Young Love: 3rd Installment

"Love begins with a smile, grows with a kiss, and ends with a teardrop."

I decided to take the weekend off from this project.  Things are ramping up at school and church.  Sorry!

When last we checked in with the story, I had sent a despondent letter to Paul, concerned about things moving too quickly.

Today's installment is the resolution of that concern.

Please don't be too harsh on me.  I know what a fool I was.  I have not received love letters of this depth (or length!) from anyone else since, nor do I ever expect to again.

March 20, 2000

Thank you for being honest with me. I enjoy honesty, even if it brings pain, and you have always been honest with me. First, let me say that this is not a "break-up" letter. Actually, it's quite the opposite. I just want to explain myself a little. Some things are more easily explained than others.
First, I do trust you. You question whether I trust you because I asked if you would consider dating other people an option. I said this because I wanted you to know that I didn't consider it an option for myself.
To prove that I trust you: Did I ever even hint at not trusting you before? Even when we weren't committed to each other? No. You are a good person, a real person. Someone I know that I can trust, believe me. It's true that I don't know you too well, that's what this is all about. But, I do know that I can trust you, and I want you to know that you can trust me. Trust is THE most important thing in a relationship. If we don't have it...well... But I trust you, and you CAN trust me.
Commitment. You really wanna know why I said those things two nights ago?
You may not believe this, but the answer is often this simple. I said I wanted to be with you for so long, because I was really enjoying your company. I have only known you for less than a month, and to say I will be with you for so long is ridiculous. I do not believe that, yet. I do know you well enough that you do not see that issue the same as me though, and maybe never will. Which is fine. Right now we ARE on the same page. I am taking this one-day at a time.
In the future I may move to the next page, but that will be years from now. Years. My parents have been together forever, as far as I can tell. My whole family and all my friends’ parents are all together forever, so I conceptualize it easily. That's all it was. A statement of affection that backfired. I enjoyed resting with you, and I pictured that and then said it in the wrong way. I was a fool to say it. I'm sorry.

I have never said anything in all seriousness just to push your buttons. I only do that when we are debating an issue. A worldly issue. I have never and will never do that when we are talking about each other. This is an area where you don't know me well yet. Which is fine, you are learning at the same time I am. So you see, we are both making bad assumptions, and that's OK as long as we continue to communicate as we are right now.
On faith, yes we really need to talk about it, but I know that as long as you love me and I love you, it should work out. On my life, I want you to get to know my life so much better. I knew this would happen too. You let me in on your whole family, excited for me to get to know everyone, but then that changes, and you suddenly feel vulnerable. I know that feeling exactly.
I want you to meet my friends, and my family. However, my friends I will tell about you now, my family, not yet. I wont be telling them I'm gay until I am committed to a long-term relationship with a man, which avoids unnecessary pain for them and me. 

This may seem like a major problem to you. But if they were to know you, and then find out the fullness of our relationship, they would change drastically. There will never be a time where my parents will be even kind-of OK with me being gay. When I tell them, rest assured, any pain that you may feel from them, I will be receiving a thousand times more. I can't explain this well here, so I will leave it at that. I AM going to let you into my life to meet everyone, just as soon as you want to.

I must be honest with you; I am a difficult person to know. Many of my friends love me dearly, but they know I can be a little nuts at times. This may not be good in your eyes. I can't apologize for who I am. I can and do apologize for the stupid things I do. For that, I say I am sorry. I am sorry that I have caused you so much pain, confusion, and torment. Rest easy, I love you, I trust you unconditionally. I am here for you, and I will accept whatever you give me, the good, the bad, and the end.

I want this to last; you are so good to me.

You are so much of everything I would be a fool to let you go without a fight.


March 23, 2000

I know why I’m writing this, I know why I'm sending it, I don't know what possessed me to do either. What I have written here might fall on deaf ears, but it is undeniably worth it if it does not. I have spent more than what is reasonable, time-wise, thinking. This letter is the result of a week of deep thought, both logical and emotional. For this reason I would ask that you read this carefully. However, knowing what this letter will say, you may wish not to continue and I cannot fault you for that. Please, if you do continue, fully consider what I am saying.
You have probably recently returned from or are still on a great Spring Break, assuming all went well, and I hope it did. I do not expect you spent much of your time thinking on what I am writing here, maybe a little. In fact, you may not have spent much of your time thinking on this simply because it seemed resolved to you. I cannot say the same for myself. The purpose of this letter is two-fold. I have asked myself some questions that I could not answer and so I am looking to you for these answers; furthermore, I have come to some conclusions that I would like to share with you. Your response is optional, of course, and since I have just left on my Spring Break, any response wouldn’t be received for a week, which could be used in consideration.

Life would be so much easier if I didn’t have these feelings, specifically for you. Instead I have made myself the willing subject of pain in order to have the chance at experiencing incredible, lasting happiness. The fact of the matter is, I have taken the “reality pill,” but it isn’t the one we intended. I do understand that as things stand, our relationship is in the past. I did hear you when you said you were ready to let go. That reality I have accepted. However, what was not said, what caused our end, is what I am looking at and what I am questioning. So, this is the question part.

I have spent much time not only thinking about Saturday and the week before, but maybe more time thinking about all that happened in our past. I thought about meeting you, again, when you stood, both of us nervous, at my door. We went out and ate a big cookie and caught up and filled in. I thought about going to the Nugget’s game. I thought about wandering around Boulder on Valentine's looking for a place to eat with you. I thought about watching videos from Blockbuster, and meeting all your family. I loved going to Grand Junction, getting to know your cousins, telling people you were gay by telling them who I was! I saw how happy we were together. I also thought about our disagreements and our very tough times. And I came to a realization. Yes, we had more than our fair share of tough times. Yes, we were exploring a new world together, even if it was secretly holding hands at the movie theater. What I realized is that ending our relationship over seeing each other a few less times a week, doesn’t add up, when I see how great things really were. So I wondered, “Why is it over, really?”

I thought of a few reasons why it could have ended. Our disagreements, our misunderstandings, but we had made it through those, together! One answer stood out. Now, please understand that I am not trying to make you feel like the “wrong” one here, far from it. In fact I totally understand if this is what it really was. I think, and this is only my opinion, that your fear of commitment had a lot to do with it. Now, understand that I’m okay with that. How? Because it was your natural and true response to the situation. But I’m writing this because I’m no longer afraid. Why did this answer stand out? Well, I thought about how close we had become, real close. I thought about getting to know every one in your family. I thought about you telling me that you were scared that I was your only friend here. I thought about how much you agreed with my statement in my first email where I said that you were still “out exploring,” and I said I was too, just differently. All these, and much more pointed to this possible truth. So what am I asking? I’m asking, is this what it is, fear of commitment?
Nothing in this letter matters as much as this next part. 

Nate, I am truly in Love with you. Come what may, I was willing in the beginning and I’m willing now to bear all burdens just to know your love. The whole reason I’m writing all this is because the reality pill made things more clear. I understand your fears, I see our hardships, and I know we differ on some things if not manner. In fact, I really like our differences! But none of that matters to me above how I feel about you.

You are the sun in my day; your smile makes my soul warm. Your laugh resonates in my mind and brings me peace. Your intellect could keep me busy for ten life times. When we were together there was always an invisible beam that connected us. We tested each other, and we came out with flying colors. I also know that I am right for you. I am confident in my intellect, my personality and my looks. You will always know that you can trust me.

I can’t imagine what I wouldn’t want to explore with you. I’m at the prime of my explorative life. I’m tether-free. I want to see the world, and have a true and meaningful relationship with someone. I want to do stuff that scares me, and stuff I’ve never heard of before. All these things I know you want to do too.

We never had the chance to go to a football game together. We never travelled, at least very far, together. There are so many things we have left to learn about each other. I can't think of anyone I'd rather do those things with. All right, if all of that hasn’t started up your “fear of commitment engines,” I don’t know what would. The truth is, that’s a really hard feeling to deal with, much harder than the others. There is little I can say to that. This letter is to combat it as best as I can. Know now that you can rest in me. You can rest in being with me, and the security that comes with that. And I will never inhibit you from going out into the world to explore, whether that’s with or without me. I guess that’s the best I can do. So, now it is finished.
I have said all I can in those arenas. I just have one thing left to say. 

Nate, I can’t promise a perfect life, and I can’t promise easy times, but I do promise my love and my commitment to you and true uninhibited happiness. Please, consider me again. Will you be mine to hold, again? I love you and always will, no matter what your answer is. I am blessed that you have read this far, please don’t discard this without responding. 

I love you Nate.

With deepest sincerity,

March 24, 2000


Well, I’m still in Mexico and I wasn’t exactly expecting that kind of response. That’s again a lot of information coming from you. As always I certainly appreciate your honesty and especially your sincerity.
Unfortunately my feelings still stand as they did when we parted on Sat. I can appreciate the way you are feeling and I wont pretend that I don’t share some of your feelings. So here is my response.

Commitment is obviously a major issue for me. You have always known that it is. One of the main reasons that I need to let go now is that I know that I have the potential of hurting you terribly if we stayed together. I believe in fidelity in a relationship but I also know that I am tremendously tempted sometimes. So far I’ve been good, but as I branch out and meet new people I was recognizing that I was walking a fine line. I don’t ever want to hurt you or anyone else for that matter. Trust me, it is better that we let go now. I already have.

I can’t devote all of my time to a healthy relationship right now. Not just physically being with you but the mental and emotional time that it takes. I hope this doesn’t sound remarkably cold. I don’t mean it to be. I’m just telling you where I am.

I don’t know what to tell you. It pains me that you are hurting over this issue. I don’t think you’ve digested the pill yet; maybe you’ve swallowed it, but not digested. Love is an interesting thing, no? I still want us to be friends, I still want to be able to hang out and have fun, but I would not be comfortable and neither would you if you still were pressing or hoping for something more than that. I need to be clear on that. I can’t be in a relationship with you, but I still want to remain friends. It is your call. You know that. I didn’t expect a reply like this quite this soon and I think it is still a bit soon.

I’m not sure when you will get this but I will probably be home already. Feel free to give me a call or drop me a line. I’m always willing to talk and listen.

I hope I can help. Have a great vacation!

With love your friend,

March 31, 2000

Hey Nate-

I hope this was a good week for you. I got your email back. I actually got it before I left and contemplated it while I was gone. I understand completely now where you are at and I respect that. 
You will not see another attempt of mine like that again. I hope that doesn't sound cold, it's just the way we both know it should be. 

I hope that your job is going well. The reality pill really digested while I was gone, and some things you said in your last email really helped the process. Thank you for always being honest with me.

Well, we'll have to fill each other in on our Spring Breaks later. Take care, call me if you want to do something some time.

Your friend,

And with that we did not talk for a few years.  But when we finally did reconnect the story took a strange and, in my mind, more angst-filled turns and twists.  More tomorrow . . .


Iknowaboutpopular said...

How can there possibly be any more angst? It's unrequited love. It doesn't get more angsty than that.

Melissa said...

Okay, I'm interested. You better not leave me hanging on your 4th installment.