How does one express feelings adequately? How can one possibly describe those alien and crazy emotions that run amok in one’s brain, causing distraction, causing dissatisfaction and causing chaos? Perhaps there was no sufficient way to convey what he did to her; the destruction he caused simply by speaking. His existence threw her entire world into disarray, and she didn’t have the slightest inclination how to tell him such things. She knew only that the secret was consuming her.
“You make me feel.”
No, that word wasn’t right. It didn’t convey the total alteration of her world since meeting him. It was an inadequate word, to say the least. Besides, she had said such things to him before, and he had smiled in friendship.
“I’m glad,” He’d said, but nothing more.
No, happy was not what she felt. In fact, being around him made her more sad than happy; how was that for a paradox? Sad was much too plain a word for the feelings he evoked in her; feelings of longing, of desire, and of things never to be. He left her bereft.
“When I am with you I feel as if I am a cat, drinking in the sunshine, bathing in the warmth and beauty of the moment.”
The problem was that if she were to speak such words to him, he would no doubt misconstrue the meaning of her statement as one of a sexual nature.
In a past life, she must have been a cat. Her torment in life was to be a passionate and sensual creature caught up in a disconnected and distanced world. This society forced her to wear a mask and hide her true nature. She had learned early how cruel the world could be if one showed such vulnerabilities. The problem was that everything about him evoked that sensuality which she strove to hide. The timbre of his voice, the length of his fingers, the curve of his smile, and the vivacity of his being all spoke to her senses and drew out her passions. There wasn’t a part of him that didn’t make her feel, though what she felt she still could not express.
“You have seduced my soul.”
He would no doubt dismiss such a statement as delusional sentiment. Would he think her dramatic? She was positive he would. Yet there was honesty in those words. He had valued the things in her that she had always valued in herself, those things that others had dismissed or treated as mere fancy. For the first time in her life, she felt beautiful and not because he complimented her appearance, but because he praised her mind.
Once she had called her husband at work. His boss had answered and declared that she had a sexy voice. We know who to call for those long weekends away, they had joked. She’d felt dirty. Men can take the pieces of a woman and break them, ruining them forever. Worse had been the fact that her husband had been proud of his wife’s sexy voice. It confirmed her biggest fear: she was an object to her husband; a piece of candy to be flaunted.
It wasn’t that she didn’t want her man to find her sexy or to desire her. She very much wanted those things to blossom in the intimacy between her and her lover. But she wanted that desire to grow out of more than a want of her body. And she wished those things to remain between them as a secret testament to their love.
How freeing would it be to give her body to a man who wanted her for the beauty he saw in her mind. There would be no fear that she wouldn’t be skinny enough, pretty enough, sexy enough or skilled enough to please him. She would know already that he thought her the most beautiful thing in the world because he treasured the way she thought and felt.
That was it. That was how he made her feel. This man, who spoke to her with a gentleness she had never before experienced, he made her feel treasured.
Once she had been broken (perhaps she still was, though she would deny it). In her pain and self-hatred, she had burned through men. She had experienced lust and greed. She had used and been used. Nothing sated her passion. Each act left her empty; filled only with her self-loathing. Even now, with her husband, she felt only emptiness though she wished desperately to be loved.
What would it be like to be loved by this man? It was not a sexual desire that drew her to him, though that was there too. She could picture herself curling up next to him with a good book and drinking in his warmth and strength. It was the simple moments—turning her face up to enjoy the warmth of the sun after too many cool days, watching the snow drift lazily while a fire crackled nearby, the sound of rain late at night and the sound of the ocean surging steadily—being with him made her feel the same emotions. It was in these moments that she felt at peace for the first time in her life.