Growing Up Without Growing Apart


I find myself sitting on the couch at 11pm on a Friday night, freshly showered, in a onesie that’s only buttoned halfway up so I can occasionally look down at my own tits. I’m drinking a PBR because they’re cheap & perfect for washing down the bacon cheeseburger I just devoured like it was my first meal in a week. There’s a chunky weird green face mask on my face and coconut oil in my hair, but I embrace these beauty remedies that make me look like a freak temporarily. I light a joint, slouch, and ponder what tomorrow, next week, next month, and next year will bring. I think about working out tomorrow despite the fact I’m being counter-productive at the very moment. I try to relax and enjoy the quiet, sort my thoughts, and exhale slowly.

My brain is overflowing with ideas on topics to write about, short-term goals to accomplish, places to go, the to-do list, errands to run, and I circle back my attention to the man I love sitting across the room writing on a different computer, seemingly focused and relaxed after the mind-blowing sex we had an hour ago. I don’t interrupt him from his work but I glance up occasionally and smile, because I can’t help but appreciate from a short distance how beautiful of a human he is, inside and out. I bring my eyes back to my keyboard and it hits me… I’m 25 years old, just as confused as everyone else, and the one thing that I think I might actually understand is how to love someone.

We’re all just trying to figure it out. How to live. The meaning of life. Our purpose. Find passion. Fall in love. Avoid dying alone.

While my personal life has consistently been far from perfect and in many instances, completely bizarre, I appreciate the fact that everyone’s experience in relationships is exclusive to their perspective and reflection on previous experiences. Having spent the last 4 years of my life involved in the adult industry, it certainly hasn’t been typical, either. I’ve betrayed the trust of others in the past, and I have also been betrayed. I was fed a taste of my own medicine at some point, if you will. In the past, I’ve told myself things along the lines of, “You deserve this, yadda yadda karma balance, yadda yadda, self-deprecating comment.” but that’s also because I’m a bit of an emotional masochist. My mother always liked to say I was one to learn things the hard way… as in I’ve been known to repeat my mistakes til I’ve really learned my lesson. My mother is right about a lot of things.

I’ve been in love before, or the person I was at the time loved the person I was with at the time. We grow. We evolve. Sometimes not in the same direction. Some people say their love just faded over time, or their paths in life have become incongruent. Adoration becomes eradicated when we maliciously hurt one another with lies, disrespect, and varying forms of betrayal. Why does it even happen? It’s so easy to feel jealousy and so difficult to cling to the concept of trust, especially in a society with such a high divorce rate, sexual-laden media, and a generation with a skewed definition of monogamy. It’s absurd to me to think that everyone just gets one person or one chance in the whole entire world to love and be loved. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible to find the right person to share your time with, give love to, and grow with.

They say it is better to have loved and lost than never loved at all, and frankly, I agree. People who have felt great emotional pain and have been dealt more than their fair share of deceit may at times have a colder approach to relationships and be slower to trust in the future, but if resilient, can find themselves stronger than before, more in touch with their emotions, and more capable of empathy. At this point, I hold on to honesty like Linus holds onto his blanket. Even when it isn’t easy to cough up or to receive, it sure makes things a lot better in the long run. I’m an open book, but I’m not here to tell those I care about facts they need not know about my personal history. I’ve found comfort in my newfound emotional loyalty.

I’ve become more self-aware these days, declaring to myself how ridiculous it is that I sometimes look for problems, like cracks in the ceiling, and find myself poking or prodding impulsively, or going into a diatribe about something that could be easily and calmly solved if I just took a deep breath and acted like an adult instead of a fussy toddler that didn’t get her way. Not to say I’m a dramatic brat, because I think I’m a pretty sweet chick that’s laid back, supportive, affectionate, and understanding, but you can be damn sure I have had my moments when I’ve chosen to raise hell. I start to ask myself if I need to look for something wrong because I’m scared of being happy or not used to there not being a problem within the situation staring me in the face.

It’s not a fairy tale, even though there are moments that certainly feel so beautiful and surreal. To me, love is an undeniable feeling, inexplicable to anyone other than those connected by the head and heart strings. “Only we know” is what we say when we need to remind each other that it isn’t up to anyone else. You. Me. Us. Here. Now. When I look him in the eyes and he kisses me like he did the first time, there are no messy strands of thoughts floating through my head, no stress or to-do lists, anxiety, or sadness… only the one solid truth that I have never loved someone more in my entire life and I couldn’t be luckier to know what that feels like.