when you slid the crumpled receipt over my till after asking me out for a drink that day i smiled to myself. your name in block capitals with a smiley face and a string of numbers scribbled on the back. during the rest of my shift i would stroke the folds and corners, the paper buried deep in my pocket. i remember coming home that day and immediately typing your number into my phone, triple checking that i’d got it right.
the more we talked the more i got to know you. ridiculously intelligent yet completely humble, family orientated and completely in love with your dog. a history buff with a penchant for ranting about society and its flaws. you were so nice and it was the kind of nice i’d never experienced before. i’ve only known complacency when it comes to relationships and you were, are, anything but.
august 20th 2018. our first date, a swanky pasta bar in the heart of london. you in your fancy navy blue suit, standing underneath the evening sky. those gorgeous zac efron-esque eyes fixed on me as we met properly for the first time. you told me about your past, showed me the scars i’d never noticed. we talked for hours about everything, from unlearning unhealthy behaviours to dietary choices. i leaned to kiss you on the cheek and you turned it into a snog, but somehow it felt right. a kiss on the first date? the younger me would have resisted. right in the middle of the restaurant too. you tasted like pesto and beer, your beard scratching my skin. i blushed all the way to embankment where we strolled by the thames in the chilly breeze. you draped your jacket over my hunched shoulders and i squealed because i didn’t know that men actually did that kind of stuff in real life.
it’s been 7 going on 8 months now roughly and i’ve learnt so much from you. before you, my views on everything were unmoving, but being with you has taught me to question everything. see the opposite view of what i believe, acknowledge it and challenge it. maybe even agree to some degree! you showed me that i am worthy of being loved and respected. that i can do the things i always talk myself out of doing in fear of failure.
i feel like this is that relationship. where you grow with the person, not out of them, experience life with them, do all the couple-y things and then some. with you there’s no evasiveness, just pure honesty and transparency in its rawest form. it’s so easy when with others its been the complete opposite. you’ve never stopped putting in the effort you did when we were first starting out and for that you have my heart. and when we do argue, we discuss it and we resolve it together, us against the problem.
this probably isn’t a surprise to you but i’ve never told you that i love you, b. it terrifies me, allowing myself to be vulnerable and putting myself in a position where you could really hurt me if you wanted to. it’s funny how at the beginning i was what you called ‘standoffish’ and now look at me, free falling into love. there are tears welling and there’s a lump in my throat. it feels like love is pouring out of me as i type these words. i am slowly accepting that i love you and i’m allowing myself to feel again.
this is the love i’ve always dreamed about. not puppy love, not lust, but love where you accept the other person for exactly who they are. you bounce off of each other, you laugh at the same things and you’re your true self around them. we are easy and you are easy to love.