Going anywhere

This is actually not the first Christmas I spend in New York, with Avy. I was 16 the last time, dad had to go on an urgent business trip (or so he said) and mom went on her own to Italy. Avy still lived in Los Angeles back then but she wanted to spend Christmas far away from home so we came here together.

She thinks I faked a cold to get out of the Christmas dinner her mother arranged this year, but the truth is I'm too shy. All these people I had never met came over and I panicked, it made me feel like a child again but I felt I had not choice. I'm good at hiding away from the rest of the world, but I always end up regretting it.


Daddy's gone

The only thing that hurts here is missing my family. They might not always deserve it but they are my blood and all my childhood memories. It's Christmas now and everything comes back so easily. I remember the night my father said he was going out, on the 24th, and I thought he'd be back in an hour or two.

He wasn't, he was gone for a week and didn't say a word about where he had been. I was little enough to forget about it but old enough to wonder if something was wrong. I guess I've known it for a long time but it's hard to admit that things aren't as perfect as you thought they were. Innocence was always made to die.


Out and about tonight

Life is so much better here in New York, at least that's the way I feel now. I've always lived in a fantasy but La La Land is more like a bad dream. Avy talks about a plastic surface, I know what she means. Here, it's almost as if the houses have been there forever, as if the best of Europe packed its bags and went overseas.

Those of you that have been here know what I'm talking about, no? There is glamor and style here like nowhere else, this dream world suits me just fine. Avy takes me out, we go to all the department stores, shop for cocktail dresses and wear them at hotel bars late at night.

Chloe is here too, I don't know her well but she could be Avy's reflection in the mirror. They share something, sometimes I feel so very different around them but sometimes everything is just the way it should be.


How does it feel?

My first Christmas in LA was terrible. The winter weather in Italy is not like in New York, but in LA it's almost like summer all year and I hate it. Some people prefer the sun and the heat but to me, a real Christmas means cold weather or even snow.

What I miss the most is my family, of course, so many of them disappeared when we moved and we only saw them once or twice a year. Now I only have Avy, at least that's how I feel even though I know I have some family left in California. I don't know if I'm going back this Christmas or not.


Some dance to remember, some dance to forget

I'm in New York and it feels like Christmas even though it's raining. I wait for her at the airport, she's told me she's coming to pick me up and I watch the cabs drive by one by one until one of them finally stops by my feet.

I can see her hair through the window as she pays the driver and my heart stops beating for a second or too. She gets out, looking like a fairytale figure in a black dress and high heels, a Burberry trench coat over her shoulders and that smile.

I don't know if she's happy to see me until she tells me she loves me and hugs me for what feels like an eternity. I could freeze time forever in that moment and we forget that we should have taken the same cab back so we stand there together in the rain and it's cold but it doesn't matter: I'm right where I'm supposed to be.


Fairytale of New York

No city in the world is better than New York around Christmas. I love the lights and the energy, it feels so warm even though the weather can be terrible. I didn't think I'd go back any time soon after the fight I've had with Avy, but I was wrong.

She called me, just now, and asked me if I wanted to see her. I try to play hard to to get but I'm really not, because I've missed her so much these last couple of months. I'm going in the morning tomorrow, now I just need to pack. I won't bring much, this is a clean sheet and it feels as if everything is about to start over.


Babbo Natale

I've never been good with change, I like to keep things the way they are even when I'm not really happy. Not that I'm an unhappy person, I'm just a little bit dark and I think I've always been.

The biggest change in my life, of course, was moving away from Italy. America meant nothing to me then, I didn't know what was waiting on the other side of that ocean. And I remember my last Italian Christmas like it was yesterday. How everyone was there, my whole family, my parents, my cousin.

They were fantastic times, nothing has ever come close to it since. Maybe it's like that for everyone, that a childhood always glows like diamonds as we get older, but that's the way I truly remember it. And I'm afraid that I'll never feel like that again, even though I may be happier in another way.

Dad got me a silver necklace, I still wear it sometimes. It reminds me of how beautiful everything seemed and how I thought it would never change.


So this is Christmas

I love Christmas, maybe because it's always been the time of year when my family looks the happiest. I look at the pictures from my childhood sometimes, mom in her flowing dresses and mio caro babbo wearing knitted sweaters for a change. Salvatore preparing all the food and the lights and the tree and the gifts.

We were still in Italy back then, America wasn't even an option at the time. Mom talked condescendingly about that superficial country across the ocean, it's funny how she turned out herself after a couple of years in Los Angeles.

I don't remember it of course, I can only derive what I felt from the pictures and it seems I was happy too. And why wouldn't I be, I never understood what was luring in the background, I never saw those dark clouds hanging over us, and I wouldn't for years to come. Now that I do, all I want is to ignore them and go back to those happy times when everything seemed so easy.

When I wish upon a star.


Growing up, growing old

The word "winter" doesn't mean much in Los Angeles, it's 85 degrees out and I'm hiding behind the blinds in my room. Mom is out by the pool as always, it doesn't matter to her that she already looks like a gingerbread woman. I prefer milk for my own skin.

Dad called yesterday, I picked up and he sounded glad to hear my voice. I almost started crying, I miss him and mostly I miss the bond we shared when I was little. He always cared about me and I know he still does but lately we've grown apart. It's the worst feeling in the world and I don't know what to do about it. There's nothing I can do I guess, it's all a part of growing up, as awful as that seems.



When I was little I always thought I was alone because there was something wrong with me. It didn't make me sad, I just saw myself as different from everyone else. The older I got the more I was angry at people for excluding me, for not giving me the chance to be part of something bigger than myself.

I swore I'd never do that to anyone, and now, that's exactly what I'm doing. When Tom calls I don't answer, I don't know what to say to him. He's such a good person and I do love him, but it just doesn't work.

Does it make me a hypocrite? A bad person? Maybe so, but what can I do?


Corpus Domini

It would be a lie to say I just woke up, but it's not entirely false either. I'm proud of myself though, not only did I have the courage to talk to Liah - the naked model - we went out together yesterday. I'm not used to that lifestyle, but all those people watching us while we danced, it did something to me. Or maybe it was just the alcohol.

Speaking of that. I'm afraid to leave my room now, I know my mom would see what I only feel, that I had a little bit too much to drink last night. It's such hypocrisy, what is it to be upset about, really? Corpus Christi, right?

I haven't been thinking about it much lately, but sometimes it hits me that the reason I left my family and went to Italy was because of my doubts about this Catholic faith of mine. It still scares me.



I finally dared talk to her. She's kind, her name is Liah. She studies art and has lived i California all her life. I must have seemed like a little child, the way I stumbled on the words, but she did everything she could to help me through it.

When I was little I remember how people would think I was strange. It's still there in the back of my head every time I talk to someone, and it always makes me happy when they put up with me for more than 5 minutes.

I'd like to invite her to my house, but another memory from my childhood lingers, my mom's two greatest fears: that I would have no friends or that I would be a lesbian.


On speaking terms

You want to see my drawings, and I'd love the show them to you but I need to ask her first. I don't have the courage to even speak to her yet, but I will, some day.

Communication seems so easy from a distance, you imagine the things you want to say and then when you stand there in front of them you can only remember a fraction of it. Why is that? Some people seem born with the ability to speak, like our president. Does that make them better than the rest of us? I used to think so but now I'm not so sure.

Dad has been gone for a while, in Europe they tell me. Mom lounges around the house in her robe like a movie star but we both know all she ever did in life was marry a rich man. For a long time it was what I wanted too, and I'm happy that things sometimes change.


Liberating or afraid

I dreamed about her. I don't know if I should be scared or excited, so I try not to to think too much about it. All my life I've been doing just that, thinking too much, and it never leads to anything good. The happiest people seem to be those who just carry on and don't mind everything that is potentially hurtful. I'll try to be more like them.

And the Avy situation, maybe that's the solution? To just let her go for a while, until I can talk to her without thinking about Henry and how she treated me this summer. I told her, she seemed sad but it's the only fair thing I can do right now. I just can't handle any more drama just now, I need to take care of myself first.

And tonight I'm going to draw naked girls again. Maybe she'll be there, the one I dreamed of.


Fall out of love

I read about storms and it makes me miss seasons changing. I know Avy hates LA because it's always summer here, and I think I feel the same.

Last night I went to my croquis course. I guess I'm a shy catholic school girl after all, the nakedness made me blush whenever I looked up from my drawing. I had to close my eyes but then I saw her even clearer, that girl, standing there in front of me without a thread on her body. I swear she looked at me and smiled, she must have seen how nervous I was.

One week to the next one, and a part of me can't wait to see her again.



I have to make a choice but it's so much easier to just pretend like it will go away if I don't. The more I think of it the more impossible it seems, and the more I need to do something else, anything. I have no one to talk to, I always came to Avy in the past but now there's only my reflection in the mirror and she's not talking.

I've decided to take a croquis course, I'll be drawing naked women. If that doesn't take my mind of things I don't know what will. Tom has stopped calling, I want to pick up the phone but that would only complicate things more. He doesn't deserve this, I don't deserve him. It's better this way.


The hole in my heart

I don't want anyone to think that Avy and I communicate through our blogs. We don't, of course, I respect her too much and I know that she does too. But I also know that we are very much alike in many ways. We're both restless, we'll never be complete, and we make up for what we're missing by filling our hearts with too much pain. We do it because we want to feel something, and then we try to deal with that pain in different ways.

That is why we blog, not because we think that people are interested in our lives and struggles but because we need to. It's a form of therapy, a way of cleansing our minds.

And what I'm dealing with now is her wanting to be forgiven. She called me and asked and I told her what I'm telling you now: that I don't know if I can. I really don't.



One other thing has changed of course, and that's my relation to Tom. At first I thought he was my Vergilius leading my through hell, but somewhere along the way I got lost. He's an amazing person and I really do love him, but I need to become that better version of myself before I can give myself to him.

He calls me every now and then and we talk about everything and nothing. There is so much I want to tell him but I'm afraid he'll be lost forever if I do. It's better to stay quiet until we can be together again.

And obviously, the person standing in the middle of all this, without even knowing it, is Henry.



Time passes so quickly and at the same time seems to move backwards. I really thought my summer would be the first step towards a new me, but I guess you can never run away from yourself. Dad is mostly away, as always, and mom treats me like a child. The only thing that's different is I don't talk to Avy anymore.

I'm not ready for that yet, and she doesn't call me either so I wait. It hurts me, I miss her, but things have changed between us. Maybe they'll never be the same, and that is not what I wished for when I said I wanted a new life.

Have any of you ever lost your best friends like that?



I love blogging here, I've made so many friends doing it and I will continue as long as it's this rewarding. I wonder, do any of you have Instagram? I'm mydarlingstephanie, what are your names? Feel free to follow me! <3


Where is she?

Someone asked me if I called Avy, and I did. I did but she didn't answer and she didn't call back. Instead she keeps posting stories about her and Henry, as if to annoy me. Does she know I'm reading, does she care? Does she read what I post here? I don't know, how could I when I can't even reach her?

And I know I shouldn't care, Henry is history and I have Tom now, at least I think I do. Maybe that's not the problem, I think that maybe I just need some proper closure. I need to talk to her to be able to go on, to start all over again with myself.

Thank you all for listening to my ramblings, it really does mean the world to me.


Landing softly

I've woken up in my own bed four days in a row now. Mom is out by the pool early in the morning, Salvatore makes me breakfast and no one asks me any questions. It bothered me at first but now I think it's exactly what I need. I feel calm, I can breathe again and nothing seems so important that it can't wait for a few hours.

And my best friend. When I try, when I really try, I'm not even angry. I don't know what it would be like to see her but I imagine her hugging me and telling me she's missed me. I want to call her but I'm afraid it might not turn out that way so I let it wait for a few hours. There's plenty of time still.


Square one

I came home yesterday, to Los Angeles. I rang the door bell, my mother let me in and gave me a kiss on the cheek. "He isn't here" she said, referring to my father, before I even asked. I had been away for months and at dinner a couple of hours later it was as if nothing had happened. No one asked me where I had been, what I had done, how I was. Mom talked about herself and Salvatore sat in silence for an hour.

I would have felt guilty, but she talked to me, not just past me like she usually does. I guess it means she cares somehow, maybe even that she missed me, but she didn't have the courage to ask any questions.

And speaking of courage, I'm tired of hiding behind a letter. I did it to protect my family but I'm not sure what from. My name isn't just S, it's Stephanie. Hello everyone.


Ci vediamo

I've finally decided to go back home, whatever that is. I though I would be able to relax here and I did, the first weeks and maybe for a month, but not anymore. I'm restless in a way I've never been before and I don't even know what I'm waiting for. Have you ever had that feeling?

I called Tom and told him he doesn't need to come back. I think it makes him more sad than me, he loved to be here but this is not forever. I just need to feel at ease again, and then maybe we can go back. Going home to California is an experiment, I have no idea how it will make me feel, but I have no choice. And I do miss some of the people there, Salvatore more than anyone.

I'll write again when I have settled in, thank you all for reading and caring so much.


Dreams can come true

How are you?

Not much happens here, summer is supposed to end soon but I can't feel it. I'm still alone, and already sick of my own company. I sleep more than usually and dream about Los Angeles and New York, never about things that really happened but always about people I know.

Last night I saw Henry from a distance, he was standing on the beach looking out over the ocean and I knew he was waiting for me. The closer I got the safer I felt untill he turned around. He was looking past me, over my shoulder, and there was Avy. It started to rain, I lost my breath and woke up.

For the first time I want to go back home, but I'm still nowhere near the calm I was looking for when I came here. I don't know what to do anymore.


3, 2, 1...

I'm alone again, Tom has gone back to the US for some important meeting. We parted on good terms and he's coming back in a week or so, but I really needed this time for myself. Bruno is still here but we don't bother each other, we have lunch and dinner together and then go off to our separate lives.

I came here to get away from my past, but it sort of followed me all the way across the ocean. I'm not going to give up though, I can't, I need to keep trying. Being alone helps, I will use this time to not care about anyone or anything other than myself. Not even my so called best friend and her new lover.


Where will we go?

Avy and I have stopped communicating, I read her blog but I don't know if she's reading mine. Everything she writes gets to me, I take it personally and wonder why she doesn't mention me anymore. We should be friends, she should love me like I love her, but who knows if she still does.

We met before Chloe, before Henry, even before Carl. It's a history I don't want to lose, if I did I would have nothing. It breaks my heart, the thought of it, and for what? I don't even have the right to tell her what to do and what not to do with Henry, but it really hurts me and I wish she would understand that.

So know I drink wine as if there's no tomorrow, just in case there actually isn't.