My track record of well-timed romances is pretty appalling. Much controversy arises regarding the notion that there is “no such thing as perfect timing” and “if you’re with the right person then timing or circumstances shouldn’t be an issue,” but after braving a predominantly healthy year long stint of long-distance that didn’t end in my favour, I’ve unfortunately adopted a significantly more pragmatic, unsympathetic outlook on relationships that span across a little too much space.
When I met you two years ago, my friends laughed as they pointed out the similarities between you and my boyfriend at the time. I think subconsciously I didn’t let myself get too close to you despite the many ways our paths intersected in daily life because I was aware of the potential trap I could fall into – developing feelings for you. You were also busy in a long term relationship at the time, so I like to think that we did the right thing and steered clear.
I started talking to you more recently because was intrigued by you on a level beyond physicality, and found my boundless curiosity and previously unacknowledged affection for you leading the way in many of our exchanges. I was warned about your emotional complexity, your unavailability, but I’d always had a hunch that if you and I actually gave it a shot, had a conversation, it would go somewhere beyond either of our expectations. And there it goes: the last time we’d see each other for most of the summer would end with a first kiss.
We agreed to write to each other over the summer from each of our travel destinations, and I don’t think I’ve ever exchanged mailing addresses with a guy this soon. We’ve gotten to know each other through the most honest of conversations and the sharing of playlists, and my favorite quote by Fitzgerald has never felt more applicable than it does right now: “I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”
Maybe while we bonded about the bittersweet conclusions and goodbyes to be said during this time of ending in our lives, we found ourselves with a blank new page entitled “Chapter 1” staring back at us and confusion as to what we should be doing about it. There’s something thrilling about falling for someone in the midst of the unknown, and filling that blank page with tales from a few days spent roaming the streets of Barcelona and one last stint in the UK at the end of the summer is better than nothing. Better a short-lived romance with stories to tell from it than nothing at all, I say.
We’ve graduated high school, he’s staying in the UK and I’m off to the US for university after the summer, and from then on it’ll take no less than a large stroke of luck and a hefty sum of money to run into each other again. Everything we’ve ever shared is ending, but I’ve been writing these letters and listening to these songs and wondering why I’m still thinking about you as a brand new start.