So, not to get all sappy and sad, but over the weekend I went to a surprise party for a family friend—put together by her kids who are my age—and was privy to some observations.
First of all, seeing someone truly and utterly surprised by a Surprise Party is emotionally overwhelming. Literally have to hold back your own tears because you just feel the shock and appreciation on their face. It’s a rare thing as it’s a mixture of astonishment and gratitude all at the same time.
Second of all, the father of the birthday woman has currently been trying to keep his own life going as he’s well into his 80s and is wheelchair bound since he lost his leg from Diabetes. Meanwhile, his wife of 50+ years is currently suffering through Alzheimer's Disease and is rapidly becoming a stranger to her family (and vice versa.) Not only can he no longer walk but, the the love of his life--who takes care of him--barely remembers him or anyone. It just got me to thinking how one day we will all grow old and if we’re lucky to find someone to spend forever with, that there’s a chance that one of us will have Dementia or Alzheimer's and everything we know as “normal” will become forgotten and either them or me will be a stranger to this life. Everything we shared between us will fade away, while the other struggles to be the constant reminder.
And I couldn’t help but think…”Is this all there is? To live to forget or be forgotten…but mostly both”?
I think things are going okay right now. I think I've found a legitimate reason to smile nearly every day.
In the last two years, I really had lost myself. I constantly felt like I was drowning...being swallowed up by negative influences around me. I kept trying to swim to the surface, but I was only able to tread water for so long. I didn't recognize who I was. I hated how I looked. I hated my daily routine. I felt like I was losing touch with friends. I got involved with guys that broke me down and drama that still stings to this day. I felt like person who normally lit up a room had had her spark burned out. I think I reached a point where I nearly had lost everything that, at one time, made me feel alive and invincible. It is only when you have lost it all, that you truly have everything to gain. Two or three times in my life I've gone through a serious personal overhaul. I ultimately shed the wounded, broken version of my former self, only to fix myself for the better.
Perhaps it sounds trite, but, I'm trying to make things work. I'm in my mid-twenties and it's time to start solidifying my strengths and abilities while still managing to enjoy this little thing called youth. Of course there are the ups and downs: health issues, family issues, friend issues, relationship issues, money issues. There are nights when I can't sleep and days when it takes every ounce of my existence to get out of bed. Nothing is truly perfect...perhaps just ideal at times. But that's just how it is. Ups and downs molding and shaping us. The bad showing us what the good really looks like and the good making us forget, even for a moment, what the bad is really like. So I'll try and take it all in, as best as I can. One day at a time.
I'm no optimist, just someone who's currently inspired.
Without going in a long drawn out story about what I'm going through right now in terms of past/present/future relationships, I watched When Harry Met Sally tonight and this scene became so undeniably relevant, that I couldn't ignore it.
Sally: He just met her... She's supposed to be his transitional person, she's not supposed to be the ONE. All this time I thought he didn't want to get married. But, the truth is, he didn't want to marry me. He didn't love me. Harry: If you could take him back now, would you? Sally: No. But why didn't he want to marry me? What's the matter with me? Harry: Nothing. Sally: I'm difficult. Harry: You're challenging.
Young Noah: Well that's what we do, we fight... You tell me when I am being an arrogant son of a bitch and I tell you when you are a pain in the ass. Which you are, 99% of the time. I'm not afraid to hurt your feelings. You have like a 2 second rebound rate, then you're back doing the next pain-in-the-ass thing. Young Allie: So what? Young Noah: So it's not gonna be easy. It's gonna be really hard. We're gonna have to work at this every day, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, for ever, you and me, every day. Will you do something for me, please? Just picture your life for me? 30 years from now, 40 years from now? What's it look like? If it's with him, go. Go! I lost you once, I think I can do it again. If I thought that's what you really wanted. But don't you take the easy way out.
There's only one person in the world that I cried for at the airport, other than when my best friend moved away in 8th grade.
I feel this loneliness every time we separate. It's thick and empty and overwhelming.
We are so much alike that in causes strong frustration most of the time we're together.
This is one of the few times in my life, I feel like both characters in this scenario.
I know I'm the pain in the ass, I know he's not afraid to hurt my feelings.
And here I am, begging and pleading on the inside for decisions to be made.
I know what I want but there are so much red tape and conflicting factors.
It's heart-wrenching to know exactly what I want and have to watch it from a distance, knowing that when it comes down to it, feelings are mutual but nearly impossible to actually co-exist in the same vicinity.
So we fight and I cry.
Everything else around me is just a substitute or means of forgetting about what I really do want.
I'm not sure I'll ever get it.
Maybe I'm not supposed to....
So for now, there's just the emptiness.
About 6 months ago I was taken off guard by something.
Without going into the details that I've spilled so many times before, I'll say that I changed a long time friendship based on feelings that I had.
It ended poorly, both of us to blame in some sense...
I just never really got over the timing of it.
From that point on, I decided that it was time to focus on myself.
I pretty much was down to my last leg of trust in anyone, mainly any guy that I knew.
Not making it all about dating and hooking up took a lot of the pressure off.
Everyone was a disappointment in my eyes anyway.
I never had to worry about expectations, or saying the right things.
This was all a new found freedom--going out became about enjoy my friends around me, rather than the anxiety of scamming.
I could actually take up a hobby and focus on myself.
I watched some dating shows and learned about potential mistakes that I was making.
"If you're constantly falling into a "type" but still end up single, then you have to make a change if you ever want to be happy. Start thinking outside your comfort zone"
or there was something as simple as: "No sex without monogamy"
And then I guess I forgave some people or just looked past my suspicions
and I let some walls down for others.
I thought, maybe it's okay to trust and be honest with some.
It always feels good when feelings are mutual.
But maybe this wasn't exactly what I wanted.
I never wanted to break the rules that I had set for myself.
I guess there's just a point of no return and you have to roll with it.
I can't help but feel as though I wasn't really ready.
I guess I perhaps imagined it to end differently---i guess more along the lines of what was originally implied.
It just feels like the same mistake that I've made before.
Maybe I will never be taken seriously enough for it ever to really matter or be important.
All I know is that...I'm left wondering.
i wonder how this all made me look.
i wonder if this will be all there is.
i wonder if i even has some sort of self respect left intact.
and in between all of this i can't help but really wonder,
"Cross my heart and hope to
I'm lying just to keep you here
So reckless, so,
This song sometimes reminds me of you.
I wrote a part for us.
We've had some ups and downs...
Both were intense, to say the least.
I'm not sure I'll ever be able to forgive you for some things that happened in the past.
Perhaps you feel the same way.
I don't know how it will end for us.
Maybe I never want it to...
(and I say that in the most platonic way possible.)
I guess that what I'm implying is that,
I consider you to be one of the only people that I feel that I can connect to.
No matter what our fights or flaws or misunderstandings are, you're one of the only people who makes me feel seen.
I feel as though, together we always have this mutual understanding.
Whatever happens, happens.
I was lucky to have your time at one point.
And I think, for me, perhaps it was enough.
Young and full of running
tell me where is that taking me
just a great figure eight
or a tiny infinite
love is really nothing
but a dream that keeps waking me
for all of my trying
we still end up dying
how can it be?
don't say a word
just come over and lie here with me
cause I'm just about to set fire to everything I see
I want you so bad I'll go back on the things I believe
there I just said it
I'm scared you'll forget about me.
I recently had a discussion with two of my friends about that one person that you'd burn the world down for.
It doesn't matter how long ago it was or who you're with now and how in love with this new person you are...
it's about the first person that ignited everything inside of you.
that seemed to be completely right for you, but in rational, real terms they're actually all wrong for you.
they made you feel a sense of love and passion that you never had felt before in your life.
but they also have wronged you.
the point is that they made you feel alive.
no matter how great of a "fake boyfriend" they seemingly appear to be
or how your fingers caught sparks upon contact
or how you had an unspeakable connection that made you feel like soulmates...
it's just not right.
we divulge our thoughts for hours upon hours with our friends and family and coworkers and strangers on the street
we write in journals, in blogs, in tweets, in anything that will help us make sense of the situation
we lock ourselves up so we can shut ourselves down
and yet, despite all of this, despite the fact that we were mislead, or cheated on, or given false hopes and promises,
we would do anything they asked of us if it meant that we would be together.
you have to ask yourself, "why am i making this person my priority when i'm only their option?"
why is it important that they like you or that you continue to like them?
perhaps what you liked about them doesn't actually exist anymore
maybe it never existed in the first place?
it's time to stop holding on to them
and start making it about you.
perhaps rather than burning the world down for someone else, you can learn to let it expand and flourish for yourself.
it's all right in front of you.
make your move.
“So tell me, why do you want to join a gym?”, He asked, reviewing my information sheet.
“Well, to lose weight…”, I mumble.
“But why is it important to you? What are your goals?”
I fidgeted with my shoe trying to decide whether or not to give a standard reason or spill my entire life story over the past year to him.
Memories of what I’ve gone through swirl through my head.
---From fights, to friendships, to funerals, to apologies, to love, to goodbyes---
Suddenly I have the urge to cry.
I swallow my emotions.
“Well….because I went through a lot of shit in the last year. I’ve lost friends…people moved away…My entire social scene has been shaken. I have a lot of free time now so...might as well do something with my life.”
He nods and writes some things down. “…Any other reasons?”
I shrug and laugh to myself. “I guess I want to have a body that I can be proud of for once in my life. I’ve never felt that I’ve had that. Maybe if I had a better body I’d feel more confident. Maybe I can up the amount of guys I reject. It’d feel good”
He laughs a bit. I really wish he wasn’t writting ALL of this down.
He repeats everything back to me constantly, to reiterate my point. It’s even funnier when he says it.
His name is Brian. He looks like a typical North Jersey guido, but he’s actually Irish with a pleasant, professional disposition.
He has the nicest smile I’ve ever seen.
He plays off my sass and sarcasm with ease and retort—better than most.
A rare find.
I immediately feel comfortable around him.
I want to sit and tell him more about my life because I feel like he actually sees me.
“So who will be supporting you throughout your journey to get into shape? A husband? A boyfriend? Family?”
I smirk at the thought. My mind scans all the people currently in my life, but then I can’t help but think about those that died and those that left.
I have the urge to cry again. This sucks. No one cries at the gym, especially not during an assessment.
Finally, I shrug and say, “No one.”
“No one?!” He’s taken aback.
“Yea, no one. It’s no big deal, it’s just my life.”
He has no idea... me just going to the gym two days in a row confuses my mom. She’s no help and she’s the only person I see every day besides my co-workers.
We talk some more. He sets me up with a really good deal that will hopefully get me into actual shape within the next year.
I’m beginning to think that this will work out for me. I can better myself one step at time.
After the physical assessment, our conversation moves to every day stuff.
I finally blurt out, “You seriously have the nicest teeth and/or smile I’ve ever seen in my life”
He nods, “Thanks. They’re actually fake. All the real ones were knocked out when I played professional hockey.”
“Tell me more about this hockey lifestyle…”
I think I’m feeling okay tonight.
I am on the mend.
At least now I can say that I am trying.
And I hope you will forget things I still lack.