Someone once told me that it doesn’t take a lot to know that you like somebody. You just, know. It’s that simple.
Last Sunday during lunch I asked Pops what he thought. He didn’t agree. Since he is the most important man in my life, I listened carefully to his answer.
“It takes time to build a relationship. It’s like planting a tree. You have to nurture it to assure its growth according to its natural process. There are no shortcuts” he says as a concerned father imparting wisdom to the heart of his youngest daughter.
I thought about it for awhile – about the boys I liked, the ones I didn’t and all the missed opportunities they all have in common. Aside from chemistry, time was always the other culprit. Lack of time to grow, to invest, to take advantage of, to fall, to give but never to take back.
We can never fully grasp the essence of time. It’s like trying to capture air in your hands. You can’t see it so you can only believe that you have.
Its omnipresent abundance overflows the past into the present, filling the future with a false sense of becoming. How do we really know which tense we’re living? Which air are we breathing? Regret, certainty or promise?
Are we foolish to think that time was ever ours when in truth all we can do is imagine how its presence feels upon the cusps of our hands. No matter how tightly we grasp, time and air will emerge into the night, stealing opportunity along with it.
Even if we clasp, our hands are not made to be perfect. Time, like air, will escape through the crevices of its asymmetrical embrace, mine in his and his in mine. And we never feel it leaving.
Perhaps liking someone is simple. But the time it takes to develop isn’t. Like or love is always a process. As my Pop’s said, there are no short cuts to see how deep it can go and it takes courage to accept the risk of believing rather than knowing what you wish would happen.
After 21 years I can finally say that a small part of me is no longer a coward.
I haven’t been very public about the last couple of months of my life. To say it has been rough in many different aspects is an understatement and I’m not obligated to share the details on here. But what I can disclose is that I was seriously seeing someone and unlike my past experiences, I could actually feel those roots starting to grow ever so slowly, but surely. After all it’s not how you started that matters, it’s how you feel at the present time that does.
It took me by surprise – the fact that there was this guy, that I could feel for him, that he entered into and saw my life in its humble entirety, and that it could end as intensely and abruptly as it started.
It took me awhile to take the risk and believe that time was on our side without knowing yet that it was never truly ours to give. Now I understand from experience that beyond the empty promises and honest mistakes, the only thing we can truly give is ourselves, no matter how small or big of a chunk it is.
Since time is infinite we’re never certain when it’s with or against us, or paradoxically both. It’s beyond us no matter how much we try to grasp it with our hands. It feels both absurdly slow and extremely fast.
But towards the end when you finally loosen your grip and let go, you understand that time and its duration is just an insignificant marker. It’s a way to keep tabs on a feeling that is supposed to be unconditional. Knowing that you planted and nurtured even just a little bit of yourself in the process makes all the difference, especially in the end.
Despite its unfortunate end, in my case, it’s as simple as that.
* Note, more entries on all of “this” soon.