Loneliness

The close conversation had reached that point where we had run out of superficial, cheery things to say.  I wrung my hands as a thought forced itself into speech: I had been afraid that saying it aloud would make a tentative idea more real than it actually was, but I couldn’t help it, it had been haunting me for too long:

“Um, I don’t know,” I began slowly.  “I think, more than anything, I want to be in a relationship.  I know that’s a lame thing to say…I believe in feminism and independence and all that, but…it’s true.”

I lowered my head and blushed as my friend reassured me, but I couldn’t help but taste the aftertaste of a remark that was not articulated finely enough.  Because, in truth, I enjoy being single.  I like going to concerts and kissing strangers without worrying about someone back home.  I like quiet moments by myself.  And I see people constantly holding hands, constantly spending the night in each others’ dorms and I think: I don’t want that.  I don’t want all of that, at least not all the time.  

But I definitely want something.   Continue reading

Morning After

There was no obliviating fade to black, and then a reemergence of consciousness and light.  I had been laying in the diluted dark for hours, listening to him breathe deeply next to me, tiptoeing to the bathroom, until the gradient of day and night pulled itself over the horizon, shifted across his bare apartment, and the birds began to chirp. Continue reading

In the Company of Myself

Recently I’ve been smiling sadly my high school self; I’ve been re-reading some journal entries from her senior year English notebook.  Essentially, she was lonely and confused, searching for a sense of identity and starving for companionship.  She wrote down dreams of long hugs and soft hand touches. Continue reading

Aspiring Author (?)

So, my relationship with writing has been changing.

In case it wasn’t clear before, I used to have serious daydreams about writing short stories and  (once I improved enough as a writer) novels for a living.  I also had a significant interest in STEM too, of course, but I was worried that a move towards that field would be sacrificing my Dream of being a Writer™; I was worried I would be one of the many sad gray souls that chooses the “safe” option over something risky.

Shit changed in college though.  Basically, I realized that I really love Biology.  I took BIOL121 and was the only kid I know who considered it her favorite class (despite my lackluster grade!)   Something about nerdy shit like cell division and alternative splicing just sets my blood on fire, I’m not joking.  I realized that I could enter this field with genuine passion; pursuing Biology no longer felt like a duller “second choice” for me. Continue reading

Relatable Charlotte Brontë

My first Brontë read for English class, Villette, has been fucking me up.  It’s always striking to see parts of me in old literature, even in as strange a protagonist as Lucy Snowe.3226-villette

Because I’m cynical and complacent and resigned:

I suppose the orb of your life is not to be so rounded; for you the crescent phase must suffice…I see a huge mass of my fellow-creatures in no better circumstances.  I see that a great many men, and more women, hold their span of life on conditions of denial and privation.  I find no reason why I should be of the few favoured.  I believe in some blending of hope and sunshine sweetening the worst lots.  

Because I’m recovering from heartbreak: Continue reading

Mind of Winter

This week I went to the Kelly Writers House, a creative writing hub on campus.  There, I gulped down homemade soup until I felt uncomfortable, appreciated the rarely-kindled fireplace, and listened to poetry/prose readings.

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I like to go to these gatherings to try and inspire my inner-writer — you could say that I’m in a bad case of writer’s block recently.  The theme of this event was “Mind of Winter,” based on a Wallace Stevens poem: Continue reading

Please Knock

I’m not holding the door open for him (letting the cold air pour in, numbing my ankles), but I’m not slamming it and bolting the lock either.

Right now I think the door is ajar, leaving me an indulgent and toxic crevice for me to peek out of, for those moments when I pretend I don’t know better.  Slowly but surely, I’m drawing it shut, and one day I know I will finally close it in peace.

But I know that I will not lock it — oh, not for a long time.  It means that a brief visit, a careless turn of the knob, will swing it wide again.  That frightens me.  I don’t want to let him in again.  I only want him back if he comes to the threshold with flowers, wipes his feet on the mat — plans to stay.

Continue reading

first semester college revelations

A few things I discovered during my first few months of college.

  • I judge people too quickly.  I assume people are more obnoxious, more self-centered, more shallow than they actually are.  I need to be more open-minded when I see someone for the first time.
  • The world is full of sensitive boys, and I didn’t even know.  Unlike the empiric/aloof males of my high school, there are so many open and artistic boys here.  It’s heartwarming, but also distracting as fuck.
  • Biking is the most joyous form of exercise.
  • I’m actually not a bad-looking person.  I assumed so in high school because there was no evident male interest in me, but some encounters with strangers have nicely contradicted me.
  • Chance the Rapper brings people together.
  • There’s that saying that college is the best four years of your life.  It’s heartwarming, but also slightly threatening.  It creates a sense of pressure and unease whenever you’re idle, not connecting with people, not partying.  There’s no threshold of fun to meet, no debt of shenanigans to pay off if you had an uneventful high school life.  You only have to worry about what you’re comfortable doing.
  • Kissing is my favorite hobby and the single best human invention.  Except perhaps for music.
  • Despite my gut feeling, there is actually no reason for people to dislike me immediately.  I need to chill out.
  • Male friends are actually such an essential asset to life.
  • “Stacy’s Mom” is the best song to party to.
  • Here’s a dirty little secret.  People don’t actually lose complete control when they’re drinking, no matter how much they boast “I’m sooo drunk right now.”  You can still think and inhibit yourself, albeit with extra effort.  Alcohol is just an excuse to do stuff you already wanted to do.  Its intrigue and social appraisal contributes to the intoxication you think you feel.
  • Alcohol is so fucking dumb.  When you think about, you’re literally poisoning yourself. Getting wasted is not fun.  However, there’s a glorious sweet spot after the warm buzz and right before the dizziness.  The key really is to drink slowly.
  • I can be outgoing!  I can bring people together!  But I can still be an introvert and enjoy alone-time at the same time.
  • I like kissing strangers, but I’m still inherently a romantic.  I still got this sticky soft heart.  I haven’t changed, I just hang around more drunk boys.

-M.L.