10/11/15

Technically it’s coming out day.

It’s a confusing topic for me since, yes obviously, I’m dating/in love with a girl, but…in terms of my sexuality I can’t honestly place myself on a scale. I don’t say that to sound ~different~ or ~special~ (like why the fuck would I even want to be that?) but just honestly it’s the fact that I have been with very very few individuals in my life and without the data, I can’t construct an accurate pattern. I’m probably somewhere floating in between and often times its frustrating (probably not to others, but to myself) that I can’t pin it down.

Today is the sort of day that reminds me: it’s easier to tell people you’re dating a girl when you can tell them that you’re gay.

At this point, in my life everyone who is anyone knows. This happened in phases over a few years. First a few (queer) college friends, more college friends, my sister, my parents (who knew long before I confirmed anything) and lastly, our high school friends.

I will have no idea what it is like to come out about her all at once, in a Facebook/Twitter/Instagram blast. Rather, for me, the process has happened over and over again with some stellar and some terrible results.

My favorite has to be my younger sister. I called her during the spring of my freshman year after some more of my college friends had figured it out. It was important to me that if these people, who I had known for <9 months knew that, she should to. So I called her, she asked how K was and I said “well, speaking of…” She was hysterical in the best possible way, crying from happiness and from just being so overwhelmed with the news. She kept repeating how happy she was for us through her sobbing which in turn got me pretty emotional as you might guess. It’s a moment between us that just reaffirmed her status in my life as one of my biggest cheerleaders and confidants despite now living apart.

But other times have been far less than ideal.

Just this May, my mother cornered me (as I sat in the passenger seat of the car, what a typical suburban mom move) and asked me flat out if her suspicions had merit. I fumbled as I repeated a few times that “yes, yeah, well like yes” she was indeed correct.

In June, I told two of my best high school friends over lunch before they both went out of the country for the summer. (A bit of a chicken move, I know) They asked a lot of questions and I tried to explain as much as I could: the nature of it, the timeline, the confusion, the reason they didn’t hear earlier.

What breaks me about these two instances is this:

I waited so long. Obviously there were reasons for waiting. Some were more subtle and had to do with a desire for privacy or how to explain and contextualize something that confused me so much. Others were explicit, as in she told me that really, truly under no circumstances did she want people to know. I had maybe a dozen reasons to wait, some legitimate while others were less so.

Here’s the thing that’s harder to explain to others than it may seem: Not a single reason had to do with being scared that my parents or my high school friends wouldn’t support me.

Yet, it’s easy to take it personally. For example, one of my closest high school friends who I told over that lunch took a train ride to follow up with me on the subject. To explain, among other things, that she was incredibly disappointed and upset with me. She felt as though she hasn’t known the real me for the past three years, that she had been lied to, cheated. I stayed so stoic the whole time, just apologizing with a straight face, but on the inside all I could think about was how she never cries, not ever. But there she was, crying on the floor of the train station and all I could think was that the last time I had seen here like that had been four summers ago when she cried in front of me just twice: once, to tell me her grandmother’s cancer had returned and second, at the funeral.

I had caused her pain because she felt as though the fact that I hadn’t told her meant that there was something inherently flawed about her as a friend or about our relationship. Since the sentiment was completely honest, I tried to reiterate that worn out, cliche line “it wasn’t you! it was me!” and that’s how I broke up with my childhood best friend on dirty linoleum as Amtrak called her train.

My mom is a big girl. She has kept secrets from her parents and from her children and she understands what I did. But what really gets under my skin is that there might be a small part of her that blames herself. She might, somewhere deep down, have the same feelings as my high school friend and think that I did not tell her because I did not love or trust her. I can’t take that, not because it’s bullshit, but because she has been nothing but totally supportive and loving all of my life and I really would not be able to bear it if she blamed herself, even a little bit. She is a mom that everyone wants and no one gets and if I made her think otherwise, even for the briefest of moments, I don’t know how I could live with myself.

What gets to me about the pressure of coming out day or a culture that demands total transparency is that as a result I’ve completely screwed over people I love deeply and, maybe worst of all, I don’t have the courage to apologize.

xx

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10/8/15

It’s been a weird day. Like I don’t even think my thoughts are coherent enough to make a real post, so forgive the prose in advance?

Okay.

First, I had a Logic midterm today. Fuck that shit. Last night I had a great monologue about how grateful I am to be in an environment where my soul purpose is to learn and grow. It’s an environment where I can fail within limited parameters. I am so lucky to be one of the dumber people in the room because that means that I’ll never be bored and I’ll have so much to learn. I’m at a place where, during my senior year, I would have given an arm and a leg to be failing any class here.

And that’s all fine and dandy except when you get into the room, they hand out the exam and you’re madly scribbling in your bluebook.

In that moment: it’s not about the big picture, taking a step back or appreciating my education, it’s just about me not getting all of the material and feeling like an absolute blubbering idiot about it.

Imposter syndrome is so fucking real, I can’t even.

The first day of orientation, during convocation some dean had to explain to me what that was and I was young and confidant in what I had done before being here and so I was just like ‘huh, that’s interesting…’ and now I’m just like jesus christ story of my fucking life haHAhaha.

For me, the feeling of inadequacy is so hard to shake and it just seems latent, like lingering under the surface and then springs up all at once on days like today.

It’s not even really about doing well on this exam/ in this class/ during this semester.

It’s just about walking around this school, overhearing conversations, looking on social media, sneaking a peak at other people’s lives and just understanding that objectively yours is a dumbed down, less rigorous, less interesting version of theirs.

(& other shit today too – low motivation, 15 min passive aggressive fights over the phone, idk idk idk…)

till next time

xo, ur angsty inferior twentyteen

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What keeps me up at night

There will come a point in time when, if we want a real future together, she’ll have to run head first into a wall, smash everything in sight. She will be guilted or threatened, called names. (Would they hit her for it?) That scenario isn’t a fear exactly, it’s a fact. It’s, as I like to say, a memory that hasn’t happened yet.

What scares me is this:

Outcome 1: She tries, she fails. They convince her, they pin her down. And she can’t- “I’m sorry J, but I can’t anymore… You have to understand, it’s not my fault…”

What scares me worse:

Outcome 2: She tries, she succeeds. She refuses their money, agrees never to come home again and slowly, excruciatingly peels off her family like worn dead skin. Then a month, two months, 5 years, a decade later, I fuck up hard. I cheat, gamble away the house, I go behind her back and I dissolve all of the trust we once had.

I’m scared that she will risk it all and in the end I won’t have had the decency, the courage, the whatever-it-is to have been worth it.

That I shouldn’t have made her go through all of that just to be with me because, in the end, I don’t know how to promise happily ever after despite feigning smiles to suggest the contrary.

But we’re young(?) and often I’m just smiling because of pure happiness. So I keep my lips closed tight when we talk and when I try to sleep my eyes are wide open playing our future out over and over and over.

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10/1/15

It’s been a while and it doesn’t surprise me. I’ve always been flaky when it comes to journaling and this blog was no exception. Like other times I’ve forced myself to write, it’s easier to do so when I need an outlet and last year (like the year before that) I most need to vent during The Bad Month(s).

Looking back it’s one of my first journals where not every entry makes me want to rip the pages out. Perhaps since most of it seems relatively fresh I haven’t been extremely critical of my work as always happens. Obviously there are some rough patches: clear typos, quoting HoC like a drama queen, what was even up with my last entry about RH??

It’s not to say that I’ve totally abandoned this project.

I rolled out of bed this morning onto cold floorboards. The sky today is gray, gray gray. Summer has come and gone.

The school year has really, truly begun. And I don’t mean to be pessimistic when I say this, but the Bad Month(s) have yet to come and when they arrive I’m sure you’ll hear all about it.

xx

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3/5/15

My guilty pleasure is… *drumroll please*… the Real Housewives. And not just New York or Beverly Hills (although those are my favorite), but all of them.

I can name just about every housewife, recap the latest drama for you, pick sides during the sensational reunion episodes and talk about them practically all day if given the chance.

I love the Real Housewives franchise because it is one of the most absurd productions I have ever witnessed. The materiality is stunning and captivating while simultaneously being so excessive that it is nauseating. The fights that are so staged all boil down to the fact that the producers picked women with enormous egos. There is rarely anything of substance which makes it a perfect break from any sort of reality that weighs me down.

And while I love the franchise for the escape it creates for me, I’m not sure how I can support such an enterprise particularly as a feminist.

There are some things people find problematic about the show that I don’t personally take too much offense to. The term “housewife” for example, doesn’t bother me. I’m supportive of the wives on the show who have chosen to be full time mothers, just as I am supportive of the ones that have chosen to balance motherhood with a career. I don’t think the term is necessarily pejorative, rather it attempts (with little success) to be descriptive. Others claim that these women are exploited. While certainly there are moments on the show where the women (and their families) would rather the camera be off, they signed up for the show themselves. Besides for this voluntary contract, most women actually end up benefitting financially from the exposure (and at times notoriety) that they gain on the show.

My problem with the Real Housewives can be summed up when Madeleine Albright said, “there’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.” If you watch the show, you know that during expensive dinner parties, trips to Bali, etc. all the women end up doing is bashing one another. Drinks fly, prosthetic legs get thrown and oh boy do they cry and cry and cry. There is backstabbing, gossip, outright yelling and physical altercations ad nauesam. And I grab dinner, recline on my couch and watch all of the malice and spite unfold.

How can I possibly get enjoyment from watching women tear one another down? Hint: I shouldn’t; thus the “guilty” in guilty pleasure.

And how do I justify this to myself? Simply, deluding myself.

My grand conspiracy theory (which you are free to borrow) is this: The women have a master plan. They know when to fight and how to fight and what to fight about just to get the most views possible. Their ratings go through the roof, they get more money, all while calling each other behind the scenes to plan their next fight. They drink white wine together and scheme, giggling as they tap their scripts into their iPhones, ready for battle. Soon, one day, at a reunion, they overtake Andy Cohen and the rest of the Bravo executives who are making bank off of them show. In a grand demonstration (all being filmed, of course) they cast off their exploitation, debunk the entire myth, hold hands and giggle as they prance out into the sunset. Their work here is done.

This is how a self-proclaimed feminist can justify her pleasure in an outright problematic form of entertainment.

Moral of the story? Anyone can delude themselves about anything.

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3/4/15

Tonight, under the dim light, I ate parpardelle with short rib ragu. I soaked up the remainder of rich red sauce with the bread at the table. I licked it off my lips.

For dessert, we split a slice of chocolate cake. I took greedy forkfuls of it and washed its sweetness down with cold, crisp water.

I left under a drizzle. The air was warm, easy to inhale, and the pavement felt fresh, anew. The snow was finally melting and the movement of the streams that formed between the sidewalk and road were illuminated by street lamps. I walked the mile home, admiring the closing of stores and the pedestrians under their umbrellas. I wondered whom they were going home to.

I was full, warm, and practically walking on air. Tonight, the first warm evening of winter, was nothing short of a gift.

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2/28/15

“You know what takes real courage?” snarls Frank. “Holding it all together when the stakes are this high.”

Now, I’m certainly no President of the United States or someone with an ounce of the insane ambition of Frank and Claire Underwood, yet, somehow, I feel as though the stakes are rather high.

In the show though, Frank looks for every opportunity to raise the stakes until he ascends to the pinnacle of power. He’s on a frantic marathon, doing whatever it takes to claw up the ladder. In my life, it’s more like I live my daily life, and only when I stop to take stock of it all, I realize the water I’m treading in is slowly rising.

Of course, I’m no where close to drowning. Perhaps that feeling will come when I’m working full-time, trying to raise a family, attempting to “have it all.” (Can you tell I had to read Lean In this week for class? Can you tell that being a career woman with kids scares me shitless? But I digress…)

Yet, the journey towards that moment, when the stakes become far too high, is well underway almost without my realization.

I’m treading. I’m keeping up appearances, faking it until I make it. But why? I used to think it was because all of it (keeping my grades us, my friends close and a smile on my face) would make me happy. I’m not so sure that’s true anymore.

You don’t tread to find spirituality, peace, happiness. You tread because otherwise you drown. You tread because it is your duty, your purpose all in the name of self-preservation.

You tread because there is no viable alternative.

It’s inevitable that the water will keep rising. I have a decent amount on my plate but I still have enough time to watch all of Season 3 of House of Cards this weekend, for example. It’s not a matter of draining a pool that’s being filled faster than I can empty it.

It’s about figuring out some way to swim.

Pardon the cliche metaphor, it’s all I have right now and while it’s about as cheesy as one can get I believe that the sentiment is there.

I do my reading, I go to lecture and I get eight(ish) hours of sleep a night. I ask my friends about their days, tell my tutee to work hard in school and reply promptly to emails. I run errands, respect my bosses and listen to the traffic outside of my dorm room window. Amid it all, I’m not fulfilled by any of it as I once was.

Perhaps this is the sophomore slump in me. On top of it, the cold weather encourages me to curl up in my room, I don’t walk to clear my mind. So of course the pattern of the past couple of weeks – eating Nutella with a spoon as I do homework surf the web – gets old quick.

I tell myself it’s that, it’s only that – temporary. After all, twentyteens are notorious for their mood swings, their flip flopping and general instability.

Yet, there are moments when I’m treading where I swallow some water, sputter, choke, cough, gasp – breathe, breathe, breathe –

it’s okay, it’s okay –

breathe, breathe, breathe –

but everything is so fragile – breathe, breathe, breathe – everything is precarious – breathe, breathe, bre-fuck it

everything is not okay. i’m neither courageous nor in charge nor fulfilled. i’m losing steam and worst of all, i don’t know how to save myself.

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