the indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole.
…is one of the cruelest paradoxes known to exist to mankind. It goes too slow when we’re suffering and too fast when we want it to slow down. Shouldn’t be a surprise, though, since we humans invented the concept of quantifying our lives through days, hours, minutes, and seconds. From night to day, we sleep and wake up around the same times to eat, work, connect, and otherwise contribute to productivity in society. From this, we’ve restricted ourselves to mundane order that we just can’t seem to shake off.
…just as much as I can’t seem to shake off my feelings of you. In the four years we’ve known each other, three of them have been me questioning whether I liked you as a friend or as something more. Each time I see you, I get shy, although I get the impression you’re just as shy, too. Moments giving each other quick side glances, gentle smiles, and awkward jokes when we worked together, later evolving to casual meetups with coworkers outside, for food and pleasant talk while roaming the streets of Los Angeles. “The City of Stars,” as it’s known. We were never that close, as we had different friend circles outside of work, but we were always friendly to each other when in close proximity with each other.
Speaking of close proximity, I’m embarrassed to admit that I’ve had…strong thoughts about you, especially at night while in bed. Thinking of you has made it both easier and harder to fall asleep, whether in love or stress that you probably (most likely) wouldn’t reciprocate my love, anyway. I blame the fact that I’ve read too many corny YA romance novels and online fan fiction to know the reality is that romance is never a neat puzzle to fit into, but rather an impossible knot that you hope to unravel, but can never get down to the bottom of. Ever.
Believe me, I’ve tried to untie this knot of figuring out your feelings for these past few years of knowing you. I’ve pulled, I’ve stretched, I’ve dug in with all my might within the recesses of my mind to discover whether or not you liked me. I’ve even played with the thought of burning the knot, but I knew that it wouldn’t lead to any answers, anyway, since it would destroy the evidence. Knots, like relationships, are tricky, and it’s especially tricky balancing between platonic and *possibly* romantic feelings for you.
…but enough of this knot-metaphor bullshit. While it’s true that I’ve tried many strategies to figure you out, the one thing that I haven’t done was straight-up asking you if you liked me. Or, at least, telling you that I *might* like you (in that way). Sounds obvious, doesn’t it? But see here, sometimes the easiest, most obvious, strategies are the most painful to do, if at all. Many factors–denial, scorn, rejection–are much too risky, and that requires sacrificing your sense of pride, either to be built up or torn down (and devastatingly so). Trust me, I’ve ran through countless “what if” scenarios, all of which seeming to have no happy ending. Our friendship, light as it is, does not deserve to be rocked by these complicated feelings.
You told me a couple of weeks ago that you were moving, leaving your life in Los Angeles to go half a world away. You had your reasons, which I completely understood, but still, the gnawing sense of sadness kept at me. Again, the desperate ache of wanting to tell you everything came back but, even when we met for a day out right before you left, I couldn’t bring myself to tell you. After all, what was the point of telling you when you would be moving away, anyway? Soon, you left, and the last memory of you was a quick hug, a bright smile, and well wishes for the future.
Don’t worry, my love. Although my feelings remain mixed, I accept that things are platonic, and have always been platonic since the beginning of our friendship. There are lots of memories we made during our time at work together and elsewhere, and perhaps one day our paths will cross…out of the blue, somewhere overseas. Until then.
— The Finicky Cynic
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