It happened tonight: the elbow touching moment.
I never imagined it would be so effortless and fulfilling, you next to me, talking about whatever it was you were talking about… I’m not sure because all I could think about was your arm (not even skin, but your shirt, against mine) in contact with my own. Sure, we held hands before (three times), but this was something new. Something I hope continues to happen. I would love for us to sit next to each other countless times after tonight. I may miss your elbow if we never sit next to each other again.
Remember when I told you that I was trying not to fall in love with you? I don’t think you could forget, I typed it out to you, and I know that you’ve read it more since I gave you that sheet of paper that I stuttered out to you the first time you heard it. I told you that I was beginning to fall, but that I wanted to guard my heart first and foremost. I haven’t told you how I’ve felt since that day over spring break.
Would you like to know?
I have slipped up. Gracefully this time. Oh, so gracefully. I haven’t stumbled, because God has been on my side from the start this time. I was resentful towards men, and mankind and many thousands of aspects of life when I met whom I later on thought to be “the one”. However, now I know: there is no “one”. We meet someone, and we make it work. (Yet, that’s not relatively close to how it works, because it involves many more words and phrases such as, “fight”, “commit to”, “trust”, “lean on”, and “grow together”.) But this time is different. Just as any other “first time”, it will be different, but this is a good different, that I am so satisfied with. I am so grateful, and must place the word “so” as a means to try and explain just how much I feel this way.
It would take me a long time (book-writing-time worthy) to put into words how all of this has curated in my mind to be exactly as it is now.
But I will try to put it into words what I feel now, in this moment, after our 8th date, this time a double date, with the best duo sitting before us.
Here is what I want you to know:
I am lucky. I have not felt the pang of missing you yet, and that is a blessing in and of itself. I do not like missing people, and it is a rarity for me. I like that I have not missed you yet, and I actually hope that I do not begin to, or that it is a much delayed response. I like the lack of the feeling because it means that I do not rely on you for any part of my happiness. It means that I have started a life for myself, and that I can be completely okay on my own, with God as my steady provider. I am so filled with love for myself now, and it is a love that was absent before. I am free from so many things, and I now know that I do not need another being in my life to have a lasting happiness, or smile on my face during the inexhaustible trials in life.
If I don’t miss you in the future, I may long for you to be by my side. This I am okay with. I think it is different than missing someone. I think you can want someone and not need them. I know that if you were to leave, I will be okay, and I will grow from the experience. I have gone through the storm and came out on the other end. I developed and grew stronger in my faith. I may have been single as a result of my challenge, but discovered a deeper relationship with Christ instead, and that is partially why I will never regret what I had and then did not have with Curtis. I cannot regret, or even be ashamed of what was during that time of my life, because it brought me here, and now I have a story to tell that I did not before. That story brought me closer to you, Nate.
Perhaps we have been very direct through indirect communication, but we are writers. We are artists, and we must say what we feel when we feel it, because if we didn’t, a part of us would die in some way.
(I honestly feel like I haven’t even told you what it is that I have wanted to tell you.)
The night you told me about your demons, and I told you about mine, was the night that I felt closest to you. That night, we held hands for the first time. On our fifth date. You brave soul. You told me, you confessed to me rather, all the things that you feared I would judge you for, when in fact, it diminished a barrier that was present. As you told me your past sins, and the dark clouds that you continue to work on, I felt a shift, and felt more comfortable than I already had been around you. I want to thank you for opening up to me, and bearing the anxiety that went along with that.
I also want to thank you for being honest, for feeding me, for sharing stories, answering questions, taking multiple walks with me, driving around with me, asking me and telling me before holding my hand, for holding my hand again, for showing me Christ’s love, inviting me to hang out with your friends, visiting me at work, making me coffee, going to an oil change for our first date, waiting on “the edge of your seat” for any story that is taking me a little longer to tell than usual (which is long), for inspiring and motivating me, for the way I know you will challenge me in the future, for dealing with my endless array of run-on sentences, for praying for me and with me (*), for making me feel safe, and cared for, and anxious free for at least a little while, and
for giving me the elbow moment.
♡ The Mackenzie Diaries