Most things will be okay eventually, but not everything will be. Sometimes you’ll put up a good fight and lose. Sometimes you’ll hold on really hard and realize there is no choice but to let go. Acceptance is a small, quiet room.
Date someone who is interested in you. I don’t mean someone who thinks you’re cute or funny. I mean someone who wants to know every insignificant detail about you. Someone who wants to read every word you write. Someone who wants hear every note of your favourite song, and watch every scene of your favourite movie. Someone wants to find every scar upon your body, and learn where each one came from. Someone who wants to know your favourite brand of toothpaste, and which quotes resonate deep inside your bones when you hear them. There is a difference between attraction and interest. Find the person who wants to learn every aspect of who you are, and hold onto them.
Date a girl who reads.
How many times have I sat and read poetry and prose starting or ending with this very line? The answer is far too many for my overwrought mind to recall. We are drawn to the mystique, the intrigue, of the one who steals away to a quiet room with a book in hand, in favor of a quiet night in their mind than in the loud, day-to-day business that is life. Girls who read tend to have more vast vocabularies, spanning endlessly into the distant horizon and the settling light. They tend to be quietly bold; in one breath, they’ll praise you and mock you just the same, and you will never know which is the more sincere of the two. Girls who read are people we all fantasize about dating.
But let me just propose for a moment that we also cherish the girls who write. Girls who read and girls who write are not always one and the same, but a girl who writes is everything a reader is and more. A girl who writes will find nights like those who read, but more often, she will find herself at the Friday night party, reading your movements like a poorly-written essay and revising it in her head. She rewrites the settings around her to find excitement wherever she may be.
She knows how to describe the circumference of the moon in a way that makes you wish you had paid closer attention to the sky the night you first kissed, because it will forever be a page written into her memory. She will make you wonder how she describes you to herself late at night when all she has is the residual tingle of your lips on her neck and the taste of exhilaration she feels in her toes when she whispers your name into the dark, a secret promise to immortalize how she remembers you now. She will make you want to read every word she writes as well as the ones she has never found the courage to. She will make you become a person who reads.
And we all know what they say about people who read.
Ever since I can remember, I have been dry as a desert. When I met you, I swore I could drown in you. I never knew what it was like to be drenched, to not feel like I was cracking brittle bones apart every time I tossed and turned in bed every night. You washed away the dirt and grime that filled me, and I thought I had been cleansed.
The more I drank, the thirstier I became, greedy kisses stolen in the dead of night to fill my gullet. For many long months, I drank myself so full, I became miserable because I only wanted more. I thought I was a barren field, with nothing left to nourish those who came to harvest any thought of merit. I thought that I just couldn’t be filled, that you would drain yourself trying to quench my insatiable thirst for you.
You were saltwater, running down my chin and coursing through my veins. You may have cleansed my pores of their filth, but you left yourself stuck in every nook and cranny I once claimed for myself; I still taste your salt in my tears, I don’t know how to sweat you out because I break out in cold sweats and you’re still here to haunt my clammy skin.
You were too much to swallow, though I truly did try. I still crave your taste like nothing I’ve ever experienced, even though I know it isn’t healthy. We were better off when I was a sand castle and you were waves, slowly and quietly lapping at the shore, just out of reach. Perhaps we can try to live in such harmony once again, though I know I will always long for a taste of your sea-spray.