That'sThe first time I read about the stages of loss, I thought that acceptance was kind of a shiny staircase, the light at the end of the tunnel. You go through the other four stages, and then you accept whatever the trauma is and you're probably better for it. I likened it to a drug habit that you lose. You detox, you feel immense pain, and then you get your shit together. The metaphor was simple enough. Grieve in stages, then you're free. That's not really how addiction works, but it's what I was hoping, anyway.
I don't really know if I understand what stage of loss I'm in right now. They aren't as clear of staircase steps as I originally thought, it's been more like walking uphill through the woods. You don't always know where your feet are supposed to go, sometimes you're stuck and sometimes you're pushed forward for no other reason than you have nowhere else to go.
I have heard that it takes about one month for every year you're together to feel okay again. If that's true, you must be fine by now. Maybe if I hadn't filled up my time so completely and become so distracted, I would be too.
Jordan, you were funny, attractive, sweet, kind and you are largely responsible for me not becoming a nightmare of a human being. The idea that you're not going to be with me any more still sucks. I don't know that everyone gets a lot of "love of your life" like we had. I'm grateful for that. I think you're a fantastic human being. I also think I shouldn't set eyes on you for years if I ever do see you again.
Acceptance in some ways is shittier than depression, anger, or any of the others. You can get comfortable in any of the others. Denial would have brought us back together, so would bargaining. Remember when we tried all that? It was comfortable but it was hollow and somewhere in me I knew that you'd moved on. I even felt it when you hugged me goodbye. It's a strange feeling to be held in a way that lets you know you're also being let go.
Depression and anger are easy traps for me. I experienced them a lot over the past few weeks. I can't say with any real certainty that I'm done, either, but I certainly went through them. I beat myself up on rocks and howled and when it was over I felt like I had tired the demon in me. Depression and Anger made the past seem glamorous and the future terrifying. They preserved you as the angel I tended to make you and offered solace in my memories. They made walls with your face on them and put them in front of my future. They didn't do shit to get me to move forward.
One thing that you know better than anyone is that I hate complacency. I am a critter of change and turbulence and the older I get the more I've come to acknowledge and embrace that insanity. Depression and Anger were fine places to be, despite how terrible they feel. They don't suggest you change anything, they are emotions that demand only to be experienced. I can't remain in any one state of mind for very long, you know that.
Acceptance doesn't just mean accepting that you're gone. Acceptance means owning up to the fact that I stayed in that broken relationship with you. It means I have to admit that I was cruel to you, and you were cruel to me and we both took it from each other because we didn't know what else to do. Acceptance means you'll sleep with other people, and so will I. It means I have to be the person who makes sure I don't mistreat or abuse other people. You won't be there to call me out on it, or put up with my bizarre social experiments. I am glad that you pulled away. I'm glad you made it out, if I'm honest.
Cities are strange places, especially after holing up in the mountains. Everything is interesting here, or at least trying to be. Everything wants you to look, to distract you. If you've got big things in your head, it's very difficult to focus. I think my thoughts behave a lot like cities do.
Whenever I have big thoughts in my head, I run from things that distract me. In this case, I went to the mountains, and deleted all my social media. In nature, things are only interesting because you find them interesting. You don't have to discern because there is no competition; everything just happens to be there and you come across the important parts as you see fit.
I left without really telling anyone and I'm sorry if I worried anyone. In my damaged mind I genuinely didn't think it would be noticed. At first I had no plan on returning to Denver, but I got to that point where I have to start doing something, or else what little I've built will start disintegrating. I still feel really tired, and I don't feel ready to be doing much of anything. It's still hard to talk to people and I still don't really want to be touched. The concept is still kind of sideways.
Social media is a lot of chatter, and for someone who believes (naively or not) that she's got something to say, it is a very useful tool. For now it's one that I have to put away. I'm not really sure how to push forward as a comedian without that tool, but hopefully I'll figure something out. The quiet has been welcome. I see people for who they are, and not based on whatever chaos exists in social media. It makes me feel more human.
Acceptance blows, Jordan, but I'm working on it. Being back in Denver has been a good step, I think. I am fortunate to have a lot of good people in my life. Last night I stepped in and did a set on my own show, which was a goofy thing to do, but also possibly the most healing thing I could imagine. I am very lucky to be cared about the way that I am. I hope when I feel a little more stable I can return all of these favors.
I have been reading this book by Kierkegaard, he talks a lot about faith. I don't believe in God, but I have been thinking a lot about faith. Kierkegaard suggests that true faith is one of the most difficult things to accomplish, and that most of us are only capable of hope. Faith lies beyond hope, and beyond resignation. Faith is the acceptance and understanding of reality with the genuine belief in the absurd possibility of the divine.
It is a very difficult fucking book.
Faith is the difference between want and belief. A week ago, my faith was that we would be together again once we both did our growing up. A silly little week. Less time than it takes for an infant to take her first steps. It's uncanny how distanced it all became. Part of me doubts my acceptance is real, given I thought I was there months ago.
I don't have faith in us getting back together. It seems unlikely, but changes happen so quickly and I'm accepting that as part of my nature. I have restored faith in what I have always had faith in: that I am going to be okay.
I have lived my life with the fortunate belief that whatever happens, I'm going to be fine. Things will suck for now, but these mistakes rarely kill me. I survived assault, a drug problem, traveling alone, and losing the person I love more than anyone. None of those things killed me. They scarred me, I'm wary and I don't like to be touched. If I am honest, I am not okay, but I am not going to die, and that alone means I have to progress, work towards something.
I'm accepting the kind of person I am and the way it doesn't work to be the kind of person I am and in love with you. I wonder if I'll write you letters much longer.
For now, goodbye you big, wonderful asshole. We got together as babies and learned to walk in different directions. I love you and miss you and hate you and everyone I know will have to deal with that, even me.
This is the only letter I can think of that's not for Jordan. I am going to do my best to be vague about who you are. I don't know that you would receive any backlash about this but it isn't my intention, and hopefully it's fine. In my experience these little dramas don't tend to edge past those immediately involved, but I am a very vindictive individual, and I am unsure how to separate the way I process this from the way I attack people I feel have wronged me. For whatever it's worth despite the very deep, hard feelings, I paradoxically don't hold anything against you. I see what happened as my decision and my fault, it just so happened that it was with you.
I had no idea how quickly I could go from liking someone to absolutely loathing them. I have to spend a lot of time convincing myself you didn't dupe me into something I didn't want, because I have been feeling very used. I know that demonizing you is a trick my brain does in order to exculpate myself, and I probably took more steps towards you than you did to me, that's how I work. I have an amazing ability to seem like I know what the fuck I am doing, which is something I think we have in common.
This is very hard to write. I don't trust you. I don't know what you want. I've been thinking about that first conversation we had about how to do what we were about to in the most ethical way possible. I was drunk and I remember suppressing the urge to laugh at the absurdity of that. There is no ethical way to cheat on someone. You didn't have my phone in your pocket so you didn't know how many times I was ignoring Jordan calling, looking for me. I wish I had slept on your couch.
I think you are manipulative, just like I am manipulative, because you are indecisive and you have lots of opportunities and giving up any of them seems like a bad idea. You have access to more of the world than most people, and whenever you make a wrong turn you're clever enough to talk yourself out of it. I don't think you're a bad person, but if you're not careful you're going to be a monster. You are cavalier about things that have meaning to have other people. I don't think you intend to, it's just not something you understand the value of, or you're dismissive of it because you can make sound arguments against those things. Whether or not you can, that doesn't mean you should devalue them to other people.
This is in particular related to monogamy and relationships, obviously, but I'm sure it spreads into other details of your life. I don't think that you don't understand the concepts, I think you don't get how big they are to other people or what happens when you take big meaning from people. If you did, then what I know about you makes you seem like a pretty terrible person.
There is no meaning of life, and our time in the universe is fleeting and isolated. We create meaning for ourselves, and the big meanings are the ones that keep us from feeling how close we are to nothingness, they make us human. There are so few things we find ourselves anchored to, and when you pull meaning from someone you take that from them. It is enough to destroy somebody. That's the danger of nihilism.
I can't say I understand those things either. If either of us did we never would have pursued anything. Maybe I'm wrong though, maybe I'm projecting. I had been thinking of breaking you, because I was pretty confident that this observation is true regardless of how I think of you as a person. I also thought you want to be broken, because I imagine feeling that indecisive is a cause of a lot of anxiety for you. As someone who is shattered right now, I can admit that I don't feel indecisive or anxious. I don't really have a need for feelings like that right now. At this point I just don't want to see you again or hear your name, and leaving was a good way to ensure that.
I'm sorry for texting you when I got drunk. I know I did when I broke my phone and I really don't remember much about what I said to you. I wish I had handled myself better, but I am working with a very old book of rules. I hadn't ever left someone before, I hadn't tried to cultivate whatever the fuck we were doing before and I sure as shit had no idea how to handle that ending in tandem with the train wreck break up I was procrastinating on until a like a week ago. I think you knew that, and you did the best you could. I think you made an effort not to make me feel worse than I did and I am very grateful for that.
There were a lot of positive things I got from knowing you. You were very kind to me and you were open about how you felt, so far as I know anyway. You were fun to talk to and interested in almost everything. I remember you had this funny look on your face when I was telling you about water bears. If it ever felt like you were hiding something, you were pretty quick to catch yourself on it and say something, even if I didn't really follow. You tried to get me to talk about what was going on and you kept lending yourself as support which I couldn't express to you why I wouldn't accept.
Comparably speaking, you were a stranger to me, and I couldn't trust you. It takes me a long time to talk about how I feel, because it takes me a long time to feel. It has nothing to do with saying it eloquently, it's just hard to answer "How are you feeling?" with anything besides what I imagine would be the sound at the bottom of a lake when a crocodile is drowning its prey and it takes its last breath. While I knew you I saw Jordan breaking and that wasn't something I knew how to handle. I wanted to make him happy. Seeing him sad was physically painful, it made my Kokadrille start thrashing and I wanted to hurt myself on Jordan's behalf. Whatever you were to me, I love him, and that's how I learned what I am telling you about taking meaning from someone else.
I was pretty blinded by a desperate need not to feel pain which at the very least I'm not blind to right now from my little hideaway in a mountain. I don't think you were terrible to me, (no more than what was going to be inevitable), but I do think you need to be careful. I think you'll benefit from that.
I hate myself for what I did to him, and you're a part of that somehow but I don't really know what that means. You are young. You will be fine. That probably applies to me as well, but it feels farther away. I wish I felt more solid about this. I had hoped that writing this would give me some sense of resolution. I guess it feels closer to it, but I am still conflicted. For what it's worth, despite my regret you taught me a lot. That's all I could really ask from anyone.
I am so tired, and I am barely able to handle being awake, but today is better than yesterday.
I think about how weird this must be for you, that I'm writing everything so publicly. I was always an attention whore, I guess. Mostly now I'm doing it because I hope you'll see it. I don't know why I want you to see it. I want you to know that I'm hurting. Not because I'm trying to be vindictive but because I don't really know how else I can prove you mattered. It felt like I took you for granted, like you don't know.
I hope, even if I know better, that you still want to see me, because that's the idea that hurts. That's what feels like nails. I hope that you are going on adventures in the mountains and you are going to find me later. I know that that's not true, but that's what I hope.
I am scared that I told that story. I never got help for it. I still haven't. I think I will deal with that soon. I am trying to think of what else hurts but I am so tired. I've been drawing monsters, Jordan, I wish you could see them.
I don't know if I can go over all the ways I was mean to you. I don't know if I'm ready to. I am forcing myself to think about the things that I hated. I don't know when it started that I felt like you had grown distant from me, but I'm pretty sure I caused it. I feel like I've been tricked. I feel like I lied to myself, I feel like you lied to me, and I feel like I was led away from you. I think that's me not accepting responsibility for my actions. I'm working on that.
Being here is very unappealing. I hate this place and I don't want to spend much time here, but my options are limited right now. I don't know where else I'm going to go yet. I'm saving up and I'll be somewhere else by New Year's. I can't really do standup right now. I haven't been able to write anything outside of these journals and the idea of climbing on stage just sounds like a melt down (further meltdown) waiting to happen. I'm having trouble looking anyone in the eye. I check my e-mail and feel like I've climbed a mountain. Most of the time I just want to sleep. I don't know what I think will happen when I wake up.
Today has been a lot of things, but in some ways it's been calmer. I am angry at you, I am angry at myself. I am sad, I am looking forward. Mostly I am thinking about how much this period of time is going to suck, but it also doesn't seem to stretch on forever. I saw my brother and talked to him a lot. I can hear how all over the place my thoughts are.
I know that if I saw you and you'd ask me, I'd be yours again, whether or not that's a good thing, but it would be so difficult to know what to do. In my head we'd sit in silence for a very long time. It would be starting over. Kyle pointed out that if I'm starting from the beginning I might as well do so with someone I have no history with. I don't know. Maybe he's right, but it's still shitty.
Apparently science has studied English literature and only found six plot arcs:
I guess if you're simplifying to parabolas, this makes a lot of sense. I wonder if life is more nuanced than that, or if it's really all the same, it's just dependent on time. I've been thinking about which one I'm doing right now. The good new is, I don't think it's an ongoing fall.
Part of me is very lonely and wants to find comfort in someone. I think the worst reason to let someone touch you is because you're lonely. That's what I liked about you; we grew together for a long time before we grew apart. I am hoping that we are in the middle of the rise-fall-rise, but who knows. I am starting to accept the reality of you not being around, whether or not I like that idea. I don't really want anyone else to be near me, but I don't really know how long it takes for loneliness to take over my brain. I'm not drinking so I probably have more resolve than I have had in the past.
I have been thinking about when you saw me this October and I had marks on my neck and you had such a defeated look on your face. You were helping me fix my bike. I think a lot about the reasons why I cheated on you. I don't know if I have the energy to talk about it yet, but I am processing. It wasn't an isolated incident and I really don't want to be the kind of person who does that to someone they're with any more. I wish that's a line I never crossed.
I want to learn how to be more honest about how I feel. I tried to, but for some reason I felt like you couldn't hear me. I wanted so badly for you to hear me and I'd get so frustrated. I don't know, maybe you did. Maybe I was expecting something weird.
I remember once when I lived in that house with Naomi and I called you a bunch of times one night. I don't remember why but I was freaking out. You were really drunk when you finally picked up, you said you didn't want to talk to me and hung up the phone. I thought that was it. Naomi and I went for a walk while I tried to process that you were done with me and when we got back to the house you were waiting for me on the porch, worried about all those missed calls and you didn't remember talking to me at all. That was about four years ago, the last time we did this.
I think I wanted you to chase me. I guess that feels nice, it makes you feel wanted when someone chases you. The problem with doing anything public and social is that a lot of people chase you, so it sucked to feel like you didn't want to. You were the one I wanted to think I was special, and I was just a house cat in your mind. I get that it's an absurd thing to ask of someone, especially after how long we'd been together. I was never secure. I don't know if I could peg you being distanced to my lashing out, which one came first, but they certainly didn't help each other.
I hope you remember the times I did try to talk to you about how I felt. Maybe you just didn't know what to say. I'm a little jealous that you're somewhere else. I guess I don't really know what you went through or what you're going through now but in my mind you're dealing with it better than me, because you usually dealt with things better than I did.
Right now I'm trying to muddle through this, and my feelings are a hundred balloons in my head and it's hard to know whether or not I should be holding on or letting them go, and which ones are meant to go where. It feels good to be out of Denver. I want to start working on being the person that would have been good to you. I want to be the kind of person who doesn't manipulate other people, who is loyal and open. I know that was me at one point in time, and I think I can do it again, whether or not you find me.
I was 17 when I met you at the coffee shop I worked at and I liked you immediately. I was disappointed that I liked someone with long hair. The split second I saw you, I knew that we would be together and I did not like that feeling. I didn't want to have that so quickly and it felt superstitious and weird to have noticed something like that.
When I met you I was in college. Before I was in college, I was not attending high school, and I guess that's where this story begins.
Jordan, I have to write this like I'm telling it to you, but you know this already and you're probably not reading it right now. I have tried to tell it to other people but it sucks, I hate being open about it. This story is 11 years old now and nearly going through puberty, and is having very conflicted feelings about its identity. I have told it in bursts to many people. Every time I tell it I get upset with myself because I wish nobody knew. I feel like I'm doing something wrong when I tell people. I think I wish nobody knew as some sort of weird parallel that if no one knows, then it didn't happen.
I don't think I had any friends at this point in my life. I have always been kind of a loner, because I've never understood people and I don't like to be touched. I used to listen to music and take long, long walks. Most of these were very uneventful. I don't really know what I did it for. Get out of the house I guess.
I am not totally sure how I met him, he either walked up to me or I had stopped at a park. Either way, we started talking and he introduced himself as Travis and I told him my name was Kira. We never got to a last name basis, and that blows my mind. My parents still don't know about him, but if they read this they will. I have been so paranoid about this because I haven't wanted them to know because I don't want them to blame themselves, but you know that already.
The day I met Travis he asked me if I was hungry and I told him I didn't know what he meant. He pointed to a lady with a baby stroller and told me she'd buy us lunch. I think at first I thought he knew her.
Travis was attractive in that way that's attractive to high school girls and not too many others; he was gaunt with black hair and bright blue eyes and looked like he had a drug problem. By the time we stopped hanging out he'd bleached his hair, which isn't relevant information but for some reason sticks out to me right now. He was very pretty, he had high cheekbones and good teeth. He did a lot of coke and he was afraid of nothing. He was 19, I was 14 going on 15, and at the time I had no concept that that would be weird.
Travis convinced the woman with the baby stroller to give him money and with it we bought pizza. He had never met her before. Over pizza, he told me that he could get whatever he wanted from whoever he wanted it from. I had a little crush on him but I told him he couldn't get anything from me, I was too smart for that. I remember him smiling a little and it making me feel giddy. I thought he had a little crush on me too.
Travis was not afraid of anything, and I guess I might have learned that from that sociopath. I learned from him that if you want something, you should just ask for it. People are usually very accommodating once they know what you want. Maybe that's why I feel so terrible when people give me what I ask for now.
I am not sure how long we were friends for. It was during when I should have been in school so I think we met in August or September. I don't really remember it being that cold and I don't remember it being near my birthday, so maybe that's not accurate. I'm terrible with dates.
Do you remember how much I hated October? Everything terrible happens in October. That's the month that Joey died and it's the month that Travis took me to the park because he wanted to show me something. We went into the men's room and I got very scared, but I also had that good kind of nervous that comes from someone you like wanting to show you something. He wanted to show me a knife, and he told me to get on my knees and I thought he was joking.
I don't even think I was scared, it was too surreal, but there I was, in the corner of a park bathroom. I still don't go into park bathrooms, babe (should I not call you that?) He put that knife on my throat and pulled out his penis and I remember wishing that the knife was bigger because it didn't seem so threatening but I was obeying it anyway. I didn't look at it, I looked at him, and then when I couldn't do that I looked to the side. When I looked to the side I saw shoes in the stall, dirty black shoes. I was looking at those shoes with someone's penis in my mouth and I hadn't had my first kiss yet.
How do you ask a pair of shoes to rescue you?
I wasn't really scared, I just didn't understand what was happening. I was trying to figure out if somehow I'd wanted this to happen, or this was supposed to happen when you have a crush on someone. I was trying really hard not to gag but your air flow is severely compromised when someone is pressing a knife on your throat and also putting a dick in your mouth. It compresses the space. To this day I don't really remember what it looked like and I don't really know how long that was happening. I think not very, because the black shoes fell forward and a passed out boy hit his head on the door and woke up. His name was Rich and he scared off Travis without really understanding what was happening. I was just sitting in the corner, I think I was crying but I think I was also laughing because it was a very strange thing to be happening. I hung out with Rich for a little bit and got high. I did not get upset about it until much, much later. Last I heard he had joined a cult.
A few months later is when I started taking pills, but I don't have a lot to say about that. It didn't occur to me until recently that maybe I was taking them because I didn't ever want to feel what I should feel when someone does that to you. I thought I was just experimenting the way teenagers do. Between those two things, I never really developed an interest in boys (or girls I guess). I assumed at that point in my life that I was going to be alone, and I didn't really liked to be touched so that was fine. I took drugs and I didn't really feel anything. That came and went and eventually I went to college and had written off Shithole Springs and all outdoor public restrooms by proxy.
I had two brief boyfriends before you, and a couple awkward college encounters that amounted to nothing. I was beginning to understand the difference between feeling alone and being lonely. I couldn't really do oral sex with anyone, and that put a huge damper on things to a lot of college guys. I wondered if I was broken.
I'm still coming to terms with the idea that what Travis did to me, he did because he wanted to feel power, and he did that by taking it from me. I am still coming to terms with the idea that most men who want me to do that only want it because it feels nice and not because they want to take something from me.
When I met you you gave me the nicest hug I ever had and I never really knew why it was so comforting. You were very shy and a little mean if you got too drunk. I liked the way you talked, and I really liked the sound of your voice (and I still don't think you get why I do). We were friends for a few months. I was not a very good friend to you, but you were a very good friend to me. You seemed to be content to be my friend if that's what it was going to be, and you didn't seem resentful about it the way "Friend Zoners" tend to be.
I remember hanging out watching a movie with your best friend who I also had some strange feelings for, and you coming home from work, and you saw us and you looked like you had just seen someone you love in the middle of a car wreck. I felt so terrible. I didn't know what I thought of you at that point but I felt bad about the look I had somehow put on your face. I would put that look on your face a few times within the next couple years.
I remember our first kiss on the porch swing. I was just by there today and felt kind of nauseous. You had solved some kind of riddle, because I liked it when we kissed in a way much different than I had liked my brief experiences before you. You made me feel safe, and you didn't question or seem upset that there were boundaries I couldn't cross. You never pushed anything but you were always there with me, and I felt like maybe I wasn't as broken by that fucking asshole. I thought I'd skipped the trauma and gone right to feeling whole. I wonder if I had dealt with that, things wouldn't have been so terrible. Maybe I would have been nicer to you if I could have admitted to myself how confusing everything felt, and worked through it before accepting it.
Jordan, I still can't stand the idea of oral sex, and after we broke up, I tried to date, sometimes that would come up and it was awful. This must be hurtful for you to hear. Some handled that boundary of mine better than others. What pisses me off is that the only reason that I'm trying to come to terms with that is because I'm an adult and I'm lonely and that's inhibiting me from physical intimacy. It doesn't have anything to do with personal growth at all, really.
I wish I hadn't tried to find someone else. I had left you and I didn't understand what I was running away from. I thought it was loneliness. I thought if I got another boyfriend to "rebound" with I wouldn't have to feel pain the same way you had saved me from feeling pain about what was stolen from me. I was prepared to feel pain, I was not prepared to find out that pain was because I had lost you.
But I didn't lose you, did I? Not at first. I left you, and there is a big difference.
Eight and a half years covers a lot of ground. I had a lot of emotional problems. You worked a lot and had a drinking problem. I'm glad that got better for you and that you're taking care of yourself. You have grown more into a man than I did a woman. It took me a really long time to figure myself out, but I always had you, no matter how much I beat you up emotionally. I don't know what you saw in me, or if it was easier for you to just hang around than it was to find someone else. I don't know what you could have loved about me. There must have been something, right?
Right now, I feel completely used and fucked up and horrible and I don't really know why. I have been tracing it back and I feel like Travis is the first thing. I used to have dreams that my tongue was a penis. I never really thought that was related. I don't think I could have ever trusted you going in with what I did. I tried to be honest, but I wasn't even really honest with myself, so... Now I have to figure what the fuck I need to do now. If I ever did see that motherfucker again I would kill him and be fine with it. The funny thing is that this is so ancient now some part of my brain scoffs that I still hold onto it at all, without taking into account I've never made an effort to let it go.
I had this silly notion the other day that you wanted me to find you, Jordan, but I know that's not really true. The idea that you don't want to see me hurts. I'm talking to myself at this point. I am so tired right now. I feel like such a failure.
I am so afraid of you right now, because you're gone. You are a million different things when you are gone. You're with someone else. You're fucking right now. You're angry with me. You're playing with Zia. You're going to see Manzie (fuck her. still fuck her). You're happier without me. The scariest of all the things you are is fine. You are fine without me, and I'm all these little pieces. There is no one left to tell me to eat watermelon for breakfast or try to teach me guitar or find me when I've really lost it. If I end up in Amarillo, I won't end up hugging you without looking because I knew it was you, and I won't be part of the most beautiful thing that woman in Texas had ever seen.
There is no one to be mean to. There is no one to be quiet with or confuse me. We were together for eight and a half years and I couldn't conceive of how all that pushing would eventually work. I am a clever fucking idiot.
I have been crying almost constantly since I ran away. This is probably terrible for my skin. The other day I was walking through Denver trying to find a place to cry because the coffee shop I was at seemed like a terrible place to do it. It became really funny that there was no place to do it. I found a park to sit down at and as soon as I did I heard three kids dressed in red saying something about initiation and I had to leave, laughing and crying at the same time. There was no place to do it so I eventually sat at a bus stop and did it there. Lots of people with dogs thought it was weird. After that I walked to El Charrito and thought about how difficult everything was.
The last thing you did to me was hug me. You held me and I wondered if you would be late for work. You said you didn't want it to end the way it did when I left your house. I left your house angry because you were doing errands and I continued to feel very unimportant to you. I know that because you're gone I am not paying attention to the things you did that hurt me, and there were a few.
I miss how clever you were. You were brilliant and I resented you for not acknowledging it. I don't think I'm alone in that.
Here are things you've said to me that will be with me forever, and that no idiot man after you can live up to, given my tendency to hold things over people:
I told you that I hate my weird feet and you said feet are supposed to be weird, that's why they're so far away from your face.
When we were lying on the bottom bunk we were holding our hands out in front of us and you said, "All we need is stars."
I told you, "I want to leave you to fall in love with other people."
And you said, "It would have been better if you just wanted to sleep with them."
I told you I wanted to be a comedian, and you said, "You're not funny, you're ridiculous."
That one is my favorite, by the way. It's so brilliant and cold I was too impressed to be angry when you said it to me.
My memory is frightening, isn't it?
I know you kept secrets from me. Maybe you needed to. That drove me crazy, but it was a short summer drive to get there. I needed you so much more than you needed me, I don't know if you realized that or if that makes my weird tendencies more understandable. I am out in the world by myself and I am not very good at it. All those shitty games I played with you I do to other people and they don't know the rules.
We got together because you didn't seem to care whether or not you got to touch me. You were just very kind. You called me a bunny because I was eating a carrot. We sat next to each other and didn't say much and you didn't try to do anything but come up with better things to say. I still remember what you looked like when you were 18.
There are a lot of people that want to touch me and I don't want them anywhere near me. I hate that people want to touch so much. There are a lot of people who help me and I hate them for it. I have been for all intents and purposes doing what I want but I don't even know if I want it if I can't tell you about it and watch you kind of glaze over and play guitar and think about how to pack a fucking backpack.
I remember when we had first gotten together and we would just stare at each other like weirdos. I would look at your eyes and think to myself that I could easily look at them forever, and every day we woke up next to each other I would check and see if it was true, and it always was. When I left I couldn't look you in the eye because it was still true.
I am so good at not being afraid because the only fear I had was losing you. I wrote that in that e-mail I finally cobbled together. I don't know when you'll see that. I don't know what you'll do with that. Maybe you'll just see it's from me and delete it without opening it. I've lost you, I am pretty sure. If I see you again I won't be able to talk. I want to hold your hand and cry. I don't want to say anything to anyone and I don't think I have the ability to say anything to you.
I wish I was a different person.
I am unsure how to start this, and less sure that I want to.
For those of you who are worried, I'm fine. For those of you who don't know why anyone would be worried, don't start, I'm fine. I am a very practiced escape artist and this is just another trap I'm wiggling out of. I think I have a breakdown or crisis of some kind once every four years or so, I'm pretty much right on schedule.
I left Denver because I am hurting, and your kindness makes it hurt more.
I grieve like a monster. It is a self destructive process and very painful. I get pretty physically banged up and I get that it's not fun to see happen. Moreover, I can't do it around people. The only person that could be around is gone now, and that's good for him. Not to sound like a martyr, but I wasn't good to him. The fact that him being gone hurts so much isn't a great reason for him to come back to me.
I have never intended to put personal things up here, but occasionally it leaks in, and until I figure this shit out, I guess that's all that's going up. I don't know how funny or insightful this will be. It's just going to happen, like a memoir in real time.
These are things I don't know how to talk about and I don't know what order to talk about them in. The end of this story is how I left Denver, and I'm unsure where I am going but it's unlikely to be another city. I want to go somewhere quiet where I can be alone. I want to go to the place where I watched a spider make its web for hours.
I'm not sure where comedy's going to fit into this. I'm not quitting but I am away for awhile. I don't really know what to do with that. Standup has been my compass for a long time but I just can't bring myself to it right now. I need to be withdrawn and figure out how to decipher all the pain I'm in. It hurts so bad I don't even know which part of me is the source. I'm withdrawing so I can nurse it back to health.
I'm not really sure where the beginning of this story is. I have to frame this like a story because I'm not sure how else to do it. It contains things that are very big to me, and the only way to make them conceivable is with very simple language. There isn't a lot of room for analysis for me, but there is a bit for the start.
First things first. I am, no matter how mature I may seem, mentally a child. I can't take care of myself well, and we could delve into reasoning for that but at the moment I don't think that's going to go anywhere. Here are a couple things about this mental child you need to know:
1. I am intelligent, but more than that, I am extremely thoughtful. I am also a very practiced listener and can ascertain patterns quickly.
2. I am relatively attractive, particularly for how society views intelligent women.
3. I am a woman.
These are all things that I do not like to admit about myself, the second in particular. Growing up, these were not things people said to me for fear (and rightly) that they would go to my head. As I got older, people started treating me like an attractive and intelligent woman, and how silly it became for me, because no one mentioned to me that was why they treated me in such a manner.
I don't like to admit these things because they are my advantages. Not everyone has those advantages, and it's not something you can necessarily rely on. Your advantages do not define you, but they help you proceed through life. Never the less, I have them, and to pretend that I don't really doesn't get anywhere. False modesty was a favorite tactic of mine but it started becoming ... I don't know, false. I am an excellent liar but at some point it becomes difficult to remember what's true and what isn't, and false modesty certainly doesn't help separate the two, and you will understand this more as I tell you what I am trying to understand.
I am telling you these advantages because they have helped me to become the person that I am, and the person that I am does not handle kindness well. I am disturbingly ill equipped. When I got home from Chicago and saw the smiling faces of friends, hugged you tightly, told you what I'd seen, I had never felt colder. I wanted to start screaming. All the encouraging and sweet words people say to someone who's returned made me feel sick. I'm not entirely sure why. It gave me an idea as to why Jordan and I became so distant. He could be kind to me and I would feel absolutely nothing. I would be an asshole to him and I would feel in love again.
By the same token that I don't handle kindness well, I also don't behave particularly kindly to those I am closest to. I am something of a bully, and I think this is a habit that intelligent people tend to form. I am an emotional scientist, and I conduct inhumane experiments on my loved ones so I can understand how feelings work, because they are confusing and intricate to me and I don't seem to have them at the times they are appropriate to have. Because of this, I can be perceived as somewhat masculine, because I am not particularly expressive; it's not that I'm not emotional, it's just that until I test how other people have feelings, I genuinely don't have a model for how to express them.
This is where being female is an advantage, because men, for the most part, can simply tolerate shit being flung at them a lot better than women, who are more inclined to move out of the way. I have been very cruel to a lot of people just to see what would happen and they let me because they don't see anything bad on the horizon. Little do they know that I am very good at hurting people, and I am looking for ways to do it, even if not imminently. I used to write poetry, which I've been leafing through and realizing that I have been very aware of this problem for a lot longer than I'd like to admit without ever really dealing with it:
"Like a bullet I ripped through you, turned your feelings into meat, because that's the only way I knew to get close to you."
This tendency to be cruel, to desire to be cruel as a way to be close to people, is typically what I refer to as the Kokadrille. It both is and isn't me, but personified as something else, it has been a lot easier to deal with, and it is delighted in my decision to run away from home, it has a lot it wants to talk to me about. If I really have been going through the stages of loss, I've been stuck in denial and bargaining for the past nine months. No wonder Kokadrille feels ready to hatch right now when I need anger and sorrow the most.
This will take awhile.
About A Blog
I'm a Denver Comedian, occasional cartoonist and person of interest to someone, probably. These articles are really too long.