When I first met your brother, he and I had been dating for a year. He was shy, and I was hesitant. You see, we had been dating for a year! I thought I knew who he was, but here he was, turning my world upside down. It seemed there was a completely new person in front of me, and I was scared. We had a whole year of dating under our belts, and it seemed the person that I had been dating was actually someone else. I had to meet him all over again, and being an anxious person, this was not my cup of tea.
It turns out, my indecisiveness terrified him. After a few days of uncertainty, he retreated back into himself, and became the person I knew again. However, there was a spark of curiosity in my mind, wondering about the new person that I had barely met, before he had gone again.
The thought, though gone from his mind, was alight in mine. I noticed things about this new person, while he was still showing the old for me. I noticed the need in his eyes, which he thought he had hidden from me. I noticed the difference in the way he held me, as though he had confirmed himself in his mind, and he was gaining the confidence that he should have had from birth. I noticed the absence of confusion, as he had finally found in himself who he was supposed to be. I noticed his building desire for me to join him in his newfound identity, but I said nothing.
I was struggling too, so I said nothing. I was noticing all these new things in him, and I began looking at myself to know if I could accept this new person as my partner. I studied him. I am not ashamed to say that I watched his every move. I listened to his every word, and took everyone to heart. He was now a subject to me, one that I had to discover more intimately than anything. I watched him discover his new self, and I recognized him. Suddenly, he was not a new person to me anymore – but he was not his old self either. He was still everything that his old self had been, that I had fallen in love with.
But he was also more. He had his old charm, but he was now even more charming. He was beautiful, but now he was even more handsome. He had his old laugh, but now it contained even more joy. He had his old smile, but now it was filled with more wonder. He had his old confidence, but it now contained more self-assurance. He still loved me in the same way, but now it was more enveloping. He was still the same person he had been, but he was also more. This was not a new person in front of me, but the person I had known all along.
I waited for him. I waited for him to tell me, again, to re-confirm himself to me. I waited for him to accept himself over me, because though our love for each other is important, his self-love was more important. I waited for him to tell me again, because he needed to put his needs as an individual over mine. I waited for him to tell me again, because he had to accept in his mind that his identity was more important than our relationship.
I wanted him to know that. And I also wanted to be able to reassure him when he told me about his new self again. I wanted to be able to tell him that it was okay. My feelings had not diminished – they had grown with his.