Tuesday, December 22, 2020

CAJÓN

don’t believe the things 
you tell yourself so late at night 
you are your own worst enemy, 
you'll never win the fight 
just hold onto me, I'll hold onto you

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. I’ve cried several times about Lucas. I think what bothers me is I don’t always feel secure enough about myself to decide whether someone is right for me. Lucas has been my first real serious long-term relationship as an adult, and I wanted to hold on to that safety and security. My grandma asked why I wasn’t speaking to him, she dotes on him and she says she’s sad because he’s alone without family in Singapore, and I cried so hard again. She doesn’t understand that it’s not always up to me whether I’m on talking terms with someone, and I understand that people need time to heal. I have cried even over Joey. Since 2016, we have found time to reach out to each other, even if for the tiniest periods. I think this year we each finally realized how so very unhealthy it is. Not staying in each other’s lives might have been a loss for the better, but it is a loss I can still grieve. It is alright and even usual to feel two very different feelings, like grief and relief, about the same event. I like him and had the best summer of my life with him, and nothing can change that. Sometimes, a lot of the time, I weave great narratives in my head. I am not one to spectate in life. Even if it hurts me, even if it breaks my heart and I fail and I cry until the pain feels physically impossible to bear, I remind myself that it’s all part of life, that it’s a miracle I am alive at this point and privileged enough to feel the great burden of heartbreak. I even reached out to Jaysen to talk about my schoolgirl crush. It was awkward when I saw him at work yesterday, but Jaysen is Jaysen and I am me, and eventually we began flirting a little again. I love him and I like him and we enjoy flirting with each other because we find each other attractive, and that’s okay. I really like people who, like myself, shoot their shots, because you never know otherwise. You cannot weave great narratives about people in lieu of interacting with them. We may have met in far flung places in the world, but unless we have conversations, you will never know the dimensions I have in my person and vice versa. I am a terrible person, I’m the worst, and I can also be much, much greater than your narrative can contain. I can make you laugh harder because I’m a tease, and I know it. Do you? 

I DON’T NEED A PARACHUTE



Two years ago, I met Tina for the first time in New York. I was nervous that day, just as nervous as I would have been if it were a first date with a romantic partner, perhaps even more so. People talk about how hard it is to find love, but sometimes it’s just as hard to find true friendship. The kind that doesn’t depend on circumstance, the kind that actually exists in spite of it. Tina and I live in opposite hemispheres of the world (though not for much longer) and yet we are kindred spirits. We’ve had to navigate Asian parents and parenting, and she’s been so much of a big sister to me, although sometimes she’s also my soulmate and my wife. We’ve had our fair share of adventures with men and with life. It makes me feel validated to know there is someone else just as trusting and vulnerable with her heart, who writes about parallel universes and timelines, who doesn’t judge me for outgrowing spaces I no longer fit into. On one of our outings (it was at a Women’s March, after we’d seen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez make a speech in the flesh!) we eavesdropped and overheard a first date going south and burst into inward giggles. I am simultaneously thirteen in middle school, and eighty years old in a nursing home, when I am with Tina. Old souls at heart, childish imps somewhere lower in the body. Thank you for being spacegirltina, for bringing me to The Ramble and teaching me about birds, for letting me talk to your cat Hadley, for giving me the space to grow and for telling it like it is. Thank you for your trust and for being someone I can trust. Thank you for reflecting and growing and calling me/yourself out on our bullshit. Thank you for being in my corner and having my back and supporting me when I need it. I love you and I promise we will grow old together and we’ll talk it out, no matter what.