The problem is that everything feels so far away, sometimes. The problem is that I can barely remember the way it felt to lay in your arms. The problem is that I am tired and restless and very lonely. The problem is that I feel like I’m withering away and I don’t know how to stop it. The problem is that your letters are so damn sweet, and you write about how wonderful things will be when we pack our things up and make our way out west, but the truth is that I am fucking terrified.

My best friend hopes to be engaged to her boyfriend in a very sensible “six to eight months,” and mine and I are moving out and it’s not because we’re not still in love, I don’t think. I wonder where we will put our things, who will get the painting he gave me for my twenty-third birthday and the cast iron skillet and if our bikes will be lonely when they aren’t resting against the living room wall together anymore. I wonder how I will sleep without his arm around me, how I will eat without making our favorite dinners for the two of us. I know that I will get too drunk drinking full beers instead of half the pint. I probably will need it. Surely I will cry myself to sleep every night and I have to hope that he will miss me when he leaves, and that it will be enough to make him want to come home.

I tell him that I’m not sure it will work, because I don’t understand how we can leave our infinitely large little life for something unsettled. He wants to go, and I want to, too, but I haven’t got the balls. I wonder if he will still call, if he will meet another girl up north, or out west, or wherever the hell he goes. I wonder why I’m not enough. I wonder if I ever could be. Somehow our relationship is going in reverse, because we moved in together after knowing one another for two weeks, and now we’re moving out and he’s moving away and I’m pretty certain that I’m stuck.

photo by mike hedge
     A warm, breezy night. A bonfire on the beach. A keg of PBR. I’m in my  summer uniform—a thin racerback tank and cut-offs. My sunglasses are  still perched atop my head; I spent all day at the beach. I’m a little  drunk, now, and all of my best friends are here, but I hang back.  Sometimes it’s nice to watch from afar, to enjoy a moment without being  in it. I don’t want to worry about making jokes that everyone will laugh  at, I don’t want to get stuck in an awkward conversation with my ex,  who I didn’t know was invited.      I’m moving soon. It’s time for a new town and a new adventure and I  can’t help feeling that my time here has run its course. All of the  parties feel mostly the same, and my girlfriends and I have the same  conversations, over and over. My best friend is engaged, and she spends  most of her time with her fiance.      This sleepy beach town has been good to me. I came here three years ago,  and I am more confident and happier and wiser now than I was then.      I’ve started packing my things; I don’t have much. I’ll leave sometime  next week, probably. I haven’t told anyone. I don’t want a going away  party or tearful goodbyes. There’s always phone conversations and visits  and drunken Skype sessions.  Or maybe no one will miss me all that  much, and I think that would be okay.        I’m thinking too much, and my friends are starting to glance over at me,  sitting alone in the sand. I finish my beer and I stand up, a little  unsteady on my feet. I fill my cup and I put my arm around my best  friend and kiss her cheek. She says hey, boo, and I try not to think  abut the boxes packed up in my apartment, the lease I signed for the  cute little studio apartment in Philadelphia. I crack a stupid joke, and  everyone laughs, and everything’s just the way it should be.

photo by mike hedge

     A warm, breezy night. A bonfire on the beach. A keg of PBR. I’m in my summer uniform—a thin racerback tank and cut-offs. My sunglasses are still perched atop my head; I spent all day at the beach. I’m a little drunk, now, and all of my best friends are here, but I hang back. Sometimes it’s nice to watch from afar, to enjoy a moment without being in it. I don’t want to worry about making jokes that everyone will laugh at, I don’t want to get stuck in an awkward conversation with my ex, who I didn’t know was invited.

      I’m moving soon. It’s time for a new town and a new adventure and I can’t help feeling that my time here has run its course. All of the parties feel mostly the same, and my girlfriends and I have the same conversations, over and over. My best friend is engaged, and she spends most of her time with her fiance.

      This sleepy beach town has been good to me. I came here three years ago, and I am more confident and happier and wiser now than I was then.

      I’ve started packing my things; I don’t have much. I’ll leave sometime next week, probably. I haven’t told anyone. I don’t want a going away party or tearful goodbyes. There’s always phone conversations and visits and drunken Skype sessions.  Or maybe no one will miss me all that much, and I think that would be okay.
 
      I’m thinking too much, and my friends are starting to glance over at me, sitting alone in the sand. I finish my beer and I stand up, a little unsteady on my feet. I fill my cup and I put my arm around my best friend and kiss her cheek. She says hey, boo, and I try not to think abut the boxes packed up in my apartment, the lease I signed for the cute little studio apartment in Philadelphia. I crack a stupid joke, and everyone laughs, and everything’s just the way it should be.