Before I’m down for you, please show me who you are.
Please don’t be a complete narcissist. I can sense one a mile away, so do what you need to, and have your sh*t mostly together before we meet. I’m working on mine, and you better be working on yours too, before I’m down for you.
I would love it if we met organically, like on a train or at the dog park, or in some rowdy bar, or at an elegant party, but alas, these are trying, disconnected, germ-filled times and it sure won’t happen that way. It will be different. Our love story will be different. Before we begin, we should be cautious. But we can also be optimistic.
Before I lay down with you, before I cuddle up all my cozy, soft flesh and hairy bits and knocking bones, make sure your feet and hands are warm. Make sure, too, that you are stable and kind and mostly liberal, because I am all about right livelihood and living clean and free, and being nice to people, and helping where and when I can, and not eating animals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I am all about respect and reverence and humor, and, of course, we can disagree, but we must do it intellectually, considerately, sans tired talking points and platitudes. I want you to really know a thing or two about the world, about what it means to be imperfectly human, because I do, and I expect that from you before I steal your blankets every night.
Before I go down on you, I will make you want it so bad you won’t be able to control yourself. I will tease you all day long. I will squeeze you casually, like it’s just part of my sexy day. I will brush up against you and talk in dirty whispers. I will reach for your hand and stick your finger in my mouth and look you straight in the eye. I will purposely bend over right in front of you, in my short skirt, or I will “lose a button” accidentally. Oopsie. I will straight-up peel and eat a banana next to you while you’re trying to work, and when I’m enjoying my yogurt, I’ll lick my spoon slowly and hungrily, savoring it, the same way I will eventually savor you.
Before I get down with you, the music better be right, dude. I’m talking “Johnny B. Goode”, or “Brown Sugar,” or maybe “Stayin’ Alive.” And I’m always down for some “Brown Eyed Girl” even though it’s overplayed. If it has to be a slow, soulful jam, make sure it’s The Commodores or Otis Redding or Gladys Knight and the Pips. I will shake my ass and gracefully swing inside your outstretched arms. I’ll toss my hair and bite my bottom lip. You can twirl me all around, but buddy, the music better be good before I get down with you.
Before I’m down in front of you, I must trust you. I need to know that you won’t hold my river of emotions against me, as a weapon for later destruction. You won’t call me a baby or tell me to stop feeling sorry for myself or to simply get over it. You won’t chuckle and call me too sensitive. You will realize that this is simply the way I am imperfectly human in front of you, and even if my tears make you uncomfortable sometimes, you’ll hold sacred safe space for me; you’ll reach for my hand and let me feel the way I feel. If it’s down that I’m feeling, you’ll just let me be, without making it about you or your judgments.
And if you ever call me crazy, it’s game over.
Before you speak down to me, or correct me, or think you’re worldly and well-versed in contrast to my obvious (to you) ignorance, please know that I will chew you up, you and your words, and spit you right out like slimy watermelon seeds on a hot day in July. I will be receptive to your thoughtful and kindly-delivered criticism, of course, but I will never be a platform for your ego-serving condescension. I’ve worked too hard in my life to give out free passes for this type of thing.
And before I’m down to be with you—and only you—please show me that you’re strong. I can be impatient and silly and impulsive and selfish and ugly sometimes, but I will always apologize. I need you to accept the bad with the good. I’d like you to be smart in all the ways I am not smart—but not arrogant. I would like you to be all the things a person should be—but not perfect. I know you won’t be perfect, but I’d like you to be the sort of imperfect human who just keeps brushing off the dirt. A human who keeps calling, and trying, and working on it. On us. I would like you to be the sort of person who understands that equal partnership love requires a bit of stubborn persistence and self-editing.
And if you’re a little goofy too, if you can laugh at yourself a bit, like I laugh at myself, and smile without hesitation, and find joy in the small stuff—if you’re someone who can proceed with cautious optimism at the prospect of walking through life with me, if you can show me that you’re truly down for me, too, then, my friend, I’ll be down for you.