A Thank You to My Best Friend in Elementary School for Teaching Me My Favorite Color Is Blue

In the third grade I met my best friend, Maridon -- named for her father and her aunt, combined -- the first friend I didn't technically share with my twin sister. I felt indulgent having a close friend that belonged to just me. I wore my checkered red, white and blue flared pants. I am not certain which top I wore that day, the first afternoon at MD's home. She had a dog named Snoopy and a trampoline that her brother used to practice ski jump moves on. We played outdoors for a few hours and Maridon announced she was hungry, so we tested her new microwave out. I had never used one before. She skillfully made us hot dogs and hot chocolate within minutes. We cleaned up our dishes and went off to her room to watch Gilligan's Island.

I really needed to use the ladies'. I felt shy asking for a bathroom. I have always felt uncomfortable asking for something if I was hungry, thirsty or, God forbid, in need of a pee. I was labeled a bold child by the powers that be that bore me. Being bold was a bad thing, so I stopped paying attention very early on, to me. Was I hungry? In need of a toilet? Uh, I don't know anymore. I could not ask for a thing in public, debilitated by potential scorn. Paralyzing shy. Shine the spotlight away, please I begged inside. Be small and no one will notice the hidden bold me. All good, I pretend.

I didn't even know my favorite color.

My twin had selected a color so I felt forced to pick another. I did not want to pick first or copy, so I decided to let her lead, whatever she liked even if my heart picked it, too, I would divert to another shade of something.

I could not even concentrate. I had to pee. My new microwave expert BFF asked me that simple question: What is your favorite color? So I responded with, what's yours? She said blue. I default with safe red. Not even trying for interesting purple or even green. I am going to wet my checkered pants. I am too uncomfortable to ask where the bathroom is, so the pee flows out of me onto the yellow bean bag. It goes and goes like my water just broke.

Yes, it would've been easier to have requested nav to the nearest bathroom. Now I need clothes and a towel and a bag to shove my shame. Sweetness, MD got it that I was all wet and needed help. I did learn to be more open (bold) with Maridon as the years of our friendship tallied up.

I do know for certain now my favorite color is blue. It took a fortune in counseling to sort this basic knowing out. I can feel my favorite color and foods and music and more. I know them now by heart. Being bold and saying what I need is now my modus operandi. This information, the blueprint of us matters. Knowing thyself allows us to know another.

I married someone who liked me rather than paying attention to whether or not I liked him. Want to get married? Sure, that sounds like a fine idea. I'm game. It would be like orange picking me and knowing I am a blue through and through. It's a deep end of the ocean deception of sorts, isn't? Sure, I like beer and the Packers, who doesn't? Liar. For real, I like tequila and ping pong and musicals. Sure, I like Spongebob and frozen sugared corn, who doesn't? Liar. For real, I like documentaries and real vegetables. It's the not saying who we are for the sake of being nice or not bold that fucks things up. And then we get the shit fact that we lied to them and to ourselves. I had to leave this plagiarized story I wrote.

I got divorced and then decided to get to the bottom of me for better for worse. I tucked in with my kids, licked my wounds and lies. Then I ventured out to dating world. I had a couple of almosts, a plethora of interesting folks and a handful of no ways. I was Goldilocks boldly testing the porridge, the chairs, the beds. Too small , too cold, too hot and then Just Right showed up one day. I sorted out the me so I could find the way to we.

Recently he asked how I know he is my person... I know my favorite color is blue. It's just what it is. My favorite color blue. Boldly, I just know.