This was something I wrote one balmy, summer night. I had had a little too much to drink; I was wearing a dress and… And… Well he was there.
4 April 2014
I’m not sure how you do it. But you have the remarkable ability to move me with words that are so common-place, it’s almost laughable. I put on my mask, and I smile as if nothing is wrong, my heart isn’t beating a mile a minute, your smile isn’t making me melt into a puddle.
I’m that girl in the flower dress and you’re there with all your friends, smiling and laughing. I smile and laugh with you. Why wouldn’t I? You’re my friend and I love you.
You’re my friend. But I am in love with you.
I walk away. Excuse myself and disappear into the crowd. I can’t stay long there. I falter too much, end up glancing your way too much. I’m never sure of myself when you’re around and so I move away. Self-preservation at its finest.
At the same time, I am a masochist who yearns to be near you. To be just an ordinary friend who can stay by you and laugh, and talk, and commiserate in our shared drunkenness. I take another sip of my beer and move towards you. You have that tipsy smile and I mirror it with my own lips.
You lift up your head and you look at me, pause. Then you shake your head and smile, telling me it’s so unlike me to wear something so feminine. Inside, I can hear myself cringe and shake in embarrassment for being singled out and I fear that you don’t like it. I curse myself for the decision but smile anyway and laugh it off. But then, you start calling me by my name.
And in the year that I’ve known you and fallen for you, I have never heard you say my name. we have nicknames for each other and you call me shortcuts, affectionate pet names, and everything. But the way you said my name felt like I was hearing it for the first time. Its syllables rolled off your tongue like a foreign word and I stopped. My entire being stopped. You said it again and the feeling was still the same; I still felt like I was hearing something else. Not my common-place, run-of-the-mill name. I was hearing a prayer. I was hearing a siren song. I was hearing something completely different, something beautiful and special.
The night ended too soon and you got in your car to drive the others home. They begged me to come with you but I smiled and begged off. I hugged everyone, said my goodbyes and walked to your window. I smiled and bid you a goodnight. You smiled and cracked my world open.