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  • lcassidy26

Despite All Odds I Wrote A Second Blog Post

Updated: Nov 3, 2022

This is the third time I have written this post because it keeps deleting itself on the website manager. This is not Wix's fault, just a reflection of my general incompetence when it comes to not losing things. So if this sucks, it is because I am sick of the sound of my own voice in my head. Also I keep delaying publishing it because people were so wonderful about the first post and now I’m paralyzed by the idea that I will disappoint you… bravery, bravery, bravery… Anyway, onward:

“It’s unbelievable how happy my ex-girlfriend is. There isn’t anyone happier in the history of people or happiness. It’s a modern miracle… She's keeping all her plants alive and not only that, flowers are blooming out of plants that don't even grow flowers. She has moved on in a way that has somehow deleted any trace of our relationship, and found herself in a land of abundance, chock-full of perfect dates and new romantic adventures… It’s not that I’m not happy, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not happy at all.”

- Abbi Jacobson, I Might Regret This.

(check out them halloween colors!)

This quote cuts me deep. I am happy but also not happy at all. I am also assuming that my ex is the happiest that they have ever been. Abbi Jacobson has been my patron saint of heartbreak. As I drove across the US I read her book I Might Regret This, which is about her first big heartbreak and the consequent road trip that she took to heal and figure out who she was alone. What insane parallels! I read it with my morning coffee in Roanoke, with an afternoon pint in Nashville, and all the way to the host stand at my new restaurant job in El Prado (I’m a slow reader).

This book was a lot of things, one being an ode to solitude in America. It's jarring to get dumped suddenly, and it's also jarring to spend an extended period of time driving all alone. But I have learnt that if the rug gets pulled out from under you, your old comforts cannot be there for you. So might as well hit the road.

It may seem antithetical to move somewhere that lends itself to loneliness. The community here is small, everything is very far apart and there are so many tumbleweeds, which we all know are the mascot of lonely boys. My dating options are nonexistent, which isn't ideal because I would like to avoid slipping into the "I am a hermit that will never find love" mindset. But, I knew that regardless of how I processed this breakup, loneliness would be inevitable, so might as well lean into it and make it productive.

To quote an AMC ad that I’m sure no one has heard of: “Heartbreak can feel good in a place like this.”

Okay, it doesn’t feel good, but it feels tolerable… it feels manageable… I'm not okay, but I'm okay. When you are in a place that is somehow emanating the same feeling as you, it feels like empathy. Like New Mexico gets what I am going through.

Most nights I get off of work around 10pm, and once I get home, I step down from my truck, stand still, and look up at the night sky. It doesn't matter if I have to pee or if it's cold out, I religiously take a few seconds with the stars. Like a freakin' nerd.

When I was growing up here and I had to go outside at night for whatever reason, I would keep my eyes on the beam of my flashlight and nothing else. I found it really scary to be outside after sunset, not because of potential bears or dudes lurking in the bushes, but because of the sky.

On a clear night, you can see so many stars that it literally makes you question the concept of numbers. The stars go all the way to the horizon on every side, and you feel like you are in a planetarium. You can somehow see depth in the stars. Like you can actually see that some of the stars are closer than others... I know that sounds super obvious, but in most skies this is just a concept, not a thing that you get to experience visually. It is staggering. It will actually make you stagger. You might even feel drunk.

The most insane part is that you can see the Milky Way. One arm of it curves overhead in what can only be described as a cosmic embrace. I was going to make a top notch joke about flat earthers, but every iteration of it ruined the beautiful term "cosmic embrace" so for now I will leave it. In this case melodrama Leyton beats comedian Leyton.

The night sky in the desert is like the Sistine Chapel. Suddenly you understand why people assume that god lives up there. The stars here make me confront concepts about the universe that I was not ready to bite into at eleven-years-old. I had the unique experience of standing on the precipice of an existential crisis every time I went to take out the trash. Some part of me knew that if I looked up at the sky, I was opening myself up to a crisis of self that I would not be able to untangle at that age.

But now I am going through a crisis of self, courtesy of heartbreak and just, like, being in my late twenties, that is eased by the horrifying depths of space. I don't know if it's about feeling small, or feeling like a part of something, or if it's about the fact that I am seeing light from stars that are now dead. Those dead stars are giving off light that doesn't exist anymore, in the same way that Emily Dickinson would never know her impact, yet still wrote a colossal amount of phenomenal poetry that has a permanent place on my night stand. Both have an air of blind faith that what one puts out into the world is not just going into a vacuum. How the fuck do I get that faith? That's not a rhetorical question.

I don't know if I will ever fully understand why the night sky here is affecting me so much, or even why Taos feels like the right place to be, but musing about it seems like a necessary step in trying to understand who I am alone. I am determined to make any unavoidable pain worth it. Maybe this is my opportunity to become extraordinary... or something like that.

On a different note, there were two deer outside my kitchen the other morning.

They were just hanging out, and so I ran and grabbed my hairless cat, Darwin, and slid open my screen door. I held Darwin with one hand around his little cat shoulder, the other supporting his little cat butt (I researched online, apparently cats like having their butts supported) as he quivered with excitement. The parent/child deer duo just stared back blankly with the sort of confusion one would receive from a popular girl who thinks that you should not have tried to pattern clash. The four of us stood silently for a few minutes. Darwin clenched his little paws around my neck, and I realized that he was acting out of character. He would normally push his feet against my stomach in an attempt to introduce himself to the deer because he is an outgoing and stupid motherfucker. This was a rare moment of reverence. He was rising to an occasion, suddenly maturing into a fine young man.

In unison the deer turned around and leapt off of the property, with a sort of grace that made me think about the millions of intense bonds that have nothing to do with humans or language or any of that. Most conversations seem to exist in a dimension imperceptible to people.

"What a life," said Darwin as he sipped on his black coffee, the morning light glinting through the handle of the mug.

"You drink coffee?" I said as we went back inside. "How did I not know that?"

"Well I'm only five-years-old, so that's not something I expected you to know," he responded with a wink.

"Alright, I'll start making more in the morning."

He lifted up the cup, miming a cheers. "Thanks boss."

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