comfortable silences.

why is it that when a moment ends we begin to feel all of it?

i’ve spent half of my early 20’s stuck in a lockdown. summers i’d imagined strolling down central park testing out my film camera and finding new hidden coffee shops are now a mixture of choosing which fan to buy because ill be in my room all summer and which show i should binge watch for the 5th time again. or lets just watch 10 things i hate about you all over again. going to a drive in movie every once in a while or sometimes every weekend when there was nothing else more to do.

its been a time where going to target and seeing your family pose the same potential danger. 

its been a time that has made me remember what i’m made of. or better said- what were all made of. i’d never imagined that id be spending the past year testing people for covid- and crying on my way home because i was so scared of getting it myself. but what can you do when that’s your livelihood? the marks on my face and the tears shed were only the beginning.

it was only the beginning and i reckon we all feel the same. together but apart. we all feel the same. time feels like its slipping, yet were all stagnant. in one place. unable to move further than our cars can take us. and what is that worth when the only place they take us is home? 

wouldn’t we rather be dancing, or painting, or singing karaoke, or laughing, or loving, or traveling, or just simply existing with the ones we love the most? wouldn’t we rather be stuck in any other situation but this one? 

i do. i always do. but then i remember all the beautiful moments i’ve had this past year. the moments spent inside getting to know myself better than i ever have. all the phone calls to people i love. near or far who i now have more time with than i initially thought. developing photos and watching old videos that make me feel so hopeful for new experiences that i cant help but smile when i see myself in these videos. knowing that one day- near or far- they will come again.

i remember how much i’ve gotten to know my closest friends much more than i thought possible. their happiest moments, deepest fears, and silent tears. and i remember how clearly i’ve seen how much our Creator loves us. how much He loves me. 

i remember how every single time i’ve wanted to give up, ive gotten a call. sometimes from someone completely unexpected. and most, if not every time they tell me exactly what i needed to hear.

i also remember how much better i’ve gotten at being vulnerable. i remember that it’s okay to cry. it’s okay to feel overwhelmed. it’s okay to feel those feelings so that in the end you don’t just let them overpower you and you come back the next day and do it all again. i know everything feels monotonous right now. our days are anxiety filled and routinely placed. home-work-home. occasionally a grocery store if you decide to step foot in one. and then home again. and then i remember this one thing- spring is coming. and with spring comes a new glimmer of hope.

talking to an old friend the other day she mentioned something that stuck to me more than anything i’d probably heard in a long time. she said- little violet deserves to grieve what she has lost. please let her do that. let her grieve what she once thought was everything to her.

and then i thought- even if i feel like i can’t go on, i have to. i have to. 

maybe you don’t get what you’d originally planned this year. maybe you envisioned better. maybe you didn’t expect anything at all. whatever the case is- we should all be proud of where we are right in the moment- right here. right here and now is the moment that counts. here you are. here. you. are. remember all the monumental things you had to do to get here. remember that this is just something that someday will be a distant memory. remember that we can’t choose what every day looks like, but we can choose how we react. we can choose to remember the past times, the beautiful times in a good light but to also realize that those times are just that- gone.

remember that what makes this time is how we choose to see it. how we choose to use our time. every single moment counts. but sometimes, thats the hardest thing to do. it can be so hard to not be able to do much while simultaneously getting older.

no one ever really tells you or prepares you for what it feels like to look at yourself in the mirror and see a faint line on your forehead. it seems small but then you notice other things too. like how you’d rather sleep early. and how you’d rather eat well because now you have some reason to worry about your health. because you look at yourself and you know you feel the same but on the outside you’re just getting older and its hard to see when you’ve looked the same for so long. and its even harder to see that when you’re stuck inside all the time, unable to do much of anything at all. no one ever prepares you for what its like to go to countless weddings that you sometimes forget to stop and think of yourself. you forget how lonely it all is to lose everything-again. little by little. of course you never really lose people unless you want to. but- no one had prepared me for what it would be like to go home alone each time. its both lonely and comforting. you become the epitome of the single friend. the one who is a die-hard swiftie and makes her own kombucha. the one who makes sure she knows how to be on her own because she knows the just-in-case’s are very real now. when people tell me nowadays that one day i’ll be okay and i’ll be with someone or whatever i don’t really listen anymore (as harsh as that sounds). and that’s because as much as i wish that was true for me- it is very much not. being okay is not really dependent on that for me most days. being okay is more dependent on how i feel, how much i’m giving for others, how much i’m contributing to their lives in a positive way, how much i love my friends and how much i show up for and respond and am there for them. those things make me happy. i find that the more i give, the more sunshin-ey i feel. the more i feel okay with all of the above. so when those moments come when i go home alone. or i go to another wedding. or i feel like i can’t do it anymore- then i think, i have to. even if i can’t, i have to. for little violet- i have to. because these moments will come and they will go. because the person i am loves her friends and is there for them even when shes hurting on the inside too. because the person i am strives to help. because the person i’m at least trying my hardest to be is glistening with love for those around her, while trying to feel better on the inside too.

and even when i feel like no one understands the way i feel, i know someone, somewhere, now or in the past has felt the same way before or is feeling the same way just now. and somehow-that is everything. 

and even when i feel like that, i remember that i understand myself (most times). and that is oddly comforting too. maybe no one has felt the way i do. maybe they have. i won’t know unless they tell me. and even then, the intricacies of how each and every one of us feels is so diverse that it would be hard to say we each understand eachother perfectly. because we don’t. we were made different and will remain so. what has hurt me or has comforted me will forever be different from anyone else’s experience. and for that i believe that no one person can know just how i feel. in the end, we all just want to be comforted and understood.

have you ever wondered why it is that we tend to run back for comfort into the arms of the same people who deeply hurt us? i don’t know what it is. we tend to forget that we are in the situation we’re in because OF this person. how confusing that has been for me.

and once again i ask myself- why is it that when a moment ends, we begin to feel all of it?

time after time- i wonder when it is that i’ll stop feeling things i wish i’d felt in the moment. the regret sometimes doesn’t stop. or it stops for a single moment and then starts again when im alone. i guess at the end of the day i wonder what it would be like to get the apologies i wanted. would they have helped? would they have made me feel better? was there anything i shouldve apologized for? i’m not entirely sure if that wouldve changed the outcome.

a poem that spoke volumes to me recently: “i won’t love anybody the way i loved you, and i am oddly at peace with that.”-catarine hancock

i’m very much at peace with the fact that i’m not going to ever love the way i have loved some people in my life. i loved them so much i was willing to put up with so much confusion and disrespect. and i promised i would never do that again. never again. pinky promise. even if its not this great love i have imagined in my head-i would simply be content with being loved the way everyone should- with dignity and respect.

from the dining table has been one of my most listened to songs lately. i guess it explains how ive been feeling. 

“maybe someday you’ll call me and tell me that you’re sorry too. but you, you never do.”

i’ve said this before but i think this time i really really feel it. i really feel okay with not getting an “im sorry that i hurt you” call. 

sure, sometimes i wonder what past me would’ve done. complete silence or forced silence was never something i was okay with. it made me feel like i had to find a way to say what i felt. i had to find a way to let my feelings be known- whether they would change anything or not.

i thought i could just tell my truth and go from there. it turns out- thats hardly ever helped. when people hurt you they almost always deny ever making you feel the way you do. and for the first time- i don’t blame them. sometimes the hardest thing you can do is accept that your hurt someone you love. sometimes the hardest thing to do is hear from someone else that what you did deeply affected them.

so i’ve come to realize and accept the comfortable silences (sorry harry). i used to be very different when it came to these things. but in the end i always felt like my voice was getting louder- and the people i wanted to listen would never hear a thing. they wouldn’t hear a single word. so as much as i wanted them to listen i realized that telling them how i felt either in person, in letters, in long meticulous messages: none of them worked. in the end it was always me who was left without any answers. so i learned to be better. even if that meant i’d have to be lonely sometimes (or most times). i no longer really have any problems with anyone in my life. i just let that go. i don’t really worry about it anymore. i live across the country after all. there’s people who haven’t spoken to me in more than a year (and its somehow worse when you consider them family) but at this point- its okay. i’ve learned to keep myself quiet. to not cause a sometimes much deserved scene. because i simply don’t have the energy to give time to things that aren’t going to help me in any way. to things and people who will never even recognize my feelings. i simply want to give my energy only to those who reciprocate the love and attention i give them.

so i guess comfortable silences are not overrated. they are healing. the less you fight it, the more you can sit back and enjoy the precious things you have in this very moment. like how the sun shines through your window every morning because it’s almost summer now. like helping your friends plan the important things in their lives. like watching them find people they really love. its so pretty watching love. it really is. its beautiful to watch people be happy (not that i’m not).

it makes me happy because i don’t know if that will be possible for me. i usually write these posts in past tense but this one is pretty present for me. this is how i actually feel right now. real time. its weird to almost be in your mid-20’s and watch everyone around you find the things they’d always hoped for and feel almost stagnant because that isn’t how you feel. every evening seems to end the same. by yourself eating dinner on the floor of your room. usually listening to taylor swift. while i think about how weird my life has been up to this point. its so good now. but at one point it was really hard. and to think that im sitting on the floor of my room in new york is not something younger violet would have ever anticipated. she wouldn’t have anticipated to be by herself either. but i guess life is life. no ones ever written poems or songs about me. no one has ever made me feel enough of a priority that i’d actually consider it. no one has ever told me they like me so much they can’t think of anything else (maybe i watch too many movies?). and as the hopeless romantic that i am- that would only be a dream. but a very unaccomplished one at this point if i do say so myself. and i guess thats okay. and im sure that im not the first and only girl who’s ever felt this way. who’s ever felt like thats a hard thing to accept. but the older i get, the easier it gets. the easier it is to let go of people. the easier it is to sit through all of the awkward comments you have to face. the easier it is to make sure you don’t feel like you need someone else. the easier it is not to jump in your own defense at any (quite ridiculous) comments. although that would always be nice, there’s no denying that. but as i grow up- the less i feel like it defines me. as much as others like to define me with it- its stopped being what i define myself with. what defines me is much much more than any of that. and although i still struggle with all of this-i can assure you that i’m trying my very best. sometimes i totally fail at any of it. sometimes i do way better than i thought. and i definitely congratulate myself with trips to trader joes even though i hate driving in jersey. sometimes i delete all my social media apps because if i literally see anyone else get married or have a baby it will throw me over the edge. sometimes i listen to taylor swift all day and sing in my car and don’t really care if anyone sees me and i feel like really really good. sometimes i don’t. sometimes i get sad as i watch my friends become more and more busy while i somehow become less and less busy. and as i try to become more and more okay with that, i’ve started appreciating the process more. i’ve started thinking of all the things yet to do. i still have mountains and hills to get through. i’ve started thinking about what i want to do this summer and this year and how i want to laugh more and sing more and write more. i want to go to the beach and i want to hike and i also want to build a desk i’ve been dreaming about making for months. i want to change my hair and do a ton of other little things.

there’s still time. read that again: there’s still time. you can take a deep breath because you still have time to do and find all the things you so desperately want to find.

so- why is it that when a moment ends we begin to feel all of it?

it’s because we never expected it to end in the first place. its because we were enjoying the moment while it lasted. and that is a beautiful thing to be. its important to be vulnerable and happy in the moment. if we start thinking about how it might end- we might never get to live in that moment fully. so please- take the moment in. you may run into the kind of moments that last a lifetime in your memory.

-vi

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