This is the 5th essay in the #26essays2017 challenge that I’ve set for myself this year. I’m doing this because I’m the first to admit I’ve become a lazy writer: allowing guest posts and series and cross-posting to make up the bulk of content on The Diane Lee Project across 2016. The brave, fearless writing that readers admired and respected me for has all but disappeared. This year—2017—will be different. I’m reclaiming my voice—my write like a motherfucker voice!
Give or take a day or two.
That’s how long it took.
For my crush to run its course.
But my crush didn’t just stop.
It didn’t run face first into a firmly closed door, and bloody and smash its nose. I didn’t get a firm “thanks, but no thanks”. I didn’t confess my feelings only to have them stomped on and squished like an unwelcome bug in a pristine house.
There was none of that.
There was talk of a straying girlfriend who was studying abroad, and my heart jumped in protest until the lure of the maybe that—butterfly-light—floated in my general direction. Potentially possible, because we—my crush and I—each kept seeking the company of the other, drawn by a magnetic meant to be that was bigger than both of us.
We are two some kind of wonderful people who have been brought together by time and circumstances to a place of caring and respect and admiration and humour. Of shared thoughts and feelings about how the world is, and how it should be.
Possibility and potential was eventually replaced by realism.
And the girlfriend who refused to disappear.
And a marriage that was being planned.
And realism that forced my crush to transform.
My crush evolved.
Into something more. Something else.
Something… transcendent. Long lived. And lovely. Gentle. Kind.
My crush is now my friend.
A bestie friend (his words). And Lord knows, I don’t have too many of those.
Don’t get me wrong: I have lovely friends. Lots of them. Friends I have collected and kept over the years. Friends who are dear to me and who have seen me prevail in times of sadness and joy and frustration and grief and anger.
But a bestie friend? Someone I know I could call if I were arrested and needed to be bailed out of a Vietnamese prison, however unlikely? A friend who senses when I am not me and takes me out for sticky rice and hot chocolate even though he lives miles away and it’s after work and he’s tired and he just wants to go home? A friend who—merely by being in his company—makes me feel a whole lot better and a whole lot nicer and a whole lot more loveable? A friend I can talk to about anything and—regardless of the language and cultural obstacles that sometimes need to be scaled and traversed—who seeks to understand me. Who sees me.
That is so much better than the imperfection of sex, and so much better than the emotional roller coaster of romantic love, and so much better than the selfishness of relationships.
It’s cleaner and nicer because it’s about enjoyment rather than gratification. There is intimacy without complication.
I can talk without awkwardness or expectation or second guessing.
Because we just are.
We are two some kind of wonderful people who have been brought together by time and circumstances to a place of caring and respect and admiration and humour. Of shared thoughts and feelings about how the world is, and how it should be. A meeting of minds and hearts, with a hat tip to the universe that conspired to bring us together.
I have a wonderful friend.
And that friend is forever.
Photo via Visualhunt.com.