A Series Of Not-So-Pretty But Very Human Experiences We Don’t Have Words For Yet

woman sitting on bed looking thoughtful
God & Man

That bittersweet sensation of realizing you forgot to wake up thinking of the person who broke your heart, how they popped into your head like lightning and disappeared before you could cling to their memory for another second (even though you very much wanted to).

That sinking feeling you get in your stomach when you realize the last time you saw someone was actually the last time you would ever seen them at all.

The times you become so stuck in the alternate universe of “should-have-been” that you can’t focus on the real world of what-actually-is.

The shame you get when you say a joke and no one finds it funny.

The shame you get when you say a joke about someone else that everyone finds funny.

The mental gymnastics you engage in when you try and be happy for a friend when you’re also incredibly jealous.

Reconciling that these two feelings can actually both exist at once.

The emotional hangover that follows an intense bout of crying.

The frustration that starts in your feet and travels throughout your body when you just can’t grasp something you’re not ready to learn or accept.

That crystal clear moment of clarity when you finally realize that you are, in fact, the biggest obstacle in your own life.

And the moment when you understand what to do about this fact.

Consciously and gleefully ignoring your intuition about someone, that person you know deep down is bad for you, but loving them with all your heart anyway because you’re still hopeful.

The belief that this person will prove those instincts wrong and you’ll finally get to tell the universe, “I told you so.”

The aftermath of learning that you never really will get to tell the universe, “I told you so.”

Understanding that change is simultaneously the most uncomfortable but consistent element in life, but still trying to fight it anyway.

The painful moment of recognition when you’re standing in front of a person and realize that love is still not enough to make it work.

Thinking about the future partner your ex will have, imagining them and hating them for making them happy in all the ways you could not.

Getting really worked up over these thoughts, even though this person does not yet exist.

Worrying that is only done as a means of self-protection.

Preparing yourself for the very worst because hoping for the very best and being let down is far worse.

That just in case feeling that you know will never be used.

That petty but all too satisfying feeling you get when you’re able to respond to a text with “Who is this?” when it’s clearly someone whose number you deleted.

The moment you realize you literally cannot recall the hurtful words someone else said to you years ago, no matter how hard you try, but you are still very much able to remember and feel the deep wounds they left behind. TC mark

Molly Burford

Writer. Editor. Hufflepuff. Dog person.

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Salt Water is a slow deep breath, in and out. It sits in a new genre of poetry, somewhere between artistic self-expression and candid self-help.” — Lee Crutchley

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