All I could think about was curling up in bed with her and watching The Office on Netflix.
I wanted to be close to her; not just close friends, but also close in proximity. That's not a bad thing, right? I mean it's not romantic or anything... Gosh I just want to be close to her!
These kind of thoughts were running through my head when I met a friend of mine late last year. They seemed harmless at first, but then I started getting to the root of the problem.
Why did I want to be close to her?
Well, she and I were becoming really good friends, we had a pretty awesome connection for two people that just met, she makes me feel really comfortable... So nothing bad!
Honestly, why do I want to be close to her? Be brutally honest.
When I started peeling back the layers of my attraction to her, my desire to be close to her, I kept thinking about how beautiful I thought she was, how I wanted to physically be near her because I honestly felt really alone, and I thought she could make me feel less lonely.
I had this great longing to be with her, and yet it was painful to feel that way. I couldn't wrap my head around why at the time.
I didn't want to use her, and I told myself a wouldn't, but deep down I knew I was using our relationship to fill an emotional need for intimacy. That in itself was painful.
This was a gaping wound in my heart at the time, and she knew about it. I think we both had wounds we wanted desperately to heal, but being in a relationship where we both very obviously wanted more (and were acting like it) wasn't going to help either of us heal.
She and I don't talk as often now, which I think is good. It helps us both focus more on our relationship with God. At the end of the day, that's where we both belong.
I want her to get to Heaven, and I know she wants the same for me. If that means that we have to be friends from a distance, than that's what we'll do.
Heaven is the goal, guys. We know this; we know this, we believe this, we profess this. It's nothing new.
But we are also human beings; we have very powerful emotions and desires, and more often that not, it can be extremely difficult not to succumb to them.
And the desires that I mentioned above are not totally bad within themselves! Me desiring intimacy from my girl friends is not a bad thing.
But, they can turn into a road block if they're distracting me from striving for the love of God.
I was fixated on being with her -- I was hardly thinking about God. My desire for intimacy was a lot deeper than she could ever fill, and I was trying to fill that desire with her.
That's when these desires become a problem; that's when I knew I needed to step back and reevaluate the situation.
A couple months after this, I was working on something for this blog and came across a paragraph in the Catechism that really struck me.
"God is love and in himself he lives a mystery of personal loving communion. Creating the human race in his own image..., God inscribed in the humanity of man and woman the vocation, and thus the capacity and responsibility, of love and communion."
Remember that vocation means "calling." Be virtue of our nature as human beings, in our sexual identities as man and woman (NOT "gay" and "straight," but that's a different rant for a different day), we are called to love.
And because of this call, we are giving the capacity and responsibility to love.
We are able to and commanded to love by nature. Bearing this in mind, I thought about my desire to be with her; the desires only went bad when I selfishly wanted her to fulfill a need in me that she was never meant to fill.
More importantly than all of this though is the intimate relationship that I am called to have with God. As Christians, we know that love is not just some emotion, but is a Person. In authentic love, we see the face of Jesus, because God Himself is love, and we can't find real love anywhere outside of Him.
We cannot love ourselves or others if we do not first go to the source. Anything outside of Christ isn't love, and should never be considered as such.
After reading this quote from the Catechism, I finally understood what St. Therese the Little Flower was talking about in her famous quote.
"My vocation is love," she said. I really think I get it now.
If I was created with the capacity and responsibility to love, no wonder it hurts to deeply when I settle for less!
Both of us keep that in mind now, and she and I are much better to each other because of it.
We can finally love each other, which is all we both ever really wanted.