Thought Catalog

Find A Better Reason To Stay Up Until 2 AM

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 11:00 PM PST

Twenty20, isr4el
Twenty20, isr4el

You’re staying up until 2 AM for the wrong reasons. Because you’re wasted. Because you’re heartbroken. Because you’re bored and lonely and scrolling through social media until you’re forced to surrender to sleep.

You shouldn’t be half-covered in blankets with your head propped up on a pillow, daydreaming about how things used to be back when you were in a relationship. Or plugging your phone into the closest outlet, just in case that text you’ve been waiting for comes through.

You shouldn’t be watching video after video after video of people you don’t give a damn about. People that you don’t even want to watch, but hey, their video popped on after something you did want to watch and you don’t have the energy to click away.

Find a better reason to stay up until 2 AM. A reason that you won’t regret when morning comes and the tiredness seeps inside.

Stay up, because you had a great idea for a story or a song or a poem, and you don’t want the idea to slip away as you sleep. Stay up, because you’re on a creative streak and don’t want to ruin your flow. Stay up, because your passion burns brightest at night.

And if your career isn’t the reason why you’re awake when the sun is resting, let love be the reason.

Stay up — not because you’re in the middle of a brutal fight filled with ugly words. Not because you’re tossing and turning, wishing that the argument never happened. Not because you’re crying your eyes out over the kinks in your imperfect relationship.

Stay up, because you have a million things to say without enough hours to say them. Stay up, because you want to set a new record for the amount of times you make love. Stay up, because you don’t want sleep to rob you of a second of time with them.

Stay up, because you found something that makes the yawns and baggy eyes feel worthwhile.

Don’t choose existing over living. Don’t scroll through Twitter, then Facebook, then Tumblr, then back to Twitter again out of boredom. And don’t relive painful memories of your ex, because you have nothing else to think about when the silence envelopes your bedroom.

If you’re going to stay awake until 2 AM, find a good enough reason. Find your passion.

Because, once you find something that’s actually worth staying up until 2 AM for, you’ll find something worth living for. You’ll find your reason to be. TC mark

Here’s What Happened When Nick Viall Took Me To His ‘Fantasy Suite’

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 09:00 PM PST

Nick Viall's Instagram
Nick Viall

I met Nick in the most embarrassing way it's possible to meet someone you have sex with: at a celebrity meet and greet. His celebrity meet and greet.

It was very cheesy, but the kind of cheesy that's fun to embrace everyone once in awhile, a guilty pleasure. Like most women on the planet, my friends and I watched The Bachelor together religiously. Everyone would show up with their own personal bottle of Pinot Grigio or Vinho Verde (or champagne, for final episodes) and we'd spend hours alternatively gossiping and vaguely paying attention to the show.

We loved making fun of Chris Harrison and how corny he was as he kept promising the most dramatic turn of events EVER. We loved the clueless men and women who'd line up to compete for whatever tragically average person was selected as that season's Bachelor/Bachelorette. We loved the rose ceremonies and making little bets about who was going to go home and who was going to get engaged (for a few months anyway) at the end of the season.

Nick was our favorite, even on Andi's season, even when he outed her for fucking him and then sending him home. We thought he was cute and honest and not like the other Bachelor contestants. He was the scrappy underdog and we rooted for him with Andi and then we rooted for him with Kaitlyn and then we just wanted him to find anyone in Paradise — and then we REALLY rooted for him when his name was being tossed around to become the next Bachelor.

While Paradise was airing my friend Liz saw on Facebook that Nick was going to be doing an appearance at one of our favorite bars downtown. You could go and drink with him and not even pay a cover charge. It was just their trick to pack the bar with women so a bunch of men would go after the event was over and spend all their money buying shots for the already sloshed Bachelor fans. We made plans to go immediately.

The night of the event we met at my apartment because it was the closest to downtown. Liz and my other friend Steph brought over a few outfits each and we got through a bottle and a half of wine just getting ready and putting makeup on. We had a nice buzz going when we got to the bar, which was lucky because we noticed the event was embarrassingly not well attended.

It was a large bar that was always packed on weekend nights. It was usually difficult to navigate around but now the lights were on too bright and there was no crowd of bodies to distract from the shitty bar furniture, greasy tables and beat up chairs. The large flat screens were playing an episode from Kaitlyn's season that featured Nick heavily. We spotted him up by the stage where there would be a cover band later that night.

There was a circle of girls around him, so we decided to get drinks first. We had vodka shots because the bar was kind of empty and we suddenly felt self-conscious in the bright lighting. It was a little much on top of all the wine we had before leaving, and can at least partially be responsible for my behavior when I met Nick.

The crowd that had been around him when we arrived had dissipated and he was leaning against the stage talking to a manager looking woman who was about a foot shorter and 10 years older than him.

He smiled and waved us over I could tell he looked a little relieved to be surrounded by some normal looking girls for a minute.

"Hey! We're big fans" I told him as we sidled up to him.

I wouldn't talk to most "celebrities" like this but Nick struck me as the kind of guy who'd been insecure most of his life so now he was lapping up all the attention he was getting from women. He made a little nervous laugh that confirmed this impulse, "Welcome, welcome."

"How are you liking Chicago?"

"It's my favorite place I've been lately."

"We're really hoping you're going to be the next Bachelor. We need some eye candy this season!"

I felt his arm up as I said this. I knew I was being ridiculous but that I kind of got a feeling he was into it, and it was so surreal seeing him in person. I felt like being slutty and making a terrible decision and being able to laugh about aggressively hitting on the corny reality TV star for the rest of time.

A waitress came over with a tray of shots and I made a big show out of buying him one. He kept smiling like a little goon over all the attention I was giving him. We cheers-ed and took the shots, when it went down I felt a little burn in the back of my throat and a little boost of confidence, I was past the point of caring. I winked at Liz and Steph and leaned into Nick, resting a hand on his bicep and my lips lightly touching his ear:

"What are you doing after this?"

That's how easy it was to end up in Nick's hotel room at the end of the night. I just had to ask. The thing about guys who grew up think they were 'nerdy' is that they try so much harder to please a woman than most do. You think you can get a Chad Johnson type to go down on you? Good luck! You can hit on him all night and maybe you'll go home with him, but he'll be passive aggressively putting you down and then complimenting you all night. It's just so much less complicated with a guy like Nick.

I spent a few hours drinking and dancing with my friends, waiting for him to be able to leave his appearance at the allotted time and then I met him in a back room and we took a cab to where he was staying. In the backseat I ran my hand up and down his thigh (It's corny, but it's so hot to get a guy going when you're being driven somewhere). He told me about the show and how he quit his sales job and felt a little dumb that he was 36 and just making money from going to bars — but how could you say not to that? I laughed and tried to get dirt on Chris Harrison, but he said there wasn't any.

Back at the hotel he made us drinks from the minibar. He kept the lights off, which I liked because he had a beautiful view of all the city lights from the window.

"Does this happen to you all the time?" I asked as he sat on the bed and I straddled him.

"Not as often as you'd think."

He was timid and nervous but with this weird undercurrent of confidence, like the slutty band nerd who doesn't think he's cool but has still gotten with a lot of women.

It shocked me when he put his hand behind my head and grabbed a fist full of my hair. He pulled my head back and held it in place while he kissed my neck. His beard was short and the stubble increased the sensation of feeling him all over such a sensitive space, I moaned a little and felt him harden between my legs.

I couldn't stop myself from grinding into him a little bit. He released my head and I got my thought together enough to unbutton his shirt. I tried to take a mental snapchat of his body (thank you crossfit!!) but I didn't want to slow down.

He pulled my dress down over my shoulders and pushed it down to my waist. In a swift motion he'd removed my breasts from my bra and put his mouth on them, savoring the moment. I pressed my fingers into his head, keeping him there for a few minutes while I admired the view.

He whispered "Can I go down on you?" And I was on my back before I became conscious of even removing the the rest of my clothing. I felt his tongue hit my clit forcefully as he fingered me. What a pro. (Why did Andi and Kaitlyn let him go again?). I ran my hands through his hair and idly wondered if any of those lit up offices across the street contained board businessmen who were now getting quite the show.

I was being a little loud thanks to the alcohol and that always made me cum a bit quicker. I told him I was close and disappeared into the pillows as I felt him bury his face into me. My legs wrapped tightly over his shoulders as I came.

He pulled up and kissed me, full stop, which was the most forward he'd been all night and incredibly sexy. He told me he was going to get a condom and I reached a hand down so that he could watch me play with myself while he put it on. I felt wetness everywhere, more than usual.

We made eye contact and I moaned, eager for him to be on me. He returned to the bed, lifted one of my legs and I adjusted my hips so he could enter me. My whole body lit up in that moment and I felt his mouth around my nipple as he began thrusting into me, somewhere between a rough and a gentle fuck. I ran my fingers through his hair, across his back, down his arms and then gripped his lower back, pulling him into me. This was good sex.

His mouth found my neck again and I reach down to rub my clit while he fucked me. My moan went into his mouth, his lips were on mine now.

His pace accelerated and I worked my leg down from his shoulder to wrap myself tightly around his waist so he could get as deep as possible before he came. He groaned and dug his fingers into my thighs, cementing himself into me as he came.

We enjoyed our time together afterwards. We cuddled and ordered room service and laughed about little things that weren’t even that funny. I left a few hours later so I could sleep alone, diagonally across my bed and text my friends all the dirty details. It had been the perfect celebrity hookup, and needless to say it’s made every moment of this season that much more enjoyable. TC mark

Producer's Note: It should be noted that this story is fictional. No fantasy suites were defiled in the making of this post.

20 Guys Ask The Super Inappropriate Questions They Really Want Girls To Answer

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 08:00 PM PST



“What is the strangest thing you’ve inserted into your vagina or ass?”



“Do you ever see a guy and just want to fuck his brains out?”

— DangoDemolisher


“Do you ever have conversations about periods with other girls?”

— theseconddennis


“How much do you fear being raped on a day to day basis? I know this is a weird question, but I keep hearing about how high rape rates are, so I’m trying to gauge public opinion.”

— ValorousVagabond


“Does size really matter? I am definitely asking this for a friend.”

— fifa17player


“If I accidentally (or just purposefully take a quick peek) at your chest or butt and you catch me, are you judging me negatively or taking it as flattery?”

— slicebishybosh


“How long does it take for you to cum? Do you care if you cum?”

— jimmyshmittens


“If you excrete enough vaginal fluids and let it dry up, will your vagina lips crust shut themselves to the point you have to have it operated on to open?”

— Sragas


“What percentage of guys that you see randomly are you attracted to?”

— Bloodysneeze


“Does it bother you to never/rarely orgasm? Or is sex still great even if you don’t? If men didn’t finish easily I feel like they’d be much less eager.”

— caramelcooler


“How many times do you go out on dates just for the free stuff? how often do you pay for dates? how many guys have you had sex with? how often do you lie about these questions to not seem like a bad person?”

— bloatedsac


“When you say, ‘Not tonight’, how often is it because parts of you need grooming?”

— -917-


“Do girls even get aroused from looking at a dick pic?”



“Do you ever realize that your yoga pants are see-thru in sunlight?”

— Ironm80


“What are some things that turns you on?”

— DarambeStorm


“Does it make you uncomfortable when guys check you out while wearing leggings, etc (whether anyone can see through them or not)?”

— Ironm80


“How many cocks have you sucked and how much cum have you swallowed? How many guys have fucked that ass?”

— Doubleagain00


“Do you ever make jokes like ‘I fucked your dad, etc’ as an equivalent to guys saying they fucked the other dude’s mom?”

— Ironm80


“Do you ever just walk over to that guy and try to pick up him up?”

— DangoDemolisher


“How big is too big?”

— DangoDemolisher TC mark

How To Murder Your Life: 28 Important Things I Learned From Cat Marnell’s Speed Freak Memoir

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 07:30 PM PST


1. People named Marco who derive pleasure from injuring small animals and never say "thank you" and rob you regularly and vandalize your home and stop respecting you after they fuck you should be avoided at all costs.

2. Ritalin is the poor man's Adderall.

3. It's entirely possible to trip on Benadryl (aka Diphenhydramine, or DPH) if you disregard the dosage guidelines and down a whole pack because you're an insomniac.

4. Angel Dust (aka PCP) also makes you hallucinate—in a way that makes you think you’re actually on whatever terrible reality TV show you're watching (awesome), and/or believe that your hair is jungle foliage (not so awesome).

5. Interns make great prescription drug mules.

6. A good best friend will stop a bride's junkie coworker from entering (and, conceivably, ruining) her wedding.

7. Skag is slang for heroin.

8. Drug addicts make THE worst roommates—because they keep odd hours, collage / graffiti the walls, invite fellow drug addicts over, and imagine disturbing things like rodent army invasions.

9. Bulimics, take note: Acute mouse-phobia can override your urge to binge and purge because being THAT scared of rodents might just stop you from bringing any food into your home.

10. Over-the-counter sleep aids like melatonin, Nyquil and Tylenol PM are a total joke to the dedicated pillhead. But unlike a cocktail of benzos and tranquilizers, the OTC stuff probably won't lead you to realize, in a middle-of-the-night haze, that someone's having sex with you without your permission, exactly.

11. In the mind of a drug addict, insomnia is 1,000 percent worse than relapsing.

12. It's possible to ignore the fact that you're five months pregnant if you're self-involved enough and/or on enough drugs.

13. A second trimester abortion can be very difficult to go through, no matter how steadfastly you believe in a woman's right to choose.

14. Standing your sister up on Thanksgiving Day is a super rude, difficult-to-forgive thing to do.

15. Ditto to letting your sister's tub overflow absentmindedly and thus ruining her floor tiling.

16. Speaking of bathrooms, losing your virginity while lying, half-conscious, on a bathmat is maybe a memorable enough way to have first-time sex.

17. Shockeroo sounds cool when a former Condé Nasty says it.

18. A few top Condé Nast editors actually thought the Internet would prove to be year-long phase (suckerzzzz).

19. If you're a high-functioning addict, it's possible to not just keep your job but also get promoted over your hard working co-worker and go on special assignments like PR trips to Italy and attend a slew of music festivals that need to be covered.

20. It's possible to get kicked out of a ritzy New England boarding school just six weeks prior to graduating.

21. And for colleges to rescind your acceptance.

22. Many a Conde Nasty has allegedly spent time at Silver Hill rehab in New Canaan, CT.

23. Total abstinence isn't for everyone.

24. When they’re on drugs, addicts are terrible at money.

25. And friendship.

26. And work.

27. And family.

28. But it's always possible to get clean and turn your life around (especially if you have the right hookup at a luxe rehab in Thailand, and a six-figure book deal waiting for you on the other side). TC mark

What An Almost Relationship Actually Is, Because It’s More Than A Missed Chance

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 07:00 PM PST

An almost relationship is a series of whys. Why did he spend so much time charming me, convincing me to fall? Why did he look at me with that level of passion and send me messages with such deep subtext? And why — why why why — didn’t it turn into a real relationship?

You mourn the loss of him in waves, because the ending between almost lovers is never concrete. Are you over, just because it’s been weeks since you’ve received a text? Because he’s in a relationship now? Because you’re in a relationship now?

You never know when your almost relationship is on a hiatus, when he’s busy and stressed and your love is planning on making a comeback — or when it’s officially, irreparably over. You never get the closure you need.

Almost relationships mean disappointment. They mean getting your hopes up and having them come barreling down. They mean letting your high expectations drop miles below their original level. They mean wasted time and tears and unanswerable questions.

But almost relationships aren’t a missed opportunity, not at all, because you both knew where you stood. You didn’t have to make a love confession. You didn’t have to ask him to be your boyfriend. You didn’t have to do anymore than you did. There’s nothing to regret, because he knew.

He knew you liked him. And you knew (thought?) he liked you. It should’ve turned into more, but it didn’t.

It didn’t…

Why? Because the timing wasn’t right. Because he was a coward. Because you didn’t want to ruin what you already had. Because that’s the way life goes.

Almost relationships are beauty turned ugly. Pleasure turned sorrow. Hope turned faithless.

Almost relationships give you a glimpse of Eden and then yank you back to your loveless reality. They’re reminders of the girlfriend you could have been and never will be. Of what you could have had but lost forever.

But the reminders aren’t all bad. No. Almost relationships remind you to hold onto anything worthwhile. The next time it happens, the next time you graze love, you won’t let it slip through your fingertips. You’ll take hold of it and won’t let go. You won’t let something special become another almost.

You won’t let hours worth of texting lead up to nothing. You won’t let your secrets slide into his ears and then watch him walk away, still carrying them. You’ll do more. You’ll be more.

Because you deserve more than a temporary love. You deserve a forever love. An everything love.

You didn’t get that with him, but you’ll get it one day. And that day keeps getting closer. TC mark 

You Don’t Appreciate Her Yet But You’ll Regret It When Someone Else Does

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 06:00 PM PST


You didn't see it but she spent a little longer getting ready that day, fixating in front of the mirror. But you didn't even tell her she was pretty.

You didn't see it but she spent a lot of time trying to find something perfect to give you. Only you didn't even say, ‘thank you.’

You didn't see it but her face sunk as you canceled plans again.

You didn't see it but she stared at her phone after a paragraph text and all you replied with was ‘K.’

You didn't see it but she cried herself to sleep because for some reason no matter how she tries, it just never seems like enough for you.

She doesn't ask much of you and accepts the little bit you have to give, while she's over here trying so hard to make you happy.

Because you don't see how happy you make her. You don't see her eyes light up around you. You don't hear how highly she speaks of you. In fact, you don't see her much at all. You don't see her value. You don't appreciate her love and her kindness. You expect it.

She never lets you down, yet all you seem to do is disappoint her.

She doesn't ask for attention, yet she gives you all of hers.

She misses you and you get annoyed because you think she’s clingy.

She says 'I love you,' and you reply, 'I know.'

She's every first text because she wants to talk to you.

She's every first like because she supports you.

She's every first view on snap chat because she's wondering what you're doing but more than that wants to be a part of it.

She's every share or tag in a meme because she's thinking of you.

What you both don't see yet is her future doesn't include you.

Because one day she'll grow tired of trying so hard. One day she won't have more love left to give. One day she'll realize you aren't worth it. And it's going to break her heart to walk away.

But one day she'll meet someone who will give her everything you couldn't.

And when you realize, what she won't see is how much you miss her.

What she won't see or hear is how pretty you think she is now, with this new guy because happy girls are always prettier.

What she won't see is you typing a text only to delete it because you don't know what to say but you want to.

What she won't see is how you saw something and thought of her and wish you could have got it.

What she won't see is how lonely you feel without her, as you lay alone wishing she was next to you.

What she won't see is that realization of how happy she made you, only it took losing her to see it.

And you'll wish you never disappointed her or let her down. You'll wish I said ‘I love you’, even though it took until now to realize it.

You'll miss every text and like and snap and share.

You'll wish you never took her for granted.

And as you follow her life, as often as you do, when she posts that picture of her and her forever, you're going to hate yourself because it could have been you.

TC mark

To The One Who Broke Me

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 05:00 PM PST

Today, I am sitting in a restaurant. The one that became our date spot – the usual, the go-to.

Today, I sat and ordered the dishes you and I used to enjoy – they taste different now. I wonder if you know that.

Today, I linger back on the days, hours, minutes, seconds, that haven't paused to wait for me to heal, that have floated past as I remained stagnant in the same place, the same time, the same numbness I felt the moment I walked out your door.

Today, I wonder what I was doing on this day a year ago. Was I wrapped up in your arms? Was I listening to words glazed with honey spill out of your mouth? Was I smiling at you with that smile I haven't worn since I left? You, who showed me why love hadn't made sense before it was with you. You, who took me higher than I had ever been, and shown me new heights, You, who knocked me down just as many pegs – You.

Today, thoughts of you, thoughts of what you did creep into my brain like parasites; they crawl into my frontal lobe and hammer their stakes down in the mud. But limiting that to today would be an understatement, wouldn't it? Everyday, I am consumed, plagued, frozen by the idea of you. Any person who could connect with me the way you did, any person who could slaughter that connection in one swift strike – the way you did.

Every day, I reflect back to the morning you text messaged me in your cowardice – too lacking of a decent human being to at least call, let alone say it to my face. I remember my fingers shaking as I processed what you were actually telling me, your words rolling off my cornea like daggers –

I'm sorry baby, It was a mistake, I didn't mean to, it meant nothing to me.

Every day, I torment myself like this, never letting the wound scab over, always ripping it back open with salt covered claws. Taking myself through that day, moment by moment, deconstructing every second like a stop motion animation, as if that will help me understand anymore than I already can't. Will I ever really understand?

Every day, it culminates to this. I am left with the remnants of the person I used to be, the person you helped create, the person you tore down with those very same hands. The person who fell too deeply, too quickly into a serious relationship but was so entirely satisfied with the love she was given, who wanted nothing more than to spend hours doing anything or nothing at all as long as her fingers were looped around yours and her breath against your chest; the person who has never felt so aligned with another human being and became blindly drunk on that sentiment.

But also the person who, behind the scenes of what seemed like a perfect narrative, you made so absolutely crazy, the person who I look back on and can't recognize as an extension of who I am now, the person who accepted settling and incessant fighting and putting herself down to satisfy your ridiculous levels of pride, in desperate efforts to keep the taste of the initial love on her bitter tongue. The person who neglected to recognize the increasing toxicity of her relationship and thought all of the pain, the negativity, the self deprecation, and all the false pretenses were just the simple, worthwhile expenses of being in love.

So although your infidelity and the end of our story still sears with the same betrayal I felt on that day, although I do not think I will ever comprehend how you could have gone to such great lengths to tear us down the way you did, although my every molecule still rings with the grief of the trust I had lent to you – I continue to see the beauty in the fact that it was a morbid blessing in the most impressive of disguises.

Today, I sit in a restaurant. Damaged and dull. But today, regardless of the baggage I now carry on my shoulders and the wounds I wear on my heart, I have a firm grip on the reality that you were never the person that I thought you were, and that the love that we shared had only been genuine for a temporary phase – something that would have taken much more time for me to come to terms with on my own rather than through the work of your tainted hands.

Today, I'm aware of these things. Today, although I am broken and haunted, I am still better than who I was a year ago. TC mark

What It Means To Love A Girl Who Has Lived Through Trauma

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 04:00 PM PST

Sophia Louise
Sophia Louise

A girl who has lived through trauma has lived through a situation where her body, her mind, her self was not her own. Where she felt disjointed, ripped from her self, safety, and sanity. It was a moment, an experience, a something where her trust was smashed, her worth was gone and all there was was pain.

A girl who has lived through trauma is the girl who was pushed into the deep end of the pool when she didn’t know how to swim, but somehow found her way to the ledge anyway. She walked through a forest fire and didn’t succumb to the smoke, but dealt with the burns and made it out in spite of the flames. She found herself in free fall but refused to break upon impact.

She survived. She did.

But the thing about trauma, is that even when it is over it never really goes away.

And sometimes trauma is loud. Sometimes it’s the monster banging at the windows and screaming gutturally and demonically inside of nightmares. It’s nails on a chalkboard and an earthquake that rattles everyone’s floors. It smashes everything in its wake and forces, no, demands that everyone acknowledge its terrible, terrible presence. She won’t have any choice but to sit with hands clapped over her ears making sounds that are barely human because she just wants everything to stop and it won’t.

But other times, trauma is quiet. It’s sneaky.

It’s the feeling that she is being watched or that she is walking down the street with the word ‘victim’ painted on her forehead in red and everyone is privy to her secrets. It’s the nagging fear that if she goes to sleep her dreams will be anything but restful. It’s the little whisper saying, “You will never be whole again,” that itches its way into the back of her mind and repeats over, and over, and over. And you won’t even see it because she convinces herself that she is the only one who knows that it is there.

It’s the feeling that she is a 100,000 piece puzzle of black and grey and everyone staring at the mess realizes that putting her back together is simply not worth the effort.

So when you love a girl who’s gone through trauma, you’re saying that you see the worth in helping her bandage the wounds. You’re saying that you see the worth someone else tried to bury. You’re saying you are not afraid of the bad days and you see the beauty in the good days. You’re saying that a lot of things may scare you, but trauma isn’t one of them.

When you love a girl who’s battled trauma, you’re really saying,

“Love, let me help you heal because I believe you can.”

Loving girl who has managed to make it to the other side of a traumatic experience is like deciding to restore an abandoned house. She has the framework and the good bones, but you may need to spackle holes someone else left behind on the the walls. She has the the makings for beautiful, light-filled windows, but you’ll need to replace a few of the cracked panes with new glass. She has the door frame, she just needs a door.

She’ll make a lovely home one day, but there needs some care in order to make a space where both of you can fit.

See, loving a girl with trauma in her history is not some choose your own adventure or some level in a game you need to beat. It takes time, it take patience. It’s not something you ‘win at’ it’s something you deal with day by day. It takes a level of commitment because reality is, loving her is not simple.

She is inherently complicated. She is stained with memories she wishes she did not have but that she will never be rid of. She is pieced together and the stitching may be tighter in some spots than others so you have to be careful to not unravel her with one careless tug.

But she is brave. And she is strong.

And when she realizes that you are choosing to love her, and not hurt her, she will love you back with the same kind of tenacity that it took to walk through fire.

And she will hold out her palm and show you the burn marks and instead of apologizing for bothering you with their appearance, she’ll trust you to hold her hand anyway. TC mark

If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away, I’d Go Just To Say Thank You

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 03:00 PM PST

 Leo Hidalgo
Leo Hidalgo

If heaven had visiting hours even if it were for a day, I'd be the first one waiting in line.

If we could talk just one more time, I'd just listen to you speak, this way I don't forget the sound of your voice. Because it hurts that as time passes, it's fading in my memory.

I don't want to forget, so I find myself holding on so tightly to any and everything I can.

I'd tell you I love you, for all those times I didn't say it enough. I'd tell you I miss you, in case you didn't know.

And even though you've been with me, living within my heart, there are so many things you physically missed out on. There were so many days you were supposed to be a part of and you weren't. There were times I needed arms to hold me but instead I had to find inner strength in your absence.

It's the table at holidays that's always one person short. It's the Christmas gift I didn't have to get this year, even though I saw something I knew you'd love. It's the invitation to my wedding I won't have to send. And the two days a year that now hurt more than most.

It's the parties you should be at, as everyone is smiling. And while it seems like we've been moving on, we all live with the same hole in our heart. It’s something that will never be filled or replaced. And we can all feel it.

Death has a way of creating very strong bonds that keep people connected forever.

But if I could visit, even if it was just for a day, I know nothing would change between us. We'd pick up right where we left off. It'd be a celebration of a life well lived and unfairly cut short.

I'd ask if you know the reasons why this happened and if you were really ready to go? Everyone tries to come up with these justifications but some parts of life just suck because we had to accept this and not understand. And I hate that you're not still here with us. I hate that there were so many things you had left to do.

It still hurts some days.

But if I could visit for the day, I'd ask if you are proud of the person I turned out to be? I'd ask for guidance because I hope I'm doing everything right. I'd thank you for the lessons you continue to teach me, even in your absence. I'd ask about my future and if you knew what was in store, even though I know you wouldn't tell me.

If I could visit just one time, I'd hug you not wanting to let go. I'd say goodbye with tears in my eyes wanting to take you back to us…because home is where you belong.

But if I could say anything simply, it would be thank you.

Thank you for the memories and time I did have.

I’m glad this hurts. I’m glad I miss you. Because that shows you were someone really special.

Because I'd rather live the rest of my life carrying this pain, if going without it meant not knowing you. You proved to me, it's better to love and lose it than never love at all.

TC mark

This Is What Deep Love Feels Like

Posted: 16 Jan 2017 02:00 PM PST

Brandon Woelfel
Brandon Woelfel

Deep love is silly. It’s about being so incredibly weird with another person that you both would never be that weird in front of anyone else. It’s slow dancing in the kitchen for absolutely no reason. It’s laughing so hard you lose your breath. It’s getting drunk in your own apartment together dressed in Christmas pajamas when it’s June. It’s strange, and it’s funny, and it’s something the both of you don’t even really understand, but would rather not be without. Because one thing you both understand is that your lives are better with each other in them.

Deep love is being heard. It’s about someone having relentless curiosity in discovering who you are, because every time you reveal a new part of yourself they fall harder and harder. It’s about them wanting to listen because they’d rather hear your voice talk about your passions, your dreams, hopes, and inner-most thoughts, than hear themselves talk about anything else.

Deep love is irritating. It’s having meaningless arguments about things you don’t even know why you’re arguing about, and it’s laughing after they’re over, about how juvenile the both of you were acting, and how tiny little arguments like those have no meaning in comparison to what you mean to each other, because you mean the world to each other, and that meaning doesn’t just disappear when you both become frustrated, or tired. What you mean to each other sticks, it stays put, and when other things like life in general try to move it, it remains.

Deep love is attempting to understand the things another person’s mind thinks and your mind doesn't; it's being inspired by them. It's wondering how you found someone whose differences compliment yours. Because differences are normally things that tear people apart, but in deep love your differences bring you closer together. It's like the things you both find unfamiliar about each other somehow mould together and form this beautiful little mess and that mess somehow fits perfectly between the cracks inside your heart you never knew how to fill. Deep love fills those cracks without making you forget that they exist. Deep love allows you to remember the past and how hard it might've been, and then it allows you to feel grateful for what you have now. Deep love makes you feel lucky for finding it.

Deep love is wanting to make someone better when you can't even begin to guess what's wrong. It's just knowing that something is off, that this person who you'd give the world to, who often tries to fool you into thinking that everything's okay, it's knowing when it's not. It's the sixth sense you feel when they won't tell you that they need you, but you're there for them anyway.

Deep love is wanting to help. It's caring so much for someone that you want to help them sometimes more than they want to help themselves, sometimes it's loving them more than they love themselves. Because for you loving them is easy, and they’ll love you easily in return, but self-love is something that might take them a little longer to master. Because the kind of love they show you won't always reflect back at them; it's not reflexive. But when they do forget how to love themselves just as much as you do, you're there to remind them that they are indeed lovable, that deep love is more than just something they deserve, it’s something you know they are capable of receiving.

Deep love is healing. Deep love is seeing someone at their most vulnerable, often lowest point, and reaching out your hand to help them get back up. Because deep love is selfless. It’s realizing there’s someone out there that you don’t think twice about caring for. Caring for them is as involuntary as breathing.

Deep love is often unexplainable. You can’t explain why it happens, or how, and you can’t instruct others how to find it, but when you do find it, you’ll be able to decipher deep love from all the rest. TC mark