Before reading “Goodbye, Vitamin” I did something I don’t usually do—actually, something I downright refuse to do, which is look at the reviews of a book before I read it. You see, I want to open a book unbiased; I don’t want other people’s thoughts swarming around in my head before I’ve even given the book a chance.
I logged on to Goodreads and read four or five reviews.
Thankfully, they didn’t stop me from buying the book.
Goodbye, Vitamin, though short, is written in small vignettes that read just like a diary. Ding, ding—I’m in love already. You give me anything that looks even remotely like a glimpse into the private, inner thoughts of someone and I am all in.
If you need proof of why I loved this book so much, here it is:
“It was grotesque, the way I kept trying to save that relationship. Like trying to tuck an elephant into pants.”
When I brought it up, months later, Joel said, “What are you talking about?” because he didn’t remember it—he’d forgotten it completely—and it was at that point I realized that I could remember something and he could remember something different and if we built up a store of separate memories, how would that work, and would it be okay? The answer, of course, in the end, was no.
If I were you is something I’ve never really understood. Why say, “If I were you”? Why say, “If I were you,” when the problem is, you’re not me? I wish people wouldn’t say, “Since I am me,” followed by whatever advice it is they have for me.
And haven’t we all felt this way before:
What I want to know is what counted for something and what counted not at all. Now I feel like shit for spending that time–that’s the word it’s convention to use: spending—on what turns out not to matter, and neglecting the things that did, and do.
And, oh oh oh:
You know what else is unfair, about Joel? That I loosened the jar lid, so somebody else could open him.
That last quote… well, it stirred so many thoughts in me. But it’s safe to say that’s what the whole book did to me.
It reminded me that life is short. That nothing is guaranteed. That sometimes love doesn’t work out. It reminded me to pick up the phone and call my parents more often. To say “I love you” more.
Goodbye, Vitamin was, to sum it up, an absolutely unexpected gem.
To read more of my book reviews, click here.