Okay, so I finally understand why I have to “dial it back” with my best friend here in town. It’s pretty neat the way in which God finally allowed me to comprehend and I believe it’s worth sharing.
I suppose a brief summary of what I’m even talking about might be helpful, so I’ll begin there. I’ve made a few friends since I’ve moved here 9 months ago but the one friend I spend the most time with, speak with the most, and the one I, unfortunately, developed a crush on, is a lovely young woman. She and I share a passion for words, grammatical correctness, pie, and COFFEE!! We’ve spent many an evening just sitting, enjoying pie and coffee, and talking. Hours on end. Well, as my mind is prone to create absurdities, I developed a crush on her. I told her of the crush (in the lamest way possible: via text) and she seemed to be able to shrug it off and we continued to do as we’d been doing. A few months passed and she tells me that we’re spending too much time together alone, that we text too frequently, and that we should dial these things back a bit. I tried to understand but never really did. We agreed that we should only do things with others involved so as to not give anyone the wrong idea: that she and I like each other and might be, dum, dum, dum! dating. This was rather unpleasant to hear but I agreed and so we began to only do things if others were present. (We tried to; but I’m so frequently asking to go get coffee and such that sometimes we still went by ourselves.)
Then, finally, I had to know: does she like me, too, or am I just being a fool? She, being the queen of ambiguity, has yet to directly say that she has a crush on me; she says that she likes me but only ever in a way that could easily be understood “I like you as a friend”…. I digress.
My brief summary became rather lengthy; I apologize. I’m a rather long-winded fellow. So! Back to my point.
I have grown quite accustomed to texting her very often throughout a day. I’ve grown accustomed to being able to see her and hang out with her, on average, two or three times a week. I was hoping that, even after our conversations, this could continue. This was wrong of me and I feel very bad for thinking so. As it is, I have begun to “dial it back” and I do not enjoy it. I do not enjoy it one little bit. However, comma, this is what she wants and what she feels is the best course of action and so, I will oblige.
This morning I bought plane tickets home and I was just too excited not to tell her. She congratulated me and out of habit I continued to text about nonsensical things until I realized that I was failing to dial it back at all; I decided to set a goal of not texting her until Wednesday and told her so and “I’ll talk to you later.” She seemed rather pleased with this and said, “See ya Wednesday.” Almost immediately after this exchange I learned that tomorrow I will be opening at work and not closing; this means that she and I will be getting off work just about the same time and I couldn’t resist letting her know. I imagine that my goal was to plant the idea of getting coffee with me after work in her head. I am not proud of this. Nonetheless, I at least expected her to say something vague such as, “Hehe, we’ll see” or “He thinks he’s so funny” or…something. Nothing. She didn’t respond at all. Well, this, for whatever reason, put me in a rather poor mood. It was ridiculous: I felt hurt and slighted and just miserable. I couldn’t stop thinking, “Why can’t we still be friends the way we were?”; “Why does it matter if other folks think we’re dating if we know that we aren’t?”
I spent the next few hours repeating this nonsense. I became rather dejected and my co-worker took note. He and I work in a lab together, just the two of us, most days of the week and we’ve become pretty close. He’s a great guy and a lot of fun. He’s going through some rough things in his life right now and he shares with me a lot of personal information. Sometimes as a way to not hear the gritty details, I’ll share what I’m going through just to get his mind off his own worries and to spare myself. So, he knows about my friend and how I feel. He asked, “What’s wrong, dude? You look mad or upset or something.” I told him what was on my mind and he agreed that it didn’t make sense. He said, “Y’all don’t do anything! Y’all just sit and talk and drink coffee! You’ve never even hugged her! So what if y’all like each other? That has to suck, bro! I’m sorry.” Well, needless to say, this didn’t help me much.
On my lunch break, I wasn’t hungry and so I just went outside to enjoy the weather and to think. I was pacing in the alley, fuming to myself. “Get over it, man! You don’t want to lose her as a friend so just suck it up and deal with it!” I screamed to myself. “But why?? Why?? Why can’t we just maintain the status quo?” I demanded an answer to this from my own brain. It was absurdity followed with more absurdity. I was just building myself into a frenzy when I finally realized that I needed to pray, and with the quickness! “God, Father! What is this? Why am I acting so stupidly? Why can’t I just be happy to have a friend as awesome as she? Why can’t I just not think about her??” I waited a few moments and got no response. Lack of immediate answer wasn’t good enough, so at that point I became angry with God. “Why are you doing this me, Father?? Why did you drag me all the way to this stinking town, give me one good friend, and then pull her away from me? What sense does this make? Here I’ve been trying to come back to You and now You’re doing this?? Wh…” and my mind stopped. It went completely blank for a moment and I was still. I didn’t hear anything, see anything, smell anything… I was just calm.
Out of nowhere the answer hit me. I instantly understood. God answered me. The reason I must “dial it back” isn’t due to any of my fears. It isn’t because she doesn’t like me; she does – she’s told me so. It isn’t because I’m beginning to “overstay my welcome”; she’s told me that she enjoys hanging out with me more than she should and that if we continue, she’ll probably only want to more and more. All of these fears were just my feeble mind and prideful spirit trying to satisfy my arrogant ego. No, none of these is the reason.
I’ve been wanting desperately to return to God, to be pulled back into His spirit that I may know peace and joy again. I’ve been struggling. The fact that I’ve been having difficulty has perplexed me to the point of tears. I couldn’t understand why I, willing and desiring to, couldn’t just let God’s grace overtake me. Today, while I was arguing with God, He shut me up. He shut my mental mouth; and He answered two questions simultaneously: the reason I’ve not been able to draw close to Him and to truly allow Him back into my heart is the same reason I must dial it back with my friend. I’ve been preoccupying my mind and my energy and my heart with seeking after her, not truly allowing God in to where He deserves to be. When I realized this I was a bit overwhelmed with all kinds of emotions. I was joyful to finally comprehend; I was relieved that I could finally begin to grow in God through Christ; I was sad that I’d been so blind to it the whole time.
After my lunch break, and ever since, I’ve been in one of the best moods I can remember being in…ever. I feel just giddy! God is back where He belongs in my life: at the focus. I am ecstatic. I am excited. I want to tell my friend so badly! I guess I’ll just tell her on Wednesday.
I still like her, by the way. It’s just that I was beginning to like her too much, too quickly. With God I am content. With His plan I am content. With His love and mercy, I am content. If she and I are ever meant to be more than friends, He knows and will make it so. I, in the meantime, will focus and seek Him every day. Where He leads me is where I need to be going and I can’t wait to get there!