I’ve yet to be reduced to scratches and moans,
pet names and bruises,
lost stockings and lost hope,
slammed doors and goodbye kisses,
indecision and a lack of self control.
But I find it sort of funny how
lying next to you in bed,
I could feel myself quietly suffocating.
But sprawled out in his backseat,
windows steamed in two hours of body heat,
choking on the scent of all we had done,
I could exhale just fine.
I’ve yet to be reduced to scratches and moans,
The thing is,
I could have been fantastic for you.
But you didn’t want me,
So I’ll just have to go be fantastic for someone else.
I’d like to start by saying that I am incredibly thankful for each and every poor misguided soul that pays attention to and/or follows me in any and all corners of this here internet. For it is all of you who know the assorted layers of my personality and still stick around and feed into my nonsense and make me feel relevant. I hope you’re all happy. :P
For my friends, particularly the ones who have been around the longest. The ones who have stuck by me as I have evolved so drastically this year. The ones who deflate my head when it gets too big, and the ones that help me piece myself back together any time a part of me shatters. The ones who I can go weeks and months without seeing, and fall right back into step with. You have all taught me what friendships as an adult really mean, and despite the difficulty, I’m so very appreciative.
For my horrible job and workplace for keeping me employed for so many years despite my attitude and honesty towards the politics and environment. For funding my lifestyle and giving me excessive opportunities that most people my age don’t have. For giving me a good reason to get out of bed every day, even on the days that I don’t want to. For the handful of coworkers that do manage to keep me sane.
For all the guys who I have seen come and go (and cum and go) this year. As much as I’d rather punch, I just want to thank you all for slowly beginning to knock down all the walls that I’ve had built up for so long and for helping me learn all the things that I do and don’t want in a relationship and in another person. With every misstep, I find myself only getting stronger.
For my 13 months of sobriety and all the ways that my body and my mind have changed as a result of it.
For my rave family, and to all the kandi trades that have turned into friendships with some of the most amazing and genuine people that I have ever met. For teaching me so much about myself and about the world around me. For all the weekend nights that have turned into mornings, drenched in sweat with a huge smile on my face.
For my mother, who always has and always will be right by my side and there for me to the best of her ability, despite our relationship being the most complicated one in both of our lives.
For the guy who will always come first in my life, a friendship that is entirely offbeat that most still can’t comprehend, but is so fucking important to me. For all the years it took us to figure it out, and how perfectly we fit into one another’s lives. For the amazing person you’ve become and a love and admiration that I can’t explain, so I’ve ceased even trying. For the most worthwhile $500 that I have ever spent and the phenomenal weekend that it will result in.
For my best friend, who totally snuck up on me. Who has taken the time and effort to get to know every complicated subsection of who I am and still loves me. Who has made both a 14 mile and a 40 mile distance vanish completely. Who has evolved right alongside of me. Who has spent hours sitting, laying, laughing, yelling, crying, and screaming right beside me. Who I don’t say that I appreciate nearly enough.
And lastly for myself, who I have never loved more. For everything she has endured and become. For every morsel of blatant honesty that drips out of her mouth and everything she has lost and won because of it. For becoming the best version she has ever been. For putting out so much positivity and getting so much back, as a result. For refusing to be anything but 100% exactly what she is.
No one has ever before shown
such a vocal appreciation for every inch of me.
It’s as if you’re memorizing every curve;
studying them with your eyes,
going over them again and again with your fingertips,
in anticipation for some sort of inevitable pop quiz
that may or may not come after I do.
I hate you for round two.
For riling up what could have stayed comatose.
Just know that no matter how many times you return,
there will always be men above you.
In my text inbox.
I thought of you today. And that afternoon that we sat on your sister’s balcony smoking a bowl. And I was wearing those wedges that you always commented on because they made me just as tall as you. We retreated downstairs with watery eyes and lungs filled with smoke and less inhibitions and all I wanted to do was touch you. And touch you I did. And afterwards, we got dressed and laid there. With your head on my chest and your hand on my thigh, and my fingers in your hair and it was like I got stuck in one of those cliché movies that I never thought I’d find myself wandering into. You looked at me with your hair sticking up all over and told me that just my presence had a calming effect on you, and I remember thinking to myself how fucking easy it would be for me to get used to these moments. And not long after, you were gone. And with you, you took my calming effect, and my desire to get used to moments, and that perfect fucking head of hair.
The other night, I thought I was awake.
But I guess if I was I wouldn’t have seen your text notification
repeatedly popping up in the top of the smartphone screen in my brain.
The length of your name, chiming over and over and over,
all of those letters, that were so foreign to me not so long ago,
but so quickly became the most familiar.
I woke up overwhelmed with a feeling of melancholy,
the four tears that I could muster trying so hard
to make it from tear ducts onto cheeks,
leaving me swimming in molasses for hours after the fact.
Missing those paragraphs and paragraphs of nothingness.
If it never mattered what they read, why does it matter so much now?
Leaving me laying here for mere moments,
accepting that the only notifications I’ll get from you
from here on out
will be the ones in my head.
Dating is weird because I don’t think I’ve ever known what it was like to let my walls down. Despite all the awesome parts, I refuse to believe that it’s more than it actually is, and I refuse to build someone up and put them on a pedestal, no matter how wonderful they are as a human being, or how good they are to me. I won’t let myself get lost, or forget anything that I am, or all the things that I believe, and that I always have believed. I don’t remember the last time that I’ve genuinely cared about another person’s opinion of me. I’m unaccustomed to the second-guessing and the hesitation and the act of holding myself back at all. No matter how far I go, I’m still taking baby steps. Even when he’s right in front of me, I feel myself constantly losing my footing and asking myself if he’s real. If he cares. If he wants me. If he likes me at all. I’m simultaneously elated, terrified, and completely disassociated. I don’t think I was ever cut out for this, and I still think it’s one of the scariest things I’ve ever done. But I love it. Oh god, do I love it.
I love the way you fall asleep mid-conversation, immediately after telling me you’re not gonna fall asleep mid-conversation.
The fact that your literal, analytic, incredible mind still can’t seem to wrap itself around something as simple as subtlety.
Watching your internal struggle of intense responsibility vs. your desire to stay put forever with me wrapped around you, play out in total silence.
The way you have to brush your hair back into place before delving back into civilization for even a moment, because of what my fingers haphazardly do to it every time you’re next to me.
The fact that we’re back on the same page, and the fact that we’re so reluctant to share each other with the rest of the people in our lives.
The idea that you can sense my mood shift, based on nothing but a few words tapped out onto an illuminated screen — a task that took months for even my closest friends to achieve.
All the questions you ask, and the answers you seem to remember. This obnoxious, ridiculous, accidental mutual inspiration.
The way your eyes stay on me when you bring your lips to mine, the way you press your forehead against mine right before you…, the way you grab onto my hair when you brush it out of my face.
The fact that the only question you’ve left me asking myself at this point is, “who the fuck am I?”
That brand new apartment may have taken so long to acquire, but it still requires an endless stream of fix-ups.
I worked too hard for that security deposit.
Just holding that key in your hand isn’t enough.
Splintered cracks along floors that were once finished wood, leaving pieces behind in the bottoms of your bare feet.
Sad walls with faded coats of paint.
Do it yourself.
Shattered pieces of windows where rocks were thrown through, covered in masking tape, crinkling in the wind whenever there’s a chill in the air.
Broken locks, letting just anyone in.
Stay the night, take what you need.
Shady neighbors peering through the blinds, offering misguided encouragement.
Crooked foundation from the last bad storm; left where the walls decided to exhale.
When does the furniture get delivered?
I pace alone from room to room, poking and prodding, picking, gazing and trying to comprehend.
How did I get here and how do I stay?
It’s only fitting that something so foreign to me be treated as such.
Searching to match-up wires when there’s such a total fucking disconnect.
Your landlord never returns your calls, but rent is still due on the first of the month.
Did you try turning it off and turning it back on again?
Just keep trying different outlets until it turns on.
I’ve been thinking a lot about that night
when I ended up straddled across you
with six hours of your stubble
rubbing hungrily against my neck
and the heat between the two of us
rivaling the humidity of stale attic air.
I’ve yet to find anything as sure
as the precision of your fingertips.
The view from your own head doesn’t do you justice. Every quirk attacks my defenses. You’ve been chiseling away at me since the moment I met you, all those years ago. From that very first moment when you wrapped your arms around me, and I had no idea what the fuck was happening.
I wish all the things you wanted me to say were pre-written. Penned to your specifications and played out just the way you want it. Haphazardly highlighted lines in neon fluorescence, mulled over until they bleed together. Know my prompts, work on my delivery, hit my mark, and get it right.
Sometimes I think you don’t care about anyone but yourself.
But then I realize
you don’t care much about him, either.