Why I Had To Leave

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Saturday morning, and I’m as usual kicked out of the house so mom can clean up. I hit the only art café that I know, alone, having my book as my only company. I settle in and start reading. About an hour later, I see you standing in front of me. I didn’t see your face, but I knew it was you! How can I not know? We’ve been friends for 20 years. I could spot you from a hundred miles away…

We say our hellos and I take you out for a walk so as not to disturb the peace in the café.

We do some chitchat, talk about new friends. I had nothing to say. I had no explanation. I just couldn’t tell you why I had to disappear from your life. You hit me with a nice line as you tell me about a new friend you got, “I found someone crazy like you after you disappeared on me.” I smile and move on with the conversation. It hurt like hell, but I couldn’t snap at you. I couldn’t tell you that I had to leave because you are a homophobe. I couldn’t say I left because, after two years of talking and talking to you about homosexuality, the most gay-friendly line I got from you was: “Let them exist and be happy, but I want nothing to do with them.” How could I come out to you after hearing that line? I couldn’t trust you to not go to my parents or our friends and pull an “intervention” or something of the sort. After all, you are very religious, and you care so much about me, and wouldn’t want me to be a “deviant.”

I had to leave when I met the first girl I fell in love with, because right then, it got to be too much for me. I was being a teenager at 22. I was much worse than high school kids, but I couldn’t help it. Everything was about her, with her or for her and I couldn’t tell you about it.

- “What’s going on with you? You’re acting very different.”

- “Well… I met someone. I’m head over heels in love with her even though I’ve never seen her face. She’s so cute. We’re calling each other “baby” when we chat on yahoo, but we’re still not that used to saying it on the phone. We’re both too shy. You know, last night she was telling me how she would kiss me goodnight and hold me in her arms all night, protect me form nightmares and get me water if I wake up thirsty. And I fell asleep reading those sweet lines without saying goodnight! I freaked out in the morning thinking that she’d be mad at me for disappearing on her in the middle of a very romantic talk, but she found it very cute. How romantic is that? You know it was the best sleep I’ve ever had, even though I only slept from 4am to 6am! I love my baby! Wait! I couldn’t tell you that. All I could say was: “I’m happy because college is over. That’s all.”

- “Put your phone down. What is it with you and chat these days? You look like you’re talking to your boyfriend!”

- “Well, correction: Not a boyfriend, a GIRLfriend. And I can’t put it down. You don’t expect me to stop talking to her, do you? She’s telling me that she wants to have a baby girl! This is important!”

Every time we went out I felt suffocated. I couldn’t let you in on this, and I couldn’t be around you without letting you in.

I had two choices: To come out to you and have you kick me out of your life, or to just disappear on you, leaving room for our occasional meetings, as it is now. We meet and greet. You look at me with puzzled eyes. I see all the questions you have, and I just look away.

One day, I might call you up and just spill it all out, and either get that accepting hug I’ve been dreaming of for years and years, or get the bad reaction, and stop dreaming of that hug. But till I summon the courage to do that, let’s just keep it as it is, because I like that dream, and I’m not ready to give it up yet.

- Contributed by Dylan

Guest Contributor

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