It’s things like the Boston Marathon bombings that remind me why I never want children. Things like Sandy Hook, like Aurora, that create a grief in me that is unbearable, something I would never want to let another human being feel (not that I blame my mother). I am reminded of the mean-spirited, the mentally ill, the people who just want to mess shit up. I cry into my boyfriend’s arms and he reminds me of the kindness of humanity, of all the things people did following the explosions to help and it feels good that I have someone by my side who can see the positive things so clearly but it is not enough.

I read about how violence is at an all time low. Is that supposed to make me feel better when I see horrific images of limbless bodies and dead children? That’s what I’m supposed to tell my child when asked why people are being senselessly murdered?

I know all about the joys of life and happiness in everything, but to create another human being knowing the potential for their sadness…it seems too cruel. The world’s in some serious shit. No place for babies.



For the first 22 years of my mostly single life, I enjoyed sleeping alone. I didn’t realize what I had. Sharing beds with occasional boys left me smothered, though I appreciated girls because they didn’t want to snuggle–we were just on vacation together. At 22 years and one month, I met the man who is now my boyfriend of almost one year. And he spends the night in my bed every single night.

Sometimes he talks in his sleep (funny) and wakes me up (not funny). He’ll laugh like something is really, genuinely funny, but if I try to ask him about it, he says something mundane like “Take out the trash,” and doesn’t remember anything the next morning. 

I have chronic mono (not really) and usually get tired at about nine. He doesn’t ever get tired. This, he says, is the only thing he dislikes about our relationship. He also doesn’t have a job, but he tries to understand what it’s like to have to wake up at 7:30.

I fall asleep when we start watching Star Trek around ten because he rubs my back and I can’t help but fall into a hazy delight of sleep. Then he gets up and does homework. It works, I think. Except this morning, when I feel asleep at about seven last night and woke up at four this morning. I tried not to wake him up. I didn’t move, I just got out his iPad and entertained myself. The light wasn’t really bothering him, but he knew I couldn’t sleep. I asked him if I could get him water. I was wide awake. I got him water. Asked him if he needed anything else.

And he asked me what was up. And I took a deep breath and asked if he was interested in going to Bruegger’s because it was 5:30 in the morning, right when they open, and I bet that’s when all the bagels are perfect and warm. And he said yes.

He drove me there and I bought us bagels and I think I am irrevocably and unstoppably in love in with him. We went back to sleep afterwards. I wouldn’t want to share my bed with anyone else and I don’t think I could sleep in it alone ever again. 

“RIDE YOUR BIKE ON THE SIDEWALK” the lady yelled to me from the safety of her van, stopped at a red light. I considered her strangely, before turning back to pay attention to the road I have to traverse that has no bike lane.

The sidewalk, I might have explained, is much more dangerous. That’s where I fell a few weeks ago because the sidewalk is uneven and there are light posts directly in the center and trash cans on Wednesday. I scraped my leg and both arms and I had to tell my boss when I got to work that no, I wasn’t wearing a helmet.

I feel the terror in my body every day now, swaying consciously to my right because I know if I fall left I will break my neck. I will contort against the the sidewalk in a way that is unnatural while my upper body will stretch past the curb to the street and I will die. Or worse, live the rest of my life paralyzed with no legal way out. I will be Terri Schiavo and a burden on my family, but a champion of fetus rights to people who have never met me. 

Falling right is safer, but it has its problems. If I ride on the street and fall right, it’s an awful reverse. My neck will still hit the curb but my head will slam hard against the sidewalk before it has a chance to break. Red concrete.

I could always get hit by a car on the street, I know. But the sidewalk isn’t perfect. Thanks for thinking you could save my life there, lady, but I know these thoughts everyday. There is no safe place for the bike outside of the bike line. I should wear a helmet. 


Stop me if you’ve heard this one. College student panics about her future. Half her life she spends wondering what she’s going to eat next, the other half about whether she got into grad school. And whether she wants to go to grad school. And how important human interaction is. And if it would be okay if she eloped and moved to Japan.

She knows she already said two halves. She’s not a math person.


This is what it sounds like when I think out loud. Everything happens for a reason, my mother says, which makes me want to shout THAT’S SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO FIX ANYTHING ON YOUR OWN or feel crappy about not getting that job or a hurricane destroying your house or your butt falling off

and she says, you know I’m right, and I say how could that be right, mother? Do you remember that shoe you had? The black flip flop, with the white stripe on the side, that you kept for a year, 12 straight months, hoping the other one would show up? Do you remember the day you threw it out? And how the other one showed up a week later? “What does it mean?” you kept asking. Nothing.

Maybe we should all keep the half lost item. I have a box full of earrings that have no partner. Some of them I can’t bear to part with, and the rest have a place to stay, so it seems cruel to kick them down the chute. Still purposeless. I’ll never find their match. Unless I threw them all out today. Then that other box that exists out there, with all their little friends, will show up on my doorstep.

We can’t keep everything though. We have to let go. If everything happened for a reason, wouldn’t it feel like we weren’t even in control of our lives? But then something brutally coincidental might happen that makes you think it might be true. And where do you go from there?

My father texted me today to say Happy Valentine’s Day. He loves me every day, he wrote, not just today. I read this exquisite quote, that I can’t remember exactly, but it was something like, “I never want human experience to feel alien.” Let’s immerse ourselves in this experience. Just because something happens that you don’t know how to deal with, doesn’t mean it’s abnormal. What we feel is everything. We’re all pitifully flawed humans. Isn’t that something?  Maybe my dad isn’t perfect (for example, it’s been about four years since we’ve been in touch). But how can he be?

I wouldn’t want to live in a world where everything happened for a reason. I prefer this one, where we’re constantly plunged into situations that will one day be familiar, but will never fully make sense. Such randomness is life. Is there anything better than that?


A watched pot has to boil


A computer at work

The bottom left corner

Roll with what you’re given? Or get up and quit?