catalogue

I've been learning your facial expressions, and how they make me feel.


There's the face you make when you're listening to me, when we're catching up after a few days apart. You're on your back, I'm on your front. Your eyes are wide and bright and you can barely keep still or quiet. You interrupt my stories, excited and eager to reconnect, then apologize and urge me on. My hair falls forward and we thread our fingers together. I push your arms above your head until you pull me down, and we roll into a tangle of limbs, laughing.


Then you close your eyes and sigh, and I see the face you wear when you need to tell me how good you feel about what's happening. "I just want this all the tiiiime," you say in the sweetest whine I've ever heard, putting your forehead against mine. The more serious the thing you want to say, the softer your voice gets. "Do you know how much I care about you?" This just a whisper. Your eyes stay shut in these moments, probably because you know mine don't. There's only so much we can take.


This weekend I was treated to one of my favorites: the face you make when I get to you, in the best way. And I was merciless this weekend. So high and so fearless, wanting to give more than I usually dare. I sat on your lap, teasing you with some delicious promise or thought, talking low and close to your ear so you could hear me clearly over the music. Then I'd watch the smile come on your face, the one where you have no choice, as your head tips back helplessly. You won't look at me in these moments, keeping your gaze straight ahead as your breath comes harder--but you'll grip me tighter to let me know how you feel. It's intoxicating and unforgettable, this face and this feeling. Probably my favorite.


Or maybe my favorite is the one you make late at night, or early in the morning. There's very little light in these moments, but I've memorized your features so I don't need much anyway. It's a grin bordering on a smirk, and it is just amazing. It's like nothing I've ever seen. Playfulness and power in equal measure. You, in complete and perfect control. Us, in complete and perfect sync.


There are others, too, with more delicate edges. There's the face you make when I've pushed some teasing joke too far. Your lips twist slightly and your head drops a bit, a silent complaint that I'm being unfair. That I don't know. (And I know I don't, always. I know that.) Your sensitivity in these moments is the most breathtaking beautiful thing I can imagine.


Or there's the face you make when you're calling me out. You flash your eyes at me meaningfully and the way you tilt your head says everything. But you only hold this expression for a second because at the end of the day, it is a tiny criticism. And you never want me to feel bad. In fact your desire to make me happy is written all over your face, your words, and your choices, every single day.


And I feel it. And it's working.