Fast forward.

The story begins when I’m alone in a bathroom. I’m 15, and I’m at dinner with my family; we just finished eating and I’m staring at myself in the mirror. I ate fried chicken with some kind of greens and I can feel rage bubbling up in me, why would you eat that, I tell the mirror, aren’t you fat enough. I listen to a baby dragon inside me as it tempts me to get rid of it, get rid of it, get rid of it for the first time, and I walked out of the bathroom with a secret smile on my face. No one knows what just happened. No one would know what was happening for another two years, until no one could keep pretending it wasn’t happening anymore.

Fast forward and I’m in college but I’m in Argentina. I have a boyfriend and he’s nice to me, and I cling to him like he’s my whole life; he is my whole life during most of college. Never mind how I’ve cheated on him this whole trip; my first time apart from him in our two years of dating and all it takes for me to let someone kiss me is a compliment and then the threat that they might like someone else more. I’m ruled by insecurities, tell me you love me, tell me I’m pretty. I’ve gained so much weight I think I’m unrecognizable, and I hate it, so keep telling me I’m pretty, tell me I’m pretty, tell me you love me and I’ll let you take me home.

Fast forward and I’m alone. I’m in my apartment in New York City and I’m alone. When I moved to this city and when I moved to this apartment I wasn’t alone, but that all just changed. I’ve just gotten back here after leaving the Upper East Side and a pit stop to see N; M is out of town and N let me sit on their couch and stare at whatever sports game he had on to numb my feelings, but now I’m home and they’re all coming back. I’m alone. I’m really alone. And all of a sudden I’m on the floor and I’m screaming, I’m screaming into a pillow until my throat feels raw, as tears race down my face, my neck. “I’m sorry,” I keep sobbing, over and over. “I’m so sorry. I tried. I tried so hard. Oh god, this hurts. It hurts. It hurts. I’m sorry.”

Fast forward and I’m not alone in my apartment, but I am. Sometimes I’m not alone, but I am always alone. It’s one of those mornings where I’m waiting to be alone again, no I don’t want your number and don’t forget your shoes. I make a cup of coffee for just myself and sigh; there’s a moment after the door closes every time where I have to laugh at myself and who I’ve become over the last 24 months since screaming on the floor. She’s every kind of crazy, this person, but I love her in a way I’ve never loved a Self of mine. She’s stronger, I think, rolling out the worn-out yoga mat; she’s happier, I realize, as I stretch up to a backbend and open my heart. She’s ready to leave, this Self, she’s ready to take everything and start over as this person.

Fast forward and we’re all caught up. It’s almost the end of the year and the beginning of everything, the end of an era and the beginning of a new me. I don’t know where I am right now, having scheduled this blog post in advance so it would post today, like my own little fast forward to the future. My future as I’m writing it now is as blank as the rest of the future ahead of it. It was time to fast forward through all the things that shaped me in the past 12 years and let them go. It’s time to fast forward into this year, all of the wonderful milestones to look forward to, all of the changes and new beginnings and new people. It’s nice to rewind sometimes, relive who you were and how you got here, but I’m ready to press play again, and watch as the next story unfolds.

Quick Thoughts: Halloweekend

I love Halloween. I’m not crazy for it, since forced revelry in costumes isn’t necessarily my ideal night, but I do love a good excuse to dress strangely and solicit candy (i.e., shots) from strangers. I’ve been trying to put together a good recap of all the fun, but honestly there isn’t too much to tell. The Nickname Posse got all dressed up and spooky for a night at my partner-in-crime R and her Scot H’s apartment, followed by a pit stop at a bar for the sole purpose of using its photo booth before we all went home. A somewhat casual-ish night where I managed about 83 percent on memory retention and 100 percent on regrettable decisions upon waking up the next morning, but all in all, nothing too wild.

There are, however, a few lessons I wish I’d known heading into Halloween this year:

  • If you’re creating an elaborate skeleton face with dark makeup and wearing a white lace top, perhaps hold getting dressed until after the black powder all over your face and neck has settled.
  • If you know the weather is going to be on the ‘aggressive’ side of windy, perhaps wear a skirt that doesn’t flip like a dolphin in a minor breeze on a good day.
  • If you’re going to force an entire party to listen to the new Taylor Swift album, be prepared for both backlash from non-fans, as well as for an overexcited drunk Bane knocking you over to share the spotlight for Blank Space.
  • If you’re going to take drunk photobooth pictures at Iron Horse (per ushe), don’t force yourself in the middle and then insist you do a “kiss on the cheek!” picture because you may accidentally leak skeleton paint on Barbie and Cleopatra.
  • If you’re anticipating a lazy, post-party Saturday, having a full fridge will prevent you from justifying that second order of tortas and empanadas on Seamless.
  • Actually just kidding, I don’t care if Gordon Ramsay prepared a meal for hungover LB, if she wants Seamless tortas, it’s gonna happen.
  • And of course, the biggest lesson of the night: I look damn good in skeleton makeup.

November is already gearing up to be a wild month, but no more wild than riding a subway car with two women in homemade Ebony/Ivory angel costumes that whip your face with their wings every time the train lurches. There’s really nothing quite like autumn in New York City, after all.