Monday, July 31, 2017

thoughts on six years (finally)

I have written draft after draft about this, and yet nothing sufficed. This, too, is long and flawed, and I don't know how it sits with me.

Yet.

Since the day I saw you one month ago, I've repressed the notion of, ironically, not feeling anything at all.

Today, however, I had two reminders. Small, seemingly insignificant. A past date and a conversation -- reminders no less of the stagnant feeling within myself of how things left me one month ago and what the "nothingness" might actually mean.


The first reminder came at lunch, while with a coworker in line at a Shake Shack.

The person said that they find it both ironic and perhaps a bit disappointing that for months they had built up the possibility of a specific conversation so much so that when it came time for it, the punch back felt weak, even forfeited.


I agreed with him. And then I thought of you.


When I heard that you were finally ready to face me, I was out drinking with friends. My mom called, and then she began to cry, which is so unlike my mom. She said she had something to tell me, but that she was nervous of setting me back. You've been so good. I don't want this to affect you and your job.

I knew immediately what she was referring to.

When she told me the news, I laughed. I was actually overcome with joy, satisfaction, relief. Finally.

After six years I would get closure on by far one of the most emotional and dark experiences of my life.

I said that I couldn't wait for you to see me now. To see that I am okay. To see that I am making something of myself.


So, I waited. For nearly two weeks. For the call I never thought would come from you.

As I waited for your call, I experienced heartache from a short lived affection.

He'd stormed into my life only to storm right out, letting me know how not worth it I was to him as he left.

His reasoning I could look past.

But your failure to call gnawed at me more than his rejection had.

Those who know me most know the whole fucking story. With hesitation they asked, one by one, how I felt. I told them I was fine. That I didn't know. That I had recently grown accustomed to rejection. I said I was more upset about the guy, but we all knew I was lying.

It would be no big deal.

Except in my heart I had already dug up my fifteen year old self. For two weeks she stood alongside me -- a forgotten shadow I hold with the most delicate reserve. When my mom's phone call came, I grabbed the shovel and began digging.


It was a Monday. When you reached out to me.

A six year chapter ended -- a page turned, first to the prologue, only to lead to a new chapter.



Nervously we made plans.

You suggested coffee, even though you never ordered anything.

We arrived at the exact same time -- which I laughed about because irony always had its way with me when it came to that era of my life and all who were in it.


You seemed well, and I said I was great.


We aren't ones for small talk, so you got on with it.

An apology.

Six years coming.

I had nothing but forgiveness to offer. And you offered it to me in return.

You cried.

And I didn't.

I wanted to cry. I had always imagined myself crying. I'd rehearsed the conversation in my head for six years. I thought I'd have a moment -- with time that moment became less about showing you coldness and more about showing you my raw emotions.

When time came to it, all expectations failed me.

As you cried, I wished to reach across the table but I couldn't.

Perhaps it was because so much time has passed. In efforts to tie pieces of the story together, I'd brought up your son and you said he was off limits.

Which is fair. I assured you that I can respect a marriage.

So, we left so much unsaid. Even though all that needed to be said was poured out on the table.

Like slicing myself open on the table, and there's blood, and you're helping me clean up the guts.

Just like that.



The second reminder came when I saw a date for December 5th, 2009.

It's always a reminder, taking me back to the panic and the ever deepening loss.



And that's the part of our conversation that made me cry.


The loss that will never leave. Of being fifteen, and not understanding death.

The trauma of it. The emptiness.

It's the grossest thing, and I am so sorry was all I could say as I held my face.

Because losing your daughter is gross. It's wrong, and it's disgusting, and I will never not be angry about it. I will never not be okay because of it.

I told you that her death is a place I can't go to without crying. To this day, those who ask me enough questions will reach that root in my past, and I'll quickly refer to it while balancing between past and present.


I told you about the box I keep deep within myself.

I said it's where the fifteen year old in me is wrapped and kept away. I explained that your apology required me to take her out. To look at her again.



As I write this, I'm discovering that perhaps this is why I didn't cry when you apologized.

You caused me to take my box out and look at myself with the eyes I now have. Eyes belonging to the woman version of myself who knows her worth and her ability, not the girl whose world was defined by the valley she had never left.

And, in the two weeks of not hearing from you, the severity of what I felt was a rejection that made me process my vulnerability. I'd lived the worst case scenario of the confrontation. Your apology was a bonus, and all I needed was gratitude.



You told me that you were nervous about how much damage had been done within me.

You hoped that I'd been well. Explaining that on occasion throughout the years, you'd catch glimpses of me and I'd seemed just fine, which comforted you. Maybe I'd found a healthy dose of normality.

You apologized for what I experienced, what I saw, how I took on the grief and the pain.


For that, I can't be sorry.

I wouldn't have done those two years of my life any other way. The days in and out are a brief time in the grand scheme of what you have faced and will continue to face. And for that I respect the hell out of you, and my heart breaks, and I am still angry.


Sometimes it hits me. All that happened. I'll be sitting at my desk, and a song will come on from before. I am taken back to the moments that helped make me who I am.

I told you that I hold those memories with such gravity. When Hollywood drowns me, I cling to the buoy of what matters in life. I cling to the experiences, no matter how dark, that let reality come crashing through the windshield of my vision.



You were scared to see how much damage had been done to me, and I was afraid of letting go of my anger.

I still don't know how I feel about it, even though I have let go.

The past month has been interesting in that regard.

Certain people have caused me to open up parts of myself, and I realize that I can't use anger as a method of protection when they finally hurt me.

It's a nakedness I can't adapt to just yet. Though, with time, a miracle might happen.



The quietness of all my other emotions is what I keep coming back to.

Certainly it's not apathy. And even stagnancy doesn't seem a fit description now that I think of it.


Perhaps it was in facing myself.

When I left you, we agreed to meet again in December.

I want to see the kids, and I think that by then seeing them will be much easier.

Upon returning to Los Angeles the following day, I decided to bury the old version of myself yet again...though not immediately.


I've left her out to breathe, lingering in the far corners of my mind. I've let her see who she has become thus far, and told her that it all works out.

She was so afraid of never writing, of never being loved, of never moving to the big city.

She feared that the depression would never pass, that hope might always remain in the distance and never find its way to her arms.

She couldn't fathom the plan that would unfold, or dream up the faces she would fall in love with.


She was reconciled to a future that wouldn't have closure.


To finally receive it is so much why I am still silent.

My hope is that the shock and gratitude will blossom into peace.

More peace within myself. More empathy for others. More love to give when love becomes right again.

Friday, July 28, 2017

all the words i see

I oftentimes find myself taking note of what my life is.

I look around, at the faces and place that surround me,

and I am so humbled.

By all of it.


To live and to grow in a place that I am so undeserving of.
To collect people that I have the pleasure of doing life alongside.
To explore a city whose heart never stops beating, whose eyes never close, and song never sleeps.
To actively pursue a pipe dream, which is a gift in and of itself.

To know myself in this time of life, this version of Madison,
as I stretch my legs, find my voice, say too many words, fall in and out of love
with life and faces and voices.

I think of if I ever get to be a mom. I wonder about what I'd say, about the time when I was young.
I'd like to think I'll be a cool mom -- one that did the thing and has the stories and survived the chaos of youth in a big city.



I lose sight of the gravity of this delicate, blessed phase in my life,
which will one day be a blip in the grand scheme of things.

Though quite possibly a blip that sets a foundation, which makes all the difference.

Laying the foundation is a tedious job, and we are each required to set and labor over our own foundations, by ourselves, and with the resources we can gather and abide by.

I tend to do most of my life kicking and screaming --

defiant, stubborn, utterly afraid, and laughing (mostly) because I am so nervous.


But I'd choose to be scared every time.

I think that having the right fear--the healthy sort--is essential.

I believe in it and live for it -- fear and dread and taking the leap.

If I am not afraid, I feel like something must not be right. So I cling to the
frightening thing, the cliff of the mountain, the deepest parts of the sea.


I will be so damned for never trying.
Even more damned for not being my biggest fan,

and so ridiculously grateful, regardless of how my success is defined when all is said and done.


But there is so much to be said, still.

So much to listen to,

and so.much. to be said.



So, when the words come like a flood (and they certainly will),

I will be there to catch them.

To put them to paper, giving them life.

Clinging to the sounds and phrases that propel me forward and scare me shitless.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

on being single

As with so many things, singleness comes with a hefty load of negativity. Mostly self-inflicted, if I'm being honest.

I'm striving, though. And determined to stand upon my two feet without the comfort of a familiar face.


I hold my own weight, and at first the pounds of emotions and needs made me feel weak. It's an uphill battle--independence--and it requires one foot in front of the other with so much intention, if you ask me.

The notion that such a climb should be completed without stumbling is a caliber that would deprive a person of the gift of stumbling into a lesson learned -- of learning how to fall into humility, standing again in strength, and collecting the load once more.


I've talked so much about loneliness. About aloneness. About the goodness and danger found in both.

But what I fail to address in writing and in my own mind is the sacred idea of singleness.


For so long, I was part of a team.

The idea of being single is seemingly celebrated by nearly all, though likely feared by most.

I think we're afraid of what it says about us.

At least overcoming that portion of my fear has been one of my greatest stumbling blocks so far.

And yet.


Today, when talking to someone new, I was reminded of my past when I said, "I was almost married."

The words felt like vomit. I wanted to take them back, to discard them from the conversation. Who had I been back in time to have warranted such a phrase?

Almost.

I also felt the gravity of my age. Twenty-three.

What might a twenty-three year old know about marriage?

Quite a bit, I'd argue.

And yet.


There was no grief following my statement.

Looking back causes nostalgia, certainly. Along with a craving for the sort of security that comes with a teammate, best friend, confidant, protector, password keeper, dancing partner, and Netflix binger.



But there was no grief.

Only hope.

Hope in the things I cannot see, and the timing I cannot predict.

The cynic in me claims that love is lost in Los Angeles,

but the goodness in me has never faltered in hoping and pursuing the impossible.



I keep calling this the year of the single girl, but really I don't know what might happen.

With each day, I relinquish my expectation of what my personal life should look like and celebrate the individuals who do fill it.

There are quite a lot of them, and for each one I am blessed beyond measure.


Most of all, I'm overcoming the fear of what I think the season of my life says about me.

The lie of feeling unwanted, uninvited, forgotten, or overlooked has got to go.

It just does. It's not healthy, nor is it fair. Plus, it's exhausting and annoying.

So.


I am determined to revel in the ambiguity. I never have. So, I hope to do so at least once in this lifetime.

I look around me, and there is so much to be grateful for. So many resources to be filled by.


And I think that's what singleness is. What it isn't.

It's not about waiting for the right person.

It's about becoming right within one's self.


At least that's my assumption.

And so I continue up.

One foot in front of the other.

No rushing,

and all of the grace when I stumble once more.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

los angeles lately :: pt. 4

In my mind, my red dress bleeds tightly against my body,

the flame between my fingers is blue at the root and orange where it meets the end of your cigarette.


The night is old and grey.

The ocean so close by is black.


Their faces flicker in green and purple.

A disco ball is sharpened silver, rounded, hypnotizing.

We laugh for no reason and call it retro because we think we're cool.

And maybe we are.



My drink is clear, and yours is dark.


I see your eyes, I remember their color. I will always remember their color.


Will you remember mine if you can read everything they want to say?



The morning comes,

I pull another book from a shelf,

like all the stories I read in bits.

I'd turn the page to another chapter,

but knowing people in this city requires setting a flame to all the pages I will never know.



You tell me about chapter twenty three,

because it's the one you want us all to know,

but I will hand you the whole damn book.


A library within a hand.

Is what I am.

And you.

And them.

And this city --

with all of its overdue fines;
the torn up pages stuffed into crevices of apartments, stars and streets;
autobiographical tales of dreams and heartache;
undone chapters,
scripts in drawers,
songs in ears,
your name in my mouth, like pen to paper.

Another story for the books.

los angeles lately :: pt. 3

First, because we are girls,

and then through a trapdoor. 

Down some stairs into a darkened room,

stepping to the sound of aged music I love most.

The bar is solid, unlike my knees that somehow continue to carry me.


I crave the ease of my companions, I long for it like a hand upon the small of a back,

but the closer he stands, the more the ledge of the bar presses into my back, and I want him to step aside, to shut his mouth, to look at another girl.

I can't lose my inhibition if I try.

Not even to the sound of Sinatra.


Another approaches me, twice, and with a kindness I cannot deem sincere because I do not know him. Once more, I wish for him to step aside, to shut his mouth, I don't want to talk about my Romanian adventure any further.

One trip across the globe to the same place is not enough common ground for me, thank you.


And so I watch the girls again -- in all of their naked ease.

I study their slim fingers, balancing slim cigarettes.

I see mountains of ice within multiple glasses that moments ago held mixed drinks with pretty names, like the pretty mouths which consume them,

and the whiskey within my hand and throat warms. 


If I could mimic them for just a night, I think I'd have a ball.

All of that ease. 

Faked or not. 

What a brilliant fucking act, or risk, or wrong. 


I remove the glasses from my face. So that I can hide behind how vulnerable I feel. 

A nakedness unlike that of their ease.

Maybe if I can't see the room, I will finally be seen.


But by whom?

And why would it matter?


There are ten thousand sounds within a bar at any given second,

and all I hear within my ears is the blur of what's around; and, within my mind, Kavinsky plays on eternal repeat. 


They're talking about you, boy, but you're still the same.


So I shift my focus away from where they cast their's on the boys who are still the same;

them in all of their ease and Louboutins;

boys in wrung out confidence and tired entitlement;

the boys Louboutins are worn for;

I swear this is all an observation and not a judgment.

A broken heart for what I know is boring and true.

If the boys are all the same, why should we feel compelled to be as well?

More importantly, why do I?

Why parallel, when one can strike through and break new ground?



I put the damn glasses back on;

I buy another drink;

I long for the one who is overlooked,

because perhaps he will be one to overlook the rest.

Perhaps he only hears Kavinksy, too, when the night is darkest, and Hollywood loudest, and the drinks are splashing hardest against the backs of throats. 


I'd like so much to be like them, as if I could try on a personhood like a thrifted dress. 

And then I hear the song again, I press the glasses to my face, and swoosh the whiskey in my mouth,

and it occurs to me that maybe we all just want to be ourselves,



we just don't know how.

We run parallel because it seems demanded.

What a luxurious freedom individuality would be. 

If it was practiced and not glorified and branded.

How wonderful to know that individuality is not indeed a lie, a threat, or an absurdity. 



First because we are girls,

and not because each of us has something to bring to the table.

Something beautiful, broken and true.

And then through a trapdoor.

A night should always have a trapdoor.


I press the glasses firmly to my face,

so that I can catch a glance of the rare one who is overlooked;

so that I can look to the eyes of girls I'll smile at because I see them and hope they can see themselves, too;

so that I can catch a reflection of myself in the mirror behind the bartender.


I'll smile at myself, too --

beneath the trapdoor. 

los angeles lately :: pt. 2








The most devastating part of the whole thing is that I cannot fall in love if I cannot love the place in which I'd fall in love within.

And so, I sit along a curb with the city beside me -- we are not speaking.

Mostly, I am not speaking.

It longs for me to love it, but refuses to love me in return.

So, I wait. Wedged between silence and city sounds.

Sitting on this curb, the night falling quickly to the west in pink hues.

The swaying palm tree overhead is the only proof of oxygen.

We forget we're breathing here, when rooms are full and hearts are empty.







los angeles lately :: pt. 1

I'm figuring out what Los Angeles feels like.

The feeling will change eventually. Not likely by tomorrow, and certainly in one year's time.


For starters, it feels like drowning. The whole it.


At first, the water appears deep and black -- a cosmic-like abyss. Cold, or nothing at all, if you go too far in.

But Los Angeles is not as deep as the Pacific that runs to and from the tourist-plagued shores of Malibu to Manhattan.

It isn't cold, either, even if so many of its inhabitants prove otherwise.

This is not a glorified abyss to throw oneself into lightly. To tread lightly is to underestimate.

Los Angeles is like drowning in a shallow end -- ironic, unexpected, and so near to the shore --

finally slamming one's feel upon a solid floor and pulling up a ledge, wondering how a right could feel so wrong while gasping for unclean air.



Recently, a boy told me that my words have depth. At first, the compliment felt like a sigh of relief -- half the feeling of being heard, and the other half the feeling of being seen if even for a moment's glance.

But the word--depth--stuck within the top drawer of my mind. And, throughout the week I'd open the drawer and hold the word in my hand thinking about what it might mean in a place that feels nearly two feet deep.



Los Angeles feels like a massive contradiction --

the second act when the antagonist nearly wins out;

the bench ten feet away from the cool table in grade school;

2:30 am on an empty stomach;

a broken heel in a crowded elevator;

the click of a doorknob as it closes;

a loose end;

for some, a newness likened to jumping out of a plane;

a contest;

uniformed individuality;

a trend;

a white blank page;

four million self portraits;

the 101 in knots, and the 405 in paralyzed rush hour;

narcissism on a bender;

tragedy;

falling in and out of love with the same body, the cruelty taking its toll solely on the ignorant and true;

the step before the brink;

and, an eternal faith in what is not known, in what might never be.

But you and I, and all the rest, would be damned for never trying.



Here I hold the whole world in my hands, while standing alone, and oftentimes sinking alone.

I tread for fear of what they say, of what may never come, and yet what could come.

Los Angeles is whiplash at its most severe -- attention torn between the need to watch one's back, and the desperate perseverance toward a future filled with lights.



Never have I grown in such a painful, needed way.

Never have my emotions been so pivotal and raw.

I told a man just this week that I feel like I'm the only one who feels this way.

And he had the simplest, most comforting, most right response in my world.

He said that everyone feels as I do, at some place and time if not now...the exception?

"You're just the only one saying it."

I'd argue that there might be someone else.

And yet.

He said it's in the honesty.

The honesty that gets me in trouble and sets me free.


Los Angeles is me freaking out,

but it is also me becoming whole.

More of the woman I yearn to be,

more of an artist,

hopefully a better, kinder, human being,

even if my edges never soften and my nerve never ceases.


Los Angeles--at the height of its contradiction--is magic.

The make believe of it all is what I am addicted to.

The constant noise which exhausts my mind more than my ears.

And the water which I seem to drown within? --

Is so much a source of life for all the things I cannot see.


So I tread when I need time, and I swim when I am most scared,

because this place is impossible to survive if fear is not the fuel from which one
thrives off of.

All who live by fear have one of two options:

The first is to sit within it, to grow so familiar with it that it becomes a source of comfort.

The second is to let it be the driving force, the whole damn point.


Every great decision and move I've ever made has been rooted in fear,

in fear of the what might pass,

rather than in the what might be.



Los Angeles is one of two choices, when the fork curves the road against itself.

And the what might be is what makes the city and these dreams feel like life.

(I cross my fingers for a life lived well).

Wednesday, July 12, 2017



It happened once, in a house, at a party in a house.
I've never been one to let my mind slip too loosely, and so the memories
remain even if in shifty, fluorescent snapshots of faces I don't truly know.

When spirits look like water, the well of fun runs deep until sunrise.
I think that time only wishes to be gentle with the restless, the ones who stay out late
to rid themselves of loneliness.

Time sneaks tomorrow right into the now, and we still call the morning the darkest hour of the night. How concerned it must feel for us all to bring in a new day right under our noses so that, if even for a matter of hours, forever feels like an actual state of mind not bound and listed by hours.

I might have seen you first, but the story of who's-who and who-what-when has never held my interest. You might have seen me first for all I know, yet things happened just the same.

I hardly go to those sorts of things for fear of being unwanted. I have a horrid habit of making myself small so as not to take up too much space. Get me alone, and I will be an ocean. But put me in a sea of people, and I will drown in the tide.

Yet you saw me somehow, standing across the room, bobbing in the current. Probably watching me let go of my smallness, and growing larger with each lost inhibition.

I saw you look, and so I looked away. And when I looked again, you weren't there. Or perhaps you just looked like a fluorescent screaming color -- a light in the darkest hour of the night, straining yourself over the ocean so that I could see home.


It happened once, in a house, at a party in a house.
A small piece of me, found like a small shard of glass that has a streak of color running through it if you hold it to the light.


You must have cut your finger on the edge.

Monday, July 10, 2017

monday thoughts

The girl whose room/apartment faces my room (too closely at times, I might add) has a wonderful new habit of playing her accordion while perched on her bed. The summer heat has the whole neighborhood with windows open wide -- and the swoosh of her song seeps into my room, along with a little boy who cries too easily down below, and an ice cream man who drives down the street at seemingly odd hours.


A woman hugged me today, teary eyed, too, and I was reminded of how small gestures make us not just more human, but better humans.


The San Francisco Bay is as blue as the sky, and if everyone could be given the chance to look upon its crisp goodness every single day, I think all of the world's problems might be solved.


I've been taking note of people who notice. At first, I was discouraged by how few seem to be paying attention around me. But then I catch two people caught in a glance, or I overhear the depth of a compliment, or receive a good morning, and I'm not so discouraged anymore.


Coffee is made for the morning. Every morning. And four p.m. is meant for tea.


It's been an entire week of learning not to apologize for my quirks and flaws, and growing into my biggest fan. And, most of the muscle of loving oneself comes, first and so much, from the unconditionality of others. So, give grace freely (is what I'm gathering) because oftentimes we are so near to growing people.


The other night, while eating dinner at a friend's house, I looked toward the kitchen table where everyone was congregated as an eruption of laughter ensued. It's one of my favorite things when people laugh at once and carry the humor for much longer than a singular laugh. In that moment, my heart was so full. Los Angeles is constantly impersonal for me, yet in that home and at that table I found authenticity.


"Movie theaters are a religious experience. It's as close to church as anything can get" - said me at a wedding on Friday. And I'll say it again.


A Saturday morning with nowhere to be and only those you love to be with is the sort of moment I could live in for eternity.


A foggy coastal day is another version of heaven.


Currently dreaming of Oslo, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Warsaw, Prague, Geneva, Edinburgh, and Reykjavik -- and (very) excited for what the spring may bring my way.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

my so-called heavy heart

I don't usually like to write on here when a wound is newly raw. I fear the level of honesty in the now and in retrospect.

But this time is important, and these words are not the entire story.

+++

In the past few weeks, perhaps months, I've been facing an insecurity that is so deeply rooted that I might as well call in a landscaper, architect, and a team of the best and strongest people to excavate the area and design something new where the weed currently stretches up like a cancerous tree.

+++

I want to say that this is half my fault. Of course, I wasn't perfect throughout the past months. But claiming responsibility for half? When so much of my half invested in empathy, encouragement, hope, and curiosity? To say I am sorry for handing over my heart is just something I'm not interested in.

+++

At first I didn't want to know why. Because the past has provided words that my mind refuses to let go. I didn't want a new lie to believe about myself in the morning and at my weakest. But you were too much a coward to even pick up the phone. And when you said that I'm just not good enough, I had to hear the reasoning, the equation that got you such a bullet of an answer.

+++

Had it been the cat jokes I'd send you at random in the day? How you would refuse to laugh because even at my most playful, it somehow just wasn't funny or amusing enough?

Had it been Los Angeles? I've found so many men to be too small in the face of a woman with big dreams. Even when, on my own and because of my truths about you, I explained how much bigger I believe you to be in comparison to the artificiality of money and popularity.

Had it been the letters and notes? The gracious words? Telling you of your worth and how spectacular you were. 

Was it my curiosity? My ability to step out of a comfort zone and trust that you were who you said you were? 

Was it the listening ear I gave you for days on end in spite of your inability to even ask me how I was doing?

Was it my wonder at your craft? My belief in your potential? My constant laughter at your quick sense of humor?

Was it the way I was learning to pursue you walls down, heart handed out because why not take a fucking risk?


The list could go on for sometime.

The insecurity in me wants to point at a false reason. It wants to say but of course you're not enough, here's why...

Though I'm not going to do that. Not this time. I've done too much and become too much to throw the woman I am away.

And even the uncertainties of one hundred men cannot amount to a single definition of who I am.

I'm not responsible for someone's inability to just be honest, for someone's inability to see. 

I am, however, responsible for my inability to be honest with myself; at fault to believe the lies; just as bad as an idiot if I let time take anymore of me with it.

So, okay.

Here is to just not being good enough, because I am so much more.

A friend of mine gave me wise words as I talked through my thoughts: 

She said that we absolutely can't give power to people to break us simply because they are too scared to love our heavy hearts or show up...

And she's so right.

Carrie Bradshaw right.

+++

I won't give the man any more attention than I already have, though I will seek to look on this with grace. 

Not just grace towards him, and especially grace toward myself. 

And on a morning when I want to say how dare you say I'm not enough, I'm going to say thank you.

Thank you for answering when I worked up the courage to call you in search for my own truth because you weren't strong enough to do it yourself.

Thank you for failing to look at the things that make me so much more than enough, because in doing so you're forcing me to see what I've failed to see for too long now. 

Thank you for the bullet that has created a space in me to become a better version of myself. 

And thank you for weeding yourself out of the garden of my life.

In case you weren't paying attention before, I'm planting not only a whole new garden but a deeply rooted tree. One to rest what you so kindly called my heaviness under.

Though, for the record -- it's not that my heart is too heavy. Rather, it's full, and tender, and beats with voracity and enthusiasm, and if it's too heavy for you then that's answer enough for why you just couldn't show up. 

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There are so many more words. But I'm leaving it at these.

Here's to a year of the single girl -- may I find myself with grace and dignity. Creativity and joy. And a whole lot of unexpected adventure in the pursuit of learning just how enough I am.