Some people take your breath away from the very start. Loud and wild and incredibly alive. Sometimes you fall hard on the spot, and it lasts, but here’s the thing about love: mostly it grows. Mostly it’s seeing her in class and wondering what she's thinking. Watching her write her name at the top of her paper in loopy cursive. When you ask her out for the first time, your palms are sweaty. God, you think. Get a grip. But then she says yes, and you stop thinking altogether.
And it’s quiet, this love. Shimming its way into your life. You learn that she’s funny. She likes bad reality TV and drinks coffee by the gallon. When you compliment her, she tucks her chin in embarrassment. She’s kind to people. Generous. And here’s the other thing about love: mostly you don’t see it coming.
One day in the middle of winter she takes your hand and presses close and says, “You’re so warm. God. I wish I could wear you like a sweater.” And that’s it. The shy girl in English with big eyes. Loopy cursive. This girl. This is it, you think. This is what it’s all about. You tell her that you love her one day, many months later, and maybe she says it back. Maybe she smiles wide with all of her teeth and says, “it took you long enough. ” Maybe you marry her or maybe she starts asking for space. Maybe it’s too much, this love. Or maybe you break her heart and she never forgives you. Maybe love just doesn’t cut it this time. Maybe all of this. None of it. Something else entirely. I mean, that’s the thing about love: mostly it doesn’t make any sense at all.