You said, You Had to Go

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A: “I’ve already cried three times today.”

S: “Girl, I cry every night.”

K: “You guys make me look good.”

Less than a year ago, you called me crying. "I feel like at any moment I might lose either of them, one or the other, or both, and I’m so scared." Your father was dying from cancer, and your boyfriend was unsure of "us". Now, in the depth of another summer, and you’re dealing with life after the loss of both.

One of my closest girl friends decided last week that she was going to move to Shanghai at the end of the month. In a weeks time, she’s going to be on the other side of the world. We’ve been neighbors since I moved three doors down, walking to the bus stop together since the 1st grade. This is going to be an incredible opportunity, an amazing adventure. But for me, this will be, a letting go of sorts. Someone leaving me for a change.

Last week, her aunt unexpectedly passed away. A month before her own son’s wedding. One day she was there, chatting with my mom about the wedding, last minute preparations, and the next, she was gone.

In the middle of this hot summer, it’s been hard for everyone. A summer defined by farewells, mourning, a loss of love, change, death. The theme? How do we move on from here?

How’ve you been today?

Shitty. I feel like shit except for when I’m sleeping.

The hardest part will be, making the choice to let go. That’s the first step. Letting go. Time will take care of the rest. We hope.

In a year and a half you’ll be okay.

1.5 years?!

Well, it might take you longer.

I don’t know. You might still be cray cray. You checked his Google calendar!

What? I didn’t do anything illegal. That’s nothing. Overall, I’m fine.

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"For some time it was about natty lights, kegs, solo cups, makeshift beer pong tables, mostly from plywood over at Home Depot, and we’d take midnight runs to Sheets for peach tea, chats with H-burg cops, and roomie trips to Walmart for toilet paper runs, brownie mix and you used to steal kool-aid packets for jungle juice, cause it was silly to pay for those little things you said. Some nights we’d walk over to Hunter’s Ridge or the Commons for random parties. Other nights we’d chill over hookah and random shit. I didn’t know as much then."

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above the rain clouds en route to 99 degrees and a little bit of paradise

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The First Kiss

The first kiss always came easily, at one point, they came too easily. I used to have this bad habit of making out with randoms and guy friends when I was too shit faced to really be aware of much. I kept a list, for the sake of posterity, for the sake of my own bad memory.

There were the first kisses that immediately escalated to sex. Those were days when boundaries and self control came hard. Then there was the first kiss veiled under movie nights between friends, the kind of affair that ends in, the loss of a friend. Then there was the first kiss on a sidewalk off 14th street, bound from unanswered questions from our youth. Then there was the first kiss that found it’s way to love, as hard as that was to accept.

And then there’s the first kiss that should’ve happened a decade and a half ago. How do you get through that?

Had it happened then, the story would’ve been complete, with no questions left unanswered.

It’s just a kiss. But this is what goes through my mind, in this rapid pace. I love him wholly. We’ve never been just friends. But we’ve never been romantic. I couldn’t explain it.. But the thought of anything physical is strange to me because for the longest time, the attraction was gone and when you’ve known someone more than half your life, how do you just alter the kind of relationship you’ve always had. And then a part of me was offended because I’m not just some girl for you for the night. And then on another level, what if, what if, what if…. Would I recover from the disappointment, from another end, from a goodbye that won’t recover. And then, what if it’s all nothing, and it is simply a kiss. Nothing more, neither here nor there, not life altering in any beat, simply unfinished business.

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He says, “You look new when you’re desperate.”

Then she runs out of ways to bargain. Like a sputtering engine, I think. At times like these I want to tell Marla that she keeps on bringing me down. I can’t take all of this overcast at once.

That’s when she’ll stand with her legs spread, points down at her savage.

“What about all that head while you were driving? When do I get mine?”

Then, because he agrees to pay her back by kissing or rubbing her savage in the form of bi-weekly car rides—which surprises her—she’ll make it clear to him as fast as she’s losing, “Baby, you’re changing.”

“Look,” she says. “What you need to know is I’ve been telling everyone that this is the last time I beg you for anything.”

- Marla, Angela Huynh [Excerpt]

Marla Angela Huynh Fiction Two Serious Ladies Writers

A weekend in San Francisco to celebrate another girl friend’s soon to be trip down the aisle. Delicious dinner at Lolinda, an Argentinian steakhouse, after an 8 hour delay at Dulles Airport, courtesy of a broken Virgin America plane. We lost a day, but it was a wonderful time nonetheless. Sightseeing in Alamo Square and Alcatraz. Brunch at Brenda’s. Miles and miles up San Francisco’s hills (okay okay 2 miles). A day in Sonoma and Napa Valley. Karaoke at Playground. Nights at Origin and Sip. And visits to Black Point Cafe and Bakery.

I’ve known and loved these girls since ‘98 and before, friendships that are hard to come by.

The hours are long, the nights never long enough, I love you wholly, the price is always worth it.

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"I feel that men are more romantic than women. When we get married we marry like one girl cause we’ll resist it, the whole way. Till we meet one girl and we think, ‘I’d be an idiot if I didn’t marry this one girl, she’s so great’. But seems like girls get to a place where they decide and pick… pick the best options, or something. Like, I know a girls who get married and they’re like ‘he’s got a good job…’. I mean, they spend their whole life looking for Prince Charming and then they… they marry the guy that’s got a good job and he’s gonna stick around."
- Dean, Blue Valentine

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Coachella 2014 that’s a wrap. Thanks for the memories.

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city of dreams

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