Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Remember the Time

I didn't want to keep writing about him since he made it clear he didn't want me thinking about him anymore but Timehop reminded me that on this day, three years ago, Emmett came back into my life.


I hadn't heard from him in six months and a friend had invited me to stay with her Tokyo for a few weeks. Airfare was cheap and I hopped at the chance. I posted on Facebook that I was planning on being in Japan for 3 weeks; making plans with friends of mine teaching English there across the country. At this point, Emmett had left six months prior and I hadn't yet heard from him - and didn't know if I would.

And then suddenly, he was active on Facebook - which he hadn't been for the six months he'd been gone. He hadn't contacted me yet so I was upset. I updated my status to "Well, I guess that's settled." - a  slight at him, seeing as he was still alive and living his life and obviously couldn't care about me. He commented on my status that "Things tend to settle during flight." I ignored it. He was always kind of snarky and cheeky.

Then he sent me a message. A mutual friend had told him I was coming to Japan and, if I wasn't too busy, he was hoping I would come and stay with him; he'd love to see me again and show me where he lived. I was angry and apprehensive about it. How could you just turn up out of the blue and expect me to be ok? Expect this to be ok? I said, well, I supposed I did have some time unaccounted for that I could stay a few days. I reserved my final week in Japan to stay with him in a tiny mountain town called Yokote, four hours north of Tokyo.


I had spent the weekend drinking and laughing with friends in Osaka and Hiroshima. And on a dreary Sunday afternoon, I boarded a Shinkansen back to Osaka, then to Tokyo, and further on to a place I'd never heard of called Omagari, in Akita Prefecture, where Emmett said he would pick me up. It took 9 hours start to finish. Three trains and three climate changes and I was there. It was late and I'd taken my contact lens out on the train and put on my velour sweatpants, hair in a pony tail. I hadn't showered since we'd spent all night in a karaoke bar and I passed out on a friend's couch. But I was nervous and my keitai had died and now here I was with the train doors opening into this frigid climate.


My backpack on and giant rolling suitcase in one hand, I stepped out onto the platform. I looked up and I could see his silhouette looking down on me from the observation deck. I nervously got on one escalator and then another, heart beating out of my chest, fumbling with my rail pass for the gate agent as I saw him waiting patiently on the other side for me. He looked different, older; his face acne scarred by the climate change. Once I cleared the gate, we half hugged and he awkwardly sought out an elevator. We looked at each other stone faced, trying to hide our nervousness, and loaded my things into his Saab; an interesting choice of car for someone teaching English in Japan. Most of my friends drove tiny kei cars; cheap little aluminum boxes - but somehow, this suited him, suited his personality. He would have driven something like this in the States if he made enough, I suppose. Then again, he drove a Honda Civic when he was living in Ohio when I'd known him then. Maybe this was an upgrade.

He fumbled with the GPS on his phone, trying to figure out how to get back. He almost ran a red light and I yelled at him. We stopped at a diner for pancakes and coffee. (Well, I got pancakes. He just got soup.) And then, a short while later, we'd arrived at his apartment complex which was named Moulin Rouge - although far from the French landmark. I began to unpack my things: presents I'd brought for him like Burt's Bees lotion and Kraft Mac & Cheese powder. I told him I was going to take a shower. I washed all my parts and shaved from head to toe. I'd been waiting for this moment for months. I wanted everything to be perfect. To feel his kiss, his touch, his embrace again. I'd been waiting. And I emerged in my pajamas and we sat on his couch - on opposite sides of his couch - and talked about my journey.

And then, like two high schoolers, we were suddenly in a ferocious lip lock. Our glasses clinked together comically and we stopped and threw them off and continued to kiss, to ravage each other. I straddled him and let my wet hair envelope his pockmarked face. I kissed his soft lips as his mustache tickled underneath my nose and then he took me and threw me down onto the futon on the floor. He kissed my neck and took off my shirt and began to kiss my breasts, down my stomach, pulling down my pants which slid off my hips that were thin from being worn out waiting for him. I was naked and exposed and I just wanted what I'd been waiting so long for. He kissed my inner thighs.

I flipped him and mounted him and removed his shirt, undid his belt, unzipped his pants. I just couldn't wait and I took him into my mouth and he teased, moving his cock away from my lips. I flicked my tongue and he'd jerk himself back just out of reach, then I'd take him deep again until he just couldn't take it anymore. He cut to the chase, pulling me by my arms up to face him, kissing me passionately before he flipped me on to my back, and then entered me. And we fucked and fucked and made up for those past six months with every thrust and scratch and scrape and pulse and grip. We came together, just like we always had. And we fell asleep in each other's arms.

I woke up the next morning to his alarm going off for work and the first thing he did was spoon me from behind and kiss my shoulder. Then he got up and showered and I watched him get dressed for work, wishing that day could be my every day. He kissed me goodbye, told me there was soda in the fridge and a key for the locker for the bicycle if I wanted to go out, but he'd be back at noon. I woke up and made some eggs and uploaded pictures and watching some TV and then took a nap.

He woke me up by whispering in my ear that I probably shouldn't leave the door unlocked. I gasped.


By the end of the week, I'd gotten so used to him that I wished I hadn't had to leave. But Emmett got dressed for work and we drove back to the train in minimal silence and I got my ticket and he hugged and kissed me swiftly even though I could hear him starting to choke up and I boarded my train back to Tokyo in tears behind my sunglasses.

And I cried all the way to the airport and in the airport and on the plane until I fell asleep because I knew that this was the man that I was supposed to love and spend the rest of my life with and I knew deep down somewhere that something was going to prevent it from happening.


And it turns out that something was me.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Final Countdown

Soon I won't be a "twenty-something" anymore; I am on the verge of 30. And then what happens?

My life is going to be perfect. Everything is going to magically fall into place and fix itself and I'll be happy and I won't need this blog anymore. Because that's what happens when you're in your thirties, right?

People are getting engaged and married and having babies and here I still am, still trying to sort out the mess of the last decade and can't seem to see the light at the end of that tunnel. I was told that it does get better once you turn thirty, but I feel like it's in such an ambiguous way, like when they do those "It Gets Better" videos for the bullied kids. I'm still living alone, waking up hungover, eating junk for dinner, pretending to give a shit, letting others believe this charade I'm putting on.

"Oh, I don't even know if I ever want to get married. I can't even fathom what love really is because every time I thought I had it, it was all just bullshit. Maybe love doesn't even really exist - not in my universe, anyway. I just can't see myself living with someone and settling down and doing boring stuff and merging our things and our personalities and our lives and our groceries."

That's all my bullshit. My wall. My defense mechanisms.

I watched this week's episode of GIRLS and I realized more and more how much I can relate to Hannah, when she says, "Please don't tell anyone this, but I want to be happy. I realized I'm not different. I want what everyone wants. I want what they want. I want all the things. I just want to be happy", because these are the same things that I say to myself; these are the same things that I feel.

I self-deprecate and I engage in behaviors that aren't good for me. I keep people at distances even when I want to draw them so close and so near to me. I try not to let people in and let them get under my skin and then when they do, when I feel things, when I hurt like normal people are supposed to, I'm afraid and offended and scared and brush them off, shut back down, shut them out. Because I want to feel things and I want to let people in and I'm not sure I remember how. I've had people playfully call me a cold-hearted bitch before, and maybe they've been right all along. Maybe everyone else can see it but me.


My friend and I had a conversation about how we let the wrong people fill certain voids in our lives because we hope the right people will come along and take their place. Sometimes I feel like I'm just cramming all these people into this void to stop an open, gaping wound; staunch the hemorrhaging of all my emotions. I spring a leak and then just use someone else to plug the hole. It becomes a never-ending cycle and I'm never happy.

Emmett told me that I was never going to love anyone until I learned to love myself. He said even if I got my dream job and found the perfect guy and moved back to NY, I'd still be miserable and he's probably right. Everyone makes it sound so easy, "loving yourself". I don't even know if I know what it means to love. When was the last time I felt it? I thought it was with Emmett, but he told me that he didn't love me, was never going to love me. And I look back and try to think who else might have loved me once before? Did I know? Did I remember how that felt? How I could try and close my eyes and go deep inside myself to search for that feeling's warmth and bring it to the surface, smell it, drink it in, use it to satiate this hunger. Use it to help me remember and revive the love that is supposed to be inside me, inside all of us.


So here's to the home stretch, the final year before I turn 30. The quest for me to see if all the rumors are true. That life can get better. That I can learn to love myself and others again. That I can be that emotion that has evaded me for so long: Here's to the pursuit of Happiness.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

(Not) Thinking of You

You told me we’re not doing this anymore and so, I’m not thinking about you.

I’m not thinking about the first time we met in Grand Central Station and how your eyes lit up like a little kid on Christmas. I’m not thinking about the way you pressed me up against a window in a Manhattan hotel room and kissed me for the first time. How the sparks between us were so intense they could have kept Times Square lit for a year. I’m certainly not thinking about how intensely in sync we are in bed together or how we came together almost every single time.

Another thing I’m not thinking about is how I met you in Cincinnati for your 30th birthday. How we stuck our heads in those silly cutouts at that festival or how I laid my head on your shoulder while we watched them feed otters at the aquarium. I’m not thinking about how you held me close and told me you never wanted me to leave Ohio. Or how that cafĂ© we had dinner at was playing The Smiths. I’m not thinking about how you held me in the pool as I wrapped my legs around your waist and my arms around your neck and how you kissed me and I felt like this was the first time in a long time that I knew I loved someone again.

I’m not thinking about seeing your silhouette looking down at me from the waiting room of a Japanese train station as I got off a 9 hour train ride to see you. Or how our glasses banged together like two teenagers when we finally got up the nerve to just thrust our mouths at one another after months of being apart, and how we tossed them off comedically and continued making out. I’m absolutely not thinking about how you woke up the next morning and the first thing you did was put your arms around me from behind and kiss my shoulder before you went to work.

I’m also definitely not thinking about how, when I was lying in my underwear on a bed in a hotel in Houston, you emerged from the bathroom, calmly walked past me, ran your fingers up my torso, went to the door to put on the “Do Not Disturb” sign and proceeded to ravage me sweetly. Or how you adjusted the flower in my hair with the utmost care so that you could see it head on. How at midnight on New Year’s you said, “Well, I guess we’re supposed to kiss now”, pulled me to your waist, parted your lips and placed them softly against mine. I’m not thinking about how when I said I’d miss you, you replied “I never miss you; I have good aim.”

I’m not thinking about the hours we spent talking on the phone or the IMs or the webcam chats or the sexting or the emails we’d send each other at work. About all the smiles and laughs and hugs and forehead kisses and handholds. Or the hours I spent crying over you and missing you from 9000 miles away. Or about the phone call you made from the airport in Minnesota where you told me you were no good for me, that I was too smart, that I should find someone better.

I’m not thinking about any of those things at all.

Because we’re not doing this anymore.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The One

Everyone around you is coupled up and you feel like you’re the only one left standing. They are cohabitating and getting engaged and getting married and you’re buying frozen dinners for one at the grocery store. You contemplate if you’ll ever find “the one”, that person who makes everything in the world make sense. Who gets your obscure jokes and likes that worn out grey band t-shirt you wear to bed sometimes. Who doesn’t mind sitting in the aisle seat all the time and who lets you eat the last donut. You wonder if maybe that person has been in your life all along and you’ve just accidentally passed them over, so you run through your mental catalog of all the people from your past who could possibly be “the one”. 

The boy who you had a torrid and short-lived love affair with; who came to visit at your dorm while surviving a 9 hour trip on the Chinatown bus during a snowstorm. Who stayed on the phone with you late at night while you read poetry to him and he told you how much your prose turned him on. How you took his virginity late one night in his room at his mother’s house on Staten Island. How he held you in the living room after watching Menace to Society, and said I love you in the lights of the Christmas tree. And then how he broke your heart and said it was all a lie; that you didn’t really love him, that he was a tortured soul. And yet, you still held this connection, this bond, on and off again for so many years, finally reuniting recently during Thanksgiving. Older, wiser, a little worn for haul – but he had sent you a text reminding you that you’d promised to marry him when you turned 30. You lol’d and wrote back saying, hold on, I’m not quite there yet.

A boy you met through an Internet dating site that you went on a few mediocre dates with and when he kissed you, it felt like kissing your brother. It was underwhelming and there was never any chemistry, but you still hung out and you still slept in his bed, but you never let him see you naked. And both of you would text each other to hang out every few months; you’d wonder if things would change next time you saw him, but it was always a well-worn friendship and never anything more. 

And then there’s the one that you thought was “the one”. Who was quick witted with even more obscure jokes and who never let you wear that grey band t-shirt to bed because you were too busy making love and falling asleep naked spooning each other. Who showed you the best and worst of yourself back to you like a mirror and kept urging you to grow into the person you are one day going to be. Who started making everything make sense in your life until the day you realized that you were never doing the same things in return for him. The one who told you that he couldn’t love you because love needs to be nourished and fed, even though he was the one nourishing and feeding your love of him for three years. 

None of these guys are “the one”. 

Maybe you’ve met “the one” already and maybe you haven’t. Maybe “the one” doesn’t exist at all. And so what? Who cares? For now, just be the only one you need.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I don't even know what I'm doing with my life. I don't know what I want to do. I'm afraid that I'm doing it all wrong. That everything I do is terrible and I'm going to wind up miserable and shitty and pissed off because I'm not good at anything. I got this internship to write for a food blog-paper thing, and I thought I was a good writer but apparently I'm bad at this or just don't know what to do with vague criticism and no direction (this is why I was not a journalism major).

And I hate being here & hate my job, but I have the potential to move to NY and do a higher level of my job and possibly either hate it more or hate it slightly less since I'd be living in a city that I love and making more money to dull the pain.

But I've also possibly got the opportunity to take a similar job for less then I make now (possibly a lot less) in Singapore. Which would be a great and fun experience and when would I ever get to do that again - provided I get this job and pull enough money out of my ass to move to and live in Singapore?

Singapore would be fun & I could travel and have all kinds of experiences and see the world and do things I never imagined and then maybe write about it - or at the very least start a blog about it. And it could open up the door to so many different opportunities & possibilities in the future.

While NY is my eventual "end game" plan, and it's sitting within reach now, do I want to subject myself to the same bullshit, different geography? Or do I take major risk and move halfway around the world with barely any money into something that I might even like or be able to afford to do?

At least the trying to live in Japan thing offered some sense of security, some sense of camaraderie with other people on similar positions; but I don't know anyone in Singapore.

I just don't want to sit around and look back on this whole scenario and wonder if I made a mistake like I already do when I think about moving to Philadelphia. And I don't want to think I missed a chance to do something amazing because I was held back by fear or money. I also don't want money & location to be my motivating factor behind my decision.

...so what do I do? What should I do?

Maybe I should just turn them both down and keep waiting for something better to come along. Maybe just because this is here doesn't mean it's right.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Passing thoughts

Staring at a blank screen, cursor flashing, and my mind is just as blank. I’m not where I want to be. Emotionally, physically, career-wise; I just feel lost and disappointed in myself. Like, you could be better than this, you know? You could be doing so much more than this, be more, write more, and feel more. Everything always just starts to feel forced: the smiles, the writing, the laughter.

I want to like him and then I second guess myself. Am I doing that thing that I do again? The over-analyzing the other person because I’m holding them up to that standard, comparing them to him up there on the pedestal? You can’t do that – I tell myself – they’re not the same; they’ll never be the same. So what if he doesn’t make you laugh? So what if you don’t have butterflies in your stomach when you’re kissing? So what? You’re still having a good time, so – what?

Everyone here makes me feel insecure. Everyone is a better writer than me, established better in their careers, has more connections, more notches on their resume, bylines to show for it. I’m a fucking great writer, aren’t I? Why can’t I do that shit? Why can’t anyone seem to see how great I am? Everyone here is more athletic than me, going to the gym every day, running marathons, being active. Why am I just so lazy about it all? Where is the fire I can light under my ass to get me to really want to get out there and bust my ass for it? I feel like everyone my age it doing more than I am and I can’t just seem to get it together.
I keep telling myself I’ll try more, harder, to be better. But then I just get to a screen and everything goes blank. I don’t want to do anything about it. I am stagnant.

I know I can, I know I can, I know I can. But I can’t.

I’m preoccupied at the thought of the future, of not wanting to be here, of him. 


Of wanting to be with him; like he is the key to make the rest of these pieces fall into place. If he were with me, I would be happy. And then we could go somewhere and live together and be happy together. He would inspire me and motivate me and encourage me. Because he gets me – he gets what I’m about and what I do and what I want to do, where I want to be – because we’re so much the same.

I read through his blog the other day and cried. The way he writes makes me so envious, it’s so beautiful and poetic. His entries are sporadic just like mine. Sometimes they are epic novels and sometimes they are short stories. Sometimes they make a difference and sometimes they are just random thoughts. I want to write my story with him, write the story of our future together.

I hate everything else I have to say. It all seems so trivial. The world is so much bigger than we all are and why make a mountain out of our anthills of problems?

I hate my novel because I hate that it feels phony; I can’t convey all these thoughts of loss of a loved one since I’ve never really lost someone I loved. I based the idea on my loss of him but he never really went away, and he was never really mine to begin with. That’s why it’s so terrible. That’s why I have an ending that was just a cheater’s way out since I couldn’t figure out how to end it since things were never ended. It doesn’t even make any sense and it’s just cheap filler. It’s like when you eat something that makes you feel terrible and bloated right after but then you’re starving again a few hours later. Or if you ate something expensive or something that you hoped would taste great but was bland and flavorless, and you felt guilty about it, about how you were so excited for it and then hated it but you still had to pretend to like it anyway.

To be honest - I’m worried that’s how our relationship would be. Bland and flavorless, even though we hoped it would be mind-blowing.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I'm Not Sorry

You know what? I take it all back. I'm not sorry.

I have no remorse. I'm a big girl now and I'll do whatever the fuck I want.

All my life I have been mousy, meek, passive, pushed around, used, taken advantage of. I let people use their leverage against me to guilt me, make me pity them, make me feel sorry for the bullshit they have done to me, make me feel like I don't have the right to just walk away, like I have to give a shit about you when you couldn't give two shits about me. I let those thoughts consume me, eat away at me, hold me down with their emotional baggage while I tried to find a way to apologize and make things right, to life these weights off my chest when I was never the one who put them there; I was trying to apologize for things that weren't my fault.

I no longer want to feel jailed by my actions or guilted by the thought of the feelings of the others that I have hurt. I'm getting too old for that. 

I am not that girl anymore.

And if you don't like it, get the fuck over it.

/I'm done.