I can be very difficult.
I bought sweet lemons at my last grocery trip.
They look like lemons.
They smell sweeter.
And they taste like unripe oranges.
It’s been a while, but I will start to think about him. At first, only a little when his name comes up, but now I’ve been reminded he exists and that he exists without me and that he maybe exists the same or better without me, and that will make me feel uncomfortable. Until this point, I have done a good job at cutting him out of my thoughts and conversations, no longer using him as a reference point of experiences or ideas or words, but things like music or a movie or a font or something stupid we talked about will remind me of him. Then I’ll remember jokes he made that I thought were hilarious and should have laughed harder at and texts we sent that theoretically should never have been sent but that made me smile and sleep better and feel like someone was there. Then I think of all the things I could have done better to be a person in his life, instead of using him as a thing to make my life better. This feeling—and it’s too much of a feeling as it stands—will initially assert itself infrequently, during the day when I scroll through my text messages trying to find someone else and I see his name, or when something I consider unique to him comes up elsewhere in my life. But soon, I will wake up with that feeling that I miss him, and I will eventually realize his likeness has been leaching into my dreams—at first a passing cameo, then a protagonist, then my sage guide. I will think, why is he in my dreams? Only then realizing how frequently he’s been coming up in my waking life. And, no matter how you interpret dreams, his presence will still need explaining. And I will think how he affected my life, and how he has made it better or worse, and how things never end the way they should. And then, I’ll think, I should just text him or email him or see what’s up and how things are going and how have you been, but i will remember why it fell apart, and i will stop myself because at the end there will just be my embarrassment. So this time, i will just sit and wait it out, because eventually he will stop meaning anything to me, and i will encounter his name without that weird skip in my heart (which in all likelihood is simply my heart murmur acting up). But in the hours or days or weeks that I use my self-control, I may realize that I’m being childish or petty, and that if I want to talk to him I just should (despite my being 50.5% to blame for the not talking in the first place) because adulthood and responsibility and all those things that I seem to care about. So I will contemplate interacting because now I have no reason not to, except of course my dignity, and my desire to be the one to win, and having it hurt again when it definitively doesn’t work out this time. And for a while my dignity, whatever that means, will win and I won’t do it and everything is fine. And i’ll continue on with my mundane life, and yes, things will have changed, and I’ll want to talk to him about them but i have other people to talk to about those things so I won’t. But then, my drunk and loose fingertips will start to try to get their drunk and loose way, and my drunk and loose brain will gladly use them as an excuse. So when I am drunk and loose I will remind myself that my sober brain is still in control, and I won’t text him or email him or call him or whatever, so I’ll immerse myself deeply in the conversation I’m having whether that means oversharing or perhaps being too aggressive with my objections to the current and future state of the Union, or the value of the consulting industry, or or or! And when I’m on my way home after a night out, I will have to stop myself from texting him about the nice and silly boys who hit on me, and I’ll thank the deity who listens that there isn’t reliable cell phone reception underground. I’ll change his name to DO NOT TEXT or to unpleasant emojis, like a thumbs down, a smiling pile of poop, and a barfing monkey (as context demands). But, eventually that won’t help, because DO NOT TEXT will still be him, and the reminder that I’m not supposed to text will just make me want to, even though I’ll have nothing to say. So, I’ll delete his phone number from my contacts. I won’t delete the texts though, but since I only have my mother’s and sister’s cell phone, my parent’s house in Tennessee, and my best friend from high school’s numbers memorized, I won’t be able to recall exactly which bare number he is, but I’ll eventually learn the placement and recognize he stays wedged between a friend from college and a friend from high school who I talk to infrequently. But, I still won’t talk to him, because I have self-control, remarkably and I can use it when I really need to. And I know how this will end and it won’t be how the teenage or the drunk and loose parts of my brain want it to. And because I know I can’t be cold, be cold, be cold, be cold, and then be scalding hot. (a burn is a burn is a burn notice after all.) And I’ll know that all the self-control it takes to not talk to him means I’m constantly thinking about not talking to him, and therefore thinking about him.
1. Heart murmur. Pre- (read: faux) training is going to be a floppy dick. 2. Where do I put my keys? Down my bra. 3. The only time my face gets this red 4. If I push myself too hard, I’ll just throw up. 5. When I whine about being out of shape, THIS IS WHAT I MEAN. 6. All the music from those lingerie parties is finally paying off
It turns out this week was the last for (f)unemployment.
The series of interviews I went on over the two weeks paid off. I start working Monday. No, I didn’t do what I ideally would have done—find a job that is something completely new, something that could be an alternative to law school. If I couldn’t find the right job, I would write in my spare days and make use of my time. I had money saved up, I could (and still can) support myself for a while if necessary.
But, now, I’m kind of obsessed with owning an apartment, which means I can’t eat away at my savings. In any case, if the way I’ve been behaving is any indication of my theoretical productivity level, it’s better that I have a job and force myself to work around it, especially since I’ll only have to work minimal overtime. Last week, I just made a giant mess in my apartment and watched TV (Hemlock Grove is the worst. House of Cards was brilliant so I expected so much better. This is embarrassing). I think every bowl and glass and 90% of our mugs are dirty because of me. I haven’t done my dishes. I finally did my laundry on Wednesday. There is still stuff on my bed that needs to be hung up and so much that needs to be dry cleaned. I cut the straight ends off my hair. I went to an open house. I did everything but write.
Most importantly, in these past two weeks, I’ve gotten fed up with the excuses I make for myself. I’ve decided to try much harder. I need to take myself much more seriously. I don’t aspire to riches, and my aspirations to power only reach so far, but I do have things I want to accomplish, a certain quality of life I want to uphold. I don’t intend to be living like this forever. Plus, every magazine article and social survey about “my” generation predicts that I’ll never be as financially stable as my parents, I may as well endure my fate doing things I want to do and being the person I want to be.
That sounds incredibly abstract and meaningless because at this point it is. All I know is I need to be moving in a different direction.
Less abstract goals: improve my French, learn to program, and take ballet. In general, I need to write more, not necessarily more pieces, but at least more often, to edit my work.
Of course, of course, these are things I can easily do.
And, of course, of course, I will get around to doing them when the timing is right.
I just prefer the time to be now.