Here is what I’ve been doing since you’ve been gone.
I kiss boys I don’t particularly feel like kissing. Their mouths do not match mine, or yours.
I go to bed early, stay asleep late.
I wake up once a night and check my text messages. This is usually at 3:30 AM, and I never remember it in the morning.
Sometimes I read an entire book, and then I don’t remember anything I read.
I ask the valets in the parking garage for help zipping my dress, because I can’t do it all the way myself.
I drink a lot of coffee. Most of it is instant, because there’s no point brewing a pot when it’s just me drinking it. I don’t mind instant coffee. It suits me. It’s kind of bitter, which I like.
I get drunk faster than I used to.
I hide from you. One day I saw your face as a retweet in the minefield of my Twitter feed, and it took me two laps around Barnes & Noble to stop the wheels in my head from going haywire and my stomach from churning. Social media is always looking for new and creative ways to punch me in the gut.
I fill my bathtub up very full and very hot and slide all the way under the water so I can’t hear anything. I stay in the bath as long as I can, which lately is up to an hour.
Here is what happens in December: It snows, it gets cold. We need mittens and sweaters and big expensive down coats. I sleep in old thermals pilfered from various boys, yourself included. They’re always grey.
I spend entire days in little high heels selling cheap sweaters to women for their daughters, their sons-in-law. Families fill up the skyway and wait two hours to see a 15-minute parade. Nobody seems all that happy.
December forces people to be happy, to be in love. It’s the snow, and the cold, and the fucking holiday music playing everywhere you go – you can’t even escape it at the gas station. Merry Christmas, baby, all I want for Christmas is you walkin’ in a winter wonderland. Don’t even get me started on “What are you Doing New Year’s Eve?” Perhaps our sound system has conspired against me this year, playing only sappy and slow holiday songs. You know what I’m doing this New Year’s Eve? Nothing. New Year’s is horrible.
I am fairly happy, all in all. I have a very lovely life for the most part. I drink wine with my roommate, I sing along to the radio all day. I see people and I do things, I drive my little car all over the place. I try very hard not to get too melancholic and sentimental, thinking about the winters prior. You’re a big girl, I say to myself. You’ll be just fine.
December is the loneliest month. I like to be alone. I just don’t like to be lonely.