Arrrgh! It was so weird meeting Tom yesterday. Was he really the same person who kissed me that night? Had that really happened? In the daylight, I felt shy looking at him. It was too close somehow. I was nervous while greeting him and embraced him spontaneously, and later felt as if I had overwhelmed him. In a positive way, probably, but still. Again, he seemed to be trembling when we hugged. Our meeting place was not well chosen. We would have needed some privacy, but I felt very watched in the cafeteria. Not just my colleagues are there, also former professors, people who taught me or studied with me in University and knew me years ago. It’s not that I’m ashamed of Tom, but I don’t want those people to see me in this fresh, fragile, and new state of love. I felt as if my face must be doing strange things without my control, so I tried to control it. And I tried to pay attention to Tom, to how he behaved, what he was saying and to how I was feeling, and keeping up a conversation. It was overwhelming and just too much.
Quite apart from all that, and from remembering that deeply touching moment we shared, and the kiss, and his messages since then, there are so many questions in my mind. And I didn’t dare to ask them. The most burning one is how he remembers our kiss, and: did he kiss me? How did it feel for him? What was going through his mind at that moment, and afterwards when I told him I’d never done that before? Did it not even cross his mind that the moment or the place we were was suitable for a kiss? And what was he thinking after he left me? What was his reaction?
All those questions come from the fact that I know nothing of his history and experience with love. We talked about all other aspects of our lives, and a little about our recent dating adventures, but that’s it. I didn’t say anything about myself because there is nothing. And he? He said something like looks aren’t that important to him, and that it just had to feel right between two people, that is all. Has he been in relationships? How many, how long? Has he been deeply in love once, or deeply hurt, or both? (How) has he approached women before? What does he feel about himself in this respect, is he very insecure about his attractiveness? Or was he just so reluctant with me because I was so shy and gave him no signs? He wrote last night that I was making him incredibly happy and that he was feeling truly alive again thanks to me. That’s such a beautiful thing to hear! But who or what made him feel less than alive before?
I feel restless now with all those questions in my mind. And I want to see him again, in private, and hold his hand and embrace him, and kiss him really slowly and softly with all channels open so I can really feel it. But he has no time, he has to work and study for a test and I won’t see him until Wednesday. I understand, and when he apologised I said it was ok. And it is, in a way. The anticipation of all that is to come is lovely to experience. It’s good to take it slow and I’m sure we’ll be glad that we didn’t rush this part afterwards, even if it seems hard now. When we said goodbye I hugged him again, but was so nervous again that I could hardly look at him. As the hug ended, his hand lingered on my ribs and waist for a second and then he squeezed my hand before he left.
I am a little surprised by the change that kiss has caused between us. For me, it was one (albeit big) step forward. The whole thing was building like a slow wave, and I had time to think about it and to imagine and prepare. And I expected things to move on from there in much the same way between us: Growing affection, growing closeness and trust, but more or less linear. Of course I expected to feel deeply affected by the kiss, but prepared to deal with it on my own, to manage my emotional ‘too much-ness’ that was no doubt a consequence of my personality and inexperience. Yet it seems Tom was affected more than I imagined. In a way, this is very flattering, but it also scares me a little. To have so much power… But it is what I wanted, isn’t it? I wanted a man who can feel deeply and express it. Maybe it was just the surprise. Or maybe (and I feel slightly ashamed of thinking this) he was madly in love with me and was holding back all this time? But it didn’t sound like that in his messages before the kiss.
All I know is what he tells me: It was a wonderful evening. We have come very close and he liked it very much. When I said I had trouble thinking, he said he felt the same. The next morning he said he had hardly been able to go to sleep, and that it had been quite stirring in a positive way. That the morning had probably still been much nicer than any morning he woke after sleeping in. And he thanked me, and when I said I was wondering whether I had left him any choice at all, he said I definitely hadn’t forced him or left him no choice, and that he had been thinking about approaching this soon as well, so he hadn’t been entirely unprepared. That he thought the situation had been exactly right (except for the stars). That he kept thinking of me. And when I told him I was very happy and felt light and floating, he said that was lovely to hear and that I was making him incredibly happy, too. And, ‘Thanks to you, I also feel truly alive again’. And that it was nice seeing me again yesterday, though unfortunately only for a short time. And that he was quite absentminded, too, and his thoughts kept wandering just like mine, but for the nicest possible reason. I told him good night and that I was thinking of him, and finally sent the kiss smiley I had been holding back night after night. And he wished me a wonderful night and said he was thinking hard of me, too, and sent me a kiss back. I fell asleep thinking of him with this almost unbearable sweetness of loving and feeling loved.
Tom has told and shown me openly, and it is so incredibly wonderful to feel, that he likes me, that I make him happy, that he wants to be with me, be close to me. And to know he is thinking of me, finds it hard to concentrate or sleep, is emotionally affected by me just as I am by him. Oh, this part of love is a thousand times better than I ever imagined! No book, film, daydream or story in my head has ever come close. I feel alive and happy and excited and beautiful and shining and perfect, but also incredibly awed and humble in the face of this great new thing. This closeness between us still scares me a little and will probably keep scaring me, but I want to go on, to open up and allow it.