As any of you who follow my Twitter feed know, I spent the majority of my yesterday with PrincessA at the Mall of America. Though we would not classify ourselves as “shoppers”, we spent about five hours in the mall and came away with nice hauls. My highlights include a new pair of heels, a pair of purple flats (yes, purple), a secondhand kimono and obi, and a pair of Invader Zim booty shorts (I rule!). PrincessA found shoes for a dress and headbands for work. It was a fun day.
But what stood out for me the most was a simple gesture. As we walked, PrincessA held my hand. Casually, she slipped her left hand into my right as we continued our trek through the endless array of stores, shops, and food stops.
When we stopped for ice cream, she checked-in with me, asking if it was okay that she had given the affection. I assured her it was perfectly fine; we were friends, so yes, she could, by all means, hold my hand.
As we walked, I wondered what the people around us thought. What conclusions did they make up in their minds about PrincessA and I from the simple act of holding hands?
And, since I was wondering about everyone else, I turned the lens back on myself. How did I feel about my friendship with PrincessA, about holding her hand?
It was, in fact, refreshing to dwell on this thought exercise. PrincessA and I are friends. Period. No big F. No underlying hope or dream. Just friends. And you know what, I really like that. With her, there is no pressure, no expectation. I can just be and that’s perfectly okay.
Maybe that is why I was nervous but not panicked at the idea of visiting her. I knew that, no matter what, PrincessA had no expectations, no hidden desires. It would just be two friends getting to hang out and have random fun.
And I also knew I felt the same. It’s been so relaxing to not have to constantly think about what my underlying emotions are regarding this action or that comment. I just am here in Minnesota. I can just be and everything will be alright. My whole world does not rest on saying the right thing or not saying the wrong thing.
At the end of my two week Spring Break, I start therapy. And though I am nervous about it, I am also relieved. I can finally begin talking to a professional about the whirlwind in my head: my anxiety, my insecurities, my bullshit. I can finally start intensely working through my issues, and just maybe I’ll come out the other side a stronger more fulfilled person.
My time with PrincessA has been what I had hoped for: relaxed, refreshing, fun, and rejuvenating. And I still have fourteen hours to fill.
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