i blinked my eyes open, slowly.
i felt my every inch of my body beg for more rest, but i forced myself to move.
my aching body rolled off of the couch as i searched frantically for my phone.
"great." i thought to myself.
i couldn't find it anywhere.
i ran my hands over the couch one last time, and then realized i should possibly check in-between the seat cushions.
there it was.
i slid it up, with what little strength i had. the clock read, "12:51 am." holy cow. i had been there, on that same couch, for the past three hours. and it had felt like an eternity. i was stuck at work, and all of my friends had left, seeing that it had gotten to be so late, and they had curfew's to meet. i heard the low rumble of the garage door and sprang to my feet immediately. i gathered my things together quickly, and ran my fingers through my hair, as if it was going to make me look less creepy. the parents arrived back home, and i grabbed my check and left.
i twisted the doorknob and stepped out into the bitter cold.
my eyes took a minute to adjust, and i drew back. i couldn't see anything.
i blinked my eyes a few times, and finally could make out the lines on the blank concrete. i randomly decided to tilt my head upwards. i literally gasped, as i noticed the bright shining stars that hovered above the world. i stood there, carelessly, for a moment.
i hadn't seen them in so long.
"they're so pretty..." i silently whispered to myself. i looked down at my feet and contemplated why i had decided to say that out loud. "they make me kind of miss you.." i said without any intention of speaking. i forced myself to quickly walk home as i questioned if those words had really just jumped out of my mouth.
when i got home, i sauntered straight to my room, and threw my bag on the ground. i melted into my welcoming mattress as it gently hugged me. i was still in my clothes from that day. dress, tights, cardigan, and all. but i was so comfortable, and so close to a deep sleep that my body ached for. i felt myself giving in, and slipped my feet underneath my comforter. i clutched onto my favorite pillow, and slowly shut my eyes. just before i let myself go, i clutched my pillow even tighter, as you slowly took over my thoughts..
i've been so terribly afraid of letting you in.
and i'm not entirely sure why..
ever since that cold november day that i met you, i've kept myself at a distance from you.
i didn't even mean to get so close to you. i just wanted to help you. you were so desperate for some kind of change. you were lost in your own sadness and heartache. i don't know what made me want to reach out to you. but whatever it was, i'm glad i followed up on it.
we've had some of the best conversations, and your unique and beautiful soul shines through almost every single thing you say. you dance around my thoughts constantly, and i always find myself hesitating to text you. whenever i talk to you, i feel as if nothing matters but you. you've told me countless times how i've helped, but i stopped believing it long, long ago. you're still depressed more than necessary, and i feel as if i'm just worthless. i should help more, but i get too caught up in myself. you tell me how you felt so close to me just from the first time we met. and it's always just enough to push me over the edge, and let myself free fall into the unknown...
but i still just can't let myself go out on a limb, and devote myself to you.
no, that's just too risky...
my thoughts of you increased the entire weekend, and i finally gave in to the itching temptation to text you, and ask you a question i desperately needed an answer to. i slowly punched in the letters on my phone, as i spelled out, "can i ask you a pretty blunt question? " and watched myself hit, "send." my stomach churned as i clenched my hands into fists.
no matter what he says, you are not going to change. you are not allowed to let yourself seriously fall in love, ashley. i tried to tell that to myself, but i secretly knew it wouldn't matter once he stated how he felt..
"yes. you can."
my hands shook, and i could hardly hit the right keys on my phone.
"do you even care? at all anymore? i feel like i'm more of a burden. i don't want to be a burden..."
because it was true. i felt as if i was a nuisance in his life, and an unnecessary person who had failed their job, and should just walk away and carry on. but secretly i was hoping you would say the complete opposite..
your name lit up my phone, and i threw it aside.
"i can't do it. i can't read it." i whispered to myself.
i felt like such a young child; innocent and dramatic over such a little thing.
i slid it open... and hit, "view."
i covered it up, and then slowly read it line by line.
"i do care... i care with all my heart.."
a wave of emotion overtook my body, and i didn't know which way was up.
i could feel the truth of his words, seeping deep, deep into my heart. i couldn't deny the feelings that overcame me..
a silent and unknown voice crept into my head, and began talking to me...
"ashley, you need to help him. what made you think you could just stop?"
my arms and legs were lined with goosebumps, and my heart didn't hurt anymore...
my stomach was full of butterflies, and i felt the warmest feeling of sincerity that i've felt in a long time.
and then the voice said one last remark.
"ashley, you love him."
oh, i don't know what to do...