I can see it in his eyes plain as a sunny south Alabama day. I feel it in his hands when they touch mine. I can hear it in his voice when a wry grin covers his face. I know it’s real in the moment, but as soon as I am alone with my thoughts the feeling quickly disappears. What if it is not real? What if I am being lied to again? What if this is just another game, another gimmick, to see how far they can break my walls down? It sounds absurd, in fact, it sounds ridiculous, but I cannot shake the feeling.
You see this man came without warning. He swooped in and before I knew it, I found myself looking at him in a crowd of friends more often. The night he grabbed my face and kissed me I swear the air never refilled my lungs again and I have felt like I have been floating since.
I did not want to do this again. I did not want to hear that four-letter word explode from our hearts faster than I ever thought possible. But it was like something else took over and our souls mended together in ways I find difficult to explain. I felt like I was fifteen again, about to have my first kiss, except the feeling never ceases and every kiss feels like a first. It feels like every touch takes the air from me and fills me with something new.
And I am terrified.
I am terrified that letting myself fall like this is going to crash my world. I am terrified that he will change his mind and laugh in my face like the others. I am terrified that the more he sees me, the more he’ll learn me and unlove me. I am terrified this will end as abruptly as it began.
So, what do I do? Is this the fight or flight that the textbooks talk about? How do I fight when I do not feel the strength in me to do it? Why am I making this love difficult, especially when it is so great?
This is how the pain funnels through. I hear the words echoing in my head from the last man who spoke them, and I can feel it burning in my stomach with shame. I believed it, only for it to all be a lie. If he is lying, I am not sure I can take the burden. Not again.
More than anything, I want him to know this is me fighting. This is me giving in, with every ounce of the heart I have that is still broken and aching. A heart that probably needs extra care when it comes to accepting love that I do not believe I deserve or need. A heart that desperately wants that to change but has absolutely no idea how to begin the healing process. This is me saying I want to fall so deep that I do not ever want to come out. I want to let go, let this explode so loud it shakes the world around us.
With a barely pieced together heart, I am going to give it my all. I am terrified and I want to run, but this love is far too great to let it get away. Here is my great gesture, letting you know I’m all in.