There are so many people I love. There are so many people that are strangers, are friends, are family, are classmates and coworkers, and I sincerely love them. It took me a while to realize it, but I know that my love for a stranger isn’t all that different than the love I have for my family; it’s just less specific.
There are a lot of people that will tell you that love isn’t love when it’s more or less specific. I don’t believe them, in fact, I think they are lying. To me, a lie is anything that diminishes from the truth. There are lies of good intentions, white lies. There are lies of bad intentions, plain old lies. There are lies with vague intentions, lies of omission. And there is a world full of people that lie often, and we’re all liars together.
I believe that the truth is the truth regardless of the circumstance. I believe the truth can be small, like a smile or a shared silence. I believe we are all responsible for the truth; it isn’t mine, it isn’t yours, it isn’t ours, it’s God’s. I believe that the truth speaks for itself even in lies. I believe that even when you aren’t able to speak the absolute truth, the truth speaks for you, even in shared silence, giving respect, and practicing dignity.
I fell in love with a boy this semester. It was not something I wanted. It wasn’t something I planned. It was something I ran away from until the point where I couldn’t any more. He wasn’t very happy when I had met him. We share a class, you see. He has such good ideas, but he always disguises them with a bunch of complicated words and cynicism and general fear. But for whatever reason, he is beautiful to me, and I couldn’t get rid of that feeling, even today.
I asked him to tell me the answer to one silly question, whether or not he liked me. I really should have been more patient, but I didn’t want him to be so afraid of cynicism and fear and complicated words. It got to a point where every class felt like torture. He kept on being miserable. I didn’t know what to do, so I asked him, because he is a shameless flirt in very subtle ways. It got to the point where the whole class picked up on it, and I was embarrassed, and then I decided YOLO whatever none of it matters anyways. But he was still upset, and it was torture to watch.
I asked him. He didn’t say yes or no, he said it was too soon for him to say. I found out later that his heart was broken. I never expected a yes, but it made a lot more sense after that point. Regardless of why, he smiles more now. I am much happier because I can tell even from his Facebook page that he is happier. He doesn’t know why. I don’t know why. But he is happier. And that makes me so happy.
I don’t know what is best for him. I told him so. He doesn’t need me to smile, and that makes me happy. I don’t need him to smile, and that also makes me happy. God is good, and it is enough. But I would be lying if I said that giving him space wasn’t hard. I would be lying if I said I haven’t cried over this. I would be lying if I said that I am waiting indefinitely, because that isn’t okay with me, and it shouldn’t be. I would be lying if I said that he’s perfect. I would be lying if I said I wanted to be rescued. I would be lying if I said that I will love him tomorrow, because I am not sure what will happen tomorrow, and I love so many people you guys.
But he smiles more now. And he speaks much more genuinely in class. And I respect his opinion more now, because it is kind and respectful. And I laugh more now. And I dance more now. And I run more now. Because there is no reason not to, you know?
There are a lot of things that I can bear. But sometimes when he speaks in class, it still hurts to listen. It doesn’t hurt because it’s wrong, it hurts because it’s true and I wish I could believe in the truth when he speaks it without wanting to cry. The truth isn’t always pleasant you guys. Sometimes you cry from the truth.
But the truth heals. I’m happy. He smiles. Enough said. And for whatever reason, I can dance now. I want to help other people dance, even if that means dancing spontaneously in public until the brave souls join, and then the not as brave souls, and then the people who legitimately don’t enjoy dancing make a circle around us and we all just groove in public. I know I can. I am going to start trying. I decided this morning as I was dancing around getting dressed that I am going to start an “Awkward Places I have Danced” List for that very reason. And it’s more than enough. I am going to dance because I can, and not every person can that wants to or needs to. And dancing is brilliant. I’m going to take a hip hop class once finals week gets out. There’s a certain truth to hip hop that transcends the fear in my mind. People know me best when they see me dance, because there is no guessing when I dance. And I really love to dance, you guys.
I’m going to sing, because I love to sing, and my voice sounds so much better lately because I’m not afraid to sing. I used to do choir in high school, but I never thought I had a beautiful voice. I kept trying to diminish it or change it. No. I can sing like Beyonce can sing, and if you ask me to sing, I will prove it. I can sing, you guys, and not everyone that wants to sing or needs to sing can, so I will sing. Me and my friend Maddie (if I can convince her) are going to sing. She plays the guitar beautifully. We used to sing in the kitchen of our residence hall while we cooked dinner. Because we sing, and we like singing, and cooking dinner and singing is the bomb diggity.
I can write now. I can blog out my feelings. It’s nice to write, and this is a space I can be honest without limiting the truth, at least as long as I am able and willing. You don’t have to read this. I don’t have to read this. They don’t have to read this. But I want to share with whoever likes to share, and to me, it’s enough. Words matter. Stories matter. Singing matters. Dancing matters. And not everyone can write that needs to or wants to, you know?
Freedom came in failure. Freedom came in almost failing classes. Freedom came in hurting his feelings. Freedom came in forcing myself to go to the hospital alone, because I HATED HOSPITALS. But I wore my Christmas pajamas to the hospital, and I forced myself to see my friend because he was with me when I was depressed in high school and relatively suicidal, and you know what? It was scary as s*** but I got to be with him and then I wasn’t afraid of hospitals because I needed to not be afraid of hospitals, and not all people that need or want to be unafraid of hospitals can, you know?
There are a lot of things I suck at. There are a lot of people that I wound pretty regularly. There are a lot of things I say that I don’t mean, and things I laugh at that shouldn’t be funny, and terrible dance moves that I improvise that really should never be danced in public. But if other people can dance terribly (looking at you, Brittney) in public, then I can dance terribly in public. And if other people can tell racist jokes that are legitimately racist, I can tell jokes that are satire of racism and other stupid lies. If other people can say things that they don’t mean, then I will say things I don’t mean, in a way that still tells a good story, and is true.
And you know what? None of it matters anyways, because the truth matters. And it will speak for me.