Unspoken, Unwritten Agreement
I am a senior at my high school. For over a year now, I’ve had a crush on my astronomy teacher from junior year.
I am a different kind of girl. Sure, I have my group of friends just like everyone else, but I do not connect with them. There is just too much that they would not be able to understand.
Anyway. I’ve never had a boyfriend and I can’t say I really need one.
I am usually a reclusive person. That manages to set some people off, but it doesn’t bother me all that much. The funny thing is, I am able to connect better with people older than myself. That has always been a factor, even in my younger years.
When I took astronomy class last year, I was more interested in learning about the stars and the universe than anything else. When I first saw Troy, my astronomy teacher, I thought he was a very pleasant person (I never call him by his first name, but I’ll use it here). He would tell us crazy stories about his college years and make class fun. It was his class that almost made me forget that I was in school every day.
He would never yell at anyone, but then again the students in my class (mostly seniors) would be too caught up staring at the planetarium above to cause any trouble.
Troy is in his early thirties, is married and has a small boy. My feelings for him had been platonic up until the end of the school year. I respected him because he seemed like a nice guy, but nothing else.
One day, after I had taken all my finals, I decided to spend my hour of journalism class with him instead.
All the seniors had already graduated, and a handful of students weren’t at school because they had also taken their finals.
I had asked Troy if I could spend my next class with him, and he had happily agreed. When I finally got to his room, we were the only ones there. That day he kept the room dark because he was projecting Sports Center on the planetarium (which is pretty cool). I grabbed an astronomy book from the shelf and sat at the end of the room, close to his desk.
I read in silence for half an hour. After that, Troy came up to me and sat on a desk right in front of me. I was surprised that he had come to talk to me, but accepted the kind gesture non the less. He started the conversation, and we talked about anything from our class, to summer plans, and future plans. He was honest and sincere, listening to everything I had to say. Somewhere along our conversation I realized that he really did care, and was truthful with me. He told me that I was a great student to have in his class – one of the best he had ever had, as a matter of fact. He also told me he had noticed that I did not talk much, and informed me that he saw no reason why I should not believe in myself.
I ended up talking to him about my parents and how, despite the fact that they have only the best in mind, they do not understand me. Surprisingly, he proceeded to tell me about his own parents, and how his father never really approved of him being a teacher.
We found common ground. Somehow I had been able to share more with him that day, than I had with anyone else.
At the end of class, we stood facing each other for a few seconds before moving in for a brief hug. I was going to miss him a lot during the summer.
Things have changed since then. Everything has become more complicated, in a way. When I came back to school for my senior year, my feelings followed. They have only been growing since the beginning of the year.
I’ve been seeing Troy almost every day since. He hasn’t forgotten about last year, and even though he isn’t my teacher any more, we talk on a regular basis.
He has, on multiple occasions, invited me to come to one of his classes whenever I have free time. Whenever we would run into each other in the hallways, he would stop and chat with me for a minute, no matter how insignificant the exchange of information was.
On top of that we also have lunch the same period. One day before the winter break I was feeling especially down. I had talked to him earlier in the morning, wishing I could somehow convey the fact that I was going to miss him during the vacation, but was not successful. I had wanted to hug him at least once more.
At the end of lunch we crossed paths, and Troy once again wished me a safe break. However, as he was about to turn and walk away, I reached out to him and said “Wait”.
I had never sounded so desperate in my life. He turned back to me and smiled, waiting patiently for what I was about to say.
The thoughts were racing in my mind and I had no idea what to really say. In an effort to explain myself, I told him that I wanted one last thing before we said goodbye. I was afraid of what I wanted to do, because I usually did not let people see the weaker side of me.
His response to that was an enthusiastic OK, even though he had no idea what I wanted. He then moved closer to me, not breaking eye contact even for a second. His gaze was intense – I had his full attention.
I could honestly not trust myself with talking any more. My voice was already weak, and I had run out of excuses to my strange behavior.
Just as my eyes were starting to get glossy, I moved in and embraced him.
Troy was not able to fully return the gesture because in his left arm he was carrying his laptop. But he managed to, very gently, place his arm around my waist, as I had placed my own arms around his shoulders.
We stood like this for a few seconds. I closed my eyes in order to capture the moment before it was gone. Then I let go and stepped back, aware that other students were around.
I am sure he already knows how I feel about him, mainly because I am so obvious. But even if he does, I will never tell him, because I care for him too much. I respect him as married man, just as I respect him as a person.
I am sure that, with this knowledge, he sometimes has a hard time facing me. Some days we manage to ignore each other completely. I understand the reasons, and I give him his space even though it hurts me to.
However, we always manage to come back. It is like an unspoken, unwritten agreement that sets things straight between us. At the end of the day, his smile is the only thing that matters.