people > places > things

To My Pre-Boys Self:

Jessie MaComment

You are in a very comfortable and never again to be reached phase in your life, sweetheart. From here on out, you will enter (hopefully) three phases. In the first, you’ll stumble upon Disney movies and catchy, poppy love songs on the radio. Your curiosity will be sparked. You will start noticing boys and hope to be noticed in return. You will long for fairytales and happy endings, for kisses in the rain, and hand written letters. You will want to be adored. You will want flowers and madness and poetry and photos to prove to yourself- this is love, and I’m in it.You will, on several occasions, go crazy over boys who do not know your name, and make a fool out of yourself for a second glance. On a desperate night, at 2 in the morning, you will run 3 miles to someone’s house, call 70 times, leave 12 voicemails, and 44 texts. You will promise a forever, and believe in an eternity. You will find the definition of ecstasy in the soft vibrations of someone’s sleepy voice wishing you good night and sweet dreams. You will fall, fall, fall.

Then you will hit the ground. You will have experienced the agonizing and inescapable pain of jealousy, of longing, of betrayal. You will be scorched by the burning passion that once felt so warm, and run your fingers over the scars thinking, is this how it’s supposed to be? You will hurt. You will cry. You will see the failings in the boys you called ‘perfect,’ as they come to see the same in you. You will sacrifice too much. You will realize that the logistics of a relationship aren’t always black and white, cut and dry, good or bad, soul mates or visitors. You will curse the same movies you prayed to model your love life after, and bitterly turn the radio off at the first 3 lyrics of your once favorite songs. You will grow skin so thick it turns into armor. Why do I have to protect myself? From something I’ve been wanting, waiting for? Because, well, that something isn’t exactly what you imagined it to be. Instead of being lonely and heartbroken, you will be bored and frustrated, such cynical versions of a once romanticized pain.

And the third, (which I can only describe by presumption), will incorporate both of your past selves. The curious, hopeless/ful, foolish, crazy romantic. And the practical, logical, conscious skeptic. You will want to enter the dangerous yet enchanting waters of love, but only after first dipping in your toes to check the temperature. You will understand your own past, and use this knowledge and empathy to understand others’, as well. You will find someone whom you can relate to, learn from, and teach. You will love with both your head and your heart. You will not lose yourself in another, nor allow them to lose (only give) parts of themselves. You will find someone who turns you 14 again, doodling hearts around their name, 20, when you argue or need to compromise, 80, thinking about a future together. You will find someone who makes you feel like your past makes sense, in order to present your present self. Who makes you feel like, well, like it was all for them; the introduction, the lessons, for them- the conclusion. Who is much more, much longer, much too permanent to be “just a phase.”