By Evelyn Dykes
I came out, stupidly, because I fell in love with my best friend.
Because I don’t want to totally give away her identity, I’m going to rename her Violet, which is equally obvious to her real name, seeing as she has brilliantly byzantium colored hair. I looked it up. Byzantium. It’s a real color.
Violet was delicate and pretty with red nail polish and gray eyes and a face that was like a paper doll. You never knew how it was going to move – not exactly – so every little difference in movement was beautiful and bizarre.
To the oblivious, our relationship was just simple friendship. To the gossips of middle school, it was obvious–at least, my intentions were. We both were stereotypes–short hair, artistic viewpoints, all sorts of differences in the atypical that we could muster. I would sacrifice for her – stupid things, little things, a candy bar, a Lady Gaga poster (the one where she was oh-so gorgeous with her fantasy mole just off), little stuffed animals I made.
At age eleven, I confessed to our orchestra teacher – tears in my eyes – that I wanted to kiss Violet on the mouth and, after that, I tried to repress my feelings for an entire year. For one year, I dated a boy, weaved flowers into my hair, and tried hard to ignore the way she ate mulberries behind the school on the last day of school. I tried.
A month into the eighth grade, I took her into the library and whispered that I was lesbian.
“Okay,” she whispered back, her expression a fairy tale waiting to be rewritten. Oh God.
“That’s it?” I asked in return. Can you take a flib-nipping clue?
I really overdid it that year. I glimpsed through a metaphorical looking glass at another girl, a prettier girl, named Lily, and I tried to distract myself with her dark brown eyes and curly waves of hair that fell around her fair and elegant shoulders. Of course, she didn’t like me, so it didn’t really matter. Nothing really mattered if Violet didn’t like me back.
In the ninth grade, I tell Violet how I feel.
It isn’t immediately that her face changes. In fact, it doesn’t change at all, which is weird, because I’ve found Violet to be the one person who I can find some kind of truth in, and now, she’s trying to conceal it. “Oh,” she says, a single round syllable, and she takes a step back. The curtains fall. It is intermission.
We don’t talk for a few months. From some friends who aren’t really friends as much as acquaintances — what we had was a little bit one-sided, I’ll admit, maybe even obsessive — I learn that she has a boyfriend now, and works for a various number of charitable organizations. I’m not sure if she’s happy, though. I know I’m not.
I know that in the time that we’ve been broken, several deeply personal occurrences have played out in a rather dramatic format. I still wonder what went wrong, and if it’ll ever be the same. Part of me — the weird, semi-formed adult — knows the truth, knows that it’ll never, ever, under any circumstances whatsoever (except for those in which she miraculously declares her everlasting love for me and I feel strong enough to accept the consequences of the responsibilities associated with sharing a closet someday) be the same. The other half, A.K.A, the loping a galumphing immature monster, is overcome by such a desire for hugs and her face that it is hard to breathe most times, and even harder to see straight when doing so.
Anyhow, now that the rambling is done, it is safe to say that now, Violet is doing well, or at least I think she is. Every day I see her at school, either with a small smile of regality or one of fabulous elegance, but it doesn’t matter, because she is always holding hands with someone, usually her boyfriend, and she looks happy, and that’s all I want for her.