Open Topic

Relationship Over Friends.

I used to shame people for doing just that. The ones who dropped friends because someone new came I thought would quickly leave. I thought who were they to put me second when I’ve stood by their side and was loyal. I used to hate watching my friends in relationships and the truth was, it was me that was selfish because what I wanted was someone to go out with.

Then it happened to me.

They said I changed. But the only thing that had really changed about me then was my relationship status.

Suddenly this person came into my life unexpected and everything about it was so easy.

And I was caught somewhere between the life I had come to know and one I had only ever dreamed about. A life with the perfect relationship. And I know there isn’t such a thing, every couple has their issues but this was different.

We might not have been perfect, but at the time we were perfect for each other.

And as a result of someone new coming into my life, what changed were my priorities. Suddenly he was it.

The truth is, if a relationship isn’t changing you or challenging you, it isn’t the right one to be in.

So maybe I did change. My smile became bigger. My laugh became louder. The words “I’m happy,” actually held meaning when in the past I was really good at faking it.

And a lot of people didn’t understand how someone so independent, never needing anyone suddenly had prioritized some guy, I considered my better half.

But the truth was, I was still that person just with someone other than myself cheering me on.

He made me a version of myself I was so proud of. So I didn’t need to apologize or explain this shift to people.

And maybe I became less fun according to your standards.

I opted out of parties more often than not. I’d choose to stay in with a bottle of wine laughing while watching Netflix. 

I opted out of Sunday brunches hungover with the girls because he had a family thing he asked me to attend and I was happy about it.

I opted out of short skirts and low cut Ts at the club because the truth was, the only person I cared about impressing was the same one who kissed me goodbye and told me he’d wait up for me.

And maybe there were a few nights I ducked out early, but I liked having someone to come home to.

The truth was, I missed him even before we’d say goodbye.

That party girl throwing back shots and running the beer pong table was simply a phase for me.

And it was a phase I didn’t regret, but I wasn’t that person anymore.

Why would anyone want to go out and meet people and pretend to be single and get free drinks when the best thing in their life is home?

That bar scene was a comfort zone for me, but like any comfort zone, nothing new would come of it.

The truth was, I always wanted something a little more and that life was the first thing to go when I found that something.

There wasn’t a party, friend or night out that compared to waking up next to someone who chose me every day.

There isn’t a feeling like standing in a crowded room and making eye contact with your person across the room, and falling in love with simply a look. And every day I spent with him, I fell deeper into love.

So I don’t think I or anyone should be shamed for choosing a relationship over friends.

Because yes, you’ll be standing there at my wedding giving embarrassing speeches of how we got here today. But the person I’m standing next to is the one who gets my forever.

Friends are just the people who get you there. The ones who dry your tears, comfort you in moments of confusion, stand by you when you’re making mistakes and love you unconditionally. So maybe my friends deserved or deserve more but I truly believe friends are simply the people who guide you and remind you, and are there until someone proves they are worthy of taking their place.

The truth is, I’ll always be your friend. I’ll always answer that call at 2 am. I’ll be the first over with ice cream and wine when someone hurts you. The friend in me hasn’t changed. And the love we have for our friends will never diminish. It’s just a love that gets shared when you meet the right person.

Open Topic

I Don’t Know How To Unlove You.

How do you even begin to get over someone who was your favorite part to the day?

How do you get up and move on when your heart is still invested in one person?

How do you go on dates and give anyone a fair shot when you just wish it was them the whole time?

The honest truth is, I’m at a loss for words and I don’t know where to go or what to say or how I’m going to move on from you.

Because as much as I need to move on part of me isn’t ready to.

Everyone says there are so many other people out there. But when you meet the right person or the person you think is the right one, it’s hard to live your life knowing they are out there and the only one you want is them.

How do you just turn off love so simply like it isn’t something that’s consuming you?

How do you erase someone from your mind when they are every thought, no matter how busy you are or try to be?

How do you erase someone from your heart when you didn’t choose to fall in love with them?

They are every thought before your eyes even open and every last thought before they shut and without even being able to control it, they meet you in dreams you wish were a reality.

They are still the ones you want to talk to every day. The ones you want to turn to when things go wrong or things go right.

They are simply everything. How do you make that go away? 

Because if it’s true, that distance makes the heart grow fonder then the separation will just make that love you aren’t supposed to fall into, deeper.

I shouldn’t want someone who doesn’t want me. I shouldn’t want someone who has made pain feel so comfortable in my life.

You’re the last thing I should want, but you’re also the only thing I want.

And every day without you in it feels like a marathon of my life in your absence.

So I don’t know how to make that go away.

And everyone says time will heal any aching heart but right now in this moment, everything hurts.

And I want it to stop.

But there’s a hope to this sadness that consumes me, I find comfort in knowing someone like you exists in the world.

And if love was a choice and you told me, all this would end in a puddle of my own tears, I don’t think I’d change anything about it. 

Because you awoke a heart that was afraid to feel anything so deeply.

You taught me how to love again and you’ll be the same person who teaches me how to fall out of it.

Open Topic

You Deserve.

We live in a world that works tirelessly to convince you that you are something less.

You aren’t beautiful until you buy this shirt, or purchase this make-up, or get this shiny car. You need this, that, and the other before you can be “somebody.” You need to travel to the most exotic places. You need to grow the best career. You need to bring in the best salary. You need to have the most attractive partner. You need more Instagram followers, more attraction, more, more, more. Then you can be pretty. Then you can be happy. Then you can be popular. Then you have worth.

We live in a world where we can look upon a screen and see all the people who seem “better” than us. We can, with the movement of a finger, see all the people who are prettier, smarter, and more accomplished than us. Our overwhelming inadequacy is packaged to us in perfect little boxes, called profiles, just waiting for us to see; quantified for us in numbers of followers, friends, and likes.

We never feel good enough. How could we?

And so we live our lives avoiding mirrors, because we don’t want to see ourselves. Avoiding commitment, because we aren’t the best we can be yet — tomorrow we will have more money, better clothes, and a better life. Avoiding love, because everybody is convinced that they aren’t good enough. We walk with our heads down, because every message around us seems to be that we are inadequate. Because there is always someone prettier, someone cooler, someone better, someone…else.

This is how we love ourselves. But this isn’t the love we deserve.

You are a unique collection of cells and energy that will never again be recreated on this planet earth. In that way alone, you are worthy. How could you not be? You are the most unique person to ever be created. And so am, and so is the next person to read this. That is how you deserve to love yourself.

You deserve to appreciate yourself for what you are. Don’t ignore the awesome things that you have in favor of the things you haven’t. You have great talents, amazing skills, and a unique story that nobody else will ever be able to experience.

You deserve to forgive yourself. For everything.

You deserve to live every day to the fullest. Don’t spend so much time looking backwards that you trip over the opportunities right in front of you. Let the ride carry you through the good times, and the bad.

You deserve a confidence in your walk, a smile on your face, a spring in every step. You get to be you! You’re the only one who will EVER get to be you! That’s exciting!You deserve an extra piece of cake for dessert, a partner who will love you, and a fair shake to all your wildest dreams. That doesn’t mean they will come easy, or that everything will work out, but you owe it you yourself to take the world that has been given.

And yeah, there are people who won’t buy it. There will be those who try to sell you short — especially yourself. But that’s not the love you deserve.

You are worthy of everything you have, and everything you dream of. Don’t let any person, any advertisement, any pessimistic thought tell you otherwise. You are whole, today. You are enough, today.

And it’s easy to believe this when life is going great; when things are hitting on all cylinders, when you feel in a good groove — maybe you can believe in your own beauty. But you deserve to love yourself fully, without conditions or reservations. Your adequacy is not contingent on getting the next promotion, or a second date with the person you got dinner with last week. So long as your heart beats, you are enough.

And what do we do on the days we can’t make ourselves believe this? When you are at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. You deserve tomorrow, and tomorrow will be better.This world is a beautiful place in which you are one integral, invaluable, in-substitutable part. That’s how you should treat yourself. That’s how you should love yourself.

Open Topic

You Matter.

I can tell that you’re struggling. Your eyes don’t sparkle the way they usually do. Your smile looks tired and your laugh sounds forced. You’ve been spending so much time trying to make others happy that you forgot about yourself.

When was the last time you were happy? When was the last time someone went out of their way for you? Because you deserve to be fought for; you deserve happiness. Sometimes in order to find peace, you have to be selfish — it’s okay to put yourself first. You deserve so much better, and I hate that you can’t see that.

Your heart is so big and full of love, and I know you want to give it away, but not everyone deserves it. You’re going to end up empty if you keep giving and not getting anything in return. The relationships you want in your life shouldn’t be you convincing someone that you’re good enough to be in theirs, because you are enough. Instead of trying to prove that you’re worthy of other people’s time, stop and ask yourself if they’re worth yours.

There are so many people who want to take advantage of your kindness and willingness to forgive. Not everyone is worthy of second chances. Speak up and set boundaries. Let there be consequences when people cross lines. Stop justifying everyone’s reasons for not taking no as a final answer. What you say matters. You matter. Don’t let people walk all over you, especially people that claim to be your friends. And when you stand up for yourself and they decide to go, let them. Quit asking yourself why people keep leaving when you should have told them to go.

Don’t settle because you’re afraid of being alone or because you’re comfortable. You don’t deserve mediocre relationships. I know that a part of you thinks that you’re not enough, that something you did must’ve warranted being treated this way. You’ve doubted yourself; you start to think that you’re overreacting. But you’re allowed to have feelings. You’re not “too much” – they aren’t enough. When people say you’re too sensitive, don’t see it as a weakness. Your emotions are what make you you.

Stop trying to save the world and focus on saving yourself, because you don’t deserve to feel this way. Give yourself the compassion that you give others because you are worthy of it. You are worthy of love. You are worthy of happiness. You are entitled to feel good about yourself.

You have to forgive yourself for all the time you’ve spent letting others make you feel bad. Time wasted is lessons learned. I know that it’s going to be hard, but you have to keep going. You have to learn to love yourself.

Open Topic

Dear Self.

Honestly… I am not a liar. But, I am also, historically speaking, at times an unreliable narrator.

In my mind, reality and perception can exist separately: Loneliness is often a choice, not a sentence — failure a feeling, not a consequence — loveless, self-inflicted, never accurate.

What I thought a curse, a forecast once given coldly in a grey cement basement from an equally unreliable self-appointed mystic, really just a suggestion—a slick magazine horoscope, a symptom not the illness. Unknowingly choking back a placebo pill, not understanding it could never fix the pain. Seeing answers without the questions but telling them anyways.

And really, I wasn’t wrong. Back then, I was surviving…not hiding, growing…but not yet thriving. Still, as it turns out…the truth has always been worth eventually finding.

So Dear Self–

I’m so sorry for misleading, for reading fabrications aloud as history lessons, for calling doors walls and missing various well-marked exit signs. I’m so sorry for all the times I said “sorry” instead of “here’s what’s wrong,” for never telling you that I always do belong, for not answering screaming hunger pains, and for not always remembering to watch for the sun after it rains.

So, Dear Self–

Next time you tell yourself a story, remember when you learned about a girl who is always re-writing, again and again.

While a novel is fiction: no start, no end,

A biography can only be written as aftermath — solely seen as honest and true then.

No, I am not a liar. But, I am also, historically speaking, at times an unreliable narrator.

So, Dear Self —

For all of the falsehoods I shared as fact, I apologize.

Open Topic

Not Worth It.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the effort. You don’t want to send the first text every single time and plan all the outings and come up with conversation starters whenever the last conversation withers and dies. You don’t want to be the one carrying the relationship on your back. You don’t want your love to be one-sided. You don’t want to feel like this person wouldn’t even bother to keep in touch with you if you weren’t trying so hard to hold their attention.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the self-doubt. You don’t want to wonder whether you’re pretty enough, whether you’re fun enough, whether you’re successful enough, whether you’re young enough. You don’t want this person’s reluctance to date you to impact your self-esteem. You don’t want your confidence to plummet, simply because one person has been unable to see your worth.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the time. You don’t want to wait forever for your phone to chirp with a notification. You don’t want to wait forever for them to become available and ask you out for drinks. You don’t want to wait forever for your flirting to turn into an official relationship. You don’t want to waste valuable time you could be pouring into your passions, into your self-care, or into another relationship that is more balanced, more healthy, more rewarding.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the uncertainty. You don’t want to interpret mixed signals every morning, afternoon, and night. You don’t want to be in a constant state of wondering whether you said the right thing, whether you texted back too soon, whether you’re making progress with them or completely wasting your time trying to get into a serious relationship.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the disappointment. You don’t want to feel your heart break a little more each time this person likes someone else’s pictures or mentions a crush or changes their relationship status. You don’t want to realize you’ve spent so much energy on this one special person, only for them to end up dating someone else. You don’t want to put yourself in a situation where you’re bound to get hurt.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the stress. You don’t want to deal with unanswered texts and canceled plans and unmet expectations. You don’t want to give someone chance after chance after chance when they don’t deserve it. You don’t want to put yourself through unnecessary heartache. You don’t want to settle for someone who would be perfectly fine existing without you.

Chasing someone isn’t worth the potential reward. Even if you end up getting what you want from this person, whether that’s a kiss or a movie date or a relationship, are you sure this person is good enough for you? You probably shouldn’t be with someone you need to beg for attention, someone who wasn’t able to see our worth until you kept hammering away at their walls.

You should probably be with someone who sees your beauty, your talent, and your strength from the start. You should probably be with someone you don’t have to chase.

Open Topic

One Year Of You.

June

It wasn’t love at first sight with him but familiarity – the kind that only deepened the more our paths crossed, like walking on uncharted territory and feeling at home.

July

I told him I was bad with directions so he drew me a map showing me the way to his heart and told me that if I ever get lost, he can be home. I knew then that I was slowly unraveling, my secrets spilling out, our souls intertwining.

August

It was always an adventure with him. Even when we were just lying side by side on a rainy day talking about our dreams, it was a completely different world of our own. And I never wanted to leave.

September

The end came as silent as the leaves falling in autumn. There was no deciding moment; one day the leaves were falling then the next, the trees were bare. Our time has run out.

October

Suddenly it was raining gasoline and I was made of paper, and his name was a lit match. I set myself on fire every time I let myself remember.

November

Home suffocated me, and his face was painted all over the places we visited; there were too much of him, of us. I slept with the lights on and my doors open, hoping one night he’d come back. But he never did.

December

I saw him again and I could no longer recognize those eyes anymore. I wanted a goodbye that was concrete, something that could answer my questions, to bring out when I look back, but all I had was one last look of the face I loved turned into a stranger.

January

I had extraordinary days here. But the bad days were all that I could recall recently. They were drowning me and I couldn’t breathe without hurting my ribs. I needed to get out, to escape, to run away from here.

February

I waited for loneliness to make me want to come home. It never came. Where is home?

March

He’s been in my dreams recently; the kind that even when you wake up, you could still feel it, as if it really happened. In them, all my questions were answered and all our wrongs were made right. We were back to our place, and he was back to tracing constellations of promises on my skin. I heard him say my name and I swore, I almost wanted to come back home. But I woke up and nothing has changed.

April

I saw his picture on my timeline today. And I wish I could say that I didn’t feel anything but I did. It wasn’t an entire ocean drowning me, or an earthquake shaking my world, but drops of rain on my skin – not too much of a feeling but enough to be felt.

May

Spring was almost over. There was a cherry blossom tree near my new house, that reminded me of us – how short-lived its beauty was yet it was a blessing to have witnessed it. Thank you. I’m okay now.