If anyone were to ask me if I’ve ever been in love, I couldn’t give them a simple answer. If love is something I have experienced, it isn’t something I could captivate with “yes”, but it’s not something I could just pass off with the word “no”. It’s complicated. It’s not something I could describe in a sentence, much less in a word or two. It’s the way my head finds just the right spot on his shoulder. It’s how good he thinks I look in his clothes. It’s looking at the clock and thinking, “He’s playing basketball right now, listening to all my favorite songs.” It’s slow dancing with him and having no idea what I’m doing, but it feels so right. I’ve never been much for dancing, but for him I did. It’s the way he comes up to me from behind my chair and puts his hands over mine and kisses the top of my head in the softest way. It’s intentionally crappy hugs, with the intention of obligating me to ask for another one, just so he can hug me the right way-putting his hands on my waist and lifting my feet off the ground, spinning me around. It’s the time he gave me a piggyback ride and for once I didn’t care how much he weighed because I knew he didn’t care. It’s the time he pushed me on the swings and touched my waist so lightly that it made my heart stop and my head spin. It’s the way those long, handwritten letters make my day when I read about how beautiful he thinks I am, and each and every thing he loves about me, the good and the bad. It’s playing this game of cards with him called “love”, and betting everything I have, even though I’ve never been good at cards. It’s how his future is the only thing he puts in front of me, because he wants it to be amazing since he’s planning on spending it with me. It’s how I only want the absolute best for him, even if it means putting an end to what we have together. It’s having taken the time to memorize him-his fears, his hopes, his dreams, and everything no one is ever going to care to know about. It’s my unsupportive and careless vibe that pushes him to be better and better in everything he does. It’s the way he looks into my eyes and still sees his number one fan. It’s being right beside him, even when he’s not the best, when he’s wrong, and when he isn’t what I would show to my parents. It’s not wanting to say goodbye. It’s dreading the day that we have to. It’s laying down at night, staring up at the stars, wearing his jacket and taking myself back to a time when we had everything figured out. When we realized for the first time that all we needed was each other and things would always be okay. When everything was perfect in the most innocent sense, before the world painted relationships as an ugly waste of time that broke you into pieces no matter how you went about creating the perfect picture. It’s praying that you’re wrong every time you think, “We’re not going to last like this.” It’s hoping that wherever he goes next, he finds whatever it is that he’s looking for, even if there isn’t a place for you. That it’s everything he dreamed it would be, and so much more. It’s holding my future in my hands, all the dreams I have, all the plans I’m making, and putting them away for a moment just so I can hold onto him for whatever time we have left together. It’s all the laughter we shared, and that cold, December afternoon, the first time he ever saw me cry. It’s all the joy in chasing my future, yet all the pain in walking away. It’s the chapter in the book that everyone reads over and over again. It’s every day I spent with him-from every smile and every kiss to every screaming match and every silent treatment. It’s every moment I didn’t share with him, wishing he was right there with me to hold my hand against his chest and feel his heart beating. It’s the look on his face when he shows up at my door to hold me in his arms. It’s the rush that comes with sneaking him into my room through my window when I can’t stop crying. It’s having all I need when my head is resting on his shoulder and his fingers are drying the tears from my face. It’s knowing that good things take time, but even greater things happen in the blink of an eye. It’s all these years I spent with him and how they flew by before I could take a step back and look at how good I really had it. It’s reminiscing and being swept off my feet when I can hear his sweet voice saying my name in my head. It’s knowing that the chances of meeting somebody like him are one in a million. It’s the amazement of knowing how lucky I am to have gotten to know him, because when it comes to having the best, the odds have never been in my favor. It’s having the best interest in him, for the right reasons. It’s the selflessness that I developed when all I could do was sit there and watch him follow his dream because it was something I knew would make him happy. It’s having the patience and understanding when he takes all his anger at himself out on me, even when it was nothing I did to frustrate him. It’s wanting no less than for him to go out and be someone, so that one day he won’t have to look back and say, “She was always there”- he’ll just look right beside him and say to me, “You never left.” It’s knowing that the only three things that keep him going is Jesus, basketball, and me. It’s not telling anyone how I feel, and knowing no one will listen to me if I did. It’s not caring that no one will believe me. It’s not having to prove my feelings for him to anybody. It’s knowing that the way I feel is only important to him and I, and that’s how it’s meant to be. It’s the one way to communicate to him how I feel in only three words. It’s the way that kissing him came so natural to me. It’s how everything about us has been nothing but intricate. It’s the one thing that’s ever been easy, still with so many struggles on its own. It’s how simple it is to say to him “I love you” and mean it from the bottom of my heart. So, if that’s what love is, then yes-at some point I’ve been in love.