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  • Sometimes I would call you like a crazy person in the middle of the night. When I was out at a party, or a bar, and the night wasn’t going right. And all of the people that I was talking to, the band that I was seeing, the guy I spoke to at the bar – they all weren’t you. And I’d wish that they were. Or that you were here with me, because then, maybe I would be having more fun. Or magically, the band would be better if you were here. Or the music would mean something.

    The people that are talking to me at this place aren’t the people that I want to be talking to me. And I wish that all the interesting people would just walk right up to me and say, “hey! I like you, you look neat, and interesting, and nice, do you want to come over here and talk to me for a while?”

    Instead I get bored faces, or friends from way back when, or hushed conversations in corners, strangers giggling, and the face that you make when you are pretending to have the best night of your life.

    I wait for you to appear as if we are starring roles in some hollywood movie, and magically you would know from across the interstate that I was at this bar, alone but not alone. Driving through the wind and snow to see me. To run to me with arms outstretched. To sit here with me and laugh at all the stupid things I say.

    I press myself against the cool concrete wall, hoping to sink into it to escape. Or notice with my fingernails a soft spot in the concrete that would allow me to push through it like pudding, stick my whole body in, and crawl into the walls on hands and knees to find the other universe that you and I were supposed to be in.

    When these thoughts would get to be too much, and the gin and tonics were getting a little too strong, I would go outside in the winter, without my coat on to call you. Because, I wanted to sound like I was cold. I wanted you to hear faint chattering of my teeth, and to have this remind you of my mouth. And picture me giving up my search to find a new best friend, walking in the ice and the snow– sad and lonely, and needing you. And because the bartender had poured the last drink too strong, or maybe because I had drank it too fast because I was too nervous that no one was talking to me at the party, my hand would mistakenly dial your house phone instead of your cell phone, and a woman would answer, and I would immediately hang up and feel sorry for what I did. And wish that there was a hole in the wall of the party that I could pass through for awhile and try out life in a different dimension.

    Yes.

    I could go back inside to talk to people that I know, but what would be the point?

    She would just be getting wasted and flirting with that stranger that wasn’t really all that interesting, but made her feel good and forget for awhile.

    He’d just want to talk to me about sports or music from the 90s that I haven’t listened to since then. Or current events. And he’s say all those things that he’d planned out in his head to be funny. Delivering the line, and then waiting with a dopey grin on his face for someone to laugh. You to laugh. With him. You really should just fall in love with him. It would be so easy. He's well-rounded, nice, would make a good father, and would work hard every day to make you happy.

    You really should just be in love with him.

    Or I could hang out with the cool kids at the bar, who just want to talk to you about hip bands. They shake excitedly when they talk to you about them. They can’t believe you haven’t heard of them. They're so revolutionary. So revolutionary that no one talks about them next month.

    Big Deal.

    No, thanks.

    I’m tired of the game. It would be more fun to walk outside, in the dark and cold, in my pink polka dotted dress and fishnets in the middle of February and quite possibly freeze to death.

    It would be more fun to pretend that you never left, and I could walk to your house right now.

    It would be more fun to walk to the apartment that you used to live in and ask the new tenants if I could just look around. And reminisce where you used to keep your record collection, and where we used to sing at the top of our lungs in the middle of the night.

    Or listen to your voicemail, and your voice, and the sound of the beep that echoes like a siren in the night.

    “I’m missing you, darling,” sung like a country song.

    ~*~

    Did you think you’d love me forever? That our hearts would go on beating once we left one another? That the love that we shared would ever really cease to exist? Like we couldn’t pull back some black curtain to go right back to where we were when I left.

    You with one foot in a new relationship and one foot stuck in the past with me. Telling me through slurred words, whisky on the rocks, glass filled to the brim and alcohol trickling down your hand from you splashing it around with vigor as you yelled at me. Pissed as all hell that I was leaving town and stammering angrily. Telling me that you would never be a city slicker because you hate those assholes, and if I was going to go and be one, I’d know where to find you. Me sitting on your living room floor, drenched in your cigarette smoke, staring at you bewildered. Surprised that you actually wanted me to stay with you, and had to get this drunk to tell me.

    "Please don't go," stammered out of exhaustion. Laid down on the carpet. Drunk near puking or passing out.

    This is when you really do love me.

    This is when you mean it.

    The rest of the time doesn't matter.

    This is when it counts.

    It's messy, but it's beautiful.

    It's never really planned out.

    Me, on the other side of the world laying on a bathroom floor, dialing your phone number.
    You answering from the other side of the wall.

    "I'm missing you darling," sung like a country song.
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