I’ve never said “I love you” first to anyone. Don’t get me wrong; it’s not because they’re so much more in love with me they can’t keep the words stuffed into their mouths any longer whilst I’m take-it-or-leave-it cooling my heels.
It’s because I’m chicken shit. I fear rejection in the same way people fear flying, or deadly snakes or serial killers or nuclear war. No doubt a therapist would have some clever comment about society and being gay and all that jazz, but, hey I’m not a therapist so who the hell knows why I’m such a pussy.
Obviously none of this would matter were it not for the fact that of course, of course, I’ve fallen in love with Blue Eyes. There I was larking and frolicking and lusting about and all the while the cheeky scamp was quietly setting up camp in a corner of my heart.
Now I’ll be bumbling idly about work or my mum or the weekend and all the while I’m thinking HOW CAN YOU NOT KNOW I LOVE YOU WHEN I AM LITERALLY BEAMING LOVE AT YOU THROUGH MY EYEBALLS LIKE A LASER.
I had no idea love could feel like this. It’s so much…more. I’m constantly amazed at how good it feels to kiss someone I’m actually attracted to. Shit! This is how it’s supposed to feel! Why can’t they teach you that at school?
So kids, today we’re going to learn about how to tell if you fancy someone. When someone kisses you, do you feel a tingle in your nethers? Yes? Good. That’s how it should feel.
I love her but have no intention of actually telling her, so I’m shocked when we’re in bed a few days later and it just pops out – a little gasp muddled up with my ecstasy; gah! come back! I want to shout as my heart – treacherous, wanton bloody thing that it is – tumbles out of my chest and down my body and lands, raw, at her feet.
She doesn’t say anything or stay her kisses and suddenly I feel very afraid, and alone.
Later we’re in the kitchen making tea and I say, all in a rush;
“Why don’t you love me? I’m so loveable!”
“Oh baby, I just want to be sure,” she says, trying to scoop me into a hug as I wriggle and squirm away.
You will love me, I mutter under my breath, like a villain.
Weeks go by without the slightest whiff of love. I don’t say it again; I’m too embarrassed, too ashamed by my indiscretion.
One night I take her to a pop up bar in a garden. She brings back cups of steaming mulled cider and snuggles up next to me on a bench under a tangle of ivy.
“Man I really love this” I say.
“What, me?” she giggles.
“You know I do” I reply quietly.
“I love you too. I’m sorry I haven’t said it before. I kept thinking it and I just needed to man up and say it.”
“I love you too!” I say, covering her face in kisses as she squeals.
So there it is: Girl Meets Girl, Girl Bonks Girl Silly, Girl Loves Girl. Turns out with the right person, saying I love you isn’t so difficult after all. In fact, it’s an absolute doddle.