Last night was probably the happiest I’ve been in the past few months.
These are my friends. Mine, and mine only. It’s truly amazing that I feel most like myself around them even when we barely keep up with each other’s lives. I guess some people make you feel like that; like your friendship never falls out, like there was no time lost between then and now, like you’ve been forever friends. After eight years, only good memories remain.
And so I feel obligated to write this so as to not forget.
Here’s to the past years and the years to come.
Hati, kamu berkhianat. Lagi-lagi kamu tergoda biru angkasa dan putih awan, padahal kamu tahu betul layang-layang putus tak bertuan tak akan membawa Raga terbang. Kamu selalu terpikat kepada amis lautan yang seolah-olah menjanjikan kebebasan, padahal kebebasan sudah berada dalam genggamanmu. Kamu terlambat sadar, Hati. Kata dan tanya sudah menghablur menjadi rasa. Sekali lagi.
Sekali lagi, seolah-olah belum cukup.
“I’m so tired,” I told you.
I loved it when instead of asking me Why?, you asked me What is it? Just tell me.
I never really understood or felt the difference, but last night it was different. What you said felt more reassuring than a mere Why? — which can sound haughty and indifferent, defensive and distant. What is it? Just tell me assured me that you were there for me. That you were prepared to listen and really listen, to receive whatever I was going to share. Also, that you had prepared yourself for another story about another guy that broke my heart. About someone like you, or almost like you.
“Is it related to those guys?” you asked. And then, added like a passing thought that popped up unwanted, that you tried to avoid but eventually decided to face: “Or is it me?”
With those questions, you held out your arms for me. We had discussed us many times, but never like this. Never this cautious. Never this gently. You allowed me to visit those scars carefully, almost with a caress. And it was this soft approach that finally brought tears to my eyes because it felt so much like home and told me the pain was healed.
It felt like someone was finally here — someone who would never leave, would never judge, would never try to be someone else, and would never try to ask me to be someone other than myself. It felt like I could stop running — from you, from us, from myself — and stop racing with life because, with you, I am enough. We are enough, as we are.
When the tears stopped falling, I realized we were truly best friends, with our past embraced and let go, written and erased, and without the romance secretly harbored and repressed, felt and denied.
We were freed of so many and given so much more.
Think of the persons whom you respect most, and in imitating them you will secure the respect of those who look up to you.
– Jo March, “Jo’s Boys” (1886)
I must be very lucky to have him as my best friend.
I do write a lot about how much I love him and how I am codependent on him. I also write a lot about the confusion between us and the peculiarity of our situation. However, there may not be a better explanation for my strong attachment to him than respect.
I have said, more than once, that I respect him. Yet, it is not until I am thrown into a pool of new ideas, new lifestyle, and new everything that I can really understand the worth of that respect.
He became my conscience. He is the John Brooke to my Dolly — the Demi who soberly said, “No fellow needs to go wrong unless he wants to,” and he is also my Mother Bhaer, who wittingly appeared before a lost youth and pulled the right strings to steer him back to the prudence of a good life.
I have been intoxicated with my new life and temptations of pleasure, and I have been led to shame, but I will think of my best friend from now onwards and sober myself up. I will try to not be one of those painted girls with only fun and games, and finally grow up a bit.
And him, what I learned from him will be the lighthouse that lights my way into the sea until that light turns into mine and I am ready to venture the unknown on my own.
It is scary enough to meet someone who cares about you and showers you with attention and gives you hope just to find out afterward that they cannot be trusted, that they maintain a facade, and that you cannot see their real intention.
However, it is still less scary than being friends with someone, getting real comfortable, and day by day trusting them more and more before one day it just strikes you that you are in love, that you are in too deep, that you cannot let go, and that you sense the feeling is, has never been, and is unlikely to be mutual.