Baby You Go To Bed Too Early, But That's Okay | Teen Ink

Baby You Go To Bed Too Early, But That's Okay

March 8, 2017
By IndieStratton GOLD, Ithaca, New York
IndieStratton GOLD, Ithaca, New York
14 articles 6 photos 7 comments

“Her personality was like a doughnut with something missing in the middle.” She was white bread. Like grandmas 4 step fast bake bread, white and bland like salteens n salt, extra grit. He says she only likes black people, makes sense, that’s why you drink water in a desert because you are thirsty. We talk on the phone every other day for almost 2 hours every other night. Every time he’s mentioned Thayon without missing a beat. you think I talk about everyone I've ever “been in love with”?


My table came with the salt cleaned off. Mamma always had me clean the table after eating wipe my mouth off and throw my napkin in the trash, just how it was.

Everyone knows that they would chose to do something other than read someone's writing. Is that true? I hope so and also I kind of don’t. Doesn't everybody think like this? I think I might just have a good memory and only for the thing that matter like feeling, and color and when somebody compares their ex to a doughnut in a bad way. Doughnuts were always sweet to me, so much so that they made the back of my tongue sour, taste bad, and I wouldn't want to eat again for hours. Doughnuts make me crave something real like eggs. I've always had a thing for being real, for looking real, for tasting real. I know you are fronting when you make me feel like I have swallowed a lump of salt. I know you are s***ting when you make my face burn red and feel hot for no reason, you really didn’t have too. I told you I DON’T like hot sauce.


I wish you were better at listening.


Mama taught me to always listen. She listens so hard that she has a crease in between her eyes that collects all the information. It go bigger and bigger over the years and I wonder if all the things she was told will ever spill out and land on the floor. I hope not because I really don’t like cleaning, and I think words would be sticky and smelly like molasses and iron. The way her bottles of iron liquid smell in the fridge, like blood and like cold stone floors in the morning. When she hears me she mapps my words one at a time. Tacks it onto what she has heard in the past. This makes her incredibly smart and over the years increasingly more and more assuming. I stopped the tell all when I was 14 maybe thirteen. Did that make me a woman, probably not, it just made her wrong more often. The less I tell the less messy I am but the more messy she gets. We keep a clean house, bathroom window open for breeze even in the winter. Cold and clean and off white.

I love when people talk about their families. I only have my two parents does that equal one family?

I think of family as 4 or more. Rooms of people with red cheeks who all smell different but all look the same. There were only ever pictures with two of us in it because the third had to take the picture. Do we equal one family? Or do we equal roommates, housemates friends.. The sharers of food? A kitchen. A bathroom, and a house. They don't like when I bring my guests into the house. The ones they do like are the ones that are smaller and sweeter than themselves, softer faces and softer words. Personally I like my ice cream hard and cold and tingly not melted in my bowl. My spoons are small because I like to feel small as well. Just like I my servings little too, but let's not lie here I just wantted to eat less that’s all. I won't even go into it because sometime when write about something hard it becomes less truthful or even cliche boring. What i’m saying is that I like to be with people that make me happy and make me feel little and i like to be comfortable.

Most of the time.

He calls me cliche and passive aggressive. If he only truly knew me. I’m not sure anyone but myself fully does, everyone catches me at a different hour. Sometimes you can’t see the full picture unless you've traveled your way around the clock.

You call me baby now. Is that how I feel too? I know in my subconscious I want that for sure. When you talk to me, I feel like Ive just climbed a mountain and an enjoying the view.

I wonder who saw your picture last night and wondered. I've had questions and I will always get more.
When you shook my father’s hand you made him looks small pale, and skinny in many places except for where his skin wrinkled soft like cream sheets. The skin on his mother's neck. His mother’s eyes that are more watchful than even mine. With age they have gotten bigger taking in more and more. But his watched you in a nonthreatening way, I think..

And then I thought how different you were. You didn’t try when you easily could have.You’re used to talking and sitting on the couch. Well I’m not, and I feel the clock ticking fast each time I feel more eager and less interested in the present. My couch. My food. My parents, and soft conversation.

When you left you pulled me in close for a hug, I felt you bend down. I felt my face being smushed up against his sweatshirt, and it made me feel like a little girl again. Your red sweater smelled sweet and not particularly like anything at all. Since then I can’t really imagine you vividly, there is no one smell there is no one image just a whole lot of words everyday to remind me of you. So many words that I might be getting my own crease in between my eyes. I shut the door for you when you left, sticking my head out yelling facts, one of our jokes. I saw your hair the side of your cheek against my doorframe smiling dark and smooth. Your eyes closed and I heard you laugh loudly as I closed the door on you. When you laygh you show all of you teeth all of your gums the way a dog would when running fast.  The door was heavy and wooden and made a noise dull but still loud. I heard you walk down the steps laugh even louder, and then your voice faded off quickly all together.

Both girls don’t like you. And I don’t want you to shut my open windows like a frost in september. I wish it didn’t matter if I don’t like to wear my coat. I’m not 5 years old anymore, I know how to work a zipper. Everyone’s always cold and I am sweating. It makes me feel different.

Why do I have to wait an allotted time? Do I? I always feel better at the end of the day, so maybe I should just listen.

I think that’s just the way it is when you’re sixteen. Everything goes back to the clock whether that’s what you want or not. It all comes down to laughing in a doorway or a few grains of salt left of a table. It takes time to be the person you want to be, and it takes time to love your family the way you think you “should.”  And it takes a long time to learn that the punctuation goes inside the quotation marks I the US. It’s just something I’m figuring out one comment at a time.

The author's comments:

I wrote this peice in response to my feelings about someone I've been seeing recently. I've been getting to know them better and this is how I am feeling. This peice is also musings about my relationships with lots of people, incding my family. 

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