I’ve stopped biting my nails.
No, I really have this time!
I had a manicure and they actually had to ask me, “Trim or just file?” It was a weird milestone. A super strange medallion for unconsciously accomplishing something that some people, that MOST people will never see as a hurdle.
But I did it.
I stopped biting my nails.
The six year old me would be so ecstatic. No longer will my mother secretly paint my nails with a top coat flavored to repel my bored habit. I won’t need to rush to a drinking fountain to wash away the disgusting taste. My nails don’t end up in my mouth anymore. The urge is gone, replaced by urge to get weekly manicures and click my new found friends on countertops.
I love my new nails.
But I didn’t stop ripping at my cuticles.
I didn’t stop pulling at the sides of my fingers at the scabs, the hangnails, the ingrowns, the things that didn’t belong. I didn’t stop seeing just how far the skin would pull back when it came loose. Even when it bled, even when it oozed that clear stuff; the stuff that says, “Something isn’t right! Stop!” I kept going. Even when the ever aged calluses were aching and begging me to stop testing just how tough they were, I kept digging. Not totally sure of what for.
I’ve stopped biting my nails but I didn’t stop ripping at my fingers.
I’ve stopped eating meat.
The little girl who could spell ‘venison’ before ‘apple’, who was Annie Oakley for 4 Halloweens in a row, who went on her first hunting trip before she had her first period, has stopped eating meat. The weirdest cringe/giggle consumes me when I think about telling my family. But then I bite down into some cauliflower and forget all about it because I’m so at peace with my decision.
Yes it’s true. I stopped eating animals.
I got invited to a wedding and the invitation came in it’s Pinterest-worthy twine wrap. But upon checking the boxes (Yes to attending, no to a plus one) I saw there were only chicken or steak for a meal option. I quickly got to make a stereotypical phone call and be the annoying person with the “at will” dietary restrictions.
And I didn’t feel bad.
But I also don’t feel bad about not caring about every single animal right. Don’t want to spay your dog? Fine. Want to go to bull fight? I wouldn’t ride shotgun but knock yourself out. Shopped and didn’t adopt? Live your life.
I’ve stopped going to the butcher, and I love animals.
But I still took a carriage the other day.
I’ve stopped drunk texting you.
Yep. These days when I have one too many I usually just want pizza, pillows, and Portlandia. The thought of paying attention to someone other than myself is just not in cards. So I push the airplane symbol on my phone and pretend like no one else exists for about 45 minutes. It’s just me, myself, and my buzz. You do not coexist on my earth, in my reality I am not obsessed with your voice. My phone is on airplane mode and you cannot touch me.
Because even though I don’t reach out anymore, I didn’t stop loving you.
Try as I might to erase every bit of you from my life, you still linger. I make a point to shove you out, to pretend you aren’t reality, but then I open my eyes and you are still here. You suctioned on like one of those barnacles at the pier and I’m just seriously wondering when I won’t have to stare at your caracas every fucking day.
Because I can’t anymore.
Because it is heartbreaking.
I may not want to talk to you, I may not want you to exist, but you do.
And try as I might to shove it down, you are everywhere.
So yes. I’ve stopped drunk texting you.
But that doesn’t mean I’ve stopped wanting to.
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