Missing Things

I miss things sometimes before they’re gone. Anticipatory sentimentality if you will, and if that sounds weird then I’m not sure what to say, but I miss things fiercely and some of those things have yet to occur.

In less than a week I move to China and already I miss the daily access I have to my parents. There is no way to explain how comforting it is to have my mother and father and brother a few minutes away, and the many friends I’ve made in Greensboro, NC.

I can’t explain how intensely I already miss the breeze in this house at night, while reading, while in repose, while listening to a thousand insects and nocturnal chordates going about their errands. I miss the accessibility of small town Randleman, and the predictability of Greensboro nightlife. I miss people I barely know, and familiar places, the spatial and temporal contexts of stores and homes and garages. I miss my friends, goddamnit I miss my friends. I can’t even write this without crying.

I miss entertaining fanciful visions of the future in my basement during and between ping pong sets, I miss smelling the coffee my dad brews every morning between 5 and 6am, I miss a time and place and environment that I, no matter how short my move abroad shall last, am never going to get back.

Something I already miss: Katie. Wow I miss you. I never would have believed that a three legged, vociferous dog could affect me so agonizingly through the mere absence of her voice, this house is now more quiet and more somber and less expressive with you gone.

I miss all those things, and you, and here, and this place and time, not because I hope to crystallize experience, or render it static somehow, but simply because I appreciate this present state, because I know and feel and am thankful for what it is has been to me.

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3 comments

  1. cassiebehle

    Wow – China! Certainly a huge change, but it must be exciting to be on the verge of something new, as well. What will you be doing there, if I may ask?

    • devin howard

      Oh yeah, im really stoked, and also experiencing brief but intense periods of pre-nostalgic sentimentality and anxiety. I’m going to live my girlfriend in Beijing who works for a chinese furniture retailer as a designer. Getting laid off may end up being one of the best things to happen to me. How was Chicago btw?! One of the few major american cities I’ve never been to, and have always wanted to visit.

  2. cassiebehle

    I’m happy for you! I know it will be tough to leave close friends and family, but it sounds like you’ve got a great opportunity for change and better things to come! Chicago is not for everyone. Ha, just kidding – it was pretty amazing! Seeing the sites felt mandatory, but honestly, my favorite part was just walking to my conferences and being surrounded by people and the city. Definitely considering moving there.

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