There’s a particular boy I’ve had a crush on since I came to AU. I will not tell his name because, to be honest, I don’t know it. I’ve been introduced to him only once, and when we spoke, I couldn’t find the words to show him how interested I was.
The reason I’m telling you this is because I think we all have crushes - that boy or girl that you see around campus that you don’t quite have the strength to talk to. You see them and your eyes meet, then you quickly look the other way, as if to give the impression that you aren’t really staring. I think part of the reason I don’t want to talk to this guy is because I’m afraid of being hurt. Yet to another extent, I’m afraid of letting go of the excitement of a crush.
It has been a couple of years since I was last in a serious relationship. We dated for three years, and it’s taken me almost four to try to forget about him. Our relationship wasn’t healthy, and although I would’ve married him at the time, only in retrospect did I realize that we weren’t meant to be.
Now, a lot of my friends are in serious relationships. Many have gotten married and have children, while others are exclusively dating. I’m one of few that are single. Watching them, I see that some are happy on the surface, but are deteriorating inside. As their relationships progress, some have sacrificed things that I’m not ready to yet: friendships, jobs, even morals.
When I was in my past relationship, I sacrificed all of those things. Without even thinking, before I knew it, I was standing alone with my man in a sea of people, afraid to go out and meet more. For that reason, I am afraid. I am afraid of letting myself go, of letting another human being into my life, of giving away my personal time.
It’s difficult as a college student to learn where your priorities stand. Do you spend time with your significant other or with your friends? Do you work at a job or study for your classes? Do you eat at McDonald’s or cook? All of these decisions, although they seem drastically different, are relatively the same. They all involve making adjustments to your lifestyle by negotiating and weighing out the differences.
My past relationship changed everything I knew about myself. I am still afraid of relationships, and I am continuously apologizing for miniscule things. Although I have been working toward recovery lately, it’s still difficult for me to open up and talk. Not just about whom I have a crush on, but about who I am and what I want out of life.
Standing aside and watching this unnamed boy has shown me exactly what my weaknesses are. It has made me realize that I am not as strong as I had previously thought. I am not a tree with solid roots, but just a seed beginning to grow.
I’m still not sure if I’ll ever have the courage to talk to him. Maybe I’ll continue to watch from a distance, counting my breaths along the way. Or maybe one day I’ll walk up and introduce myself to him again, show him who I truly am and what I have to offer. We all have insecurities, and we all have crushes. It’s up to the individual, however, to figure out how the two intertwine.