things i miss/things i like {pt. 1}

I just finished re-reading Station Eleven because of course. It actually made me less stressed about the Corona craziness because it made me realize how much worse things could be. What’s happening is way, way less freaky than the Georgia flu.

I’m home from school and reliving my high school days with online classes, and all this is nothing what I thought 2020 or this semester would look like. I’m trying to process everything, as we all are, and this is the first thing I was able to put into words, this set of lists. More will come.

I do want to say, I realize that I’m coming from an incredibly privileged perspective. My dad still has a job; I still have a job (pros of working at a grocery store: it’s about the only thing open in a pandemic!). I have a safe, comfortable, loving home to hide out in and my own room. I’m not a senior, missing out on graduation, or an athlete, losing the chance of a lifetime. I’m not a single mom or homeless or at risk health-wise. I recognize all those things.

But I’m also realizing that that doesn’t invalidate my own experiences or disappointments, and that it’s no good to anybody if I’m not processing and staying emotionally healthy the way I need to. A quote on this from another recent read, Nowhere Boy:

People are always weighing their suffering against others’, not using it to form bonds.

So, in the interest of forming bonds, here are …

IMG_7975
my desk at school

the things i miss

about new york

Waking up to the sight of skyscrapers catching the morning light

Standing on tiptoes to see the Statue of Liberty from my window

Getting ready in the morning with my roommates, each of us at our own desk

The feeling that you can go anywhere, hop on the subway and ride with a thousand strangers to a museum, a park, a coffee shop, some random street

Walking at my apartment steps with groceries and thinking, I live here!

Sitting in the front row of my science class with my roommate and her boyfriend

Standing in the back of my horrifically boring art history class and making despairing eye contact with my other roommate, who sits in the row in front of where I stand

Walking up Broadway in black heels

Making dinner whenever I feel like it

The decorations above my desk

Studying with friends, the shared stress of classes and inside jokes about professors

Knowing there’s always someone to watch a movie with

Being able to wear whatever you want, crazy or fancy, and nobody caring

The little market in Bowling Green where I buy apples and gluten-free bagels

Even those awkward, crowded, always-late elevators—I miss them

IMG_8554
our dog, looking unimpressed

the things i like

about being home

Reading with my mom in the living room at night

My dad’s shoulder rubs

My mom’s “Wegmans texts,” checking how my day has been or asking me to pick up something for her

Being there for all the inside jokes and funny moments of my family

Saturday morning pancakes

Our adorable dog, who converted me from a devout pet-disliker to an only-this-pet-lover

Having my own room to escape into

Someone else making my dinner each night

The pond in our neighborhood, with its blossoming cherry trees, magnolias, crocuses, forsythia, and myriad other signs of spring

Listening to music or podcasts in the car while I drive to work

My little sisters asking how work was and inviting me into their worlds of stories and toys

Family Catan games

My brothers, just everything about them

Wood cabinets and carpets and a deck versus the sterile white boxy-ness of my apartment

The freedom of having “real” adults to pass off troubles to

All my books

Friendly neighbors

The yard, a patch of land that is our own (sort of—we rent)

Even the constraints of following the family routine and having to check my plans with others—even this, I like

Hey friends—how are you? What are you missing & what are you liking, even if you haven’t changed locations?

9 comments

  1. This is really beautiful and special. I admire how you can hold both moments and see the light and gratitude in each. 💙 Also your words are just really pretty, my friend. (they make me miss being in NYC with you and hanging with your family and make me feel like I’ve gotten such a specific, vivid glimpse into your life both there and here)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dearest Abby,

    I enjoyed reading this so much. What is Catan? It made me want to see your house in Virginia but, of course, we are unable to make the trip.

    I miss everything: church, movies, theater, symphony, libraries, concerts, choir rehearsal, Scargo Cafe.

    Like you, I am thankful for many things. I am so thankful that I have Pop-pop with me. I am so thankful that he came home from rehab. It is wonderful to have him with me and it would be very dangerous at this time to be living in a nursing home. I am thankful that we have our daily routine of going to Ring Brothers every morning. I am thankful that I can play tennis many afternoons of the week and that I have a good aide to stay with Pop-pop. I am thankful that I can watch our Sunday church service on the computer. I am thankful that I can write emails to friends on the computer.

    Thank you for making me think of all of these things. Please write more!

    All my love,

    Grammy

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Grammy,

      I loved hearing what you are thankful for! I too am thankful Pop-pop is home with you. Catan is a board game where you have to build cities and harvest resources—Daddy learned how to play it when he was deployed and taught the rest of us.

      Like

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