I only have two moods: 1) sleep is for the weak and 2) sleep for a week.
You will appreciate the first on nights that you’ve had too much Berocca in the afternoon and we’d stay up until six in the morning, talking about how much you love dogs and how much I love cats. You’ll get annoyed by the second one on nights I’ve had a tough day and knock out the moment I get home.
We will drink coffee in the morning, preferably something light and creamy, and you’d make a face at me as you chug down your dark mocha chip. But you’ll kiss my lips anyway, even if they taste like caramel cream.
I will twist and turn in bed, messing up the blankets, and you’ll laugh at me, listening to me sleep talk. You will find it amusing, mostly because it’s about you and food. Every chance you get, you’d have that urge to push my 1960’s bangs out of my face because it “blocks the view” and you’ll immediately regret asking me to get them. Together, we’ll wait for it to grow out.
I’d talk to you on and on about books, even if you won’t get my references about Why We Broke Up and Looking For Alaska and Pride and Prejudice. You will, however, ask what my favorite song is, and I can’t tell you just one. You’ll learn about He Is We and Regina Spektor and Owl City, and why I love them so much. We’d watch movies together, and you’d be patient with me whenever I hold your hand during the boring parts, or hug you during the scary parts, or whisper questions to you during the exciting part, over-all killing the suspense. You’d be very patient.
This is all very weird to you, but it’s my blanket. It is warm, inviting, familiar. And you’ll wear it around both of us, reveling in it together.
We won’t go to dinner; we never go to dinner. We’d settle with ice cream for me and smokes for you. But when we do, it’s usually with my mother. I would get annoyed by your indecisiveness on whether you want the chicken wings or the salmon, so I’ll order for you. You’ll smile at me apologetically, thankful that I know you like the back of my hand and chose the right thing. My heart will warm at that.
Soon enough, I’ll stop wearing makeup entirely around you. And you won’t even notice because you thought it was natural. It’s not. I’d start wearing shabby clothes, even shabbier than the jeans and t-shirt you’re used to. I will let you play with my hair and touch my shoulders even if I don’t usually let people do that – you’ll understand why when I explain it to you.
We’ll go on Starbucks dates, basketball dates, walking dates. We’ll forget to check our phones and realize only after fourteen missed calls.
Eventually, you’ll discover me. My shape, my rolls, my muffin tops, my waist. You’ll find that comfortable spot on my shoulder where you sleep as we ride in the cab. You’ll enjoy it when I let you lay on my lap and stare up at me as I pepper you with kisses.
You will always let me walk on your right side.
By this time, you’ve realized it. You’ve realized I’m hard to love. You’ll begin knocking on my walls, the ones I’ve built around my head and my heart – even for you. I have created a temporary image for you to believe, but it will all slip away.
As I grow more comfortable with you, start to worry. Not because you’re boring or tedious or anything, but because I’m beginning to feel secure. It is inevitable. I will pull away relentlessly because I am spontaneous and impulsive and run away a lot of times. By this time, you already know this.
I lose all sense of function when I become too secure because all my life, all I’ve known is insecurity. It will feel very stifling. And I will surely mess up. Many, many times. You’ll be sad and hurt and angry. You will say and do things that will upset me – sometimes because you don’t mean it and sometimes because you do. I will take it graciously.
I am flawed, you know it, though you will feel fed up. Please know that you are flawed also. But it will be too late before you realize that. The footsteps on our hearts will remain, a trace of each other we can never get rid of. But we will both walk away. In the end, like all good things, we are both flawed. And, like all good things, we will fall apart. All things do. That’s just the way life works.