thoughts about the impermanence of a hook up written in permanent marker in the places he touched
I remember feeling like no one would ever hurt me—certainly not after we laid in bed together and circled each other’s stomachs with our fingertips, and ordered delivery food and made up inside jokes before we fell asleep in each others arms. Why would anyone do that? You’re supposed to treat me with care after I’ve exposed all of my vulnerabilities to you. You’re supposed to protect me and make me feel good about people. I remember feeling this way, I remember being naive and trusting. I don’t feel that way anymore though.
I remember feeling satisfied by finding five dollars underneath a couch cushion. I remember having a pure relationship with money and not really being aware of class, or what it meant. Currency used to be in pokémon cards and, stickers. I didn’t know that people could have so much and I remember feeling shocked when I walked into my first big fancy house. I remember not understanding why people would go to such insane lengths for a dollar. I remember feeling okay with just a milkshake and fries from McDonald’s. I don’t feel that way anymore.
I remember feeling scandalized when someone would do drugs. I remember feeling like this person snorting something in her bedroom at her parents house was really cool and maybe understood things in a better way than me, like she had it all figured it out and just got the memo before I did. I remember feeling inadequate to the popular kids when I was sixteen and feeling tired from trying so hard. I remember feeling like I would be happier if only I got invited to that party in someone’s basement. I don’t feel that way anymore.
I remember feeling invincible, like nothing could ever get taken away from me. I would always have these limbs, these fingers, these hands, this body. I owned it. It was mine. I was going to stay the same forever and never have any health problems or injuries because that stuff wasn’t something that I thought could happen to someone so young. I don’t feel that way anymore.
I remember feeling like my parents were immortal and would never need me in the way that I needed them. The father becomes the child and you become the caregiver. That wasn’t something I ever understood or felt. I remember feeling like it was their job to protect me and make sure my life was nice. I don’t feel that way anymore. (Sadly)
I remember feeling like I had a list of things I would never do in my life and thinking I was going to feel the same way forever about those things. My opinions would never change. I had drawn a line in the sand and there was no way I was going to erase it. Inflexibility, stubbornness—I remember feeling these two things constantly. I don’t feel them anymore.
I remember feeling like I was owed certain things. I was owed a boyfriend in high school because everyone else had one. I was owed a job after graduation because, hello, I just spent four years working my ass off. I was owed a dog and a husband and money and an apartment in New York City. I was owed a grown up life because that’s just what was supposed to happen. It’s what felt fair. I don’t feel that way anymore.
I remember feeling excited over something as small as new music or the new issue of a magazine. I remember feeling excited whenever someone cute would kiss me or even show intrest in me. I remember feeling lucky that I was able to do the things I like to do, the things I was good at. I remember feeling that, no matter what happens, in the end…everything was going to be okay. Luckily, I still feel this way.
The concept of being ‘a couple’ is about as meaningful to you as sunsets to a blind person.
You live in your head. You watch people more carefully than you should. A trip to Starbucks isn’t just a quick exchange of goods. Instead, you see everyone. The baristas weird banter; the homeless man sleeping on the table next to the window; the emo girl on her incase protected laptop. These people have interesting lives. You don’t.
At work, you get things done, sometimes even efficiently. You take far too much pleasure in your Tuesday and Thursday night prime-time television line-up. It should make you feel like a parent; instead it provides mid-week comfort.
When you go out, you either drink too little or too much. Too little and you’re in a salty mood for the last hour and half to two hours. That usually requires apology texts in the morning to your two friends. And, if really bad, an emoticon. Too much and you have call and “ask what happened” because you were “so drunk you don’t remember.” But, yeah, you remember making out with the guy that really likes you and literally running away just before things went too far.
You have “couple” friends. You get why they work but you always have a reason why you’d never be with either one of them. She’s needy. He’s selfish. In your mind you could cut them down in less than two minutes, bringing them both to tears.
A lot goes on in your fantasy-loner world. The conversations you have with yourself. You can be quite witty. Just yesterday you saw “organic sailboat-shaped salt-shakers” and thought to yourself, Zooey Deschanel would most definitely own a pair. Not many people would have those.
In your down time, you get to really know certain, especially soulful, songs. Brandi Carlile singing, “My Song” becomes the epitome of emotion. If only you realized, you have no idea what she’s talking about.
The moment you realize you’re alone, that all this is your life, that these things are really happening, becomes the same morning you walk into Starbucks, hear, “That often change or maybe I’ve changed. And sometimes seeming happy can be self destructive, even when you’re sane or only insane. “And get a smiley-face text from your friend about plans for tonight and you rush to get a drink, just coffee today because the line’s long, and you grab it and turn, brushing arms with someone and, flustered, a smile creeps over your face and over theirs and you blush and you walk out and you look back for a split second and they’re staring right back at you. And for a moment, you don’t feel so alone.