It’s Thursday night. You and Hottie McTastyface are hanging out. You feel awkward. You want to look him in the eye but it’s almost painful. You hate it. Why do you have to feel so awkward? Everything would be great without that.
Wrong. So very wrong. I will tell you why are you so wrong: the more you like someone, and the more they like you, the more awkward you both will be around each other. Which is kind of a terrible arrangement, but I’m not sure who to speak to about that. So we’ll just have to make do and embrace it.
You know that moment, right before you kiss someone, when everything is very tense? You feel like you’re 12 and in the spotlight at a middle school dance? If you couldn’t cut the air with a knife between the two of you, how would you know that he/she wants to kiss you as much as you want to kiss him/her? Exactly.
The more you like someone, the more awkward you get. And really, if your feelings are reciprocated, then so is your reaction. Of course, if the other person’s awkwardness is exaggerated to the point where it cripples their ability to actually make a move, then you’ve unfortunately stumbled onto the .001% of the population who are like that (Lord knows I always do, but I digress). Mostly, though, if you tense up and the other person lets the tension linger, then they’re feeling it too.
So enjoy it! Embrace that moment instead of dreading it. I think we hate it because we feel so vulnerable. It’s that crucial minute where unspoken things linger, and we know that either the other person will let the lingering continue in hopes that it will lead to the same thing you want, or they’ll cut it quickly and find a way out of the situation because they just aren’t feeling it. And that’s terrifying.
I am so afraid of this moment that I find myself repeatedly having to force myself to even be present for it. Once I literally ran from the person, albeit playfully and with a task at hand. Over the past couple of years I’ve gotten better at staying in one place, looking the other person in the eye, and accepting that we’re sharing a moment and that it’s okay. Sometimes what’s even harder than facing the moment when a “yay” or “nay” will inevitably be decided is accepting that the other person is into you too.
I have no idea why I find it so impossible and scary that someone I like would feel the same way. Maybe because then things progress and have the potential to lead to commitments and responsibilities and things…. That’s a whole other column, though. Ultimately, it’s impossible to get anywhere near comfortable with those ideas without baby steps like looking the person on the other end of the couch in the eyes and accepting that the air is thick with imminent kissing. So let’s just all agree to let that moment in and go with it. The rest can be worked out later.
Photo found on http://iheartquotesle.tumblr.com/post/6575950055