None of this was supposed to happen. You were my friend. You were a girl.
Yet how is it that I find myself thinking of you in almost everything I do? How is it that I feel a soul connection to you like this isn’t the first lifetime that I’ve known you? How is it that just being in your presence makes me feel overwhelmingly calm, like everything is the way it’s supposed to be? We were supposed to meet each other.
You see it started out as acquaintances who happened to run into each other on a park bench one day. And then it turned into Chipotle lunches filled with exchanges of playful sarcasm and guacamole. Lots of guacamole. And then came the car rides to the grocery store, or to the mall, or to the thrift shop, or to Ithaca, or to anywhere that would give us the excuse to spend time together. Just as friends. Just as two good friends who enjoyed each other’s company. That was all. Yet somehow the more I repeated this to myself the less I actually believed it. And it wasn’t just me who saw it. Your friends started asking. My ex-boyfriend started asking. The random guy at the bar who bought me a drink was asking. But it was fine because I was straight. And I wasn’t into women.
Then springtime came. And as much as we tried to ignore the facts, our time left at college was turning into weeks. It was now or never. At the time I had an inkling that you liked me but were too afraid to tell me, so I finally worked up the courage and drunkenly told you one night that I think I liked you. I remember our walk back to my house that night. I remember how raw and honest we were with each other – a genuinely sincere conversation about how we really felt. You told me you had liked me for a while but always thought I was completely straight. You told me that you didn’t want to tell me because you were afraid it would freak me out or mess up our friendship. We ended up kissing that night, and it didn’t feel wrong. It felt right, very right. But I also felt scared because I was straight. I wasn’t into women.
Fast forward three months, and we are no longer in college. We are thrust into this clusterfuck which is known as “young adulthood,” and we face having to decide our first step in the rest of our lives. You’ve decided to come home for the summer which makes you only an hour away. But summer is two months, and we both know that at the end of the summer we will be an ocean apart.
I still remember the night I told you I was accepted to grad school in the U.K. I was nervous to tell you because I wasn’t sure if you’d be happy for me knowing that meant leaving you behind. You reacted in the selfless way I should’ve expected. You looked so happy for me because you knew that’s what I had wanted for so long. But I couldn’t miss that flickering moment of disappointment in your eyes, the look of distress and confusion. I hope you know you weren’t the only one feeling that way. Having to tell you was finally putting a label on this relationship which I worked so hard to blur the lines of. The only thing this could ever be was a fling because I was leaving. There was finality to this all. This had an expiration date. But it’s fine because I was a straight girl. I wasn’t into women.
And so here I find myself waiting for you to come home. I miss you everyday, and it feels like time passes in counting the days till I get to see you again. But what is looming ahead is hard to swallow. I’m not quite sure if I’ll be able to live my life knowing you are thousands of miles away. That while I’m in the U.K., your life will carry on here in the U.S. without me. I can’t imagine how many times I’ll be homesick not for my home, not for my parents, but for you. You always say during our late night pillow talks that you don’t want to give up on things when I leave for the U.K, but I’ve done this all before. I know how this works. Everyone thinks that if you try hard enough you can make it work. After one failed long distance relationship I’ve been jaded, I know better. So that leaves me having to accept that two months is all I have with you.
Our story isn’t one which will grow into years or even many months more. We have an expiration date. We have an unescapable finality. And I am helplessly not okay with that. And the thought of that is unbearable because I’m straight, I’m not into women. But I’m in love with you.