My Love Story Chapter 11~Uncertain Heart

{If you are new here and missed the first 10 chapters of my love story, get caught up here.}

After our first kiss, I was on cloud 9. The next week was fun, we hung out with a bunch of our friends, with a few alone outings to the store or a concert on campus. At church activities, I knew all eyes were watching, and I felt more cautious with the public displays of affection. I remember sitting by him in church, and just keeping my hands busy looking up scriptures or writing in my journal, so my hand wouldn’t be still enough to grab. I wasn’t sure if he was ready for that or not either, so I think that helped us both out.

There was a social activity with our congregation (made up of other single 20-somethings as well) and we danced to a few songs in front of lots of people. It was becoming apparent to more than just our close friends that he and I were an item. I knew there were a few other girls that had crushes on  him, and I began to feel very special.  His roommates and my roommates still spent a lot of time together. His brother, Sam, was starting to show more attention to my roommate Hali (after she and T.J. had dated a few months back). As Valentine’s Day was approaching, my apartment got a collective Valentine request to “BE Theirs.” Giddiness prevailed.

About a week after our first (and only) kiss, Matthew went shopping with me to find a birthday present to mail home to my little brother. While were were out, I asked him what he had been thinking. I wasn’t prepared for what he  had to say. He said he’s not sure what he wants. Not sure if he is ready to forge into a full blown “relationship.”  All of a sudden, I felt so stupid. Stupid for thinking so many positive thoughts. Stupid for telling my parents that marriage may be in my summer plans. Stupid that now “people” know about us. He told me he feels good when he’s around me, but feels uneasy about some things. I felt dumb that we kissed and it was cold and not ideal and that it may never happen again. I felt ill. He doesn’t know what he wants. I knew it was all too good to be true.

In high school, my bestie Natalie and I decided that if we had crappy days, we were dressing to the 9′s so that no one else would know about it. That’s what I did the next day. I got all dressed up and was up on campus all day long–much longer than normal–and I didn’t tell anyone where I’d be. I hoped he’d worry. I kept myself busy, and planned out my week to keep my mind from him. My plans were foiled when I ran into him on campus late in the day (at least he saw me looking AWESOME!). We went to a building to study and chat and he told me he felt a lot better that day after saying everything that he had the night before, but I got defensive and told him I wanted him to make sure the “uneasy” feelings wouldn’t come back. I remembered him telling me a while before that he always thought he’d end up with a “sporty” girl, and for some reason, that moment felt like the time I made sure he knew that sporty wasn’t me. I pretty much hated playing sports, and could only tolerate watching a few of them. He quickly responded that he realized how low on the priority list that was.

We decided to just “wait and see” how things would pan out. I told myself to be patient with him, and understanding, because he had told me that with a mixture of fear from past relationships to concerns back home, his head wasn’t right. When I got home at 10 pm, and chatted with my roommate Hali about all of it, I had a realization that his uncertainties were actually exactly what I needed to realize THIS is what I really wanted. In all truth, I had never been broken up with before. I had never had a boy I dated tell me they were “unsure.” It was always me, and I always felt broken because of it. Even the month before, I was doubting how I felt about Matthew, but his uncertainties helped me realize even more that HE was what I wanted. No matter what he ultimately decides, this is good for me. I hoped that in a week or so, it would all be sorted out. I wondered how he could question “us” after everything he had said to me (hello, letter at 10,000 feet!)

During that crazy time, I was blessed to have AMAZING roommates. We danced around our apartment to music, and we laughed and laughed about everything and nothing. We had deep, spiritual conversations, talked through the crazy emotions in our heads with each other, and lifted each other up. These girls were my family, and couldn’t have asked for a better situation. We literally did everything together.

Matthew and I still went out, we just back tracked  a few weeks. Just friends. I was ok with that, because I just wanted to be near him. I threw myself into the concerns of my roommates. In my journal, I wrote, “Hali asked me what she should do about Sam because a talk is necessary soon. T.J. is starting to show interest in Amy again which is digging up old dirt she thought had been buried.” My roommates and Matthew’s roommates were pairing off a little, and it was fun to watch as I tried to forget about my current unstable situation.

The boys were on an intra-mural floor hockey team, and the girls and I went to watch them play. I wrote in my journal, “Matthew is really good and so adorable when is face turns red.”  I didn’t realize how sporty he really was. After his game, he and I went to a comedy show on campus, then got ice cream. Still, very casual and platonic. I got home late, and with my roommates still awake (because his roommates just left), we giggled at the idea that one of us couples would get married. One night, we rented the movie, Shadowlands, and all kinds of craziness happened:  Matthew and I cuddled on the couch, T.J. grabbed Amy’s hand under the blanket, and Sam even grabbed Hali’s hand. When the boys left, we pounced on Amy asking, “what in the world?!?” Hilarious enough, once the boys went home (at curfew) Sam called us up to say that we needed a group D.T.R. (define the relationship) because all kinds of craziness happened that night with that movie. Though we cuddled a little, I felt things were going in reverse with Matthew. I just didn’t know what to think. (I have no pictures of him during this time, evidence of my vulnerable state).

A popular song by Will Smith frequently repeated the phrase, “Tru-dat” and among my roommates and I, it was a sentiment we liked to echo when in agreement with something the other said. Boys and marriage were always a topic of conversation, and with our goal of a union between the boys in apartment #20 and us girls in #39, we coined the secret phrase: 20/39 forever:  Tru-dat! With hopes that one day it would come true. At the time, it wasn’t looking like it was ME that was  going to make that  happen.

 

Kristen Duke

Kristen Duke

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Kristen Duke
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Comments

  1. Another chapter–yay! I totally remember Will Smith and singing his songs, we must be about the same age.

  2. Theresa Mann says:

    Oh my goodness, that vintage phone is hysterical! Sounds like you had even more of a roller coaster than before.

    • Kristen Duke says:

      I was thinking the same thing when I looked at this picture again, my kids have never seen the curly chord like this!

  3. I love reading these!!

  4. Group DTR…lol :)

  5. Oh, I can’t wait for the next installment! This is so fun! Even though I went to a completely different university and don’t know any of these people, it is bringing back so many memories for me! My husband and I hung out with a group of three guys and three girls in college, and we did all end up marrying each other. :)

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