from Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong


I’ve never liked New Years. The trouble with beginnings is that there’s no such thing. p 10

We got a new-to-us couch delivered today and I am giddy with excitement. For the past two decades we’ve had a futon mattress on a couch frame we inherited from the pastor who married us. This couch is lovely and long and joins the other comfy chairs in our livingroom. One is from ~a when she and her family got new furniture and one is from my high school boyfriend’s sister who brought it to my college dorm. It is round, like an oversized ottoman with a back. I have never seen anything like it and I hope to have it until the end of my days.

Somehow inheriting furniture has become our thing. Recently we were given a beautiful cherry kitchen table and chairs and a dresser for the bedroom painted the most amazing shade of blue. A walk through our house is like a tour of our lives, connections to other people and other places we’ve lived. Each piece has its own story.

I remember this line from the movie State and Main when Rebecca Pidgeon is fixing Philip Seymour Hoffman’s glasses and she’s says it s better than new because it has a history. I’ve always loved that sentiment. I love that something someone no longer has a use for goes on to be a part of another person’s life. The story continues. Endings and beginnings all muddled up together.

So here we are at the end of July. That doesn’t seem possible. Nor does seem remotely possible that my son will be turning 20 on Friday. He starts a new decade, his teenage years will be over. Soon a new school year in London will begin after the summer comes to an end. I’m trying my best to hold Fall off for awhile, getting out the lion tamer’s chair and whip if I am forced to.

There’s still so much summer to cram in. We still need to go to the drive-in, eat a few more ice cream cones, go to at least one s’more evening. I’ve still got flowers to plant, even if I see the blooms next year, it will feel like I am doing something. I hit my NaNoWriMo goal but there’s still so much left to write in this book, and for that I am grateful. These characters who are with me, day and night, are both a comfort and a cause of worry.

I’m not ready to let this summer go. I’m so behind I haven’t even written out my summer manifesto yet. But I’ve been living with it, perhaps this year I’ve inhaled it like scent of those stunning roses that continue to bloom. My love of this season is elemental, bone deep. Every pore, every cell wants to be in the moment, experiencing summer. At times that means moving and dancing, other times it means rereading the Narnia books on the new couch with a tall glass of ginger lemonade.

Reading the news today, amidst all the other craziness in the world, I saw that Sam Shepard had died. I have a book of his short stories on my nightstand and for some reason this hit me pretty hard. I’ll leave you with this quote, because it’s one to hold onto.

I hate endings. Just detest them. Beginnings are definitely the most exciting, middles are perplexing and endings are a disaster. … The temptation towards resolution, towards wrapping up the package, seems to me a terrible trap. Why not be more honest with the moment? The most authentic endings are the ones which are already revolving towards another beginning. That’s genius.”

One thought on “from Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong

  1. A lovely post. Summertime is usually a lovely and lively period. I enjoyed the story about the furniture. It got me smiling.😄 As for endings, I think maybe bad experiences should be an exception. I hope you write up your summer manifesto and thoroughly enjoy every bit of the summer.👍😉

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