Tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of my grandmother’s death. This past Monday, my therapist asked me about some of my favorite memories of her.
“I remember her waiting outside the bathtub with a towel when I first learned how to shower,” I said. “Or waking up from a nap in preschool and seeing her standing beside the door, waiting to drive me home.”
I told my therapist I felt unsure about why I kept thinking of all these early memories. Continue reading
My grandmother passed away last year on December 20. Sometimes I shrug off her death. “Yeah, she was like my actual mother, so it’s sad,” I’ll say to a friend, “but it’s fine, like I’m fine overall.” I like to use the word “fine” a lot, because it helps me avoid how not fine it is to lose the person who had loved you the most. Or I’ll point to my planner and say, “Yeah, it’s tough, but I did this therapy session, and this research meeting, and that class reading, so it’s okay. Sad, but okay.”
But sometimes grief and loss and mourning are not okay, and no matter how much I want to embody put-togetherness, I just have to feel that shit, that not-okay-ness. Continue reading
In my last blog post, I wrote about a friendship ending with distance. In this one, I write about a friendship that with distance has only grown stronger. Friendships are hard to form in a
patriarchal society that celebrates the heteronormative nuclear family above all else adulthood, so I want to celebrate my friendships on this blog, especially this one, which helped motivate me to take care of myself in a time of darkness.
I met my best friend Bri in my freshman year of undergrad at William & Mary. Continue reading
How do you deal with a long-distance friendship? I ask because one of my closest friends, A, moved away from the DC area about three months ago. Though we still text almost every day and FaceTime about once a week, I still feel sad. As I write this, I sit alone in my apartment’s living room space with all the lights on, covered in a semi-thick blanket, though I wish I were sitting a few feet across from her on her old apartment’s worn-down yet comfy grey couch. I am mourning: remembering the closeness we once had and confronting my life where I still have it in some ways, yet in other ways, no longer.
A and I met when I moved to the DC area for graduate school in August 2017. Continue reading
A few weeks ago, I watched Amour, a movie centered on Georges and Anne, a married couple in their eighties. They reside in Paris as retired and cultivated music teachers. Their peaceful lives change when Anne suffers a stroke that paralyzes the right side of her body. George chooses to take care of her no matter what the consequence.
My semester in a nutshell.
The media floods us with images of passionate love, with dramatized versions of real life. Continue reading
A few nights ago, I wondered what it would feel like to cut off my ears.
I remember thinking something similar when I was thirteen or fourteen. I was in the car with my mom, sitting in the passenger seat as she screamed at me. This I was used to – what scared me was how she had formed her hands into fists and was punching the leather of her seat as well as the surface of the dashboard. While I cannot claim to remember exactly what had caused her anger, I do recall that it was something insignificant. Perhaps I had closed the car door a little too loudly. Maybe I looked at another boy who walked by for a little too long.
But, as she spewed poison and purged her anger, I thought to myself: I wonder what would happen if we got into a car accident right now. I wonder how much of myself I would be willing to give away for her to disappear. I proceeded to bargain mentally – would losing an arm be worth not having to put up with the abuse anymore? How about an arm and a leg? All of me?
Looking back, I realize how melodramatic and shallow those thoughts were. Continue reading
Nothing ruins a sunny Sunday afternoon like a hypocritical hate group claiming to be Christian and corrupting the next generation of children.
When it comes to religion, I feel like choice is an important concept. You can choose to believe whatever you want to believe. It’s in our Constitution, and it’s one of our shared societal beliefs. Although I am not the most knowledgeable regarding religion, I can see that it has several advantages – it can bring you closer to others, it can give you strength in times of crisis or prosperity, and it can help you find deeper meaning in life or self-actualize.
At this moment in time, I am an agnostic atheist. I don’t really believe in a higher power because in my lifetime, I have not seen enough evidence. God has not convinced me yet. Similar to Abraham Lincoln, I believe something similar to “When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. That is my religion.”
But I will still let you choose. Continue reading