important questions.

I found something on the internet in which someone asked questions. This is not a hard thing to find, but I liked the one I found and so here are those questions.

“When did you feel the most alive? Where do you go when you want to be alone? How did you know you were in love for the first time?”


To be nitpicky, I’d rather this person would ask when do I feel the most alive, implying thereby that I can still feel so, but that’s of no real consequence.

When do I feel the most alive.

I have felt very alive wrestling a boxspring up small, cramped wonky stairs.

I have felt very alive tucked up in a bed by the window, lying awake at two in the morning talking about collective consciousness with Hannah.

I have felt very alive running across the top ridge of the hills up behind the university and throwing my arms out and looking out over the whole city like it’s mine.

I have felt very alive lying on a dock in the middle of the night, freezing, watching the orange moon rise over the trees, and later, walking up a path of white sand in almost complete darkness.

I have felt very alive skiing, of course.

I have felt very alive while on a bus after the longest and most ridiculous weekend of my life, running on no food and no sleep, which is an interesting way to feel alive, but I was alive nonetheless.

I have felt very alive standing under the moon in the Sawtooth mountains with my father long ago, while the dog raced down to the lake and found a sock, frozen solid.

I have felt very alive sledding on an elementary school field in the darkness of a Minnesota evening, with snow in my funeral sweater after a toboggan crash.

I have felt very alive in a motorboat with the wind in my hair, talking about swimming with someone a foot taller than I am but nonetheless who sees the same things.

I have felt very alive picking wild raspberries with a four-year-old on the side of the road, and also picking huckleberries with my family deep in the woods.

I have felt very alive looking at stars and fireworks from my own roof.

I have felt very alive watching a lunar eclipse with Derek.

I have felt very alive listening to my grandfather tell stories in his halting way while I hold his hands, cold with age.

I have felt very alive sailing.

I have felt very alive in Kailyn’s kitchen at 11:30 pm philosoanalyzing people and making cookies.

I have felt very alive when I was as sick as it gets but watching the snow fall while I wrote my last research paper.

I have felt very alive in a lot of ways and places and with people, come to think of it.

So now, where do I go to be alone?

Well, right now, it’s basically my room, because I have one where I can close the door now. Though I probably shouldn’t do that as often as I do, because I live with people and might need to talk to them more often. But if I really want to get away, I hike up to the pillars and leave my phone behind, or maybe go for a run, ditto. Or I hide out in the library.

How did I know I was in love for the first time?

When Christopher Eccleston said, “I like bananas. Bananas are good.”

I’m only about 25 percent kidding.

I don’t think I’ve ever been in love. I’ve been very deep in like, certainly.

I don’t think I’ve encountered the person who will change my life that deeply yet. Or if I have, he hasn’t pulled it off yet.

In all honesty, I have never said “I am/was in love with this or that significant figure in my romantic history.” Of the three, the phrases I used in describing them have all been quite different.

I have said, “I loved him,” when he was three thousand miles gone. (I changed my mind about that later. Can one love if one does not know what it means to love?)

I have said, “I was crazy about him,” when he was no further away than he had ever been. (I hold with this one still. I was crazy about him. Would I call it being in love? No.)

I have said, “I have tried to show him love,” when he dropped off the planet. (I hold with this one still as well. I did try to show him love, and I can be satisfied with that if he never tries to contact me again.)

Have I ever been in love? I do not know. I don’t think so, somehow. I have tried to love people; I have kissed people; I have thought people were the most wonderful things on the planet but somehow I do not think any of it constitutes being in love with them.


Well, who knows.


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