Evening.

Dear Mindfuck,

Dear is too formal and Mindfuck is too informal.

Hi Brainsmush,

Is that better? Who the feck knows.

You’re probably sat at home on your sofa right now watching tv and snacking. I’m trying to get to sleep but evidently it isn’t working.

I feel like I’ve got a lot to lose. I’ve got my pride and my bravado and a hell of a lot of weight.

You have more to lose and I understand why you’re clinging onto it all.

I can’t and won’t guarantee you that this will be easy. I’ve learnt from my therapist that nothing can be guaranteed. 

She has a point.

I will not make promises that I can’t keep. With that in mind, I promise you these things:

  • I promise that I will always be grumpy before 6am.
  • I promise that I will always be allergic to cats and covered in their fur but that I will always consider getting more.
  • I promise to take note of the little things – like how your eyes seem brighter when you have no make up on.
  • I promise to be annoying and needy and ever so slightly immature.

On paper, we don’t make sense. It’s a good thing that we aren’t just fictional characters. I am not your ideal man and you are not my ideal woman and yet I feel like a nervous teenager when I see you.

I’m ready to lose my bravado.

Love, Similar Mindfuck 

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Dear DTB 

Dear DTB,

This is tough. This is like well done steak kinda tough. I mean I like my steak well done but I still want to be able to get my teeth into it. I can’t get my teeth into this.

People say that it’s a burden or emotionally abusive to say that a person is instrumental to their happiness. Unfortunately, despite its connotations, you are instrumental to my happiness.

I can only really gather the courage to write this because I don’t think you’ll ever read it. If you were to discover this I hope you wouldn’t realise that it’s for you. If you were to realise that, you’d be angry. “Why couldn’t you just talk to me?!”, would be your response.

I can’t talk to you though. Not now. You’re a teenage boy in a cave right now; agitated and isolated and you love it. 

I’m asking you to be someone that you can’t be, at least not yet. I’m not there yet either, my therapist calls it “fake it until you make it”. I’m faking it so much that I don’t think you know that I’m terrified like you.

You think I’m strong which is why you talk to me the way you do. I’m not strong, I’m barely getting by.

I wonder where we’ll be in ten years. Will we find this funny? Or will we still be bitter? 

I think we’ll find it funny. We’ll be different people by then. I’ll still be stubborn and you’ll still be grumpy but we’ll be a bit softer.

Years of “good living” and hindsight will have made us softer. 

I cannot wait until we’re softer. I cannot wait until life is how we imagine it to be. We’ll be the envy of people on Instagram (if it still exists) and we’ll be smug. We will be allowed to be smug because of all the shit we will have to endured to get to that point.

This is the shit and I’m sorry that right now even my name annoys you. Guess what, yours doesn’t make me best pleased either.

But when I think about my life at 33 you’re there. You are instrumental to my happiness and that irritates me so much. I’m stronger with you, and that bothers me. We’re better people when we’re together. We’re softer. We’re faking it less and making our dreams a reality.

This, right now, is shit. You’re being shit and I’m being shit. At least we’re consistent.

In 10 years time you will no longer be known at DTB; isn’t that a refreshing thought?

So I’ll let you be a teenage boy in a cave as long as you let me be a middle aged woman having a midlife crisis whilst going through the menopause. This is making us softer. The steak is no longer as hard to chew.

A letter to somebody I know from afar.

I’d like to tell you that it’ll all be ok but I can’t. You know it’s not true and I don’t want to lie to you; you deserve more than that.

Some people believe that white lies are helpful; they can protect people from the harsh truth. I think, to a degree, that’s accurate. Some difficult things in life are “character building” and I believe all things happen for a reason. For what reason though, I cannot tell you.

You are well meaning and honest but an aspect of that scares me.

Do you know what is ahead of you? Are you quietly confident? Or is it a front because you know the truth is hard to handle and you’d rather plough through than face up to it?

I say face up to it.

Don’t hide behind excuses and third person narratives that allow you to live vicariously. It won’t help you.

An unpopular opinion is still a worthy opinion and I thought, out of everyone, that you’d know that.

You will meet people that will understand you instantly and people who you will know for years who will not understand a single part of your identity. I used to think that without common ground life was meaningless. How can you express how you feel and share experiences if both of you do not understand what the other is saying in its full capacity? Now I understand that only understanding the notion or the thought behind something is enough. For example, you know how a sneeze feels, right? I can’t explain it but you know how it feels.

The past will be hard to look back on but you have to do it. It is what made you who you are now and without it you’d only be a fraction of the person you’ll be in ten years’ time.

If you ever doubt any of what I’ve said then think about what your life was like ten years ago and tell me it hasn’t got better. Except you won’t be able to tell me that because it has got better and it always will.