Perhaps the most embarrassing moment I’ve ever experienced. Perhaps the most embarrassing moment anyone has ever experienced.
After the friend zone that night we decided that we still both wanted to go to the concert the next week as friends. We’d had the concert planned since like our second date and we both still wanted to go! And after all, we had decided we could still be friends right?
December 9th 2017 he picked me up and we walked out to his car with just a little bit extra space between us; Hands dangling lonely towards the ground determined not to connect.
We knew there was a chance of traffic so we left early. But the roads were as clear as the red sea the day Moses parted it so we made it up north in record timing. With a lot of spare time before the concert, we decided to drive around his hometown. He showed me his old school, his favorite places to eat, his old house, and all the other little places that were important to him in his life. All the while we talked.
See, conversations with Josh were always so easy. I never felt like I needed to try to impress him or be anything I wasn’t. I always felt comfortable to be myself. He always laughs at my jokes, which I love, and he is just a fun person to be around. It was easy to talk about the church nerd side of me because I knew he would get it. We would have deep and meaningful conversations frequently when we were together which was something I’ve never experienced, at least not to this magnitude, with any other boy I’d ever dated.
So we were driving.
I was laughing.
He was smiling.
This was something special.
And suddenly I remembered that I had friend-zoned this boy and my heart felt like it had been tied in a knot and two giants were playing tug-a-war with it…
“Whitney! What the *swear words* have you done?! You have made a terrible mistake.” just kept repeating in my head.
What was I thinking friend-zoning a boy like this?
I sat there squirming in my seat as I dwelt on this terrible mistake I had made.
But I could get out of it… right?
So I decided to do everything I could to send the signals I wanted out.
We made it to the concert but the parking lot was full so we had to drive to the overflow parking lot to catch a shuttle that would take us to the concert. When we sat down on the shuttle I made sure to sit extra close to him.
Ya see… My neighbor, Dan, has a method he likes to tell people about. It’s a process in which a girl can tell a boy that she likes him without having to say any words at all. It’s called The Three-Point Touch. Ask any of the young women in our ward about it and you’ll get a good explanation. In order to initiate the three-point touch one must complete a series of innocent touches… starting by touching the shoulder of the boy, then the elbow, then the wrist. These can be completed with a relative amount of time placed between them and are to just be casual interactions. For example, say a boy says something funny, the girl can then place her hand on the boy’s arm and say something like “you’re so funny!” and then immediately remove it. According to Dan, this is a fool-proof way to communicate to a guy that you like them.
Well I have already Two-hand shoved Josh into the friend-zone at this point, so I wasn’t sure just a simple three-point touch would cut it. So you’d better believe I snuggled right up next to him. knees and thighs touching. Arms touching shoulder to elbow. There were far more than three points, right? and instead of initiating the touch and then pulling away like the method suggests, I let it simmer for a while and just sat there very close to him.
He didn’t move away. This was a good sign.
So we make it to the concert and go in.
We find our seats and sit down.
His arm casually resting on the armrest.
I knew that if I wanted out of the friend-zone I’d need to make a bold move. And it had to be obvious.
I was going to hold his hand.
Okay, so the logical thing to do would be to just grab his hand right?
Ya, sometimes I don’t think things through very well….
So I’m sitting there and for some reason, it seemed like the obvious choice to snake my arm around the back of his arm in order to grab his hand from the other side. So I did just that. But this presented a serious problem. See, I’m a little one. Being 4’10” tall with proportionate extremities means I have kinda short arms. And Josh being almost 6’2″ with likewise proportionate extremities means his arms are significantly longer than mine. And to make matters worse he was so determined NOT to let me hold his hand that he kept his elbow placed firmly on the armrest.
My hand couldn’t reach his.
So I panicked.
I panicked bad.
I knew there was no easy way to shake my arm back around to pull it to safety. So I did the next thing my brain told me to do.
I wrapped my hand around the armrest.
I was mortified.
I had just attempted to hold this boy’s hand but was unsuccessful. And now I was left here holding the armrest instead of his hand and now he was just looking down at my stupid arm trying to figure out what the heck I was trying to accomplish here.
And he thought it was funny so he JUST LEFT IT THERE! He left it there for what felt like an eternity although I’m sure it was only like thirty seconds.
Eventually, he just laughed and untangled my stupid arm and held my hand.
*takes breath of relief*
So that’s how we stayed for the rest of the concert.
The only problem was that despite the fact that our fingers were now interlocked, we STILL hadn’t discussed WHY IN THE SAM HECK I had made such an attempt to hold his hand.
As far as Josh knew I still just wanted to be friends and was just trying a sad unclassy attempt at friends with benefits. I knew we were going to have a conversation and I also knew it was going to be uncomfortable.
On the ride home I could feel the tension build with every mile we got closer to home. We were listening to Disney music and I didn’t know how to handle the situation so I just cranked the music to an uncomfortable level and sang my little heart out. There was no way Josh could say anything, which he later told me made him extremely frustrated.
As we exited the freeway he immediately pulled his hand away from mine and as we pulled into my apartment complex he turned down the music and with intense frustration asked “What are we doing?! I don’t know what’s going on?”
I finally opened up to him and explained to him the things that were going on in my life that had made me not want to date anyone, but I also told him that I really did like him wanted to date him. So for the next half hour, he patiently sat there and listened while I debated with myself about whether or not I was really ready for a relationship.
Finally, after a long debate, I just looked at him and exclaimed: “I WANT TO DATE YOU!”
Despite all that I had recently experienced in my life I knew Josh was good for me and that I really really liked him. I was going to go for it. I was going to date him.
That’s when we kissed.
So here we are… dating again and definitely happy about it.
And now the part that you all hate…
To be continued…
Catch up on the previous parts of the story!