Tuesday, June 16, 2015
This is almost exactly where we left off a year ago. A lot has changed, but the more important things have remained the same. Strange and familiar. You are stuck in my brain. And I’ve tried to change my writing, tried to ignore the steady, aching rhythm of a heart that knows exactly what it wants. Avoiding the truth isn’t the same as forgetting reality. In fact, it is the reality of the situation that has kept me from flying at you with the full force of my emotions I still can’t explain.
You know me. More than anybody. Less than some. But the core of it is in the way you make me come alive. I have questioned the meaning of what it means to live, so much so that it no longer matters if today I feel like nothing can peel the walls away. Nothing can penetrate. It’s not numbness. It’s not apathy. I think that all it is can be summed up as being lost and turning on autopilot until I find the courage to find my own way.
I sip on my gin and tonic (Tanqueray, not the well stuff, because I like to indulge my spoiled palate every so often) in the back corner of the Ruby Room. It isn’t 5:00 yet. I’m waiting on the Warriors to win the championship tonight. I’m charging my phone and I’m all alone, an entire room filled with memories. I see you seated at the opposite end of the space.
And it is only the second time I have met you alone. And you agreed to meet with me, even if it was late and you just got off work in the same building I had just escaped from. You ask if I’ll be here long, and I tell you, “I’ll be here.” Because I waited. I was waiting. Had been waiting for maybe my entire life, to feel the way I was feeling. Strange and familiar, as if the gods had bet on us long before I turned my head to see your face and turned away because I saw your face. I got into your car later that night and I welcomed you back into my bed for a second time. It was always like it was going to be the last. I never knew if you were coming back. My mind says that it still doesn’t know.
I see you in this corner bar, sitting beside me with with all our friends. I see you on the dance floor. I see the empty seat where you should have been that night we were supposed to exchange Christmas presents and you pulled your disappearing act. I still do not understand what happened but I have since let it go.
I see you in all the places I’ve always wanted to take you. Every fucking place screams your name and you have never even been there. I only imagine your reaction. Can only imagine your energy bursting forth in all the ways I have always been excited to witness.
Sometimes, I see you in the grocery store. And you make me push the cart. Until we reach the produce and you let me go with reckless abandon.
I have lingered in the locker room downstairs at work. Waiting. Just waiting to feel you again. And you’re not there now. But you were before. And that made all the difference. You never did give me back my jacket. I don’t expect to see it anytime soon. And maybe I don’t care to.
I have said this before and I will say it again: Never have I ever had to say goodbye to the same person as many times as I’ve said it to you. And for some reason, it’s always okay. Sometimes I really do feel like it will be the last. And I am sad, but I wonder if that’s the way it’s supposed to be. A “hello, goodbye” kind of affair. An affair. A friendship that never comes to a stop, always at full throttle until it hits pause. I don’t know what to make of it except that when I’m with you, my heart is full. And I am the most authentic I have ever been. Because you know me, but, even better, you love me for all that I am.
I won’t tell you I love you until you are sitting here beside me. And I won’t tell you on a Fireball/Coconut Ciroc/ $1 gin and tonic evening. I won’t tell you as you board a plane to go north yet again. I won’t tell you on a holiday when you’re dressed in red and I’m in my whitest of white coats with a crisp collar.
I won’t tell you when we’re both naked and skin to skin, flesh against flesh, erotic, emotional contact brings us to say the words we’ve rehearsed to ourselves. I won’t say it then.
Don’t you dare imagine I’ll say it fighting back tears. Don’t you think for a second I’ll yell it in anger when you seem not to understand why I am reacting a certain way to your actions. And don’t you even begin to wish that those words will come during a goodbye.
In the most mundane of moments, even a forgettable one, I might just turn to you and state the fact, as if to say, “It’s hot today.”
This goes beyond feelings. This surpasses artistic venture and romantic notions of a life-long love that seems to have no starting (or ending) point. In all the words I write and in all the sentences I exclaim, telling you that I love you will become obsolete. What is the point when all the world already knows the truth? (Maybe you don’t know. Maybe that’s the point? But you do. Right?)
It is what it is and when I say it (finally) to you,
that moment will not be any more special than all the other moments because it’s always been there.
The gods had bet on us.
We have been there.
We were always there.
And we will be there again.
You’ll be beside me.
And you will know.
You’ll smirk at the gods.
And you will say
“It is indeed a hot day.”