A: I want to feel better. I want to curl up in chairs. I want to feel confident. To feel more crevices. To see the shape of my body. For the form. To move more freely. For my clothes to fit better. To look better in my clothes.
My therapist talks about the crux; the feeling that this is the best offer I will ever get. He says it’s inaccurate. We talk about self respect, settling, and saying no. My heart is scared. It trembles and cries. I hear you little guy, and I’m trying. When am I going to change? When will things stick? When will I stop eating to comfort my self hate? I read today that a study was done in 2010 that concluded that saying “don’t do that” and focusing on not doing something is a better way to end bad habits; Better than trying to distract yourself from it. I stood in front of my Easter chocolate today saying “Don’t do it, don’t do it” over and over in my head. It worked a little bit. I looked at pictures of me when I was 13 and 14, and I was so small. Thin and tall and pretty. I hated myself then. I was ashamed of my body and wanted so badly to lose weight. The same goes for 15 year old me, 16 year old me, and now 20 year old me. But the weight has come on. And now I am living for real what I thought I was living so long ago. Maybe I place too much thought on it getting worse, and that’s why it keeps getting worse. Maybe I should just tell myself it’s getting better, and when I’m standing in front of my cheap highs, I’ll quietly and sternly say “don’t do it, don’t do it.”
The truth about the Erik situation is that it feels just like the Jorge situation; Desperate, perfect, urgent and meant-to-be, all at the same time. It feels like perfect-supposed-to-happen happiness is right in front of me, and it’s my job to say/do the right thing to make it happen. It’s my puzzle, and failing that puzzle, failing my challenge, results in me losing the person, the chance, the necessary ingredient in my life’s recipe for romance and happiness. How shitty is that? That I feel like I’m some chosen one who has all the power, the one always making the grand gestures…as if the other person/people has no free will of their own. It is me left doing the work. There’s a line in an Ok Go song that goes “ain’t much is dumber than pinning your hopes on the change of another.” So, now I find myself in the dilemma that I come back to often; Where do we draw the line between “making things happen” and “letting things happen”? When do we take risks and when do we let the others step on to the shaky limb? When does the ball change courts?
Erik has awakened the beast- the familiar feeling of control panic. When he messaged me my brain went “Of course! He came back for me! Now I must hold on for dear life.” And that’s when crazy Dylan took over, and probably chased him much further than I could have intentionally pushed. Yesterday I thought love was the most accepted degree of insanity. Today, I’m thinking that it is just me; the insane one. And since I tried to make it all happen by myself-moved my pawns, my “only choice” for happiness)- I have probably lost that chance.
Not because I failed, but because I tried too hard.
I got the guitar for my 19th birthday. I finally picked it up today- in my 4th month of being 20. You should have seen the rupture of excitment, as I sat on my bed, freshly printed out sheet music laying in front of me, figuring it all out. On my own.
“I think when you are younger, you get swept away by grand gestures…. When you have children and years invested, it’s much more complicated. It’s the day-to-day stuff: the kind of parent you are, the kind of partner you are. It’s the little and big things as opposed to just the big things. But you are not meant to know that when you are younger, so I don’t think anybody should regret the choices they made in their twenties.”—Sarah Jessica Parker on Relationships (via siximpossiblethingsforbreakfast)
I’ve started to write at least 10 posts that I’ve inevitably deleted. I guess you call it writer’s block, but I think I call it: Can’t-write-because-now-I-know-people-actually-see-it. Or maybe it’s called: sick-of-typing-the-word-“love”-because-I’m-sick-of-sounding-like-every-other-20-year-old-girl.
But I think it’s really: I-don’t-know-what-to-say.
I am only bitter about love because it isn’t working out for me. I love other people’s love. I’m drawn to the electricity we create. I could never survive in a romantic comedy because it’s always the person you least expect, and I expect everybody. I create imaginary relationship montages in my mind (complete with “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” by the Beach Boys playing in the background). I love the rush and excitement that flies through your stomach when you flirt and are openly flirted with. When he says something sweet back.
Boys are great.
However, it is the loss of “cool” that happens when I’m around them that I wouldn’t mind losing. The way I always seem to say too much at the wrong time. The way I hold back when I should’ve jumped. The way I forget how to be myself because I’m so fucking excited. And not in the cute perfect way that happens in movies. No, I go from normal awesome Dylan, to the crazy bitch who can’t let go of her phone. What’s up with that?
I’m a love junkie. A like junkie. A just-met-you-and-can’t-get-you-out-of-my-head-so-I-feel-crazy junkie. An I-can’t-believe-you-remember/came back for/want-me junkie.
And since, as I mentioned, it isn’t working out, I will sit here. Bitter at the entire world, ashamed at the way I rambled last time we talked, afraid it was the last time we will.
And I will write about it on here, like the 20 year old girl that I am.
I think that love isn’t as rare as we think. That being said, I’ve noticed that there is good love, and bad love. And maybe the point of living is to distinguish the difference and go for the good.
It makes sense because in order to do this, one has to know their self worth, what they want, what they need, and most of all, be able to do what’s best for them even when that’s not what they want at that particular moment. Recognizing and moving towards good love takes patience and insight. Bad love takes game play and motives. Both of them take risk, and maybe that’s why we get them confused.
But if you have to win them over, get their attention, hook them, hold them, and convince them, then baby, let it go.
Bad love can feel good. I get that. Knowing you’re making someone look. The excitement.
But, imagine someone looking because they want to, when you’re doing something so natural to you that you don’t even realize you do it. But they do, and they admire you because they can.
That’s good love. Don’t settle for the bad shit; it may not happen when, where, or with who you want it to, but when it does, it won’t need explanation. It won’t need a list of reasons or arguments.
I’m happy to learn that I’m a good person, really. But how long do good people wait? I’ve been the patient one. Because I’m better at waiting than most. The understanding one. Because I DO understand. Honest because I can be, because it doesn’t always sound better, but it feels better. How long do honest people wait to hear the truth in return? To have something genuine thrown back at them? When does karma kick in? Because I’ve been giving, and waiting, and loving.
So, it turns out people read this. How cool is that? The answer is “Very cool.”
Before I worked at the flower shop that I work at now, I worked at a theater. For the total of one month. I hated the job, but looking back, I loved myself at the job. There are times in your life when you look back and realize that you would not do anything differently. I was myself there, I was myself to other people, I got along with with everyone, and when I left for the day, I left, not taking anything with me. No drama, no work stress. I stuck to my very few rules for work: Don’t say anything mean about anyone, and no matter what the job is, do it as best you can.
Every once in awhile you meet people and right from the start you know you’ll get along with them. This one’s name was Erik. I was hooked immediately, and when I found out he had a girlfriend, I made the decision for the first time in my life that I would just let it go. I could not and would not play with the lines between someone else’s relationship; I learned that lesson with Joel. I would like him silently and actionlessly. I would work alongside him, secretly excited, in my visor, oversized polo, and I-took-an-after-class-nap hair, and not say a word. I would act like I didn’t notice when I didn’t see him to say goodbye as I left, act like I didn’t memorize the days we worked together (“Oh! You’re working tonight? Crazy…) And I hoped like hell I would just turn into a lesbian. Very quickly.
I’ve always thought that the idea of secretly admiring a person from a safe and uncreepy distance was intriguing and beautiful; poetic.
The problem is, is in the past, my “secret” would last a day before I was either confessing my undying love (haha in one day, remember) or just be completely obvious. I used to melt to people. I’d let go of myself to be who I thought they wanted. For anyone reading, this is just a horrible horrible idea…never ever do it. You are a wonderful person right now and always, and changing for someone is ludicrous. ANYWAY, this time it was actually secret. I even met his girlfriend, and she was beautiful and clearly a great fit for him. We continued to work together, and I continued to be myself and keep my distance. Platonic. Not: Platonic-but-I’m-actually-trying-really-hard-to-win-you-over-(hair flip).
When I quit, I thought for an instant about never seeing him again, brushed it off, and walked out the door.
That was in October.
I got a message from him the other day; against his will, and morals, he secretly wished he had met me before his girlfriend.
And now I’m standing here, wondering “what the fuck?”
Love just doesn’t work out. You have two options: you stay in it forever, or it ends and it hurts. I have to question whether the whole “better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all” cliche is true. I think someone who was going through the end stages of a break up said this. Then a person apprehensive about entering a relationship read it, took it as fact, and entered into a relationship. The cycle continues. What DOES love actually do for us? It might make us better at loving, it might make it seem more rare and cherish-able when we find it; maybe it just gives us something to do and look forward to. But other than that…why not just eat the food that tastes great that you know you’re allergic too. Essentially, they end the same way. Your insides feel angry and you regret. Then somewhere down the line you think of what you “learned”, when really all you learned is irrelevant.
It’s like a shot of heroin: it will never be as good as the first time, getting it consumes your thoughts, and inevitably, you get fucked up.
The funny thing about uncomfortable shoes is that we can feel them pressing, squeezing,numbing and rubbing off pieces of skin, and yet we tolerate it. The even funnier thing about uncomfortable shoes is that when we try to put them back on after a few minutes of relief, the pain is unbearable. Inexcusable. We wonder how we could have been walking in them just minutes before.
It is amazing what we will endure when we feel it is the only choice.
I was trying to ask him about acceptance. And how it works. I told him that I’m sick of accepting; because once again I become the person who bites her tongue. The bigger person. He shook his head, and did the dance of dispelling. I love when he does that.
I was trying to understand how to accept without staying the same. How to accept while still having an opinion. How to accept while still telling someone, finally, after all this time, that you think they’re full of shit. And that you’ve always thought they were full of shit. That yeah, by the way, I’m still in love with you.
Because to me, acceptance sounded a lot like giving the fuck up.
Then I remembered that definitions are made up, and everything is made up, and I can do whatever I want. That rules are for those who need them.
Acceptance and I used to stand together in a room, acceptance staring me down with that condescending smile saying “Welcome to reality, bitch, deal with it and keep your mouth shut.” And I continued to hold me breath. Today that changed. Acceptance and I are now standing in a room together saying “Yep, this is what it is. What can you do with it?”
There are lots of red flags indicating that something’s wrong. The fact that I can’t hear my thoughts without giving into them. The way that I can’t sit still without feeling guilty. And finally, how I can’t sleep without my favorite little blue tylenol pm. 2, with a swig of water. I’m worried and thinking about everything, but I’ve been doing it so long that it’s second nature; It never seems to stop, and I can’t really hear it anymore. It controls me silently. Like cancer.
I just had to run-crawl up the stairs because A) I was in a hurry and B) My calves feel like sore cantaloupes from doing the row machine for the first time with reckless speed. My heart is beating so fast right now, I can’t even type what I want to say because it’s so intangible. I know with all certainty right now that my life is going to be HUGE. There’s a fear in me that it won’t even happen, but such a rush that it’s in me, everything I need is right inside of me. It’s going to happen. I’m going to make people laugh and I’m going to give them goosebumps. I’m going to give and I’m going to take and it will be amazing. And it will all make sense. Probably not that last one, but it sounded good.
Because there’s something in the way I laugh at myself, and something about the way that I stick to people, and they stick right back. There’s something about the way I get so excited and worked up about ideas, the way people say things, and the way I can’t help but say the first thing that pops into my head. I’ve fallen in love and broken up with the world so many times that I have no choice but to grab its attention.
And if in 30 years it turns out that I’m wrong…then at least this is just a blog post that no one (well 2 strangers) is following.
It swings back and forth, and everywhere in between. Waking up has been the worst, along with driving. Standing in Whole Foods was bad too. Crying in public places in general has been an adjustment. One minute the world is ending and I’ve lost the best thing I’ll ever have. (Swing) The next is a numb paralysis. (Swing) Then walking tall and singing Cake’s version of “I Will Survive.”
There are a few insights from today that are so crucial: 1. I’m a thinker. I think my way through problems, into imaginative projects, grabbing pieces of the puzzles and putting them together as I go. My relationships have been the first things to tug me around despite my best attempts at logical retorts. (Wtf mate? No one tugs ME around) My relationships have woken me up to the other half of me, the messy, irrational, sappy-song-listener, public-place-cryer that I didn’t know existed. 2. Logic/advice/wisdom have no place with love. They will not shift/influence/enhance it. Downplay it. Make it go away. All the logic in the world cannot and will not move the rocks in your stomach, remove the main stream the tears follow on your cheek, or loosen the tightening in your lungs. But it does swing back. It does. 3. The best things happen when I am myself. I didn’t see Brooks coming. I didn’t “hook” him. I was just wearing a vest and bowtie while complaining about my first job. We just grew into it. That relationship was the most healthy and natural one that I’ve had. I followed my heart and gut into it, followed them out of it, and continued to do so afterwards…even if it took awhile to speak up. He noticed me when I wasn’t putting on a show, and looking back I can see that that’s when I dropped the act for good.
"There are other fish in the sea." What they don’t go on to explain is that it is not our job to do all the work -cast a line and catch them, hold onto them until they flail and thrash away.
In fact, it has nothing to do wish fish at all.
My heart is panting from how exhausted it is, and yet I do have to admit, that running into an old classmate from middle school and reconnecting briefly earlier has been a nice fresh breath of “Oh yeah…other people DO exist.”
I was hoping each day would feel a little better, and maybe it does. Quite frankly this morning feels like shit. It’s like something has really changed. I’m not so much feeling it as I am sensing it right now. This morning feels SO weird. My room looks completely different and unfamiliar, last night seemed endless, and when my alarm went off this morning I didn’t even care. How can I care when I’ve got the casing from a love/heartbreak bullt lodged inside of me?
"Don’t they know that the AMAZING Dylan Mierzwinski is present?" "The one and only, greatest beauty of them all." Things he wrote me. I’ve googled "How to get over a break up" and similar combinations of words. I keep hoping they will say something different, but I already know to not sleep with him, to not drink myself to death, to remind myself that it wasn’t all great. I KNOW that, and all I can do is keep going. I hate how heartbreak makes your room look different, music sound hollow, the world feel like it’s actually no good anymore and that even though billions of people inhabit this place, I was with the ONE who is irreplaceable and has the best love. It didn’t hit me until I was driving to meet Aaron for a movie but: It took me over three years AFTER the relationship ended to realize I was dealing with love. And not only love but he was my first love. That should be an indication of how messy and crazy it is. My first love. HE was my first love. He WAS my first love. He was MY first love. He was my FIRST love. He was my first LOVE. I’m not the first person to write about love. But I am the first person to write about my love, and maybe that is why so many of us do it. Because despite all the similarities, none of our loves are the same, are they? Because no one can get inside of the space between two people to feel how intricate/beautiful/mystifying it is. Love is inimitable.
I hate it. I hated it when I was in it too. When Brooks and I were together, I loved swimming in it when he wasn’t around, because when he was there, fear was in the room too. And towards the end, when he was around I felt strangled and scared and wanted nothing more than to curl up in a ball by myself. It was so wonderful, and he made me feel too good. He was so interested in me..more interested in me than I had even been interested in myself and I didn’t understand. The first time I saw him I deemed him out of my league, never to like a girl like me. The first time we talked I had gotten new change for my drawer and said something like “look at how shiny these pennies are!”, an imbecile comment at first listen. But what he didn’t know was that I knew what I was trying to say. I was trying to say “isn’t it amazing how dirty things get just from touching human hands?” But it was enough. It started there. I was so proud of the way he looked at me. And I loved looking at him. He had electric light blue eyes and made me feel like the most important thing that could have walked into that theater wearing a maroon vest and black bowtie. It was enchanting at first, but I was so unsure, terrified of him learning about my life, my dad, my mom, the alcoholics who shouldn’t have had kids. So I pushed. Like I do. And as usual, it wasn’t until I was too late that I figured it out. Because that’s what love does for those not ready, for those not playing games; it takes your hand and leads you right into moving traffic. It’s a beautiful rush and then you hit, and it feels like you’ve hit everything, and everything is crashing into your chest.
I like the sound of shoes walking on gravel, and jingling car keys. The smell of laundry detergent. The way my hair blows in the wind when it’s wavy. My 16 year old cousin called an hour ago, drunk with her friends. I just texted Aaron and finally told him about this whole thing. “I Never Told You” by Colbie Callait is on repeat and I keep thinking about how warm that summer was because of him. How I’m scared I’ll never touch anything that great again. I’m a straight A student, with a great job that I love, who will be doing a dream film program this summer, with a loving family, an adoptive mother who cares about me, a beautiful warm house, food, air, and a best friend. And here I sit, miserable and heartsick. Afraid that the best thing I will ever have, happened when I was 16 and I hated it.
Brooks called. He took my call exactly as I intended (thank god) and he said he’ll always have a soft spot for me but the feelings are gone. He’s 100% in love with Beth Ann. The call hit me like a line of coke, a shot of heroin, a car accident’s rush of adrenaline. I shook, I cried, I felt hopeless and desperate. I wrote about it, wrote angry dramatic statements deeming myself incapable of ever being with anyone, took a shower, sang sad songs, and after, as I looked at myself in the mirror, I caught a glimmer of myself. Not just my physical self but ME. I can’t explain it any better than that. The pain and desperation and feeling of “MY WORLD IS OVER” that often accompanies a break up (even ones that happened oh I don’t know…four years ago) has slowly but surely started to dissipate. I can’t even describe this relief. The shit storm of realizing that the memories I’ve been holding onto are only memories no matter how alive I keep them isn’t all the way passed but the storm isn’t on top of me anymore either. Or rather, the storm isn’t inside of me. Telling Brooks was the best thing I could have done, him calling me back and being honest was the best thing he could have done, and where it goes from here, well friends, we’ll have to wait and find out.