Well, I could be angry, but you’re not worth the fight
I’m counting to ten and I’m feeling alright.
Besides, I’m moving on.
I was in a relationship with a cis guy for almost two years who was, at the beginning, really good and wonderful. But I realize more and more these days how damaging that relationship became.
Today has been a particularly hard day. There are lots of hard days. It never means they don’t have goodness or beauty in them.
I am only physically capable of playing a single video game: Aqua Aqua. It’s this cute little game where you get a chunk of land, and then parts of land or water slowly drop down as you place them, and you have to keep all of your water inside your chunk of land. Little raindrop people run around and make cute squeaky noises. If you don’t keep that water contained, a little guy to the side in a tube will choke and drown as the tube fills with the water that has spilled.
I feel like the little guy in the tube a lot of the time. I feel like I have this looming cloud bulging with responsibilities and to do lists. Find a psychiatrist. Pay for psychiatrist. Change your name before you find a psychiatrist. Prove to the hospital that you can’t pay a $2,500 medical bill. Make payments on the other one. Find a way to pay rent. Get enough sleep for class. Don’t get frustrated about not being able to sleep for two days.I feel like this balloon of water is about to shatter over my head.
But it doesn’t. It doesn’t shatter, and I’m not drowning. On the worst days, when I leave my job feeling defeated, or I have to face a professor in class when I know I haven’t been able to complete work, or when another unexpected medical bill arrives in the mail, or my old credit card company tries to tell me I owe them money (I don’t), or when I think my phone is broken…
…I find myself, usually, reaching a moment of gratitude. This is perspective gained that is new to me. I could never before pull myself so far out of my own inner storm, and look down at it’s power and beauty. After a nap and some coconut water, I was overwhelmed not only with how overwhelming my life is in general (can you believe my life, I mean really), but how grateful I am that it is mine.
Sure, I could have majored in Fine Arts like my parents wanted me to, and worked as a waitress, like I had right out of high school. But I didn’t. And there are reasons for that that run as deeply and has integral to me as my own blood does. I began working in personal care services, for the developmentally disabled, and then the elderly. I chose a major where I can continually answer my childhood question of “why,” and then my adolescent question of, “how do I make this better?”
And now? I’m twenty-three. I’m alive. I’m the administrative manager of a reproductive health clinic. I’m a Gender Studies major, which means I’m essentially very well trained to wreak havoc on bullshit in our society. I have access to the medication I need to take, and I do well on the treatment I’m following. I’m bipolar. These days, I can’t help but feel that it can be kind of cool. I have two adorable ferrets that I literally want to eat alive they are so precious and cute - BUT I’m vegan, which is something I care so much about, and I’m grateful to have the ability to commit to that.
My greatest aspiration when I was a teenager was to be homeless. Considering I’d lived in many shelters, I’m not so sure why. I just wanted to have as little as possible, and devote all sense of meaning in my life to simply people and experiences. I’m not homeless - no yet, haha - but I feel like that’s exactly where I’ve found myself. I live my life with meaning. I work somewhere that challenges me in ways I could never have imagined, but is a space where I feel I get to impact others’ lives in such a positive way, not simply shelving boxes on a shelf every day. I’m incredibly lucky to have had that opportunity come my way. I get to spend my time studying and learning about people - their histories, struggles, identities. I get to share the experience of living together with people I care so very much about. I’m part of a community that is supportive and strives towards love and justice and general tomfoolery.
Gratitude is what I’m usually left with at the end of the day.
the first person i ever smoked pot with was this kid named Eric. he and I had lived together when I was fresh out of high school. we loved each other a lot. we’ll probably always be those people in this gray area between friends and lovers who know unequivocally that they should not be together. after we lived together we broke up and i moved out to live in my college town, but we were off and on for the next couple of years.
during one of those on times, we made a huge fort in his bedroom and strung it up with christmas lights and listened to aphex twin. this is how i wanted my first experience of smoking pot to be - comfortable, safe, pretty. he filled the bong with sprite instead of water and put ice cubes in the tube (or whatever that thing is called) - this was supposed to make it easier to breathe in. i, of course, had to hold my head out of the window and try not to puke after one hit, because asthma, and i was either too dumb or just hoping for the best anyway to acknowledge that i would possibly choke and die from breathing in pure smoke. i just remember how gentle and kind and affectionate that experience was, and how much our togetherness was always like that. i’ve had a lot of experiences with boys where i was pushed into doing things i didn’t really want to do, wasn’t ready to do, or thought i had to do because if i didn’t something was wrong with me. this kid was really into smoking, but i hadn’t been interested until this point. he never asked me to - i asked him. and it’s just a really wonderful thing to remember, to be respected and cared for in a way like that.
my point is, this kid. with a lot of reflection, i realize this young, dumb, silly and simple kind of love and affection is really probably the best. all of my best memories. this kid, probably the only one who ever really, truly loved me back. sometimes i think i’ve probably lived out all of my best love stories already, and it doesn’t even make me all that sad.
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