I sat awake into the early hours of the morning. A vital piece of my heart was somewhere in Madison, and I was feeling its absence. With the soothing poetry of one of my favorite musicians feeding my thoughts and words, I wrote to you. And wrote and wrote and wrote. A letter that may never be sent. A letter that might not need to be sent. My heart was splattered in patterns all over those endless pages. The pen said all the things I’ve felt in my bones since I realized what it means to love you. The things that everyone deserves to know about themselves. The words I would die to hear from someone about myself. These are the kind of words that are hardest to spit out. They are the ones that matter the most, the ones that weigh most heavily on the hearts of the feelers and the hearts of the searchers. They take a sort of courage that forces you to really think. If someone somewhere in this world felt this way about me, thought these things about me, wouldn’t I want nothing more than to know? It takes a sort of selflessness, I think, to reveal yourself in that way. What if the things you feel in the deepest parts of your soul are met with rejection? There you are, standing naked, clothed only in potentially life changing words and emotions. Vulnerability is matched only with the deepest kind of courage you can muster. To me, there is nothing I fear more than vulnerability. That night, as the tears threatened to fall and you reached out to me, ready with comforting arms and understanding eyes that awaken something deep inside of me, I turned away. Afraid of feeling too much, of revealing too much, I walked away. We both sat there, opposite sides of the parking lot, for what felt like an eternity. I let the tears fall in pools, the longing escape my lips. Why, when I knew that we would see each other soon enough, did it feel like the end of something? I wanted nothing more than to go back to your car, settle in your arms, and let some of my pain sink into your chest. Instead, I watched. Always watching, never doing. Maybe now is the time for courage, maybe not. But hidden in those pages is a desire for fulfillment of a seemingly endless journey. A simple envelope and stamp could give me the power to make up for lost time. Or maybe even a night in the not too distant future with the leaves crackling under our feet. Either way, you can rest easy knowing that there’s a place in my heart you should always feel loved.