God And My Friends

Khush
Khush

So many things have happened recently and I have no one to share them with. 

My ex-girlfriend and I broke up in the beginning of the Summer. We got back together in the beginning of the Fall semester. Three weeks in, she said no. Too much emotion. Too much weight. She pushed me away. It’s hard to fix things once they’re broken.

We agreed not to talk for a month in order to “get over each other.” Halfway in, I couldn’t do it. I was having what felt like the worst depressive episode of my life. I texted her. Maybe because I needed a friend who understood me in New York City. Maybe because I knew that intimacy with her was a short-term miracle cure-all. She interpreted it as an attempt at emotional manipulation, according to a mutual friend. She didn’t respond. I went crazy. I Tweeted at her, I emailed her, I Facebook messaged her. Then I felt guilty and insane and wished I hadn’t.

It is so frustrating, when someone doesn’t respond to you. It feels offensive. It is like saying, you are not a person. And I guess my biggest desire was to be a part of her life. To be needed as much as I needed her. But it was unbalanced that way. And it had been for a long time. Maybe it was because I talked about myself all the time. I drew closer, she drew away.

It wasn’t her intention, but her not responding helped me. I needed to vent to someone and so I reached out to school friends. I would talk and talk, the way that some of them had talked and talked to me when they were down. When you reveal yourself to someone you feel closer to them. So I became closer to my friends, friends that I wasn’t close to for my previous two years in college because I was always with my ex-girlfriend.

Human contact is like the chicken soup of depression. It is a miracle cure-all. Sometimes.

My friends and I did all sorts of fun stuff. We went shooting guns in Long Island. I shot the AK-47, it was so cool. We saw Interstellar in IMAX. We met my friend’s son. We smoked a lot of weed. We went to Brooklyn, Manhattan, Staten Island, the Bronx.

College has brightened considerably since I’ve made actual friends here. I’ve gone on record saying I hated New York City. But now I love it. A place is its people. When people say they hate their hometown, it means they hate the people of their childhood.

I always felt more comfortable in Cleveland, my childhood home with my childhood friends. But when I made real friendships in New York City, it was like this big veil was taken off every building, every person, and now it seems all so fun. I take the subway down to Columbus Circle sometimes, where they put the Christmas lights on the trees. New York City is beautiful when they do that. It sparkles and shines, like the inside of a snowglobe.

I still think about my ex-girlfriend every night. When a crazy thing happens to me, I lie in bed, and pretend like I’m telling it to her. My absolute favorite thing was when I would say something weird, and she would say, “What?” and lie there smiling, leaning her ear in, and then I would whisper it again. And then she would get fake-mad at me and push my head into the pillow and say things like “Stop being so fucking weird!” And then we would both laugh.

I think I would like that more than anything, just to have that with someone again. I want to be loved. I want to be appreciated. I want to love. I want to appreciate. I want someone to share my life with when things happen.

And so many things have happened recently. I ran out of money a while ago. My parents pay for my schooling and my rent, but everything else is on me. Not necessarily out of necessity, but by choice. I won’t ask my parents for money. I buy my food, toiletries, books, clothes, etc. I make money by hustling odd jobs and writing for websites, which usually gets me $400-500 a month and counting.

But I ran out of money for the first time in my life. I started to stress. I’d walk around campus, rubbing my hands, thinking about money. It was crazy. I remember running out of contact solution. I had to sleep with my contacts in for a week. I remember running out of toilet paper. I didn’t have many options left. It was a situation.

I started stealing from my school. I stole bottled water from the cafe. I stole toilet paper from the bathrooms. I would sneak into the dining hall and shove sandwiches and fruit into my backpack. I felt humiliated doing these things. I’d walk around with my eyes bugging, my mouth quivering, talking to myself, cursing and sweating.

There was no water in my building for a couple days. I realized that to drink water one night, I had to make money. I went to my student center. I walked around doing magic tricks for money. I would do a trick where a random person would select a card. Suddenly I would seize in pain, lift up my shirt, and the card’s name and suite would be faintly imprinted on my chest.

Everyone around would clap. I’d ask if they had any money. They would stand around awkwardly and mutter “Uh…”. I would drop my voice and say, “Listen, I’m totally out of money. Please, I can’t even afford toilet paper, whatever you can spare would be so appreciated.” Then the money would be produced, coins that I would grab greedily and stuff in my pocket. I would murmur something like “God bless…” and then leave. I could hear the silence behind me. A stunning finish to the trick.

But my friends came to the rescue. My great friend Ben bought me dinner one night. My good friend Tommy gave me 20 dollars, no strings attached. Another friend, a Republican, offered me a job if I learned coding. “Listen, I want to help you, but you need to work for it.” That was the Republican in him. Work for pay. I appreciated that. He was trying to help me help myself.

I believe in God. I have a relationship with God. I believe my friend the Republican was a messenger of God. A prophet with glasses. God was telling me to learn coding, because he knew I already wanted to. I just needed the catalyst.

Last night I smoked a blunt with a 65-year-old woman. She shares my apartment with me. We talked about our relationships with God. “God has been so good to me,” She said in between hacking coughs. “He has given me so many blessings.”

Afterwards she went to bed. I heard her coughing violently in the middle of the night. I heard her puking. I squeezed my eyes shut and tried to fall asleep. TC mark

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