I saw the Bus Driver recently for the first time in 5 weeks. I had gone to watch Best Friend #2 play pool and I’d been feeling a certain amount of panic all day, would he say anything, would I say anything, would I do that thing I usually do?
In the end it was all over very quickly, after the initial shock of being in the same room as each other for the first time in a month had gone, and I was sat alone, he approached and said “you alright?” His voice was soft, I know from previous experience that he is cautious around me when we have stopped speaking for a time, and he was clearly unsure of what my reaction would be.
I did do that thing that I usually do, I didn’t quite make eye contact (odd as I’d spent a lot of time looking into his eyes in the past months), said two words (“Yes, thanks”) and dropped my gaze pretty quickly. This thing I usually do irritates me, but I always do it. I’d even sat there, silently willing myself not to do it, but still did it anyway. Small wonder then that he approached with caution.
To anyone not inside my head at that particuar moment I know how this interaction looks; he made a huge effort to speak to me, I barely looked at him, said two words and then pretty much ignored him for the rest of the night. Sometimes I wish I could show people what is inside me at times like this, because it is the complete opposite of how it appears.
His approach took me by surprise, I hadn’t expected that he might speak to me although I’d thought about nothing else all day. The soft tone of voice completely threw me, because I didn’t deserve it. I couldn’t bring myself to look directly into his eyes, because in doing so I wouldn’t be able to prevent myself from holding back all of the things I wanted to say, all of the things he isn’t ready to hear yet. I may not have spoken to him or met his gaze for the rest of the night, but I was painfully aware of his prescence for the entire night. I tried not watching as he played his game of pool, I tried not stealing glances at him, I tried not looking at his hands which, I don’t really have an explanation as to why, I have always loved. I tried, I tried really hard.
I’ve never believed in ‘The One’, I don’t think that out of the 7 billion (and counting) people that inhabit this planet, there is just one person destined for me. I do believe that there are a few people out there, some of which I will never meet, some of which I have met. The Bus Driver is one of these people. I know this almost as well as I know the back of my own hand.
I’ve never liked opening up to people and telling them my deepest feelings, fears and hopes for the future. I might mention in passing that I would love to visit The Great Wall Of China, or that I would consider adopting a child, or that not getting married doesn’t matter to me. I have trouble holding people’s gaze for very long, fearing that somehow they will see something in my eyes that I’m not ready to share. I hold a lot of what I’m feeling or thinking inside myself, refusing to let it out. But things felt different with the Bus Driver, I knew that one day I would even be able to tell him the reason I cannot eat Weetabix.
But, this morning I find myself once again stuck in limbo. He doesn’t understand me, doesn’t understand that my defenses are up once again resulting in very little conversation, not making eye contact and almost pretending like he is not in the room. He doesn’t understand that it’s killing me not speaking to him.
Best Friend #2 says “tell him all of this”, I’m still not convinced.