Clustered Tulips

It’s late night dance parties in your studio,

Early morning kisses in your attic,

Getting locked outside in your clothes,

Talking to your mom as if I were here every morning.

Every little bit makes it harder to let go.

*   *   *

You found out she got married this weekend. In a little black dress at the county courthouse, with the brightest smile you hadn’t seen in years. My heart broke for you as I felt your last thread of hope peeling away. It was so subtle, with the impact of a guillotine. What could you do about it? She is not yours. You’re not sure she ever was, but maybe that’s what kept you on your toes.

So what did we do? We got drunk. I was excited to see my friends, some unusual faces in the crowd. I think you were torn between distraction and numbing. I got you to dance, but that’s the best I could do.

We slumped up the stairs, falling back to our puzzle piece rhythm. And my own misery couldn’t hold it in any longer. I asked you about it. I asked if you were okay.

In those moments, I feel like your friend. One that just wants you to be happy, to be okay. That one that’s empathetic because she’s been hurting too, one that shares your pain because it’s all she knows how to do, how to comfort, how to react. You talked, your voice plain, and I asked more, careful questions. In those moments we know each other. In those moments you find solace of your loneliness with my head on your chest and your arms around me. You find a love that you don’t know how to hang on to, and you’re too tired to try. I am too.

Like probably every other girl that’s tried, I want to fix you. I want to love all your broken pieces back together. Save you from your past, from your loyalty, your first love. And like every other girl that’s tried, I can’t.

*   *   *

I had a really great time visiting home this weekend. Work was hectic and annoying but we made it through as usual. Any motivation for free alcohol right?

I live for the nights that I can connect with people. As someone who has been introverted (and extremely shy) her entire life, relating to people and connecting to people through conversation is very inspiring and fulfilling to me. Some of them were my coworkers, and some my own family members.

I woke up to his kisses Friday morning, somehow made it through the entire day on four hours of sleep.

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Saturday I was well rested (he was gone), so I hiked by myself through Harper’s Ferry. Though the inclines were incredibly steep, especially with a 10lb weight in my backpack to help condition, it was probably my most rewarding hike. I had time for myself, to do and think about what I wanted, not worry about keeping up a conversation (I probably wouldn’t have been able to anyway). The view was spectacular as I watched birds swirl high above me, heard the train rustle below, the river to my right. It was incredibly peaceful, and it made me excited for my trip. It was also the first time my legs had been so sore in a while, and it made me feel so alive, that I was heading in the right direction, that the plateau was over.

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I spent the afternoon sanding a breadbox, of all things. At first it was stressful and annoying, time-consuming. But as usual once I slowed down I really actually enjoyed it. Working with my hands outside. Nothing but me and my thoughts. The more solitude I have, the more I realize I like myself. I’m not a perfect person, but I make myself happy, and I appreciate my own thoughts in a strange, cyclical way. img_0129.png

That night I went out with Kristen, Rosie, and Heather. Kyle owed me some drinks so he gave me a good amount of patron for free (love it). I didn’t get to spend as much time with Heather as I wanted, but I got to spend some time with Rosie that I think she needed. I don’t think she has a great outlet, and she deals with a lot of shit in her life. She’s such a sweet person that just wants love, and she definitely deserves it. She doesn’t get enough from some of the places she should… lots of heart to hearts. Like I said, I love connecting with people.

Sunday was a day with the family. Lauren’s absence was noticeable, and I don’t think I filled the space to its entirety, but I think it was good enough.

Something that I recently admitted to my mom is that I think the Main Cup is the only place in which I have felt truly celebrated, and that was kind of a tough thought to accept. I have always had an immense love for my family, and like I said I’ve always grown up kind of in someone’s shadow without it really bothering me. I don’t need to be center of attention all the time, I just like appreciation.

I shared with mom that I’ve always been in the shadow of my sister, through no one’s fault. I’ve just always been quiet and reserved and she has fit in better with the extroverted side of the family. Most of the time when Lauren’s missing from family events, the first question I get is “where’s your sister?” like I’m not good enough to entertain them in the same way.

I don’t want to paint a woe-is-me story about my life, because I have been blessed in so many ways. I’m just saying it’s not always fun to grow up in someone’s shadow.

But Main Cup has been different for me. I’m a different person. I’m more confident because I’ve learned that people like me for me, that they give me a chance because they want to, not because they know my sister. That they aren’t comparing me to her, let down when I’m not as outgoing. It’s given me a sense of self. Of finding who I am with fewer influences.

I love my sister. But I’m happy to be discovering who I am on my own. Why I love me. Why others do too.

Love

 

 

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Bloody Bags and Muddy Shoes

You are the gentle thumb sweeping across the back of my hand.

You are clutching my fingers in your hand, the reassuring squeeze.

The goosebumps of a warm rain on a cold night.

You are emanating love.

* * *

It was a strange and beautiful weekend. I learned you didn’t think too much of yourself, that you really were scared because of what girls had done to you in the past. My hurt hurt. You need to know what I think of you, drunk and sober. The kindest I had ever met. The most beautiful soul to experience. I want to love your pieces back together.

You must have hit your head pretty hard because you told me you love me.

I was running around, wishing for clones as I searched for your dog, searched for a bag of ice, searched Google about head injuries. 

I borrowed your clothes, a simple “this is what I want” smile crossing your face. Like you’d found peace you didn’t know I could give you. Like everything was as it should be, with a bandage on your bleeding skull and a beautiful girl in your baggy clothes.

Cleaning your wound, purging my own. I didn’t sleep a wink, and I’m glad you woke up. Though you should’ve let me take you to the ER. 

You were appreciative the next day. You called me your little nurse, and I couldn’t help but smile.

You wore a horrible suit for a themed party and you loved it, exclaiming “I’m getting married in this!” Tina turned to me and said “don’t marry him if he wears that.” I blushed because she thought it would happen, like she knew his love for me. 

Appreciative, apologetic kisses tickled me all the way home. I slept.

Sleep on the Floor

It’s almost midnight, I’m drunk, and I’m thankful. It’s almost Thanksgiving, and I’m finally on break. I’ve come home too often for this to feel like anything more than an ordinary weekend, but I think it will be much more spectacular than the last few visits.

With the weather getting colder, I’m starting to compare myself last year to my current self. I really find it astonishing just how much has changed, be it my situation or myself in general. There are some good and bad memories, and what strikes me as odd is that my… *ring ring*

*  *   *

I started writing that last night, but was interrupted by a phone call, had some business to tend to, and forgot until this morning. I wish I knew where I was going with that last sentence, but whatever. I’m sure it’ll come back to me tonight when I’m drunk again. Something about memories clinging to different mental states.

It is different this year. Somehow, it seems the years have run together, and I forget how long ago certain memories are. I usually tie my memories to people, and maybe that’s where they blur.

This time last year, I was very needy and very lonely. I liked to be overtly appreciated, for someone to kiss the ground I walked on, because that somehow proved that he loved me. Things have changed, I’m happy to say. I would like to think I’m no longer so needy. I’ve recently discovered that I moreso appreciate the compliments I feel I deserve, not ones that are handed out at the drop of a hat. It’s a different type of cherishing, and it feels much more honest and genuine. Almost like I’ve earned it. Those kinds of compliments make me much happier, make me feel more accomplished.

Also, last night, I remember appreciating all of the beauty around me. There’s just something about a cold November night, the skies so clear you can accurately identify constellations. It always fills my heart, fills me with awe, but I’m not sure how to capture it, how to relive it. Camera phones never can capture what you’re seeing, what you’re feeling, especially when it comes to a beautiful night sky. It’s too beautiful for words, my only weapons against forgetting. I’m not sure if I want to just sit in awe and experience it, or if I want to be able to turn to someone to share that inspiration.

Last weekend, I also had an overpowering sense of appreciation while at the cup (shocking, I know). Recently, coming back to work has felt mundane. There are a few mixed emotions between the place and the people, walls that weren’t there before, both for my own protection and for his. And yet, twice in a few short days the walls came down with ease, no chipping. And, separately, as I walked through the cold alley, clutching an unknown coworkers’ flannel closer to me, I was overwhelmed again with that appreciation. For where I am, for who I have. To know that I’m not alone and that I have people who genuinely love me, regardless of how often they see me. It’s so comforting.

It’s also scary. Why would I ever want to leave this place, where all of these loves reside, in search of new people, new adventure? Would it be a mistake to sacrifice sharing my 20s with some of the best people I have met? I’ve always said that I like to have a home base, but I love to travel outside of it. I just want to always have one place to call home. And shouldn’t that be Middletown? Or am I cheating myself out of more adventures, more beautiful people, by staying where I’m most comfortable? These choices won’t be easy to make, but thankfully I don’t have to make them yet.

Recently, the subject of the power of thoughts and “vibes” has come up a lot. A friend’s mom read a book about how you get out of this world what you put into it, so for example if you are a positive force, a happy energy, similar forces will seek you out. In the same vein, if you are an anxious mess, similar anxious forces will pervade your life. I’m not sure just how much I believe that, although I guess it is very similar to the karma concept. But I wanted to say that, over the years, I have started to really put more of an effort into being appreciative (if you couldn’t tell). I don’t see a whole lot of appreciative forces seeking me out (though there have definitely been some thankful people for which I am grateful), but I do see some kind of payoff. Mostly in my mind. Being appreciative of everything, all the little things, from my car starting in cold weather to hitting a lot of green lights on the way home from class, I just feel so much lighter. Positivity is quite the pervasive force.

So, thank you for listening and allowing me to share my thoughts. It’s therapeutic, even when I don’t really need it. It lets me share those sentimental moments I hold dear.

And with that, it’s time to get ready for drinksgiving with my best friends and favorite people!

Cheers!