Dear Bryan,

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It was so delightful to catch up last night – and so restful to “just be” with you – sitting on the couch, or watching you brush your teeth. I’m sorry, that’s weird. But mostly it was nice because I didn’t have to be alone.

I’m afraid I must confess to you that you might not even recognize me if you were a fly on my wall one night during the week. I’m not the same person I am when I’m with you. I’ve given you this impression that I go to yoga, take vitamins and work on planning for school 24/7. Unfortunately, when I come home without someone to cook with or talk to, I end up eating half a bag of Pirate’s’ Booty, drinking a glass of wine, and calling it dinner. Until the cravings hit again around 8 or so. Then I eat gelato.

When I’m alone, I do things like watching three episodes of Friday Night Lights in bed and pretend I don’t have work tomorrow. No, I’m not great about keeping my bedtime.

I leave pans “to soak in the sink” (unscrubbed!) for days. Yes, those same pans I insist MUST BE CLEANED IMMEDIATELY  OR ELSE THEY WILL BE PERMANENTLY RUINED while you’re watching football games.

When you’re not around, I eat dinner over my computer (while watching Friday Night Lights or New Girl or reading blogs – see belowor over a book (but really I’m just pretending to read). Dinner, by the way, usually consists of whatever one food item happens to sound best (corn, black beans, chickpeas), roasted in the oven, and sprinkled with my entire spice rack.

I spend hours browsing blogs I care not a smidge about. Before long, I know the author’s alma mater, the name of their beloved goldendoodle and their favorite brunch locale. I also find my brain has shrivelled to the size of a jelly bean.

I turn on Pandora while I’m in the shower just to quiet that haunting nightmare from the scene in Psycho. Granted, whether or not I shower every night is a debate better left to chance. More than 50 percent of the time the answer to that question is no. I hope you’re not judging me here, because what I’m really trying to say is: I need you. And when you’re not here to remind me that showers are good for me, I skip them. I tend to focus on the “wet hair/blow-dry/I hate my life” kind of thing. Still not sure whether your insistence on me showering is for my benefit or yours …

My phone is constantly refreshing Instagram and my text messages: who likes me? who approves of my pictures? Does my life look as cute as I think it should? You’re not here to affirm I look beautiful, or to share my experiences; I think that’s why I’m compelled to share them with the open void of the wider world (the world is harsh!).

I’d previously imagined that as a “single person” in DC, I’d fly through a couple books a week, and build up to half-marathon running shape, and throw lavish dinner parties with all my new friends.

Reality laughs in my face, doesn’t it? I’m left aimlessly wading into the endless depth that is the dark, dark internet. Sometimes I wish I lived in the golden ages where you had to finish your reading before the sun went down and then you went straight to bed. Ah, the simplicity.

Anyway, the conclusion is this: Yes, indeed, you make me a better person. 

And, I hope you still accept me – grimy and unshowered as I am – when you come back to live with me. I love you!


PS: I still love this life and DC and my job; This post is the skin of truth stuffed with sarcasm.


One thought on “Dear Bryan,

  1. Dear Shannon,
    Love your openness and honesty. Everything you write I, and likely others, have done when living alone and missing connection. So glad you have Bryan and can look forward to days when you are both living in the same town.

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