Letter 22 – someone you want to give a second chance
The hardest thing in the world, for me, is being honest with myself. If this challenge has taught me anything, it’s the power a couple of honest sentences strung together has. It’s the fear the spawns from not backing down, from being the person you really are, that freaks me out.
And if I’m being honest, I think we deserve to be friends. Maybe not the friends who call each other up every week and talk for an hour on the phone, but the kind that you can come back to in five, ten years and know that they’re still the same. That they’re still grounded.
There was just this small moment, insignificant at best, but it stuck with me. We were standing in Kohl’s, you staring at a display of moccasin slippers on sale, unable to make a decision about which pair to buy.
“If only those shoes came in that color,” I said, pointing at a combination that didn’t actually exist.
“See, she knows me well,” you told the rest of our friends.
And I think it was something about those four words strung together that made me realize, almost subconsciously, that it feels pretty crappy to throw away knowing someone. To have to pretend you don’t know them anymore.
She. Knows. Me. Well.
I don’t know a lot of people well. I don’t know a lot of people even “okay”. I know what I see and that’s where it stops. And for some reason, I’m okay with that most of the time. But then, the other part of the time, I’m not.
My favorite part of being friends with someone is knowing them better than just the limited knowledge gained from a chance encounter at a bus stop or in a classroom. Maybe that’s why I hate making friends. And the idea of first dates. And the idea of putting myself out there.
Because small talk sucks. And when you’re already friends with someone, or you’ve already dated them, there shouldn’t have to be small talk. No more catching up on little stuff. No more beating around the bush.
I already know what you want to do for the rest of your life. And your favorite channel on TV. And the reason you hate buying t-shirts from American Eagle. I know that you’re not great at making homemade pretzels, but you make killer Kraft Mac & Cheese. And that you’ve always been the older brother my little sister never had.
For some unknown reason, I worry too much that people will see you as some guy who’s good at breaking girls hearts. Some guy who’s good looking and knows it. That’s how I saw you, that first night in Vanessa’s kitchen. But you deserve more than that.