If we thought we could do better

Almost everyone does the best they can do at the time. I see this in my own life and when I watch my friends struggle and grow. Some people are so ignorant. They think people are lazy or make excuses. Sometimes that’s true. But believe me, if we thought we could do better—be better—we would. If we thought we could jump higher, we would, we would soar!

If I thought I was a treasure, I would polish myself till I gleamed, and come out of that bottle the most beautiful genie. If they thought they were worth it, my friends would put down their razors and make their beds and sleep for eight hours. If we knew in our hearts that we could achieve something wonderful, we would. But we are afraid. We don’t think it’s true.

Sometimes it’s a struggle to get out of bed, make food, do my homework. So little things don’t seem important. They seem ridiculous.

How can my teacher be angry that I was 2 minutes late? I’m proud I even got to class. 

Someone wants me to sit them at a larger booth.

I have to use the term “folks” instead of “guys” bc it’s more inclusive? Get fucked.

I still care, which is the worst. I care too much about the little things and not enough about the important things. I am a zombie. So please, be considerate and communicative with depressed and anxious people. “It’s not like we can’t handle criticism,” said a friend. “I’m not going to kill myself if you don’t like something I’ve done.”

But please understand that I have a lot going on my mind, often things I haven’t shared.

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Worries

I worry all the time, it seems. Or lament about my failures. Why am I not in a relationship? What is wrong with me? What type of person does this stuff? I’m stupid and ridiculous. I’m tired of it.

There’s this inner tension inside my heart—have sex, even if it’s meaningless, or be celibate and look for a relationship? I’ve had…maybe one ‘relationship.’ I was 17 and he was 25. It lasted a month after I realized I was not what he needed right now (which was a therapist.) I still miss our talks, though, and sometimes I wonder if I made the right decision. But as my mother says, “Do something right, or don’t do it at all.”

I started dating this guy in March, and I was into him. I loved the intimacy and the way he looked at me. I wasn’t crazy about him, though. I kind of knew it wouldn’t work because he and I are so different. He’s in a whole different sphere of creation; music. And I need someone who understands and appreciates my creativity. No, who urges my creativity and supports it. We need to have a shared passion. I remember going to Julianna Baggott’s reading a few years ago, and she said something so inspiring, something like this:

My husband doesn’t just tolerate my writing; he says, “Go write, you need to write.” He understands that I need to be creative, and that’s the man that I fell in love with, that I am still in love with.

I need that. I need someone creative, intelligent, adventurous. I want to dive and climb and eat and race.

In all the time I’ve worried about this stuff, I could have been on adventures. I could have written novels. I could have gotten to a better place and fallen in love.

Even though I know he doesn’t care about me, that our small connection has trickled and vanished… I’m still hurt. I cared about us together, even if I didn’t really like him in a deep way. If you like someone, you

  • ***brag about them***
  • reference them randomly
  • in fact, make excuses to talk about them
  • or see them
  • think of them and smile
  • love the stupid things they do
  • ***value their opinion***
  • tease them
  • get nervous around them

This is just a bit of stuff I came up with on the fly. Thinking about this stuff, I realize I did tease him. I did get really nervous. I did always want to talk about him, because I was happy in those few weeks we saw each other. But that was before I knew him better. Sometimes it just happens that way—it’s not that they’re a bad person or they deceived you. It’s just not a good fit.

And I think that’s why I’m hurt. Because I miss the intimacy and vulnerability (nothing is so sexy as vulnerability. It’s so wonderful when someone opens themselves up to you). No one’s ever held my hand like it was natural, like they wanted to. No one’s ever kissed me in public before.

I don’t know why I’m sharing this with you, readers. I guess it’s a comfort that there are so few of you out there and I may rant as I please. I’ll leave you with some Jane Austen:

“The last few hours were certainly very painful,” replied Anne: “but when pain is over, the remembrance of it often becomes a pleasure. One does not love a place the less for having suffered in it, unless it has been all suffering, nothing but suffering.” Persuasion

Hypocrisy

I am unaware of how my life must seem to others. Is it fulfilling, is it youthful, is it prosperous, is it naive, is it desperate? Yes. Probably. But often times I forget to look at other lives. I forget that we are all intricate creatures, that one person prefers blueberry jam, and another prefers blackberry. That’s a weird analogy. I sometimes am baffled by other people. And I become hypocritical. It’s like I think everyone should be made in my image and philosophies.

This past month, Indiana has been a hotbed of controversy. Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act became a law, and people started freaking out about it, left and right. I personally see how much harm it’s done to our reputation, and worry that this will give religious organizations freedom to discriminate. I am an LGBT and reproductive rights advocate–I’m really annoyed by the people that decide they can refuse service because the customer is doing something against the person’s moral code.

This post got me angry:

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This is a post from a customer of mine at the coffeehouse on campus. I Facebooked him after cashiering one day and realizing I wanted to have him on that counter right then and there (sorry, Mom). In other words, he is the hottest thing since hot fries and that Nymphomaniac scene where Shia LaBeouf goes down on a chick. Wow. I just watched that scene after typing that and I’m breathless now. Aaaaaannnywaaaaay, the point is that I was lusting after this guy until he wrote this. Then I deleted him.

He came into Starbucks yesterday. My breath caught in my throat and I didn’t know how to act. Should I bring it up? No, that wouldn’t do any good. So I was distant. And he wondered at it, I could tell. Then I thought, “Is this a good enough reason to cut someone out of your life?”

Am I a hypocrite? Am I only accepting of others if they fit my lifestyle, my liberal, feminist, queer-rights lifestyle? Yes, I think so. I don’t think I’m a tolerant person anymore. I think I’ve changed.

The End to a Year: What I Learned and What I Still Don’t Understand

As the year evaporates from under my feet, it’s best to reflect on the life lessons and the intellectual paradoxes that made up my first-year experience. I only have a week before I say goodbye to some friends, and leave to go back home.

I’ve Learned…

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You really can’t judge a human by it’s cover

True, first impressions are really important. But more often than not, what you see is a small percentage of what you get. Someone may seem really messed up or prissy or just plain stupid, but then they turn out to be brilliant, creative, funny. And you’re like, “Hey, we should hang,” or, “Now I get why I’m sleeping with you.”

Continue reading “The End to a Year: What I Learned and What I Still Don’t Understand”

I Don’t Like Getting Drunk, Bro

Friday night parties are great for getting buzzed and chillaxing (yes, I said it) with your friends as you listen to 60’s music, all the while hoping to get laid. It’s not that great if you’re surrounded by super drunk assholes who use a crowd to touch you inappropriately. Hence last Friday.

Who has been begging me to take him to a college party? And who is majorly underage? Who thought I was the nerdiest person ever until I got to college? My 17-year-old brother. So I relented. It might have been a mistake.

I will tell you why.

The night was not so young when we departed from my all-girls dorm to go into the night. We were supposed to meet my friend Zoe at a house behind Ross Hall. We approached the door.

“I’m sorry, it’s way too crowded. Too much people. You have to leave,” said the asshole at the door. He physically blocked us from entering. However, the group of girls behind us, giggling maniacally, were never stopped. (I’m told later that I yelled, “Yeah, right, the party’s closed, ya fucking dickwad!” But that could have been an exaggeration.)

Shortly later, Zoe came for us. She was already a little buzzed. “Get in here!” She tried to pull me through the door, but was immediately caught in an argument with the asshole. (“Who do you know to get in?”) Finally, she just pulled us in.

The party was packed. Imagine the crowd of a nice day at the zoo, except it has the disposition of wild animals. Music was blaring, people were dancing on chairs and (possibly) tables, and empty containers of every type of alcohol possible were strewn over various surfaces.

My brother grinned like his birthday was here. In the first 10 minutes, Zoe had Nate chugging an ambiguous mixture of alcohol (Sprite© and vodka?) and dancing in a basement of bad music and horny girls. As you know from A Wedding and No Funeral, my brother is going through a tough time. I didn’t want to promote a casual hookup or alcohol to solve his problems.

But I was going through some things as well. The guy I was ‘seeing’–Brad–hadn’t texted me for almost two days. And it wouldn’t be so worrisome if he hadn’t been texting me all week. And he hadn’t gone home on Thursday, where his recovering alcoholic of a father also resided.

 

This was over a span of 10 hours or so. I'm not clingy. I swear.
This was over a span of 10 hours or so. I’m not clingy. I swear.

Soooo….Yeah. I felt like my potential relationship was crumbling from underneath me. I asked several people if they’d heard from him, and they all said no.

The party soon got boring, and we decided to leave after an hour and several men brushing their hand over my backside. ‘Accidentally.’ I wanted to show Nate a better example of a party, all the while trying to find this guy.

When we arrived at the door of the second house, a long line of frat boys in basketball jerseys were unceremoniously exiting.

“The cops told us to clear out. Party’s over.”

But a girl my brother had just met 20 minutes ago was undeterred. They snuck in the backdoor, and I followed.

God, looking back, I wish we’d never left the first one. This was a whole nother level of stupid, one I had no patience for. I ended up sitting on a couch and having a fruitless conversation with ‘Lance,’ who was so sloshed he asked me where I lived twice. At one point, he said, “You think you’re so much better than me cause your more sober. Well, screw you, screw you.” I excused myself when his hand, which had continually been tugging me towards him, travelled up to lazily squeeze my breasts.

He came up to me soon after I left.

“Why did you leave?”

“You were kind of touching my boobs.” I wasn’t even mad.

He was outraged. “You think I did that on purpose?”

“Um, yeah.”

Then comes the scary part–he started yelling at me, yelling, “ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?” over and over again. Needless to say, we got the fuck out of there.

Now I am afraid. I am afraid I gave the wrong impression to my brother about what college is all about. College isn’t about partying and drinking and screwing around. It’s about having wonderful experiences. And getting a degree to justify paying thousands of dollars to study instead of sleep. 

No. Next time, I will be more responsible. I will only consume steady amounts of alcohol alone.

 

I’m Scared, But Screw It

I’ve never had a relationship that lasted more than a month. But I think that’s about to change.

Over the weekend, I partied. I drank. I danced. I toked (once). In essence, I kind of did the whole college experience, sans the horrible rap music in the background. And I met this really nice guy. Brad is into hard rock, baseball, and marijuana legalization (for obvious reasons). He’s the most fun I’ve had in ages. But if I’m not making out with him, I don’t know what to do or say. 

The face lowers. The mouth dries. All train of thought drifts away, like the smoke in which he engulfs himself. Even now, his smell is still in my clothes. 

“What do you want from this?” he asked me, my hand in his as he drove me back to my door. 

“I don’t know,” I replied. “I have no clue.”

But that was a bit of a lie. I did want something. I wanted security, happiness, friendship. I wanted conversation that didn’t feel like small talk. I wanted people to say, “Oh, there’s Chloe’s boyfriend, Brad. Aren’t they so cute?”

I can’t say that to him, though. It seems too much, too soon. 

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So remember we were driving, driving in your car…And I had a feeling that I belonged.
I had a feeling I could be someone. –Tracy Chapman

 

People are afraid to be vulnerable. They are terrified of it, and so they hide in distraction and misrepresentation. The heartthrobs of television and media are tough and merciless. They don’t give a fuck about anyone, and dat’s cool. But no one tells you vulnerability is beautiful. No one says that the bared neck receives more, be it kisses or scars. Heartthrobs get more action, but the soulful are the real winners. 

I used to think that if I was a good girl and waited for my fantasy, I would get it. But it doesn’t work that way. You have to work for what you want, and he is what I want.

It’s time for a change.