Imperfect Impressions

Thursday, 
12th February 2004

I think today was a little better than yesterday. For one thing, at least everyone was at school today. I found out that Amy actually wasn’t sick yesterday… she wagged. More specifically, she wagged with Dan! They met up in the city and hung out all day. I can’t believe she didn’t tell me! We haven’t even been at school for a fortnight and she’s already cutting class. She told me not to tell anyone. Well, not yet. She’s not ready to tell the rest of the girls just yet. I seriously hope that she tells them soon though; I don’t like keeping secrets. And I seriously hope that Amy wagging school to see Dan doesn’t become a habit. Or worse.

Get caught.

I didn’t have Physics today. Instead, we had something called Health Studies. It’s held in the F Block common room, with about 5 other form groups. We aren’t actually assessed on anything; it’s more to educate us on various health topics. In summary, it’s basically an hour of being lectured on some random topic like ‘The Food Pyramid’ or ‘Family Planning’.

Ugh.

Today’s subject was about STD’s. So awkward. Rita and I sat together, then I saw Britt and Mercy’s form groups walk in. Unfortunately, Benjamin White and Omar Jabour had decided to take the seats next to us. Definitely the last people I wanted to be sitting next to. Isn’t it enough that I have to put up with them during Physics, and now I had to sit next to them during one of the most uncomfortable subjects on the earth? I’m just so lucky! Not.

Benjamin winked at me as he sat down. I rolled my eyes and shifted my body angle towards Rita. Once everyone was seated, Mr Travis introduced the guest speaker and we sat there for an hour, listening to her story about how she became HIV positive.

It… was one of the saddest stories I have ever heard in my whole entire life.

Everyone in the room was completely silent as she talked about her life before, and after her diagnosis. I came out of the common room with a whole new perspective on life, not to mention more of an appreciation of how lucky I actually am. Because really… it could be worse.

The girls and I were talking about it at recess. But the topic was so depressing that I decided to change the subject and ask for their advice about Taj. I told them about the conversation we had last night, and they were just as confused as me. Mercy reckons that Leanne probably still likes him, that’s why she’s messing with him. And everyone else thinks that Taj might still like her too. They all agree that they think he’s a really nice guy, but he probably needs some time to clear his head and work out what he wants. Like, it was great that they agree with me about the latter, but at the same time, it’s not reassuring at all. But interestingly, that all changed when I ran into Taj on the way to last period.

“Hey Amber,” he greeted me, as if the arguing never happened from yesterday.

“Hi.”

“What a stroke of luck that I’ve run into you,” he said as he watched everyone else make their way to the last class of the day, “I am really sorry about yesterday. I feel incredibly bad about it.”

“It’s ok,” I said, reluctantly lying, “I’m over it.”

“Really?”

“Yup.”

“Huh… ok,” Taj said quietly as he recoiled slightly.

I didn’t have time for idle chit chat, “I have go, so-“

“Wait!” he said suddenly as he went to grab my hand, “Come on MSN tonight. I need to tell you something really important.”

OMG. Not again. I rolled my eyes. He’s lucky that I’m even talking to him right now. I know that I’ve calmed down a lot since yesterday, but I’m still really pissed off.

“Amber… please?”

I let out a loud sigh, “Fine.”

“Thank you. Ok, I’ll talk to you later,” he said gratefully as we parted ways.

I seriously HATE not knowing where I stand with a guy. Joshua put me through it, and now Taj was doing the exact same thing. Way to pick ‘em Amber.


I caught the bus home but Adrian wasn’t on. He had work tonight, so Mrs Petrovich picked him up from school and took him straight to the record store. The rest of the afternoon and evening went pretty smoothly.

I watched Passions… but I really wasn’t paying attention.

I did my homework… but I really wasn’t paying attention.

I practised piano… and I still, wasn’t really paying attention.

All I could think about is what Taj was going to tell me. I had like, a million thoughts going through my head… and barely any of them were positive. So, by the time 8pm came around, I was going insane!

I was really anxious by the time I logged onto MSN. I ignored all the chat windows that were popping up. I just couldn’t be bothered dealing with everybody else’s problems; I was already too emotionally drained. I didn’t have to wait too long before Taj started chatting to me.

Taj: Hey

Me: Hey

Taj: How are you this evening?

Me: im ok. u?

Taj: Honestly… not so good.

Me: y?

Taj: Because the more I think about yesterday, the more I feel terrible about how I acted, and how I treated you. Words can’t describe how much I regret hurting you. I am so sorry Amber, I really am.

Damnit! Why does he have to talk like that to me? It makes it near impossible to be pissed off with him. But. I couldn’t let him know that he had melted my heart a little bit.

Me: k. is that wat u wanted 2 tell me?

Taj: No. I need to tell you some things that I should have told you a while ago.

My heart felt like it was going to leap out of my chest.

Me: is it bad? Coz if it is, I dun wanna kno

Taj: No! No, it’s not bad at all. Well, I don’t see it as a bad thing…

Me: ok…

I was bracing myself. I wasn’t sure what I was bracing myself for, but I just stared at the bottom of the chat window, watching the ‘Taj is writing…’ prompt. It seemed like forever, but finally, it disappeared.

Taj: Please don’t hate me for what I’m going to say, but Amber… I like you. In fact, I’ve liked you for a really long time. From the moment I saw you at the airport; before we even boarded the plane… I thought that you were just so damn gorgeous that you probably would never even notice a guy like me. But then… I got to know you. And as elusive as I thought you were, you were just… just the most amazingly down to earth girl that I’d ever met. I would have asked you out, but… I was with Leanne. I’m sorry that I kept that from you, but I thought that if I told you that I had a girlfriend, you’d stop talking to me. Plus, Leanne and I were going through a rough patch and you were like a breath of fresh air when I felt like I was suffocating. I found myself getting jealous when a couple of the other guys on the trip were flirting with you and I was missing talking to you when I was lying in my bed late at night in the hotel room. I was thinking about you even after we got back from France, and even while I was trying to work things out with Leanne. I wanted to add you on MSN, but I thought it was only fair that I should try and fix my relationship, so I let it be. I didn’t think that you’d talk to me anyway…

Omg.

What. The. Hell?!

I didn’t understand why he was telling me all this! I thought he was finished, but he just kept on going.

Taj: Then when I saw you on Australia Day… I felt like it wasn’t a coincidence. And those same feelings from France came flooding back. There was nothing holding me back from talking to you anymore. Leanne and I had broken up, so I added you and got to know you all over again. But as you know, it hasn’t been easy to be your friend because of Leanne. But I just need you to know, as much as she is a bizatch to me, I am NOT interested. I don’t have feelings for her at all. If anything, I want cold, hard revenge, for everything that she has put me through. But I would never actively seek out revenge, and I would never use you to do it because I care about you do goddamn much, which leads me to why I am so upset with myself for making you feel like I used you. Like I said, I really should have told you all this before, but I wasn’t sure how you felt about me. So yesterday when you implied that we were just friends, I figured that in order to keep your friendship… to keep you in my life… I need to be honest with you about how I feel. It’s not an easy undertaking for me to express emotions, so I hope that you can find it in your heart to forgive me for everything.

INFORMATION OVERLOAD!

I had to re-read everything that he had written. It was so… detailed. I could feel a range of emotions surge through me. Surprise. Anger. Disappointment. Sadness. And probably everything else in-between. I can’t believe… Taj Amherst opened up to me. But I wasn’t entirely sure that I liked it.

I know that he has a history with Leanne and she has made things pretty difficult. And they aren’t even going out anymore. I’m not even sure that I like the fact that he liked me at the same time that he was dating her either. What does that say about him? Technically, he was emotionally cheating on her… with me.

And I was the other woman!

I know I’m not anymore, but it still feels like it… I am so confused. Like, I know he 100% means it when he says that he’s sorry. I do believe that. But. What I can’t believe is if he is really over her. It took me a while to find the words to respond but I eventually wrote back.

Me: y ru telling me all dis?

Taj: I’m telling you the truth. My truth. But it doesn’t change anything; it doesn’t change the way I feel about you.

Me: do u think that it’s ok 2 tell me dat u liked me wen u were in a serious relationship wit ur ex? do u kno how dat makes me feel?

Taj: … I can’t imagine… but please you need to know, you weren’t the cause of Leanne and I breaking up last year. Like I said, you were a ray of sunshine in my life when I was surrounded by darkness.

Me: i dunno if I cn trust u. i dunno if I believe dat u like me, or ur just using me 2 get revenge on ur ex

Taj: I swear on my mother’s grave. I swear on my collection of AFL cards. Hand on heart Amber, I would never EVER use you.

Me: sad_smile

Taj: I know that they are just words to you, but I’ll prove it to you ok.

Me: how?

Taj: I don’t know. But I will. Amber… I don’t want to lose you…

I couldn’t take it anymore. I logged off and shut down the computer. I felt hot tears fall down my cheeks. How could he lose me? He never had me in the first place. Well, in the true sense of things… we weren’t even going out. Did he mean as a friend? Or as something more? My head was beginning to hurt.

I’m really struggling to process everything he’s told me tonight. Like, I really like the fact that he’s being honest with me; it’s answered a lot of questions about why he didn’t tell me about him having a girlfriend while we were in France. But then… the truth is just as bad. He thought I’d stop talking to him? I’m not that shallow! Sure, it would have probably stifled our conversations a little bit, but it wouldn’t have stopped our friendship from forming.

And given everything that I know about his ex-girlfriend, I feel bad that he was stuck in such a shitty relationship. But that doesn’t mean you can think about other people while you’re trying to fix things… right?

I think the thing that I’m the most upset about is that I thought Taj was… well, perfect. But now, I’m completely questioning his character. And whether or not I want to be friends with him, let alone be in a relationship with him. Maybe that’s what he was scared of too. But I don’t know. I’m not him. And I can only go with what he’s told me.

I really wish that my love life was clear cut. I hate being on this emotional roller coaster ride.

I want to get off.

Amber A.

loveheart

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