away from absolutes

i’m worried that i’ve experienced all the happiness i was allowed to have in this life. that maybe things got too good too fast, and now i’ll spend the rest of my life trying to grasp onto feelings that just aren’t meant for me.

i know that’s not how emotions work.

i think what i am most afraid of is this: that i will live a life devoid of the things i value most. in my mind this life looks like two squiggly lines that come together to briefly kiss and then go their separate ways for the rest of eternity.

everything i’ve just written is so god damn absolute.

tonight i was listening to solo by frank ocean and thinking about the first time i’d ever heard the song. it was around this time 4 years ago and i was coming out of one of the worst depressions i’d ever experienced. a depression where, like this one, i’d convinced myself that i would never feel good ever again. ever ever again. until out of nowhere the weather got warmer and the air became still and i sat in the library with my earphones in thinking maybe i’m okay after all. maybe in hell there really is heaven. inhale, emily.

i listened to that song and i felt close to those feelings, not exactly feeling them as i once did, but feeling a vague sense that my bones are the same bones that held onto them a long time ago. and that all of that still exists inside of me, somewhere. in my bones or my fingertips or my ouroboros tattoo.

slide by frank ocean came on next and i danced in the shower for the first time in a really long time. it felt like making a promise to myself.

winter is over and the weather is turning once again and i’m not sure whether it’s naive to rest all my hopes on this change or whether it’s exactly what i need. the sudden warmth that spring brings has been one of the few constants in my life. every year there’s a moment where it feels the exact same. and i feel at home. and i smile and a breeze ruffles the trees and there’s that thought again: maybe i’m okay after all. exhale, emily.

i’ve been afraid to write because it’s been a long time since i’ve actually tried. and i don’t think i’m as good (whatever that means) as i once used to be. but then i thought well where did all those words go? all those words i’m afraid i’ve lost, the words that could carve out reality, that could capture this feeling, where did they go? even if they dissipated, dispersed into the air, they’re still out there somewhere, waiting for me to reacquaint myself with them. somewhere in here is a metaphor, i’m sure of it.

i don’t know where all this leaves me, or my happiness, or my writing. i don’t know how to connect all these paragraphs into a story that makes sense, because it still doesn’t make sense to me. i think, at the very least, this is a movement away from absolutes.

maybe it’s even a movement towards more warmth, towards nuance and possibility and (emily you are allowed to write this down) a movement towards happiness.

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