Old Letters

Nothing really makes sense.

I think I’m forgetting what hour it is, what day it is, even what year it is, because nothing about time feels real to me.

Reading through old letters from friends written 4 or 5 years ago feels like ancient history. Most of the words that were so passionately conveyed at the time no longer pierce me in the same way. Unlike ancient artifacts, which are recovered and assigned meaning based on their original design, I am unable to find value in the words written by people I now consider strangers. It is almost as if the letters that were written with the most sincere of hearts are now the ones that I immediately want to crumple up and abolish from my filing cabinet.

Key phrases like,
“You are becoming such a wonderful woman of God!”
“I’m excited to see you grow more and bloom”
“You are growing so much!”
….

These sentences actually kind of annoy me now when I read them. Probably because I have received countless cards that place a heavy emphasize on “who I will become one day.” I think I have developed some sort of desensitization to all the encouragement I received about who I could be in the future. But it seems my curse is that people in my life have often and continue to speculate on future-anna-buck (or anna-x if I ever get married).

So that’s why the more arbitrary the greeting card, the better. The ones that were based on inside jokes exchanged between myself and friends are the one that I cry at now.

“I think you should die. That would solve the real problem.
Love, X”

“Dear Bitch,
Happy B-day! I have never been a man of many words so I will be brief (although I wear boxers, strictly…)”

“You have quite the exquisite taste in wall paint.”

“Cheers to garlic kale smoothies and lots of good questions.”

These are the words that choke me up inside. Words written when there was nothing serious to be writing about. I think it’s because every healthy friendship requires times of silliness, goofiness, hyperness, and an equal exchange of inside jokes that outsiders will never understand. That’s when I know I’ve found a true friend.
When I can say, oh hey, we don’t need to do anything together! We can hang out on my couch together and somehow have the greatest time just discussing anything that pops out of our mouths. I’m eating cookies and dropping crumbs on my sweat pants while you’re fully reclining on the sofa with your belly flopping out from under your shirt. We’re both far past the age of 16 but still giddily swapping secrets about boys. And of course, I’m sobbing like a baby and you’re rubbing my back while softly whispering that everything will work out just fine.

But anyway, maybe I’m saying all of this because I get too serious too often and I miss spending hours with my close friends—laughing until my jaw sticks open and my bladder can no longer hold up.

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Published by Anna Buck

"everything was beautiful and nothing hurt."

3 thoughts on “Old Letters

  1. The grain of sand examined loses sense and meaning.
    The grain of sand lived is coherent, inexplicable, incarnate.

  2. I love this. And I wish I had more to say than, “You are a very good writer and a thoughtful person.” But please notice that I didn’t say, “becoming”. Even though you still are, becoming. And changing. But the present is what you/we have now. And it’s very strange, the older one gets.

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