I keep journals. You’re shocked, I’m sure. But I’ve made a habit of buying fresh leather bound journals with crispy white pages, eager to watch them wrinkle and yellow and fill with pretty words and ugly words and sad words and then what actually happens is I get halfway through the journal and quit. I miss a few days or I tear out too many pages and the whole book seems obsolete. And then I meander my way back to Target and the process begins again.
WELL, my friends, I finally filled one. I wanted to commemorate this moment by dedicating a blog post to the highlights from my little leather-bound disaster. I’ll add dates where I remembered to date them but I won’t be providing context so just bask in your confusion, intrigue, and boredom. Also – this is one of those posts that’s extremely personal and raw and whatever so, I don’t know, be nice?
So we fell apart
and it’s not anyone’s fault but
I’m jealous of whoever gets to put you back together
If I lay here & imagine your voice
Maybe I’ll hear it in my sleep
I’d do anything to call you
But my dreams are as close as we’ll ever be
‘Sorry I’ve been really busy,’ and Other Lies I’ve Told
No, I’m not avoiding you. Or anyone. But truthfully I’m masking my disinterest as introversion and I don’t want to indulge in small talk. I don’t know if it’s me or the seasonal depression but I don’t want to wish my high school classmates a happy birthday on Facebook or join someone’s pyramid scheme or get a drink with some asshole I barely know and let him ask me about my fears and aspirations just so I can give him my stock-image, recycled version of a response.
I’m going through the motions of pretending to be in love with my life. And I guess I just thought by now I’d feel okay. All I have is an apartment I can’t afford in a city I can hardly stand and ideas I can’t bring to life. I spend a lot of time on the wrong things. But I’m learning to believe in all the things I used to dream about and I think my grandma would be proud of me. I wish she could still workshop every word that flows off of my fingertips. But anyways I hope she met Ernest Hemingway in Heaven. Although I doubt he’s there.
I am sorry I tried so desperately to fix everyone else while your hands were trembling. I’m sorry I never gave you time to heal. I’m sorry I sealed other wounds while yours festered. I’m sorry for those days it hurt to get out of bed but you did it anyways and I never stopped to check on you. I’m sorry you emptied yourself into people who never would’ve refilled you. I’m sorry for those nights you cried yourself to sleep and I let you. And mostly I’m sorry it took me so long to love you.
– An Apology I Owed Myself but Never Articulated
One particularly shit part about wanting somebody who loves somebody else is the feeling that follows thinking about them in the morning when you know they’re next to her and you have yet to cross their mind. I’ve been silently rooting for the successes of somebody who is absent from everything I’m going through. I pollute this journal with sentiments revolving around what it felt like to look at him while he’s miles away looking at her. And yet I pray for his happiness regardless of the fact it has nothing to do with me.
Knees purple eyes blue
4 AM tangled in each other
Bleed red cry black
Loving you gave me color
I don’t think it’s death we’re afraid of but the silence surrounding our absence from the world. And that regardless of where we go, eventually our names will be nothing but names. Our bodies just part of the earth. Our love, our laugh, the feeling of our touch just distant memories tied to a being that doesn’t exist anymore.
With each loss I’ve endured, I’ve learned to love a little differently. Every time I wake up, I experience a brief, fleeting sensation of bliss. I’m in between a dream, often a dream of someone I lost, and the sober awareness of the real world. I’m still waking up to the reality that the person in my dream isn’t actually here anymore.
That’s how I love people: in that surreal state of in between. I’m halfway drunk on the sleepy feeling that I can love them forever and halfway aware of my finite time with them. If I love them enough, they might stay forever. If I love them too much, a part of my heart dies when they leave.
So I guess that’s the scariest part about learning to love somebody new.
His body’s warm against my heart,
We’re not in love but it’s a start
Fixated, watching him speak
But hardly hearing what he’s saying
Too busy staring at that mouth
wondering how it tastes and
This might hurt but I’m fine with it
You can wreck my heart
Just take your time with it
I don’t need to be in love
I just need to know your name
And where’d you come from
And if you could ever feel the same
Jesus Christ this night just might keep getting better
He said tell me something clever
And in those eyes, the bluest blue
I knew I could swim forever
I said let’s go, even if this goes nowhere
At least we’ll go together
I remember you in fragments between the smell of vodka and muscle memory when something hurts
You’ve got a face like spring
It’s fine but everyone’s waiting for summer
I’ve made mistakes
& you’re another
You said you think you need some time
I’m just glad to hear you’re thinking
You always had a way with words
Despite not knowing half their meanings
There are still nights when I cry so hard that my body aches and my temples throb and it feels like I can’t stop. There are also nights I’m happy. And I dream of you and I wake up and feel at peace. There are times I feel everything has happened for a specific reason. There are also times I feel nothing at all. Some days I forget the way your laugh sounded. But not a day goes by where I don’t think about you and how the world was better before you left.
The pain will leave once it’s finished reaching you.
This world is filled with beautiful places,
Let your heart be one of them.
The faucet is dripping, it’s driving me mad
But I can’t get up to turn it off
Depression’s got a funny way
Of convincing you that you don’t know how to walk
I have miles to go before I fall asleep
“He licked his lips, ‘well if you want my opinion-‘
‘I don’t,’ she said, ‘I have my own’”
We were a mystery that will never be solved. A combination of chemicals that could never be repeated. We were an isolated natural disaster whose impact still lies deep within me and probably deep within him, too. I wonder if the wreckage in his soul still echoes like mine does. I wonder if he internally spirals at the teakwood scent of the candles we burned. I wonder where his mind takes him when he meets someone with my name. I know he doesn’t know I think about these things. I know he has no idea about the parts of me that went missing or the fact that he was the last person to see them. He was the last person to hold the Amy who believed this world was easy. I used to think we were a mistake that was never supposed to happen. But the traces left of us intertwine into a roadmap that has begun to feel a lot like home.
What if I packed everything I own and start all over? I feel suffocated by everything that’s happened here. I tell myself that I have this blazing self respect and shameless awareness but I still settle for being treated like a backup plan. When is it my turn to be someone’s best thing?
I told like three people to fuck off today.
“Those who escape hell, however, never talk about it. And nothing much bothers them after that.’ – Charles Bukowski
This is written on my last blank page of this notebook and I think back on all the hurt and anxiety and excitement that I felt and poured into here. How did it take me so long to realize that sharing my heart with my need to write was what makes me happy at the bottom line? I’ve written about a few lost loved ones and a few lost loves and almost loves and I’ve created storylines and music and pictures. I opened up about mental health and heartbreak and even if no one reads any of it, I did it for myself. It’s weird – feeling like I’ve relieved myself of so much weight even though I haven’t even opened my mouth to tell anybody. Someday I want to be with someone who wants to read this cover to cover. Or at least sit down for a summary. I feel like sometimes I’m too much. I have so many dreams and feelings that before I can swallow one, I’ve bitten off a new piece of another. But I know that’s not really something I ever intend to fix.