And I didn’t know how I wanted it to go until that day. It wasn’t like I was unhappy, but I certainly wasn’t happy. And sure, sometimes I was content. But it wasn’t enough. I fall into this trap of settling so often, you’d think I’m not still young. I get petrified of any negative feeling; I ignore the ones I’m already feeling. And it’s ironic, and I get that, but sometimes it’s hard to tell what’s wrong until it’s over. And this happened a year ago. I’m only thinking about it because I’m the world’s most nostalgic person.
I miss things. And I miss people. It’s the reason I annoy my friends with all the mentions of exes. I get accused of not being over them, but it’s not true. I don’t miss the people; I miss the feelings. And sometimes I miss the people, but it’s not usually for long. I miss ex friends more than I miss ex boyfriends. And even them I know I’m better off without.
And on the day when that two-year, arguably worst relationship of my life ended, I remember I went to the gym. I know we shouldn’t have broken up over the phone, but he lived an hour away and we both knew it was coming anyway. I went to the gym and I listened to a break-up album that had conveniently just come out that day. I became fixated by it. I wound up going to the gym a lot in those coming months. And I was fine. I was happy. I didn’t miss him in the slightest.
But I realized, after two years of constantly being lied to and treated like yesterdays garbage, that I was happy to be single. And I’ve been happy being single for the better part of the last year. I think when that nightmare of a relationship started, what I needed was a friend. And I realize now that all I really want are friends. I don’t feel like I need a boyfriend or girlfriend to be happy. I’m just happy hanging out with my friends and watching a show and maybe having a drink. And that’s fine.
And now Valentine’s Day is coming up and I never much did celebrate that even when I was in relationships. So, I’m not too worried. I’ll probably end up watching some rom-coms at home and I’m content with that.
I miss my carefree nature,
I miss the wind at my back,
I miss the way the sun beams glowed
early summer mornings.
I miss watching the sunrise
from my bedroom window,
and I miss watching the sunset
on the beach with the dog.
I miss the simplicity,
and how I knew it’d all be fine.
Sometimes winter gets so cold,
I fear I’ve gone as bitter as the wind.
Tea in the afternoon,
hard at work on this or that
and the sun shines through the window, cracked.
Tea on the windowsill,
a gentle breeze cools the drink.
It’s not as cold as it’s been lately
and the smell of fresh air
brings a sense of nostalgia
for when I had no troubles,
spending all my time running around outside.
I have this obsession with nostalgia
and I think it’s because I’m so eternally exhausted
and I miss the feeling
of optimism and pure delight
I only truly had as a child.
I’m only 22
but I’ve been through enough
to deserve this cup of tea
and a moment of clarity.
I haven’t felt a single thing
and I worry I never will again.
I used to be so lively,
nowadays I’d rather sit at home
than be with loved ones.
It’s like a part of me died when you left.
I knew it would happen;
I knew from the start
and I did nothing to stop it.
What happened to the person I once was?
I have a fondness for things from before,
things like games and music and pop culture
because it’s the only thing
that brings me closer
to who I was
No one prepared me for growing up. It sounded liberating, fun, exciting. To move out, get a good paying job, having the freedom to do whatever I want. I loved the sound of that. But I’m tired all the time and I have no motivation to do anything more than the bare minimum. It’s boring, I tried to frame errands in a fun way that made them sound like I’m on some big adventure but it’s just going to the store and buying milk because I’m somehow always out of milk when I want a late-night bowl of cereal. Or it’s going to pick up a prescription but it’s not ready yet- should I wait for it? Or should I make use of these 15 minutes and go do something else I had to do today. And this was supposed to be my day off? My one day off this week? And I’m stuck at the store for 15 minutes because my prescription wasn’t ready yet. If this is what adulthood is then I want no part in it.
But that’s not all there is. There are concerts I don’t have to ask permission to go to, there are vacations I can take without my parents arguing every time we get in the car. There’s still fun to be had, it just feels less fun because I actually need the time off to recuperate from the long work week I just had. Being an adult is exhausting, and I’m not ready to grow up, but maybe I’m looking at it wrong. Maybe it’s more than just going to work and running errands. Because there’s also buying myself that new video game I’ve been wanting since I first heard about it, there’s playing it until 2 am and regretting it in the morning, but I’m still on that high you get when you first play a game that I don’t even realize I’m tired. I’m just counting down the minutes until I can play again.
Or, more personally, there’s staying up all night writing a new story I thought of during work and quickly wrote down on receipt paper so I would remember it when I got home. There’s the six hours straight of writing and editing and planning and more writing and more editing and it’s somehow all fun because I finally, after months of writer’s block, have something to write about again. I thought I had lost the ability to write, every time I tried to it came out as utter nonsense. As if I had written it on no sleep and too much caffeine (which was sometimes the case, but that’s beside the point). When I wrote this new story, it was like I was 12 again and just realizing my love for writing. The possibilities are endless and thank god I can type fast because the words come so fast, you’d think I’m on a deadline. But I’m only just beginning.
I still think of you often,
but it’s not the same.
I miss you in the way I miss my childhood,
you’re a nostalgia trip,
but I’m better off now.
It’s warm now for the first time
in a long time.
I wasn’t sure winter would ever end,
but it did now.
Now it’s warm nights and sunny mornings,
as the trees bloom all around me.
I’ve never known joy,
at least not like I know it now,
but I know it now.