Crooked Beauty

Every morning, a man with arrestingly blue eyes puts a heart inside my coffee cup. It’s a mug, actually — I prefer a mug. I can’t imagine you’re new to the corner spot coffee shop scene, but mugs are for staying. Cups are for going.

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The man I mentioned — the one who thinks my name is Anna — I’d say he must pour a heart, two hearts, into lots of coffee cups. Let’s go ahead and call this a minor detail, okay? Minor detail, one of many.

Every morning I look at my watery heart, swim-swim-swimming somewhere in the general vicinity of the middle of the mug, and I slurp it shapeless. I do this slowly, if I am feeling good. At the speed of light, if I am feeling bad. Good or bad, I’m getting a little more used to the questions left lingering on my tongue.

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Bon Iver’s Skinny Love is playing. Do you know this song? Come on skinny love, just last the year // Pour a little salt, we were never here. If you’re a regular — yes, you know this song. Can I tell you something? I am so sick of it. I am sick of all of it, if you want to know the truth. Skinny love — what about skinny life? Skinny life, with its skinny lattes and skinny jeans.

There are things I want to do differently. Need to do differently, I think.

I think I want to take a break from blogging. A big break. Did you see this coming? I sort of did. I fought it all the way. These last few weeks have been a long, slow goodbye. (My least favorite kind.)

Blogging is a wonderful thing, for many, many people. For years and years, it’s been a wonderful thing for me — how could I say otherwise? Look at how much I’ve learned, look at how far I’ve come. This has been percolating for awhile, but I’d like to experience other, wonderful things.

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I highly doubt I will stop writing. It’s my way of moving through space — the void left would be enormous. But I’m ready to write differently, I think: to a friend, in a journal, for a company.

It might be nice to write just as it comes, too. It might be nice not to have to break up my sentences. Urge you along.

There is so much I want to do differently, it’s actually overwhelming.

When I get another job, I don’t want to blast it all over social media. GUESS WHAT? ALL THE EXCLAMATION POINTS! (Read: like my status and give me confidence, pretty pretty please.)

When I fall in love again, I don’t want to have to half-wonder whether I’m falling more in love with the story I’m telling. When I fall in love, I want to be busy living the story. Our story. I want to wake up every day and be there, right there, our hands together on the same page. I don’t want to be three chapters down the road. Or worse: three chapters behind.

When I fall in love again, I want it to be private.

When I am lost, when I am lonely — when I am seeking love, intimacy, warmth, understanding — I don’t want to look for it here. I want to look for it in a friend. (A real friend.) I have those! I have those, even when Oregon feels ominously echo-y.

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When I picture sitting down with a friend, the table between us just doesn’t include a laptop. Try as I may.

With that being said, I really don’t regret anything I’ve written on here. (Today, two months ago, or two years ago.) The fact that I’ve documented so much of what’s sort of turned out to be the excruciatingly painful process of growing up — maybe it will all come in handy, someday.

Even now, even when I feel reasonably sure that nobody needs to know about all the ups and downs, it’s nice to be able to look back on them. It’s nice to have them here. I don’t see anything to be ashamed of, embarrassed by. I see someone who is doing a relatively marvelous job of feeling her way through.

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I see someone who is making a major effort to speak kindly, even when she has unkind feelings. I see someone who is trying to do better, all day, every day, in nearly every facet of her life. I see this same someone taking a nice, long, well-deserved break. I see her listening better, loving better. I see her learning how to live a bigger life. A bigger, better life.

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(Just don’t ask me whether the backdrop to said life looks more like Portland Oregon or more like Portland Maine. You’ll ruin it!)

In all seriousness, though: thank you, so much, for being here. Whether today was your first day, or you’ve been here all along. I’ll leave you with one last nice thought.

Anyone capable of deep sadness is equally capable of deep joy.

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8 thoughts on “Crooked Beauty

  1. Thank you for your beautiful words here- keep the door open, you can always come back! In the meantime, looking forward to more emails, texts, phone calls, and hopefully soon, coffee and cooking dates!

  2. Oh! I will be missing your writing and photography very much… though, I think I understand your need to be more present / connected right now in your real life. I hope you check back in some time in the future, as your thoughts and expressions were so refreshing, honest, pure, and curious. I hope you go on and continue to live your life with the wonder that you seem to have, and that you continue to enjoy the excitement of delving deeper into your relationships with others, and finally — that you’ll have plenty of content, slow-sip coffee days in the future.
    You’ll be missed!
    Wren

    • Aww, thanks for the nice note Wren. I so appreciate your support/understanding, especially when I don’t quite understand it all myself yet! Somehow it just feels like the right thing to do. (For the time being, anyway.) My email is hcnickerson@gmail.com, if you ever want to check in. In the meantime: sending you all the best!

  3. Hannah, I wish you peace and happiness and adventures to make your heart fill, keep writing, you have such a gift.
    Take good care of yourself, Tina

  4. I saw it coming, and I am happy for you, it is time to live off the page and the web screen for a while, and I hope you really live. Fully live. Live up to all those abilities and dreams that you have and deserve x

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