I have to write to you. The last time I did this was the last time I fell in love with someone without being able to say out loud what I was really feeling; then, it was cowardice. This time, I like to think it’s at least partially driven by an attempt at being honorable, with a healthy pinch of being scared shitless. So, here it is.
I don’t know when whatever is between us became more than friendship for me, but it did. Somewhere along the line things changed, and for a long time I lied to myself and to other people about it. I made excuses for myself, for you, for us being as close as we are until I spent more time defending our friendship than actually thinking about it. And when I took a breath to really look at us and find what other people pointed out, I realized something.
You, my dearest, are convinced of something and I don’t know what. Sometimes I feel like we’re thinking the same things at the same time, miles apart from each other. There’s some piece of me now that you take up permanent residence in. The terrifying thing is, I never realized it was happening until it was already done. I was caught and you were under my skin and I honest to God have no idea if it was an accident or just plain inevitable. I only know that once I was there, one singular truth became most important; I love you.
I love you and I don’t know from where or why, but I think I maybe even loved you before I ever knew you existed in real life. As if I dreamed you up a long time ago and gave up on ever finding you or anyone close, and then, out of nowhere, there you were. At a time when I desperately needed exactly you. I can’t explain it, I couldn’t predict it, but I could always feel you near me in my heart until I saw you for the first time and thought, ridiculously, “There you are! Where have you been? Everything is better now that you’re here again.” That was day one.
I had no idea at the time how much you fucking loathe yourself, and as I slowly began to realize that you had no idea how incredibly rare you are, it began to bother me. One thing after another, every reason under the sun why you were dark, or bad, or deserving of pain and suffering at your own hand or anyone’s. Penance, you always said. Do you have any idea how badly it hurts to hear you say out loud that you sometimes sit alone, wondering if anyone loves you besides those who “have to”? That look on your face could break my heart the exact same amount every time, even if I saw it on a loop for eternity. Could you ever even accept that someone loves you the way I have come to, for no particular reason among thousands? There is so much to love in you.
And I do, and have and will always, regardless of any dream or want of my fantastical imagination. I will care for you this way for now until the end of time, either as a friend or a ghost drifting in the past of your storied life, my heart still echoing from afar, “can you hear? I love you always.” It’s just a fact, a law of the universe. I don’t need anything from you but to know that you exist somewhere in this world. I don’t love you because I want you. I adore everything you are, all the things you do and think of, from best to worst. How you try, how you smile, how you kiss my forehead when I’m heartbroken or gently pull the sleeve of my oversized sweater over my shivering shoulder. To be your friend is a gift I didn’t earn, to ask for more would be greedy on my part. But I do want. How I want, regardless of right and wrong.
Yet, it’s possible that this is a different kind of want than I’ve ever known. When I dare to imagine what a life lived never parting from you would look like, I think primarily of what is already here. Talking, laughing, smoking, flirting. In my dreams we are just together, by choice and by fate and by chance and by love love and love always, never caring about anything. Most of all I picture telling you often and always how truly amazing you are. I believe you will change this world with your perilously beautiful soul. I don’t picture any particular life with you at all really, because it could be anything or nothing but you. None of the rest comes close to being as significant. I cannot see beyond the you in that dream of mine, the dream that lives far away from here.
That’s frightening, isn’t it? That you could love someone so much that it literally blinds you to all else; as long as they’re here, what the fuck do I care?
I promise, my own Mr. President, I tried not to fall in love with you. Oops.