Whenever Ingrid and I got out of the suburbs, into Berkeley or San Francisco, and saw how other people lived, Ingrid would cry at the smallest of things- a little boy walking home by himself, a discarded cardboard sign saying HUNGRY PLEASE HELP. She would snap a picture, and by the time she lowered her camera, tears would already be falling. I always felt kind of guilty that I didn't feel as sad as she did, but now, watching Dylan, I think that's probably a good thing. I mean, you see a million terrible things every day, on the news and in the paper, and in real life. I'm not saying that it's stupid to feel sad, just that it would be impossible to let everything get to you and still get some sleep at night.
There used to be days that I thought I was okay, or at least that I was going to be. We'd be hanging out somewhere and everything would just fit right and I would think 'it will be okay if it can just be like this forever' but of course nothing can ever stay just how it is forever.
I never realized what a big deal that was. How amazing it is to find someone who wants to hear about all the things that go on in your head. You just think that things will stay the way they are. You never look up, in a moment that feels like every other moment in your life, and think, "Soon this will be over". But I understand more now. About the way life works.
It isn't the happy ending that Ingrid and I have dreamed up, but it's all a part of what I'm working through. The way life changes. The way people and things disappear. Then appear, unexpectedly, and had you close
And I want to tell you about everything but I can't because I couldn't stand for you to have that look on your face all the time. I just need you to look at me and think that I'm normal. I just really need that from you.
I wish I knew why she never told me any of this. Maybe she thought I wouldn't be able to handle it, that I was too sheltered or too innocent or something. If she had told me why she cut herself all the time, or that it was the pills that made her act so spaced out, or that she was even on pills, or even saw doctors, or any of it, I would have done my best to help her. I'm not saying I'm a superhero. I'm not saying I would have just swooped down and saved her. I'm just saying the only reason everything was a waste was that she made it a waste. That whole time, back when I was just a normal kid in high school, living out my normal life, I really thought everything mattered.