in a way it’s funny, in a way it’s filthy

when i met m i was sure i had my entire life figured out. sure, he was addicted to drugs and having sex with other women, had inexplicable anger inside of him, had violent outbursts regularly, belittled me on a daily basis, and left me with nothing but a couple of moving boxes and suitcases when he decided he needed enlightenment by backpacking across the world going to halifax for a few weeks to get fucked up because he didn’t have a passport, when i was barely eighteen years old.

but the man loved me.

when he wasn’t molesting my friend in her sleep, fucking his neighbour when i was babysitting our godson, or punching holes in the walls… he totally loved me. because picking me flowers on the way home from work, or writing me cards and love letters all the time, or bringing me on a surprise picnic in the middle of the night totally made up for hurling my (then) 110 pound body onto the leather couch when he was angry with me, right? the nights of champagne in bed in our underwear, or curling up together on the ten year old lazy-boy (our only piece of furniture at the time) watching stolen cable on a 13-inch television, kissing in between sentences definitely made up for the debt i accumulated for having to move every time he found me- every time i lost the safety of living peacefully in my own home.

it’s funny, you know… how the only man i ever loved could be so fucking evil.

andy gave me the world (and then some)… he gave me safe arms to fall asleep in, a beautiful home to live in, and all the hope in the world- and i couldn’t tell him i loved him. i thought about it sometimes. i’d catch him looking at me a certain way, or he’d place his hand on the small of my back when he’d be trying to get by, or he’d make me laugh so hard my sides hurt. i could kiss that man forever. he would come home from work; sweaty, smelly, and tired and i couldn’t keep my damn hands off him. i’d rush home from work so i could get started on dinner and i’d get antsy until i’d get that daily text message… on my way home, babe. i couldn’t wait to kiss him as soon as he’d walk through the door… to taste his sweet lip balm mixed with salty sweat. to hug him and breathe in his dirty work clothes. i ached for that. i don’t think i was ever in love with andy- simply the idea of him. i know i loved him, in some way. i loved that he could make me feel again- every morning i wanted to wake up if only to see his blue eyes looking back at me, and kiss his bearded chin- like i always did. he made me feel alive after being dead for so long. i loved how soft-spoken he was…. he never raised his voice, never made me feel guilty or sad. even when we broke up, we sat quietly in the kitchen, whispering. we just held each other and cried, and cried, and cried.

it worries me that i haven’t been able to feel for anyone what i felt for m. maybe it’s out of fear, or worry- maybe self-preservation. i’ve seen what it is to be so happy and so in love- to have the entire world at my finger tips and then have that person turn on me. to have them absolutely destroy all the good i had inside of me. maybe i’m being selfish or stupid for blaming m for who and what i’ve become- i don’t care. i was his enabler, and yes i’m aware of that- but no one in the world deserves to feel anything less than human. i wasn’t alive when i was with m… i was a skeleton of someone i once was; nothing but bones. the only thing i was able to feel was that dull pain in my gut every single time i saw him. part of me felt okay when he’d ask him to flush the drugs, or tell me he’d want to spend a night in instead of out at the bar… but none of that was ever permanent. he’d beg me to start a family with him, and although a lost, beaten, sad little puppy i was… i was always sober enough to know better.

his on again/off again girlfriend decided to message me the other day to let me know that they’d recently been to cuba, where he was planning to propose, and instead came home and broke up with her. why she feels the need to let me know these things is completely beyond me- but that’s beside the point. i did what any human with half a heart would do, and comforted her. what else could i do? i know how hard it is to escape him.

in any case i guess this is some pseudo-excuse as to why the hell i’m so broken. luc constantly tells me i’m impossible and he’d do anything to reverse whatever pain m has inflicted so i could just give him a chance… but i’m beyond that at this point. i’ve had two relationships- both at polar opposite ends of the spectrum and both of those were rollercoasters and now i’m just tired.

i’m so fucking tired.

human skin can be hard to live in

the next time i wake up, i want to be
in a rabbit hole to the sound of you
(making coffee)
– seabear

i had a dream that m and i were apartment hunting. he was riding his bike around town while i met with landlords. i kept feeling sick- like i was making some sort of mistake. he was getting angry and none of the houses were good enough. i woke up feeling angry and anxious.

when i fell back asleep, i had a dream that andy asked me to go visit our old home because he’d decided to buy and renovate it (a plan that was actually in the works when we were still living together). when i walked in most of the layout was different; i was trying to remember what our house looked like when we lived together. he ripped up all the floors and put in beautiful hardwood. he grabbed my hand and lead me to “the love nook”- a room with a comfortable sofa, dozens of candles, and my favourite pictures of us everywhere. i cried as he tried to explain that he wanted to keep a part of me in the house, to make it feel like home. he then lead me to the bedroom- the details i can’t even get into because it completely breaks me heart, it was so real. i woke up gasping for air, covered in a cold sweat.

andy and i have been in contact recently… and when the messages aren’t totally mundane, they’re absolutely heart-breaking. and for no other reason than because they remind me of the first few weeks of us dating. the messages were flirty, fun, and harmless. we were giddy and giggly and happy. and that’s just how they feel now. it’s so easy to talk to him and get lost because i’d never, ever felt more safe than when i was with him.

living alone is hard.

i liked it so much a few years back, but now i’m finding it less easy. it was so simple to do it the first time because i didn’t miss the holes in the walls or the panic of wondering when m would be home. i didn’t miss picking up after roommates or getting frustrated over privacy. but now? how do i go from waking up early saturday mornings to kisses on my face, cartoons on the tv, and the sounds of andy and his brother in the kitchen? i miss cooking together, cleaning together, watching movies together. i miss sitting out on the deck, or making hot dogs in the afternoon (using the bbq i’d spray painted gold and lovingly nick-named B3Q0). i miss folding the boys’ matching underwear and putting their clothes on their beds. i miss brushing my teeth with andy every night. i miss feeling him quietly crawl beside me and wrapping his arms around me after i’d already gone to sleep. i miss watching him work- ripping up the old floors in the basement, or building a bedframe from scratch for us. i can’t forget the excited look on his face the day he came back with olive green and chocolate brown egyptian cotton sheets to match the colours of our bedroom. that’s what i loved so much about andy- the effort he made into making our house a home. the effort he put into seeing me smile. i miss that so much.

give me a few days, maybe i’ll start feeling better about this.

they’ll never hurt you like i do

damn it all, i am just sad
everything’s staying as fucked up
because all that i used to have
burned out in jar like a lightning bug

– the polar bear club

i’m not sure i can pin-point exactly when i fell in love with m. i don’t know if it happened when i was watching him boil pots of water on the stove and carry each of them up one by one to draw us a bath after our long winter walks back to his mother’s house. i’m not sure if it happened while watching him pick out his clothes and dress himself every morning. i can’t remember if it happened while watching him light every candle in his bedroom and put on our song before he laid down to kiss every inch of me. i do remember though, that after a few weeks of dating, he bought me a card with a picture that said “you are my sunshine” on it- inside he thanked me for being me, for absolutely no reason at all. he did that a lot- bought me cards for no reason, drew me pictures while he was at work, and took me on dates. i can’t quite put my finger on when it was that i fell out of love with him, either. i’m not sure if it was watching him cry alone on the sidewalk as he told me he’d cheated on me for the first time. i can’t remember if it happened every time i saw the plaster from our walls crumble next to me as he put his fist through it over, and over as i cowered in the corner, crying and begging him to stop. it may have happened moments before everything went black as he pushed onto my throat, with his thumbs. it may have happened after stepping out of a hot shower and catching a glimpse of my reflexion in the mirror for the first time in days- black bruises on my collar bones, eyes red and swollen, face drained of any real emotion. i do remember though, when i stopped giving a shit, when i stopped having nightmares, when i stopped giving into him.

there are many memories i have of m stored in the back of my brain- but there are so many more things i can’t dig out. so many things have been partially erased, as if to save me the pain of remembering. it’s frustrating: trying to put the pieces back together in order to remember clearly enough to forget. how do you forget something you’re missing pieces of? how do you put those demons to rest if you’re forgetting the worst parts?

i’m not sure what my mind has decided to keep from me- and as frustrated i get, these past few days just proved to me how grateful i am to have that ability; the ability to block certain details and memories from my brain enough to try and move forward. these past few nights before finally drifting to sleep, i remember the smell of a stranger’s clothes- and the twisted knot in the pit of my stomach when i woke up to that scent, and realized he’d been in my home. i remember how gnarly the whiskey tasted as i pounded it back, shot after shot. i remember the confident smirk plastered on his face as i danced. i remember, i remember, i remember…

i don’t know what the fuck i remember.

these past six months have been more blury than any memory i have. maybe leaving andy was harder on me than i’d lead on. not because i miss him (which i do sometimes, for the record), but because andy sheltered me. not in an over-protective, jealous boyfriend way… but because he protected me from myself. the people who know me best have told me repeatedly that i have a destructive personality; i don’t just do bad things and live with the consequences… i get lost in my emotions and my mistakes, and completely destroy everything in my path. andy had so much good in him it over-flowed, and filled me with that positive need to be better. he pointed me in the right direction without even knowing he was doing it. and when i moved out of our home and needed to build myself from the ground up again, i got lost. i left the best part of me in that house, i left the best parts of me with andy- and that’s finally clear now.

my mother remembers things for me, sometimes. when i decided to find another place on my own after moving out of me and andy’s house, she remembered what happened to me the last time i lived alone. she remembered visiting and finding weeks’ worth of dishes piled on the counter, the cat box over-flowing in the kitchen, the bottles of empty liquor scattered in the apartment, the clothes all over the floor in my bedroom… she remembers how easily i disconnected from life. i mourned such loss, alone.

i’m trying so hard to dig myself out before i get there again. i’m trying not to beat myself up for what i can’t remember. i’m trying to be a better version of myself, but so much of those memories have been erased.

memory is funny like that.

all the umbrellas in london couldn’t hide my love for you

my mother and i are very close.

i still go to her house once a week to have dinner, hangout, talk about boys, and cuddle. we always share the couch and she usually scratches my head while we watch movies. i tell her just about everything (that wouldn’t break her heart), and i rely on her for a lot. she buys me veggies every once in a while, and she helps me sort my laundry. everything you picture a good mother being, she is…

when andy and i broke up, i moved half my stuff across the city into a storage facility, and the rest into my parents’ office. i didn’t have a bedroom door, and i felt like i was invading their space. my parents put their life on hold (again) to make sure i would get myself through this (again). they lied to their landlord so my cat could stay with us, and they altered their lifestyle so i would have a place to sleep. they are nothing short of superheroes.

so anyway, when i was staying with my parents, my mum did her regular motherly duties she hadn’t had a chance to perform since i was seventeen and i’d moved out. she would bring me medicine when i was sick, she’d fold my laundry if i’d forgotten, and she’d cook me healthy meals from scratch. she’d come spoon me in bed if i was crying, she would give me advice on moving forward, and she still emailed me daily at work. needless to say, my mother is phenomenal.

but there are certain things i had never learned from her. i never really got a “sex talk”. she talked to me about blow jobs back when i was maybe fourteen and too afraid of putting anything in my mouth, and she told me they were meant “for that special someone”. she never really taught me to apply makeup- i learned from my childhood friend nakia. we’d sit in her room at her step mother’s house and take turns putting on royal blue eye shadow and gold lipstick. she’d make me lay on the bed and open my eyes real big so she could apply mascara. i didn’t know how to kiss, or how to act on dates, or what to say to charm the pants off someone. these are mostly things i taught myself. it’s not that she failed me- if anything i’m glad she never gave me any of that advice. learning it on my own was the best part.

i’ve always found it easier to be friends with boys. for as long as i can remember i’ve gotten all my dating advice from paying attention to my guy friends and how they act around girls. i’ve listened to their problems, and helped them in their relationships. it’s just always been easier for me to be that friend.

before kevin moved out of the city, we’d spent years having sleepovers. when i was fifteen or sixteen we would party all night and crash at his grandparents’ house. when i moved in with m when i was seventeen and he’d be out on his binges, kevin would come over every single night to sleep over and keep me company. sometimes we would drink, and other times we’d sit on the porch talking, but he never left my side. the year i lived with jesse, we moved my mattress into the living room and kevin and i slept there all summer. he would wait for me after work, and we’d get ready together in the morning. sometimes i’d take naps in his bed while he’d play video games, and other times he’d sleep while i cleaned the house. when i finally left m for the last time, i remember the sound of kevin pushing my door in, coming into my apartment, stomping around my room, throwing pants at my head and yelling at me. he told me to get up and go because i can’t just stay in bed forever. he said, yes it fucking hurts, and yes he’s a piece of shit, but you will move past this. he took me out for breakfast that morning. because that’s just the kind of friend he is. kevin is the kind of guy who texted me from across the table asking me what the hell i was doing going out with a certain person. you’re too good for him, he said. he’s the kind of friend who would call me every morning saying, i have stories to tell, where are you!?, and he’d come over to tell me about his ridiculous adventures. kevin is the kind of friend who never once tried to kiss me, never even held my hand. but he held me every night when we slept, he hugged me every time i cried, he told me i was pretty when i asked if i looked okay, and he listened whenever i needed to vent. i learned most of what i need to know on being a friend, being a girlfriend, being a daughter, and being a good person by having kevin in my life. he taught me that people make mistakes, there is good in everyone if you look hard enough, and to just be patient. he never talks behind anyone’s back, he’s always positive, and he genuinely makes me feel good about myself. he may be gone now, and we may not speak every day… but kevin will always be my best friend.

there was only ever one other man i loved other than m. i’ve never written about him publicly because i’ve always felt that nothing i wrote about us could ever do us justice. to this day we ache for each other in the only way we know how to. a few years ago, i’d broken up with m because an argument had gotten physically violent. at that point, i wanted nothing more than to disappear. my roommate at the time took me out of the city for a weekend of fun. we took the bus out of the city and visited our good friend andrew. he took us out to a show that night. there were strangers dancing all around me, fists raised high in the air. the music was loud; its boom-boom speeding through my veins. eyes wide and smiling, i remember being pushed around in the crowd to the beat of the music, my body in tune with every other person in the room. soon, it was time for all of us to go back to our own towns, our own routines- our lives. but that night, that one night in particular, was the first time in two years that i’d decided to really let myself sink into this new feeling: i was vibrant, i was alive. beer was being poured on me as i danced and shook, lifting my head and opening my mouth to taste it. i’d stopped long enough to catch his glance at the other end of the room, waiting for me to notice. he had a shy smile, and he knew just what he was doing. i smiled back, and he motioned for me to follow him. he took my hand and lead me up a few staircases. there were kittens all over the house, and drunk kids everywhere. he opened the door to an empty bedroom, brought me inside, held me up against the door, and shut it slowly. he took my face into his hands, and kissed me hard on the mouth. he stopped, looked at me and said, “i wanted to do that all night”. we raced to undo each others’ pants and pull each others’ shirts up. he lifted me against the door and kissed me over, and over. i stopped every few minutes to touch his face; make sure he was real, that this was really happening. we spent that night in his bed, laying at opposite ends learning everything about one another. i remember him telling me his favourite food is shepherd’s pie, and his favourite colour is orange. i remember one winter a few years ago, after weeks, months, and years of indecision, he finally came to see me. i met him at the bus station, and he was hours late. he picked me up in his arms, breathed me in, and said, “sorry i’m late, i got hit by car”. the guy had gotten hit by a car, and still came to see me. he asked if we could go for a drink. we walked around my part of town and wound up at the dirty oak. we sat across from one another, and he bought us drinks. we held hands, and just looked at each other for hours. he asked about m and we made small talk. he told me i had beautiful hands and that he’d been waiting for this moment for ever. needless to say we spent hours in bed. we had breakfast in the morning and we argued on the bus. being apart was easier than being together, it seemed. we’ve always kept in touch- we visit each other now and then and have lunch dates or small talk at bars. he emails me to check up on me, and we pretend nothing happened. about a year ago he asked me to move to his city and be with him. fuck it, let’s just do this, he said. i told him no, gave m another chance, and broke his perfect heart. recently, i was in town and he surprised me at a party. we wound up in a dark room, both crying and holding each other. he’s living with his girlfriend now. he asked me why i fucked everything up. he told me he’s in love with me. eventually he left and by 6am i crawled into a stranger’s bed with bizkoti and slept off the liquor. he called me a few times and i never picked up.

living with andy taught me more on acceptance, compassion, and relationships than i probably would have known had i never met him at all. we’d known each other exactly three weeks when he took me home to meet his family. he picked out my ring that same weekend. how ironic is it that we broke up because he decided he could never marry me, or start the life together we’d been planning since that weekend in oshawa. but that weekend is engraved in my memory like it happened yesterday. andy’s father gave good hugs, always told me he loved me, and visited us often. i came down the stairs of me and andy’s home once to find john sitting on the side of the couch. he looked up at me and said, you look beautiful… did you know that? . that’s my most vivid memory of him. the reality of my life hit me like a ton of bricks in that moment. i had finally let someone in, i’d fallen head over heels in love with his family, and i knew in my heart of hearts that it was over.

you know i spend a great deal of time whining about m and how awful my past was. slowly spilling our secrets into these pages has been more liberating than i thought it’d ever be. and for someone who has such a hard time dealing with the reality of m and i’s destiny, i do realise i am luckier than most. m is one bad seed in the crop of amazing men i’ve had in my life. i have to remember that.

an old friend once said, you love people! and each person you find a way to love differently, in their own special little way. i envy you for that.

that always stuck with me.

i’m not alone, i’m just on my own

i’m exhausted.

saturday’s move was quick & easy and i’m glad it’s all over. so many things happened this weekend but i’m too tired to attempt a recap. moose the cat kept me up all night, screaming. it’s been a rough transition for him too.

last night was my first night alone. friends have been staying over every night and it’s been fantastic… don’t get me wrong, but i was pretty excited to finally be in my house alone. i got back from luc’s around 10ish and wandered around the house- not really knowing what to do with myself. i started packing a lunch and the silence hit me like a ton of bricks. i love my new house, and i love all the love and effort put into making it a home, but it still doesn’t feel like home quite yet.

every time i walked into me, andy and matty’s house, i always felt at home. the colours were warm, the air smelled of a home-cooked meal, and the lights were always dimmed. the boys were usually in the kitchen, making their lunches or playing games on their computers. matty and i would talk about the day, and he’d usually prance around the kitchen- singing 90s songs and dancing while cooking. he always asked me if i had a good day. i miss that about him. i would kiss andy on the mouth, and then on the neck. he tasted sweet and salty, he smelled like hardwork and the cologne i bought him.

i can’t begin to explain how lonely i felt, making lunch for one, in my tiny little kitchen. i felt so fucking defeated. it still smells like fresh paint and stale air. i want nothing more than to run home, take off my stupid business wear, throw on an oversized tshirt and make dinner. i want it to smell lived-in. i want it to smell like home.

i want to stop beating myself up for making the right decision.

fuck life: an update

so remember how i mentioned fucking life on a seriously large scale for about a week or two before buckling down and figuring my shit out?

well fuck-life-weekend part 1 was a major success. i even woke up on sunday without a voice from drinking so much. kevin returned to his house sunday night and found holes in the walls, blood everywhere, graffiti on the floors, and a strobe light still on.

what. the. fuck?!

i managed to lose some money, eat pho and catch up with some close friends. i saw tegan & sara, went to a party, took some photos and cheated on my diet with a big mac. i woke up with bruises i can’t explain and small cuts everywhere. EPIC. i know i’m being reckless and unhealthy, but i need to get this shit out of my system.

tomorrow i’m going to the gym
wednesday i have yoga
and thursday night i leave for montreal til sunday

for what it’s worth, i miss andy so much. not the relationship, necessarily. but his presence in general. i lost my best friend, you know? i’m being tough though… so i should come out of this alive.

…if i can make it through next weekend!

wizard staffs, tattoos… and getting over my ex-boyfriend

sigh.

where to begin? although completely devastated, i really feel like this may be for the best. the last few months with andy were spent laying in bed, waiting for him to come home. when i wasn’t busting my butt to make him dinner, wash his laundry, and clean the house… that’s just what i was doing: waiting.

other than m, andy is the only person in the world i ever let myself get wrapped into. in the end, i dismissed my own happiness to try and keep him around- to try and make him want to spend the few minutes or hours of spare time he had, with me. don’t get me wrong, andy is a smart, loving, wonderful man… he’s just not ready to stop being selfish enough to make a relationship work. my heart will always ache for him, and i’ve come to terms with that. but now it’s time to make up for lost time.

moving out of andy and i’s home means a few things:
1. save, save, save.
2. buy a car.
3. discover myself again.

but before i do these wonderful things, i’m giving myself a week to absolutely fuck life, on a pretty seriously large scale.

within the next week i’ll be doing the following:
tegan & sara show, party at quinn’s, drinking with gindaisy, lazy movie day, dinner with my brother, yoga x 2, look at houses, take some time off work, go to montreal, buy new bras and panties, get ridiculous tattoos, party at bip’s house for sip’s birthday (involving twister, wizard staffs, and 90’s wrestling), go dancing… etc.

ah, yes.