my ex boyfriend said i can’t teach you how to love and i said i’m sorry, but what i should have said was: who gives a fuck? i was raised by tumblr and lana del rey, so i’m doing pretty well considering. do you consider yourself estranged? ellen asks my sister and me. ellen has a phd in psychology so she knows which questions need to be asked, but we don’t know how to answer. it’s the fourth of july and we’re at her apartment for fireworks. no one wants to celebrate america at this party. everyone’s like fuck scotus while they drink their miller lites. there’s a first-person shooter game projected on the wall and “this must be the place” plays in the background and it feels like a meme. i look at my sister and i say, this feels like a meme, and i think about texting a boy to come over later, but i don’t. my sister asks if mom texted me and i say no and she says she usually texts for holidays and she does but not anymore. i don’t have a mommy now. i buy my own sparklers and we light them on ellen’s balcony. we play “national anthem” by lana del rey while we wave them over the city. i say this is so tumblr and my sister says lana invented america. my ex boyfriend didn’t like lana del rey and that’s why i dumped his ass. i’m just kidding. kind of. my sister says, mom always said i was so demanding and i say, that’s because she never asked for what she wanted and then she was mad that she didn’t get it. i don’t ask for what i want either, but i get it for myself. i never meant to be so self-contained. i don’t even know how it happened. my ex boyfriend said i can’t teach you how to love and i said i’m sorry, but what i should have said was: how am i supposed to know? i’m still figuring out online banking. one time when i was a kid, i jumped on the bed. i jumped so hard i fell backwards onto the windowsill and i hit my head. i held an ice pack on it and it turned out i was bleeding and i looked at my parents and i said, don’t worry, and we went to the ER. they stapled my head shut but i didn’t cry. i never cried. this is lana del rey’s america and we raise ourselves here. we get by and then we get out, move to big cities and put on mascara and party dresses to celebrate what we don’t believe in. we wash our own sheets and we put them back on our beds, tuck the corners under the mattress and pull them as tight as we can.