When I was 18, or soon to be 18, I was at home with my young sister for a few days before Christmas.
The house must have already been decorated, my sister already asleep. (How did I get her to go to bed, but my own children never sleep?)
So, of course, I decided to make Chocolate Chip cookies.
I think cookies were a serious part of Christmas at that time in my family. We had an enclosed front porch that was freezing in the winter. That’s where we kept the Christmas cookies, frozen for weeks, ready to be made into platters to gift family, friends, neighbors, teachers…
I don’t remember much about decades ago, but I remember the house smelling like a chocolate chip cookie, my dining room table full of cookies. I was making so many cookies, they were spread like playing cards cooling on foil. For quite avwhile, baking chocolate chip cookies triggered sadness.
I don’t remember if Mr. Thought called, or came over.
He wasn’t Mr. Thought then, just a boyfriend.
Well, he was a boyfriend before I made the cookies, and maybe during a few batches.
But then — he wasn’t.
He wanted to see other people.
Explore. His. Options.
He was done with us.
I was devastated.
Christmas was ruined.
My parents came home the next day, we celebrated Christmas and my 18th birthday. They gave me a beautiful silver bracelet.
We went to my grandma’s, where I was a teenage zombie, with a broken heart.
I spent time with my blinds drawn, blasting PJ Harvey that winter break. “You’re not rid of me…”
18-year old’s grief
2 thoughts on “Breaking up”
I loved this slice, the way you set it up with the cooking in the kitchen and the difficult conversation. The poem at the end really resonated with me. Yes, grief comes to us in so many different forms, doesn’t it? I hadn’t stopped to think of how many shades of grief we might experience throughout our lives, but you’re right. Thank you for this!
Your intro leads made me think of all the times I bake and how wonderful the smell is. Unfortunately, your chocolate chip experience brought sadness but that is one of the pains of teenage romance. I wonder how many people do remember a significant breakup. I surely had them many times with the same person. Your poem shares the different griefs you experienced. I hope this Christmas is full of joy.