song: bon iver — “flume” [stream only] | buy
“character — like a photograph — develops in darkness.” – yousuf karsh
i was twenty one, living in colorado, platinum blonde.
i was also heartbroken.
i was dating a really wonderful person. a person i love to this day. i was in love with someone else, though. someone foolish and young. someone with melancholic eyes and mischievous lips. someone vibrant and so alive. so alive, it hurt.
especially when he left.
it was a shitty situation, what i did. dating someone even though i was in love with someone else. it’s the sort of thing you never expect yourself to do; it’s the sort of thing i never expected to do. be anything less than painfully honest with someone. but it happened, and i was, and this boy and i spent a long time together; longer than i deserved with him, honestly.
when i think back at that time when i was twenty one, living in colorado, platinum blonde, heartbroken, dating a really wonderful person but in love with someone else, i am incredibly melancholic. i remember listening to this song on repeat at the time and it’s funny that now, years later, this song so perfectly embodies that time for me. not just because i listened to it incessantly during that time, but because this song is melancholic and a little dishonest and just filled with a lot of grey area. which is exactly what i was.
most of the time, i don’t think we ever get the opportunity to truly apologize for things. how, for example, could i ever apologize to this boy for being confused and involving him and loving him, but never being able to fall in love with him? how do you apologize for years of letting someone be in love with you?
how do you apologize for not being brave?
i always expect that at the end of my life i’ll look back and be happy — or calm, rather. peaceful — because so many of my decisions have reflected my love of adventure and general throw-caution-to-the-wind attitude. i always expect that i’ll look back and not have any regrets because i’ve purposefully made the most spontaneous, boisterous decisions possible. i always expect that at the end of my life i’ll look back and be proud of myself for being daring, and it’s a hard thing to swallow when i realize that so many times, most times, i made those daring, impractical, vibrant decisions because, simply, the thought of not making them, the thought of being practical, scared the shit out of me.
and the thought of that now, the flicker of thought that i haven’t been brave, scares the shit out of me.
because bravery and honesty are the most important, most beautiful things. and any level of justification — i was young, i was confused, i was hurting — can work for a time, but only until you’re brave and honest with yourself.
and then you realize that you need to start doing everything differently.
and then you start doing everything differently.
and that, that, is the bravest thing.