Lessons

You break my heart in a blink of an eye.

My digital clock read 7:30 a.m. when I was abruptly awoken by the incessant alarms on my phone. I groaned and flipped over, wishing time would subtract itself and I had more time to sleep in.

I’d decided to miss class, seeing as I would obviously already be late, and taking into account that I barely had any sleep the night before, a law class bright and early just sounded like a disaster waiting to happen.

I shut my eyes and all I could think about was the unsettling dream I had of my ex boyfriend. I hadn’t dreamt of or even thought about him for a while but there he was. So vivid and so alive in my head. It was a troubling and confusing dream that I won’t bother to go into details.

The one thing it did however was brought out feelings that I’d carefully and painstakingly learned how to forget and lock up in some corner of my heart. And head.

I groaned again and muttered a simple ‘why’. I thought I’d learned how to stop dialing his number on impulse, learned how to stop reminiscing, because I’d definitely learned how to stop loving him.

I wonder how many friends and lovers I’ll learn how to love. And then forget. There’s already a handful in my life so far and it’s sad.

I went to dinner with a couple of mutual friends that we had and of course, talking about him was inevitable. They didn’t really know how he was doing either. I was a little disappointed.

Maybe you really do just write off the people you choose to leave behind. I still find it surreal and almost unbelievable that you’re capable of making the person you once loved…a complete and total stranger.

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Closure

I know that every time I’m upset over my ex boyfriend, I listen to Taylor Swift.

Tonight, it’s on repeat.

I know I’ve said it over and over again that I don’t love him. At least not like that, and not in the same way that I used to anymore. But I’ve seen him this year and it breaks my heart to see him that way. Why do I feel like he’s lost the sparkle in his eye and the glow in his smile?

He looks exactly the same and different at the same time.

I’ve been debating the decision to see him today. At first, it wasn’t a direct answer. Vague and indecisive, I gave him a maybe. Giving him enough to hold on to and not to write me off just yet because while I had my reservations on seeing him, I also felt like I had a strong responsibility to be there for him. What if no one loved him anymore? 

It took every ounce of courage in me to say no to him today. I kept him hanging on but I knew that the outcome would only hurt me more than it would him. I know that he’s looking for temporary fix and I’ve always been there for him, rain or shine, I was the girl he could count on. The girl that would drop the entire world on a whim, just for him.

But I’m not her anymore.

I cared so much about him and I still do but he doesn’t deserve my priority. He isn’t my priority. I miss him every day but the person I knew back then isn’t there anymore. All I want to do is bicker with him about politics and watch South Park late into the night or watch him write his papers and struggle through Spanish.

I guess I was still holding on to the notion that my guy, the person I knew, would come back. I was afraid of losing him all over again without realizing that I’d already lost him a long time ago. I mulled over the idea of meeting up with him for hours on end and thought of how I would feel after. Would it change anything between us? No. Would it help our relationship, whatever it was, in any way? Probably not.

So I decided to take the step of securing myself, and while I felt awful for turning him down, I know that I’d only feel worse if I had complied.

And so, at 10:06 p.m. tonight, for the first time in my life–– I felt closure.

There Is Nothing Roaring About The ’20s

Well. This weekend has been sufficiently…unfortunate, to say the least.

Besides getting into an awful predicament and deciding to sever ties with J, I realized that I don’t have my Halloween costume ready and that Halloween is only over a week away. Which also means that I am that much closer to graduation.

I have never felt more lost than I am right now. For the past 15 years, at least, my entire existence has revolved around grades, homework, classrooms, recesses/breaks, making friends, losing friends, having friends. But graduating college kind of feels like I’m graduating all these connections that I’ve always known. And I’m not ready for that.

Graduating college puts me in front a a hundred million possibilities, or so I’d like to think. Commencement ceremonies are always so inspiring, they make you feel invincible for about 2 and a half hours until you wake up the next morning, a little hungover from your graduation party and realizing that you’re just like every other 20-something-year-old out there.

(On that note, here’s a blog post from Friesorsalad that actually details my present life.)

I took a shower early Saturday evening after a hike up the Flatirons with my roommate. I had came home, sweaty and hungry, and had proceeded to make myself the biggest chicken quesadilla known to mankind (It had two tortillas, don’t judge.) After briefly passing out on the floor of my living room, I took a shower and the time read about 8 p.m after I was all done.

Half expecting my phone to blow up from friends and half hoping it would not, I thought of what I should do that Saturday night. Readings for classes were out of the question because it was a Saturday but at the same time, my liver was begging me to not move from the couch.

I conceded with it, feeling entirely put off at the thought of wearing make up and a thong. I guess I’d sat there for a while thinking of how many nights I’d felt that way and how unhopeful I am anymore. I was thinking about how fast these things get old. It starts off with loud music and a lot of laughter and then it could go anywhere from being exceptionally great to falling-in-a-ditch wrong.

The twenties have started out being nothing but confusing for me. From breaking up to graduating, there is nothing assuring about being a 20-something-year-old at all.

Is it too much to ask for if I just wanted a stay-at-home boyfriend that makes great chili, a black Labrador puppy and paycheck big enough that it at least allows me a trip to the hair salon?

Realization

“I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I’d catch myself just walking around to find you, not for any reason, just out of habit, because I’d seen something that I wanted to tell you about or because I wanted to hear your voice. And then I’d realize that you weren’t there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me.” –– Leigh Bardugo

Hurt

I have no idea, how or why, I found myself sitting on the front steps of J’s balcony, crying uncontrollably like my world had just came crashing down on me.

We had only stopped at a couple of places and the night was still young. But going to the “danciest” bar was a bad idea, despite me really wanting to just dance and have a good time.

I had came home earlier that night, feeling exhausted from the long day and from covering a local event for work. I was upset that it was cold outside and that my pants were not as flattering as I had hoped they would be. Plans to meet up with my roommate on Pearl Street fell through as I didn’t want to wait alone with my unflattering pants. So I told him I’d go home and we could go out again together. Unfortunately, the buses were not as efficient as they usually were during the day, leaving me walking about 10 blocks to get home.

Needless to say, I was pisseoff. And naturally, I took my frustration out on the night. Slipped into the shortest black dress I had and drank the rest of the white wine that was in the refrigerator.

I had no idea why J decided to show up, alone, to meet up with us. His ex girlfriend, who ironically, is a friend of mine now, was with us and apparently, he was still bitter and angry over their break up a year ago. (Come on.) But we were having such a good time without him before that. We’d played some pool, ate a lot of peanuts and my roommate and I were acting like 2-year-olds in the middle of the bar. It was great.

But of course, we decided to go to the bar next door to dance and no one was really having that much fun, except for J, who had apparently found a wasted girl to dance with. So as I say, when life gives you lemons, you make the best out of it. Kelly, his ex girlfriend, and I danced and made fools out of ourselves. My roommate stood in a corner by us, appalled by either the sight of the crowd or the terrible music the DJ was spinning.

Whatever it was, the circumstances turned around slightly, and I found myself dancing with J after a trip to the bar. He was upset over a certain situation and I felt awful for him. I imagined being in that position again and remembered how painful it was to watch from afar and be absolutely helpless. But you’re always going to have moments like that in life and I wanted to be there for him, as a friend. Being in that position before, maybe I could have offered him comfort, or company, if anything at all.

He had stormed out as I went to grab my purse. I caught up with him outside but he was set on leaving. Alone. For some reason, I thought it would be a good idea for me to run after him, just to make sure he was alright. He made it home just fine and I sat outside, holding my face in my hand, and cursing at myself for crying over J.

That was the first time I’d cried over him.

I guess I was more disappointed than heart broken. I guess I do care about J, as a friend, because at some point, he had let me into his hurt. And at some point, we had shared that together. Me with my ex boyfriend and him with Kelly. I just didn’t expect to be treated that way. I just didn’t expect to be disrespected to that extent.

The cab didn’t show up and so I forced myself to walk across town, back home. After what seemed like an eternity and being absolutely tired from crying the entire walk home, I walked into my house and curled up against my roommate’s lap without even trying to mask the hurt that’s evidently taken a toll on me.

J apologized over text a little while later. I deleted the text and along with it, his phone number. Kelly had to stay over so I let her share my bed. We talked about everything that I don’t remember about now and I woke up the next day, wishing that it had just been a dream.

That I didn’t just decide to write J off.

Expectations

Growing up with Disney movies, book after book of fairy tales and a religion that preached love more than anything else, it was hard for me to escape the expectation of love in my life.

Going through awkward and extremely unflattering adolescent years and then proceeding to getting myself into rather dysfunctional and somewhat emotionally abusive relationships in my later teenage years, my entire idea of the innocence of love has, undoubtedly, gone out the window, along with whatever expectation I had of relationships with people.

However, my new found independence away from home has thought me more than just that. I had the gracious luck of meeting friends and people that were more than kind to me. They were family and more often than not, I found myself looking to them when my own family was 14 hours ahead of time. So, I slowly regained trust and hope in what was once lost, thinking that maybe things away from home would be different–– it wouldn’t be so bad.

But my luck ran out after a year, when I had decided to, once again, fall in love and ended up devastatingly broken hearted. It’s been a year since I’ve last seen my pathetic self in the mirror and I couldn’t been more proud at myself. I have successfully toughened myself up and focused on everything but love. I’ve taken on ridiculous amounts of work and surrounded myself with friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world. Kept in touch with my parents because they never fail to know exactly what to say when the day turns out particularly gloomy.

Despite all that, I still can’t help but go to bed every night and wonder if this is peak of my life and if there isn’t anything else to look forward to after this. Besides graduation and (hopefully) getting a big girl job. Somewhere, deep inside of me, there’s this tiny glimmer of expectation.

I want my grand gesture of love. 

Call me naive, immature, young and stupid, but I want an unnecessary expensive trip to Paris. I want to padlock locks of love on the gates of some random bridge somewhere. I want obnoxious bouquets of flowers in the middle of the month. I want a low key birthday with that one other person and a huge bottle of red wine. I want to feel extremely nervous to go on dates.

It’s funny if you think about it because we tend to gravitate towards things that are somewhat trivial, and things that we don’t have. It must be human nature to covet because I’m often extremely jealous over people that have cover photos of themselves and their significant others. And couples that are celebrating their 2nd anniversary. Or couples that just cook dinner together. (I’m also actually often jealous of people that have dogs, but that’s a conversation for another day.)

I’m not saying that I’m unsatisfied with where I am at this point–– I love it. I love what I do and am proud of how I turn out to be (trust me, it could’ve gone horribly wrong) but I guess I also want the chance to love something else; someone else.

Pretty sure I’ve just scared off half the male population with this one post. And, that’s the thing. Half the guys I meet are giving me their phone numbers, asking me to “hit them up when you wanna hang/chill,” give them a call, etc. What, are you scared of rejection, so you give hand out your number instead, as a safety measure?

Grow a pair. If you can watch your fantasy team lose at least once, you can accept a simple no.

Maybe it’s unfair for me to hold such high expectations of guys. Maybe the playing field has changed and I’m just stuck in another era, but all I’m saying is, the answer will never always be no, when you decide to take a chance.

It could also be a yes.

Integrity

In the second episode of this season’s Jersey Shore, Deena struggled with the meaning of the word ‘integrity’, and in an email from my supervisor to me today, it read, “I appreciate the integrity!”

While Deena sipped on what was presumably cranberry vodkas and slurred her speech over the bar, trying to find some form of definition for the word integrity, my supervisor knew exactly what it meant. And how important it was.

I’ve just taken a shower and am currently sipping on a huge cup of green tea, a little annoyed that I’m still hungry despite having a decent dinner. My roommates and I have just turned off the TV after the second Presidential Debate and are each now, fixated on our respective computers, attempting to catch up with homework that always seem to be ahead of us.

I had volunteered to take notes from the debate today for one of my classes. I knew that I lacked participation in that class because it was a graduate level class, so getting notes from this debate would be an easy way to make up for it. I was going to watch it anyway.

For those of you who did tune in to watch the debacle, you would know that it was nothing like the first one. However, looking at it from a bigger point of view, past the heated arguments and remarks, I knew that what it should boil down to was the facts.

My Twitter feed exploded with commentaries, opinions and hashtags enough to last a lifetime. I guess it’s so easy to lose fact from fiction in the midst of all this excitement and clutter, and that’s why I especially love being a journalist. While people were re-tweeting clever, humorous comments on Twitter, I tried as hard I could to follow the debate whilst fact checking each candidate’s statement. From energy policies to immigration to China, major news organizations such as the New York Times, CNN and Times provided coverage on the accuracy of the statements each candidate made.

For some reason, all I’d wanted to do, to post, to my followers were the facts.

I’ve always thought of the field of journalism as a field of values. Particularly for me, I hold myself accountable for everything that I’ve published, and will publish. I guess this profession stemmed from a noble purpose. They say the media serves as a watchdog over the government, which I think is true, but greater than that is the responsibility the media has to the people.

I made my first journalistic error a couple of weeks ago when I had misprinted my source’s name in one of my articles and also misquoted her in one of her quotes. I was mortified when I read the story in print the next day and realized my mistake. I debated in my head on whether or not I should let my editor know or not. I mean, no one would even actually know if this was her right name or not. And I could potentially save myself from getting yelled at if I had just pretended that I didn’t know anything about it.

But I couldn’t. I read the article over and over again, and each time, the mistake just seemed larger than ever. It was like I had an ethical subconscious eating away at my mind, telling me the longer I’d waited to notify my editor about it, the worse it’d get. In all honesty, the word ‘transparency’ was the only thing I could hear in my head.

So finally, I emailed both my managing editor and the online editor at my publication. I held my breath throughout the entire 10 minutes that it took for them to respond to me. Thankfully, they were positive responses, and nothing like I thought it was going to be like. I imagined how much I would’ve regretted if I had decided not to tell them about it. A wave of relief washed over me. I came into the office the next day to issue a correction statement over my mistake and my editor was there to assure me that people make mistakes. And mine was an honest one.

It was a hard lesson to learn but I’m thankful I got to learn it. Because of it, I take my role and profession that much more seriously now. I think of my audience and think of how disappointed they’d be if they found out I wasn’t honest. There’s nothing worse than disappointing someone.

My supervisor had emailed me today, thanking me for having the integrity because I wanted to ask my editors at my present internship if I was allowed to write content at my job. Deena from the Jersey Shore came to the conclusion that integrity was equivalent to shame. That if you had no integrity meant that you had no shame.

I think, to certain extents, that Deena’s pretty accurate.

The Problem With Guys

So here is my plight with guys.

I say guys because I’m still living off this naive hope that men are absolutely nothing like this.

I don’t understand guys or boys when they accuse us, girls, of being fickle-minded and indecisive. Or emotional and attached. Or even being high-maintanence. I know some guys that are such divas you’d wish it were a joke.

But I am honestly, just frustrated with the way guys decide to handle certain things. I’ve never really been a confrontational person my entire life but I’ve learned that sometimes, you’ve just gotta dive right into cold, deep waters to get some clarity. However, that process can often times be extremely painful. And uncomfortable. And if you’ve ever dove into cold, deep waters, you’d know that the pain and shivers will last a while, even after you’ve gotten out.

So note to self, guys, don’t make every girl do that. In an attempt to help you with this cause, I have a short list you can follow. (I say short because I’m pretty sure that this list will expand with time.)

Don’t say things you don’t mean. I’m not usually that judgmental the first time I meet you. I’ll take you in good faith and accept your credibility because I want to give you the benefit of the doubt. And I’m trying to seriously tone down my cynicism and how jaded I am with the entire world. Obviously, it doesn’t help when you’re constantly just proving me right on how untrustworthy the entire human race is.

Say what you mean. If you have nothing good to say, don’t say it.

Mistakes are only meant to happen once. Once. Ok, so you had one too many rum and coke and beer goggles kick in, and suddenly, god damn she’s hot. Once. You’re not allowed to drink copious amounts of rum and allow for the same mistake to happen again. What did they teach you in kindergarten, seriously?

Pillow talks are for old, married couples. Got the job done? Good. Call her a cab. Drive her home. Show her the door. Pick one of the above. There is no need for you to discuss your insecurities or fears or dreams or goals in life with this girl that you barely even care about. Because you know what? Doing that only confuses her and she’s bound to let her guards down. What happens when you decide that maybe you’re not that invested after all? You get called an asshole.

Don’t get called an asshole.

Be an asshole. If there’s one thing I’ve learned throughout my single career in the past year and a half it’s that there really isn’t anyone more important than yourself. Yes, it’s kind of sickening to think about it, and trust me, I was not brought up this way at all but for the sake of self-preservation, being an asshole is critical. I’ve totally been an asshole, and more often than not, I love it.

So really, I’m just tired of being judged as the emotional, needy, clingy girl that follows a guy around. I’ll admit that there was a dark time in my past that I was pretty emotional but that was way back when. I’d prefer for you to be honest and really, don’t complicate things. Everything else in my life is complicated enough and it’d be really nice if guys would just be straightforward.

And as for you, you were too good to be true anyway.

Giving In

I wonder how broken I am compared to the people around me.

I understand that we carry baggage and we each have pasts that haunt us to extents but in all seriousness, what if my demons are just larger than life?

For some unknown reason, I don’t feel the need to run into a corner of a room and start talking to a complete stranger about it. I feel quite content at where I am in life right now. Though, I knowingly seem to pile on mistake after mistake on myself but its effects aren’t here–– yet.

I know I’m going to live to regret the day when it all comes crashing down on me and I am forced to dig myself out of the rubble.

Things between my ex boyfriend and I are complicated, yet simple at the same time. There is honestly nothing in between us at all, anymore, whatsoever. But I don’t know how to say no and so when he texts me in the middle of the day, wanting to hang out, I actually comply. And I don’t know why.

I can’t decide if I’m the one using him, or if he’s the one using me. Or are we both just using each other shamelessly.

Regardless, it’s wrong. And we both know it. Although today, I walked out and felt awful for him. I mentioned the weather because it was really nice outside and he said that he hadn’t left his room all day. He has no internet connectivity there, and no television. He literally lives in a broom closet, so what has he been doing all day? One can only hope it’d be something remotely productive.

I don’t know where to draw the line with him. Can I step in as a friend and ask him honestly about it, or is the whole notion of a friendship ultimately lost when we decided to break up?

Help.

Clarity

If there’s anything I’ve learned from the past week, it would be that vitamin C is actually key and you can never have too many chocolate chip cookies.

I’d tapped out midweek, starting on Wednesday when I woke up with a searing headache and a body that felt like it’d been pulled apart by vicious dogs. I had to email my editor to tell him that I would be out for the day yet feeling awful that I couldn’t go into the office to finish up a little bit more work.

The rest of that day felt like a massive blur. In between drinking a lot of water and curling up under my blankets, I had somehow agreed to meet up with my ex-boyfriend that night and realized that I had reached another milestone in my life. Success.

I started my first day at work on Thursday and loved it. They have free candy and coffee. Score.

The Buffs lost the game Thursday night against ASU, but I definitely ended up winning. I guess kissing C made me realize what everyone around me already did. That of course I’m not in love with J.

I’ve been going through the past two weeks of my life convinced I had fallen in love with J just because we’d hold hands at football games. Or because we went out together on Friday nights. (Mostly because we go home together on Friday nights) But that’s not grounds for love at all, is it? I don’t remember how I fell in love the last time. I just remember saying the words and feeling right about them. Can I say that I love J right now? I really don’t think so…

I’d spent the first half of my Friday night with my friend Sara. We made chocolate chip cookies and watched old episodes of Sex and the City. It’s little moments like that I appreciate. I’d told her about C and J and my ex-boyfriend, she told me about the guy in her life and we just sat there, munching on cookies, trying to figure out what it all really meant as Samantha had sex on TV.

There was maybe half a cookie left on the plate when we decided to give up on understanding things and that we’ll probably just end up on Match.com sooner than we’d expected.

Well, that’s that. It’s been a weird week. What with me falling sick and falling out of love. Looking ahead, I have the real world to deal with, which ironically consists of midterms and a ton of readings. Oh and of course, writing and meeting more deadlines.

So with a sigh, I say, c’est la vie.