forgotten you. Those moments make me happy, because I’ve thought about you for far too long.

But lately, in the early morning hours, and when I have a good taste of liquor in my mouth, you’re there, again. And I fight you with every ounce of my being. But something in my heart just can’t stay mad, can’t force you from my mind. Somehow I did a better job of keeping sugar cookies out of my mouth today than keeping you off my mind… At least I’m developing willpower where it counts?

You need to go away. Or at least make a fucking decision.

***

I think I’ve been single for so long that I don’t know where to start anymore. I’ve developed a social anxiety for hanging out with people that might be interested in me. For the most part I just turn them down, sometimes because I genuinely don’t have an interest, sometimes because I think it’s just too nerve-wracking. How can it be?

I feel as though I’ll be single for a while (which is fine, I enjoy being single and not having much to worry about, but as always it gets lonely every once in a while). But I wonder if later I will see I had made mistakes, that I should have taken chances with certain people over others.

I often wonder how different my life would be if I had made a different decision. I try not to dwell on it because I can’t change anything and I would never torture myself in such a way. However, what if I hadn’t broken up with you? What if I had stayed at Frostburg? Would I ever have connected with you? Would it have been better timing at that point? Would we have worked out in the long run? Would I be better now?

That’s the danger of wondering if the grass is always greener.

***

Have you ever had a weird thought for a lover? A large part of you wants to be with them, but then again there’s a strange part of you that wants them to find love in one of their exes? If you’re by any chance reading this, Ashley, go back to him. He needs you.

I wonder if it’s a fate thing. I haven’t decided on whether or not I believe in soulmates. Rationally, I don’t think so. I think you make it work with who you have if you are compatible and think it could work out. But on nights like tonight, when I have a strong buzz going, I think I believe it. The romantic in me wants to believe it. Believe that someone’s soul is out there searching for no one else but me. That we will fit together like pieces of a puzzle, the curtains will draw and we will be consumed in each other forever.

That’s what’s giving me hope at the moment (and also causing me anxiety as far as “Am I passing up my fate?”). Otherwise I may be doomed to pine after you forever, feeling stupid and used, dodging kisses from the Australian boy who might think more of me after one night than you have in a year.

Around the Riverbend

Tonight I found out just how happy I am to feel, how powerful and brave it is. 

Most of my friends, some of my closest, all go through heartache. We talk about it, try to talk through it. I’m glad they feel comfortable opening up to me about stuff like this. 

But with one I always get so exasperated because he just doesn’t care. I don’t feel like he doesn’t care, but he honestly just seems so indifferent that I think maybe that’s just how he is, and it doesn’t make sense to me but maybe there are people in the world like him, that are okay with not caring, not feeling.

I personally think he just wants to be loved. I think we all want to be loved (watch an episode of Catfish, I think it boils down to we all want love). But if, somehow, he really is a person who wants to not care, I don’t know how to handle that, how to help.

It made me grateful for my emotions, and I think they help me process my situations. Of course I’ve been heartbroken more than once, and during those times I thought I wanted nothing more than to shed those desperate, devastated emotions and just pick up as my usual self. But I think working through those emotions has lead me to a better place, where I feel more confident in myself, I care more for others, I have a deeper sympathy because I’ve been there or I can maybe begin to imagine what it’s like. 

And once you finally claw your way out of that pit, you appreciate life so much more. Your happiness feels happier, your love stronger, less likely to shovel it on someone who won’t nurture it. 

I remember after Adam and I broke up I was alone for the first time since I was 15; I had no prospective love interest to lean on, to distract me. I had never felt lonelier in my life, never more desperate to distract myself through work and friendship. I dove into finding myself, learning what hobbies I truly enjoyed. And it’s made me a better person. 

Also during that time, I was shown love from the most unexpected people (in my opinion). People reached out, and I learned who really loved me and wanted to see me be happy, see me succeed. 

And how could I let them down? More importantly, how could I let myself down? I had so many people showing me love, and they saw something in me that I hadn’t seen in myself without the accompaniment of someone else: worth. Of all things, worth! 

I thought I loved myself, but I discovered that I hadn’t at that point! I attached my worth to another person, depended on them to reassure me that I was someone worth loving. How crazy! How naïve! 

Now I can confidently say I love myself. And I think openly navigating my emotions has helped me get there. So please don’t be afraid to endure those feelings, however miserable they may feel at the time. You never know what’s around the bend.

Love