It’s so easy to blow off the idea of a crush or crushing on someone because crushes are what I identified with as a teenager. After marriage and kids and work and keeping a home running and the art of adulting, it seems insignificant. It’s something I can’t imagine having time for. Actually, I can. I have. It was fun. And yes, I lost time in my lack of concentration because his presence made my mind go blank far too often. I have been in the middle of something and when work doesn’t get done, I prove I don’t have time for it.
Crushing something takes a whole and perfect object and adds pressure to the point that something fundamental is released and changed and the modification can not be undone. If you crush a grape – a very specific grape for wine making and not table grapes – you release it’s juices and let it ferment. The decaying of the grape, with special enzymes and time are what make a wine. It’s a process that has to be completed or it’s unusable. Let it go for too long and alter the conditions required and the wine becomes vinegar which has a unique purpose, but I wouldn’t ever advise sipping it. I tried it for a little while and even if it’s diluted apple cider vinegar, it’s just not worth it. It’s the same with a friendship that crushes it’s existence into something more. How do you go back? I don’t know that you can.
I think the process of living is in itself a form of a crush. We go through experiences mired in trials that transform us and going back is impossible sometimes.
I’ve had lots of crushes in my life. My first three or four long term relationships were guys that grew on me until I was obsessed and determined to make their kisses mine. I tend to be a nice person that takes more than she deserves and gives more than she probably should. Call it my lack of boundaries, or an inability to decide I deserve more than they are capable of giving me. It always started with physical attraction and then I got lost in what their favorite everything is, without really paying attention to me and loving myself first and best. My infatuation crushed who I was and wanted to be.
I didn’t have a crush on my husband. At first I was insulted that he didn’t call me when I gave him my number. On our first date, I was surprised that we had a conversation and he wasn’t trying to see how far I’d let him go. At some point the rightness of him settled around me. With him, I just knew. There were no butterflies, just a new feeling that we were aligned with destiny. I wanted to be with him all of the time and the love blossomed and filled my entire being. Fifteen years is a long time to be wrong, so I want to believe we stayed together long enough to create and gain what we were meant to. I was content in our lives but the understanding of my joy lately tells me I was there too long and he saved us from existing and released me into living. I’m not surviving. I’m thriving. He taught me to speak up for myself and helped me stop my boozing and smoking and promiscuous ways. He healed my brokenness and rewrote my Daddy issues. I can always thank him for making me better, but I also believe we stopped making each other grow, and started piling burdens on each other instead of nurturing each other in love, grace, patience and understanding. Without that laundry list, it was just laundry and undefined comfort in expected routines.
I love my current crush for it’s frivolity. I love the excitement and butterflies. I love picking out then changing outfits a few times each morning instead of rolling out of bed and throwing on whatever isn’t stained too badly. I like the way my ear picks up on his voice and I have a silly smile on my face whenever he looks my way. Today, very loudly throughout the office, he mentioned that I’m always smiling. A friend in the know giggled and laughed with me and if my skin wasn’t such a warm chocolate, you may have seen me blush but I felt the heat flush through my chest up to the roots of my hair.
The crushing in my infatuation was the slow walk over the last vestiges of commitment toward my husband. In the liminal spaces of longing looks, I’ve given myself permission to look for another man’s face and I’ve started longing to hear someone else’s voice and it is not about betrayal or pain, but a birthing of pleasures in a new life and with a new freedom. He isn’t just a person I find extremely attractive. He is my first crush in over 16 years. He symbolizes the first steps of determination from a future I didn’t want and was terrified of. I took that step after denying that possibility for so long and I find it’s a meadow filled with California poppies and a blanket and I can lay as long as I want to, looking at the wispy clouds and feeling the warmth of the sun as it kisses my sorrows into oblivion and hope is restored for a future I can finally see myself in. The clouds part and gather to give shade in tandem with warm winds and it’s amazing.
There was a crushing and I know I can never go back. It’s not about my crush. It’s not about starting or finishing something with him. It’s not even about my husband. My crush is about me and I don’t want to uncrush this grape. It can’t be restored. The process has been started and the enzymes were added. Given enough time, this wine will be full bodied and fruity and pair well with dessert. Second helping please. With brie and fig preserves please. Okay, and maybe a naked crossfit body, please.