About halfway through senior year in high school, after making some colossal messes and mistakes, I fell for someone. I fell harder than I could have ever imagined or realized. I fell for one of my best friends. He made me laugh at a time in my life where happiness was scarce. Were it not for him, I probably would not have gotten out of bed most days.
I kept this from him. I couldn’t stand the thought of rejection but regardless I would drop mild and subtle hints. The rest of my friends knew. I’m pretty sure they thought the whole thing was ridiculous. This went on for months. It was teenage love. Mad, crazy, and completely out of control.
I think back on the whole ordeal and I’m ashamed and shocked at how carried away I let myself get. I got to the point where I was in literal agony because he didn’t know how I felt about him and I couldn’t bring myself to come right out and say it. I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t sleep. I was unhappy every moment that I wasn’t with him or even talking to him. I would curl up in my room, under my blankets, and listen to depressing music all over again. This lasted well into the summer after we graduated. One day it dawned on me that nothing in my life had really changed. I had still assigned emotional control to someone else. And he calls himself my friend? well, how dare he?! Doesn’t he care about me enough to stop this? What the fuck is wrong with him?! I was seething. I had reached the tipping point where I could no longer contain myself. I jumped online and waited for my chance. As soon as he logged on and began talking to me, I was aloof, angry, vengeful. I blurted out that I couldn’t believe that he could call himself my friend and not realize that I’m constantly holding my heart out for him and how dare he not take it?! And that’s when he told me he didn’t feel the same way, but he’s known all along. I logged off. I went into a complete and total tailspin. I cried for days. It wasn’t even about unrequited love anymore. At this stage it was about unrequited friendship. It took me a long time to get over it. Even longer for us to be friends again. Longer still for me to consider being in a relationship again… And then I met Robert.
I’m talking about this today because a song has been added into the rotation on the radio where I work. This song will forever make me think about him and those days and that time where I had my delusions of love. I’m not going to tell you what the song is.
For the record, I’d like to state that he’s not a bad guy and that I’m past the whole thing. I don’t want to vilify him in any way as he is still a friend of mine, even if we don’t talk much any more. Although I confess… some days, it still haunts me.