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loved labored & lost
by julie welch

Saw a college friend of mine today. We talked about Kessler, our dead friend. He memorialized him on some website so I thought I'd check it out. The story he'd written made me smile. Not because it was hilariously funny but because it could've been true. And I would have missed it because I was too busy being this person I'm not.

Seeing Harry Dan today pissed me off. He's one of the few guys in college I knew but didn't sleep with. Probably could have - but he was too smart for me. I enjoy being the smartest person in the room and I never felt that way with Harry Dan, Sex Ed or Kessler. Maybe that's why I liked them so much. They shared a common bond of men searching. I too searched. In a different way.

I am a recovering alcoholic and drug addict. I have been sober and clean for exactly 7 years, 5 months and 4 days. I have coins and chips and big blue books and lists of resentments to prove it. I never thought I would live past the age of 30, but here I am. This is my life now. Married to a man ten years my senior. 3 beautiful kids. A dog I fucking hate. A mini-van. I go to church now. Regularly. Seriously. Every Sunday. And I work at the same goddamn job I had in college. Who am I?? This is not who I planned to be.

I was supposed to be the charming-yet-cynical, amusing-yet-sophisticated, independent-yet-tame, intelligent-yet-passionate chick. I was going to be the cool aunt you'd go visit for a long summer weekend and I'd let you smoke cigarettes on my front porch and we'd talk about sex. I should be the intriguing woman who lives on the 7th floor who is always on the elevator at the same time every day. The girl with big tits who washes her car in the driveway on Saturdays and somehow manages to get her shirt soaking wet in just right spot every time. That English teacher who wore sandals and bangles every day who sounded like the air at the end of a Grateful Dead jam when she walked by. The one who could sit at the sports book and give you stats and schedules for every game while she smoked her cigarettes with one hand and played video poker with the other. Yeah, you know who I mean. That Girl.

But here I am. My passion is gone. I am tired. Some part of my body aches all the time. I read magazines in the check-out aisle. I bake casseroles. I buy in bulk. I call my mother now. Regularly. Seriously. I carry a box of tissues in my mini-van. I think 10pm is too late to be making or receiving phone calls. I think Cosmo is a stupid magazine. I think people who speed on the highway are idiots. Who am I??

So what's really pissed me off about seeing Harry Dan today is he reminded me of those ideals I once had. You know, the ones I'd never surrender. Yeah. Who'dve thunk it. Fuck. Where do I go from here? What in the hell have I gotten myself into? I guess I'm still searching. Sober this time. We'll see where it leads...


more about julie welch


dan gonzalez
8.9.05 @ 2:43a

We'll see where it leads...We'll see where it leads...

Hopefully to you writing more, Julie.

I too went to school with that Harry Dan fucker, and those other assholes, but none of them were anywhere near as smart as you, Chuki. (sp.?)

He and those assholes OverSexed Ed and Kessler - between verses, beers, and haikus or whatever other shit they pretended to write - spent most of their time acting smart in front of you to disguise the fact that they were talking about your awsome rack just before you walked up.

daniel givin
8.9.05 @ 9:27a

I go to church now. Regularly. Seriously. Every Sunday. And I work at the same goddamn job I had in college. Who am I?? This is not who I planned to be.


julie welch
8.10.05 @ 1:30p

Yeah - I said I go the church regularly...I forgot to mention I usually end up sneaking out to the parking lot and smoking cigarettes on the daycare's playground...

robert melos
8.11.05 @ 3:49a

I don't know you, but I know people like you. In some ways I am like you. There are many days when I don't know myself, and some when I don't want to know myself.

Beautifully written.

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