Wanna hear something pathetic and a little sad? When I was a weird emo middle schooler with few friends and fewer social skills, I did what all outcasts who listen to Evanescence do — I wrote stories about sh*t that would literally never actually happen, specifically about bringing a boy home for the holidays. 

The pathetic part wasn’t that I wrote stories because that would have been normal for my social bracket. Oh no, I had to slave away at an in-depth story in which an unnamed boy who I made up in my head meets my parents on Thanksgiving.

I told you it was a little pathetic.

Now as a slightly less weird and significantly more social adult, I’m kind of in the boat that I painstaked over in a beat-up composition notebook back in seventh grade math class. Guitar boy and I are going strong, and it couldn’t be more Hallmark-esque. We just went shopping for Christmas decorations and also bought the Kama Sutra, while simultaneously discussing if we should get a dog together. 

Our holiday plans involve me, a closeted Christmas fanatic, showing him the joys of the most wonderful time of the year because honestly, he’s kind of a Grinch. He will be joining me for my family's Christmas, and I will be joining him for his family's Thanksgiving.

I know, it’s nauseating for me too. Six months ago, I was carving the hearts out of the subpar, at best, men of Lincoln, and now I’m planning to carve up a plant-based turkey alternative for his family’s Thanksgiving dinner. 

I couldn’t be happier, or more excited, but it’s wild to me how much life can change in just a few short months. The holidays have always been a bit somber for me and my family, and I don’t know if it’s because this is the first holiday I’ve had with a boyfriend who actually cares about me or the strict weekly therapy visits I’ve been attending for eight months, but it’s been bringing something up in me. 

I’m remembering parts of my childhood that I thought I buried years ago. I remember how alone I felt, how the weight of the world felt like it rested on my 14-year-old shoulders. I remember how I felt like I couldn’t trust men, how that apprehension turned to anger and that anger turned to retribution, which turned me into the person I was six months ago. 

The girl that sat in the back of math class writing stories about bringing a guy home for Christmas or Thanksgiving was just the musings of a really depressed girl who just wanted to feel less alone in the world. I think I really tried to kill that part of me with all my big talk of playing the game like a man and making the boys of Lincoln cry. 

I’m no longer that girl, nor am I the girl writing stories about being loved. I am the woman who wears an apron while I make apple pie for my boyfriend’s family. I am the woman who realized that the girl writing stories was always loved, she just didn’t know it, and that girl never has to feel alone again because I carry her with me every day. I am no longer the girl fantasizing about being loved; I am now the woman who knows she is loved. 

While the impossible details of my Thanksgiving story I wrote so many years ago won’t be met entirely, I think seventh grade me would be pretty happy to see how things turned out.