Tragic Crush Tales #4

If you’ve read any of the lovey dovey type poems I’ve posted as of late they are all about crush L. The only words I can use to describe this man is: intelligent, caring, cool, laid back, artistic, and the perfect match for me, truly.
I met him at my first job in Chicago back in 2009. When I first laid eyes on him I just knew he was someone I was going to click with. The romantic feelings didn’t start off right away. I still had an overwhelming feeling of nervousness because I’m in this big city by myself and hadn’t been there long, I was starting this job where most people had been for a long time, were a tight knit family, and I know I’m not the easiest person to get to know, and when I did start this job I was given a heads up that the store was closing in less than a year. With all of those feelings swirling in my head I had no time to stop and listen to my heart pitter-patter.
I quickly started to fit in and especially when months later a girl from another store came to work at ours. I instantly clicked with her, even though we were total opposites. By this time I had started looking at L in a different way. One day me and the girl were talking and she told me that she had liked L. They had known each other a while so I never said anything about my feelings. All my life I’ve only had one friend not go after a guy I liked and I’ll be damned if I do that to someone else. So from that moment on since L and I had the same interests, sort of the same attitude I started to call him my big brother. When I think about it the first time I called him that he looked kind of crushed. But I had to put that label out there to make my feelings subside so that I don’t make a move on my friends crush.
As months went on L and I got closer. Not in a romantic way, but in a sort of best friend way. I don’t have many people where I feel just opening up my soul too, but he was one of those people. He made me feel completely comfortable from the first conversation we had. There were a few times were after work we’d go walk and talk for what seemed like hours. A few times I’d be on the verge of tears because of whatever we were talking about and he would be the type of person to grab my hand and just listen. I never got any judgmental words from him let alone looks. I’d never gotten that feeling from any of my girlfriends let alone a guy.
One summer night we decided to meet up and go to this reggae club and no one else wanted to go with him. I really liked hanging out with him , but I was kind of nervous to go because he’s a real cool dude and I’m a black chick who can’t dance for shit. When we arrived everything was fine and fun, but he slowly started to get agitated that I wouldn’t dance. I’d try to do the minimal, but it seemed to annoy him that he kept trying to get me out of my shell and I refused to. We only stayed a few hours and I guess he got tired of watching me pretty much just stand around. When we left, I don’t know how it happened, but all of a sudden we were in a screaming match as we walked down the street. I don’t know if he felt like I ruined his good night or if he was upset that I didn’t let loose, but I do know we were literally screaming at each other. It was weird though, once we got on the bus we were mad at first then we kinda looked at each other and that anger was completely gone. Once we got downtown we decided to just keep the night going since the buses that would take us home all the way to the south side had long since stopped running for the night. We bar hopped a bit and then decided to go to the beach. We climbed onto the lifeguard stand and talked for hours until the sun rose. I couldn’t tell you what we talked about, but it was one of the best nights I had in Chicago. Honestly, I lived there for over 4 years and the only other awesome nights I had was seeing Paul McCartney for the first time, seeing U2 for the first time, and seeing Coldplay, RHCP, and Jack White at Lollapalooza. Still my night with L ranks above most of these events.
The only downside to my night with L is that the sexual tension was high and nothing happened. We did the most romantic thing in the world like watching the sunrise and absolutely nothing happened. I was torn. I didn’t know if his anger from earlier that night was because he liked me and didn’t know how to say it (because that’s definitely where my anger came from) or if he didn’t like me in that way at all. It could’ve been possible that he didn’t think I liked him in that way. Either way it was an opportunity lost.
Another opportunity happened when we went to see “Hot Tub Time Machine” after work one day. Afterwards we went for a walk and talked again for hours. At one point I could feel him lean in, but again nothing happened. I had even looked into his eyes, not backing away, and still nothing. In the back of my mind was always that my friend liked him and the only way I was going to act on anything is if he acted first, but we never got to that point.
 By summer of 2010 I had found another job, which the girl who also liked L helped me get, in just enough time before this job closed shop. My new job worked me like a dog, so I barely had time for me let alone trying to keep in contact with other people. L and I would talk here and there and then slowly it turned into the occasional “Hello” or “Happy birthday” on Facebook. As of late he’s really been on my mind. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m at a point in my life where I want to settle down and build something with someone and when I think of the perfect mate it’s his face that pops up. I’ve tried talking with other men whom I do like, but in the end of the day it comes straight back to him. Just as in “Hot Tub Time Machine” I really believe he was my great white buffalo.
I know most of my Tragic Tales are about asshole exes and crushes in my life who had done me wrong in some way, but this is a different type of tragic. It’s tragic because perhaps we would’ve been great together. Perhaps we would have flourished. He very well may have been the one and I ran from that because I chose friendship over possible happiness. It’s even more tragic because to this day I’m still terrified to tell him how I feel. How do you tell a person you haven’t said much to in 3 years that you can’t stop thinking about them? The shy girl in me posts obscure statuses on Facebook hoping he’ll see and get the hidden meaning and say something. Most likely I know I’ll post this with that same foolish hope. I tell myself that if it’s meant to be it will be, but I know that there is no way he will ever know what is in my heart unless I actually tell him and I know that’s something I don’t have the courage to do. I don’t want to face the rejection of him telling me he’s with someone, or even worse, married, or even worse than that, him telling me he never saw me that way at all. As much as I think about him it’s a risk I should be taking, but it’s a risk I’m just not willing to take yet. Just another opportunity wasted.

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