via www.tobemagnetic.com, original source unknown.

Guilt

I was mean to my dad the night before he died. That’s a true thing, a fact, not an opinion. He tried to talk to me and I was in a bad mood and I ignored him. There was no fight, no reason to be upset with him. I was irritable and he was there. The next day, he wasn’t.

It’s impossible to make some things pretty because they aren’t. There are bottomless, uncomfortable, harrowing regrets, the most painful of truths because they aren’t just thoughts. They were real. They are real.

Regret, when we live in it, is staring…


A photo of my dad from the early 90s. A moment of joy.

2 months

I haven’t spoken to my father in almost two months. I listen to his old voicemails, run my hands over notes he wrote, I guess trying to pull him out of the ink. I wear his old t-shirts everyday in desperate attempts to feel closer to him.

We expect so much from this life, we expect that things are supposed to happen. He was supposed to see me graduate, meant to walk me down the aisle, retire somewhere that made him happy, have grandchildren. But nothing is ever guaranteed, not even ourselves, nor each other. …


image via Unsplash

“Well, your father did die of the flu, after all,” my mother said over dinner. This was a few weeks ago, in early March. We were out to dinner for my boyfriend’s birthday, the last time we ate out since the US spiralled into collective panic, and probably the last time we’ll eat out for the foreseeable future.

This sent me reeling. My father died of a heart condition, I thought. His heart failed, causing him to crash his car.

He hadn’t been well before that, though. Not for a few months. I went back through the chain of events…


via Unsplash

It was my senior year of college and an unseasonably warm evening for February in Massachusetts, warm enough at least to brave wearing a skirt to the bars. People had been commenting on my weight all year- I’d gone down a size over the summer- but that winter, my body had shrunk rapidly. I’d gone home for break and returned a size zero. It was clear to my friends that I’d gotten even smaller, but when they saw my legs, compliments started flooding in.

“You look… good. You’re so thin,” a friend of mine said.

“Seriously,” another girl added. “What…


Art by Jeannie Phan https://www.jeanniephan.com/

“That was a beautiful service,” a lab tech from my dad’s department said to me kindly. We’d retreated to a room filled with decent enough pastries and finger sandwiches. The hospital did a nice job. “What are you doing later this afternoon? Just taking it easy?”

I paused for a moment before I began to laugh. Loudly. It was a normal question, so she was rightfully thrown off by my reaction. I’d just taken a bite of my croissant, so I had to do that weird, hand-in-front-of-mouth-while-politely-smiling thing as I finished chewing.

“Not really,” I answered. …


This is the Speech I Wrote for My Dad’s Funeral

image via @danniesimpsonart

I have, for a long time, been fascinated with the nature of existence. How we exist, how to exist, and if one can exist better than the next. Some believe that existence ends when our bodies do. Some believe in a heaven, a hell, or both; others believe in neither, but trust that there is an elsewhere beyond the horizon for us to enter once our physical being is no longer.

In any case, our bodies somehow go back into the universe, and none of us who still have ours…


Getty Images/iStockphoto

I played field hockey for ten years. The first two, in middle school, were pure fun. My freshman year of high school, I realized I was actually pretty good, and from there I got increasingly serious.

About six of my ten years involved intense physical training; I ended up in USA programs and played on the top team within the number one club in the nation, switching to that organization after committing to a division 1 college during September of my junior year of high school. I retired about a year ago. …


From the outside, they look like tiny, oval-shaped limes. The meat of the fruit has a gritty, pear-like texture, even sugary in feel, and the taste is difficult to describe. Tart. A tad tropical with a minty finish. They’re good, I swear.

Grown mostly in South America and New Zealand, feijoas are extremely uncommon in the US. You’d be hard-pressed to find any in the grocery store, let alone growing in your yard.

My upbringing was split between Scottsdale, Arizona and rural Pennsylvania, where we landed in a small town called Lewisburg. We kept massive gardens at both houses; my…


via lifeinbetween.me

Talking about my years as a serious athlete feels like recounting a past life. I played Division 1 field hockey (because yes, I am a Middle-Class White Girl from the East Coast) and although my last collegiate game was only a little under a year ago, I already feel incredibly far away from it. I’m relatively un-athletic and noncompetitive, at least as far as athletes go, and it always felt like an accident for me to be there, especially at the level that I was. …


An early summer night’s view from my window in Lewisburg.

I guess it wasn’t technically my childhood home. I was brought up first in Scottsdale, Arizona, and I did love it there. Even if one day I forget everything else, I’m certain I’ll always remember the white and black tiled floors and the how the garden shed smelled like play-doh. Any real reminiscing about that house is usually to do with the trees. We had planted a small “orchard” where we grew citrus, some stone fruits, and apples (the apples never did well, everything else was imperfect but delicious) in addition to a massive eucalyptus, two olive trees out front…

Maggie Harrison

a 23 year old who likes to ask questions with no answers

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