“You haven’t spoken to me in awhile” is what I feel he is saying to me with his eyes. It’s a line that runs over my mind occasionally when I notice the silence between us, because I know it’s true. We haven’t spoken as much. He doesn’t force conversation. He can tell when I’m withdrawn a bit and I know he doesn’t take it personally. But I know he misses the good chats. That’s what those eyes tell me.
Sometimes I nod at him as though acknowledging “yes I know, I’m sorry. I should try to make an effort. It’s not fair on you”. But that’s when the weight of guilt tugs onto me. Sometimes I just take it cause I know I’m the one being closed up and I know that keeping him at a distance probably hurts him a little. We are usually so open and talk about anything, and I do love those times, which we shared. He’s always there, right there with me, no matter what I do. But I know we still share something special. We always will be friends for life.
So sometimes as the guilt tugs on, I try to force myself to say a few words, to make up for the silence. But it doesn’t feel natural because I can tell how he sees through me. He knows me too well. I can’t pretend around him and give him small talk that says "I’m doing fine" like I do with others who don’t know me as well. It’s fine for them. They don’t need to know. But he doesn’t buy it. And so, sometimes it’s easier to just be silent and say nothing.
I know he’d prefer me to open and share this with him. He wants to be there for me, help me figure it out. But I just can’t deal with it. I don’t know how to and I don’t want to talk about it either. It just hurts. So instead I tell myself that I’m doing fine and that I just need to stay focused and keep it together. One day at a time. Besides I’m not even sure what’s going on either or how to express it. I just feel happier when I try to forget about it.. People prefer that side of me anyway.
“I miss the intimacy” is another line I read from the look in his eyes. But it’s like he’s patiently waiting till I’m ready to open up to him and talk.“he don’t want to have an intimate chat” I told to myself. He’s always around me though. Sometimes we drive together. Sometimes we shop. Sometimes there’s a bit of general small talk when things need to be said. But I do find myself avoiding him a bit when I notice how he sees through me. When those eyes show care and concern for me, like he wants to step in closer.
I think about how we used to chat.. 'quite a lot'. Laugh about things and talk about anything really. I always felt safe to open up, like I could trust him with anything because of his understanding and acceptance of me, no matter what do or what I look like. After some awkward small talk, I can tell he knows I’m covering up, I feel the frustration and think to myself “why can’t we just forget about it and get on like there’s nothing wrong, like I’m doing just fine?” I love our good deep chats but I just want to skip this one. Sometimes we do get past it and we have a bit of chat and sometimes a laugh too. But when the heavy stuff surfaces up in me and I try to burry it back in, I know he’s looking at me. I avoid looking back but I can feel his eyes on me.
And then life throws a curve at me. Everything surfaces and I feel like throwing it all up. That’s when I know. I just can’t keep it buried in me any longer! But how do I flush it out? No words come out. And then finally I decide to at least try talk to him about it, but I don’t know where to start or how to express it. All I can say is; 'it hurts and that I’m angry at how the glooms never leaves me, no matter how much I try to fix it or ignore it'. I just want to get out with. But again, no words come.
Then I notice his arm around me. He doesn’t say anything. He just sits with me and smiles, rubbing my back, holding me close. His smile says “you don’t have to say anything”. I took a breath and the pressure lifts off me. His comforting arms say “I’m here with you”. That make me feel a little better. Helps me more than words. Then his eyes say “and I know. I know how you feel, and I know you too well.”
All along, those eyes were not pressuring me to talk. They were just feeling my pain and wanting to be there for me. We sit in silence. It still hurts but his comfort helps some of the weight lift off. It’s like we’re opening up without saying a word. In fact, the longer we sit, the better I begin to feel. It’s nice and intimate between us again and it feels right, like it should be. I know we’ll have some good chats again soon. But right now this is perfect. And it’s so good to know that besides our open chats, we have a comfortable language that we can use without saying a word. A part of me wants to explore it even more. To share many more of these. I smile, look over at him and then back at the trees blowing in the wind softly. It’s a beautiful silence.