I know I’m not good at giving you my heart.
Trust me when I say that my inability to properly express my feelings and my aversion to vulnerability has eaten me up on the inside countless times. That whenever I tear my heart off my sleeve and shove it down my throat it burns. I know it’s frustrating to have to deal with me– someone who struggles with even mustering an, “I love you too,” and who constantly shies away from things all sweet and sentimental.
I have trouble expressing myself unless I’m alone, with the door shut behind me and the lights dimmed. When there’s a keyboard before my fingertips, a dictionary to one side and I have infinite time to mull and ponder over the words and synonyms and phrasing that I want to use. When I know that there’s no one looking over my shoulder to judge me, to criticize me, to berate me and instill fear in my heart.
This is a problem. You know that. No matter how many times you’ve assured me that everything is okay, that you’ll be willing to wait patiently until I can get rid of the chains around my heart, I’m never convinced. I’m never satisfied with myself. I’m not patient as you are. I scrawl notes on my desk pad out of frustration, telling myself that I need to wake up. I sit for hours on end ruminating, wishing you would know my thoughts. I tear paper, I throw fits, I bash my keyboard, I shed tears. What I’m saying is, I’m terrible at this part. The part of being vulnerable. The part with hearts out and soft spots exposed and words of love rolling off my tongue and no masks to hide behind.
But even though I can never genuinely be myself for more than a minute and I have a tendency to go pink in the face when confronted with even the slightest hints of raw emotion, I need you to know this. I want you to know this.
You do. You matter to me. Probably a whole lot more than you think. But it’s not your fault for thinking this way– it’s mine for never making it seem so. I still might not be able to express how much you mean to me or say the simplest “I’m really grateful that you’re in my life,” and do so without wanting to curl into a ball cringing, but that doesn’t mean you haven’t made an impression. It doesn’t mean that your actions have gone unnoticed, that you haven’t impacted my life.
You matter. You matter to me. A lot.
And besides the over-elaborate cringe-worthy and petrified of wearing my heart on my sleeve part of me, there’s something else that I want you to know.
People who matter to me are worth more to me than anything.
When you’re smiling, it’s as if I take mental pictures of these moments, wanting to relive them time and time again. When you’re laughing, something inside of me lights up. When you support me and provide me with words of encouragement, my heart is full. I am so grateful and feel so lucky to have you in my life. Thinking back to where I was before you, I’ve never felt more happy and more content with anything, let alone my existence. That in itself is something I still find surreal with every day that passes.
When I see you breaking, my heart breaks. When I see you struggling, I can’t help but cry. When we’re separated even for the shortest periods of times, I can’t help but miss you. When you’re hurting, a part of me can’t help but blame myself. I want to help you in every way I possibly can, I want to shower you in words of love and praise just as you do to me. I want to make you feel loved. I want to be able to convince you that you are worth my time, you are worth all my effort, you are worth everything. And not only that, you are everything. You are everything to me. I want you to know that.
You’ll be in my thoughts and on my mind as I drift off to sleep and your name will be at the tip of my tongue and in my heart for probably forever now. As long as I remember you, I’ll always care about you. Perhaps it’ll be in a huge, life-changing blatantly obvious kind of way, or maybe it’ll be more subtle, quieter and simplistic. Whatever happens, it’ll be there. It’ll linger forever in my heart and never go away.
Because people who matter to me this much, matter to me a lot more than my own life. And these people are the people who will matter to me forever.
Yes, I’m not great at being vulnerable. I hesitate with my feelings and suppress my emotions and struggle with showing my real genuine self because my instinct will always tell me to not risk giving anyone my heart.
But that doesn’t mean the feelings aren’t there. That doesn’t mean that each and every day, I’m not putting in the effort, especially for you. You’re worth the time. You’re worth the effort. I’m telling you, you’re worth everything and are much more important to me than you think. My heart is just hiding, and slowly but surely, someday I’ll edge it out.
You matter to me.
And I promise that one day, I’ll convince you of that.