Well, hey there, Stefanie! I know we’ve been out of touch for a while now, but I occasionally see your face pop up when you’ve been tagged by some of our mutual acquaintances. When it does, my heart bleeds.
I’m going to be honest here. It’s hard, so please forgive me if my words don’t come out right. Not to be honest overall, but–to be honest with you. You are the type of person who demands honesty, and, frankly, it scares me. Which is part of why I stopped being in your world. We don’t see eye to eye on certain things, and–unfortunately for our once wonderful friendship–those things mean more to me than you did. How’s that for honesty?
I’m not trying to be mean here. You deserve an explanation for why I bolted. You were a true friend to me, and I still think of those car rides to Charlotte when we bared our souls to each other. When I see Tom’s Barbeque Chips, I remember how you bought me a bag and opened it from the bottom, telling me the best chips were always found there. You knew I had OCD and that this drove me crazy, but you risked it because you are such a funny girl.
I miss you. I see you on Facebook; see your books around the local bookstores. I look for posts from the writing group and upcoming events you all might be sponsoring or participating in. Those were some great times and I miss being a part of them. Sometimes I think about coming back, but…
…but how would you react? I mean, I made you a promise, and I failed to keep it. Would you give me a second chance? Would you allow me the opportunity–the privilege–of loving you again? Or would our conflicts separate us again?
You really are a lovely person, Stef. Dare I find out? Can I let go of my pride and love the whole of you without always liking those parts that made me leave to begin with? Are we worth another chance, as Barry Manilow sings that song right now about being ready? Am I ready to take a chance again? What have I to lose? What have I to gain?
Silly me. Of course you would welcome me back. Probably you’d say something cute, like, “Hey, Love! Turn around a moment.” Puzzled, I would acquiesce, and then you’d say, “It’s so good to see you’re back.” (You do love those double-entendres, don’t you, Stef?) Then you’d laugh, I’d laugh, and the air would be clear, just like that.
The chances are good that we wouldn’t even speak of this long break because I know you, Stefanie. I know you. I know you still love me, that you didn’t stop, and that you’ve been hoping for this–even though I didn’t return your calls or respond to your messages. I know you, Stefanie. I know your hopeful heart is waiting for one move, one gesture from me. What I don’t know is if I can make it.
Oh, heart! I want to! I miss you so much! And the stories we have to tell one another are enough to involve many more trips to Charlotte, the waterfall you once took me to, or just over twenty or more dates.
In closing, don’t give up on me. I don’t think I am ready just yet, but…I implore you: don’t give up on me. What? You haven’t? I assumed as much.
Thank you, Stefanie.