My name is Kayden Tyler, I’m from Chatham, Illinois.
Ever since high school I’ve kind of had anxiety, it’s kind of followed me into college. So once I moved to Canandaigua, New York, up near Rochester, i went to Finger Lakes Community College. I was an art student, there was a lot surrounding me, it was a little overwhelming at first but there was a thing on Thursday nights called Art Night. And it was pretty much a place where everyone could come and express every type of art that you wanted to.
One time I went and there was a poetry night and my friend was like, “Oh, yes, it will be a lot of fun. We’re all poetry people, let’s go.”
And I was like, “Okay, sure, let’s go.”
And while we were there, there was this girl and she, first of all, was gorgeous. And she was reading an incredibly deep poem and everything about it was just amazing. Her word choice, her, I don’t even know, everything was just great about it. And afterwards I kind of hung around her more and she was friends with the person who brought me that night. So we kind of hung out for a bit and I kind of got to see her conversate with the rest of her friends and got to see her in her own environment, so to speak. And it was a really cool thing to see. Then afterwards she kind of started to hang around us a little more. She was like, “You know what? It’s getting a little bit crowded around here, let’s kind of get out of here.”
I was like, “Alright, my car is in the back, let’s go.”
So we climbed into the back of my SUV, lowered the seats and just kind of sat there and talked about anything and everything. We talked about school, we talked about families, we talked about our pets, we talked about space, we talked about the future, we talked about everything. And at that point I felt like I saw every bit of her soul and I just, the only thing that came to my mind, I said it outright, I said, “I really like your soul.”
And it was one of the first things I ever said to her and it was amazing. My friend was telling me, “Oh, yeah, well I see how they look at you, I see how you look at her, you should totally talk to her.”
I was like, “Oh, I can’t do that. It’s the second girl I’ve ever been interested in. I can’t talk to her. I don’t even know what I would even say.”
And they were like, “Well you’re going to have to. Otherwise this isn’t going to happen. If you feel this way about her, you’re going to have to.”
I’m like, “Okay.”
And they said this to me in a crowded school and I was like, well I can’t do this year. Everyone’s going to be looking, let alone be talking to her. It’s just going to be terrifying. He was like, “Okay, well why don’t you take her into the woods?”
Our school had a nature trail which was the best and I loved it. And so we walked outside, we walked down the paths and neither of us looking each other in the eye and we were just like, “So…how’s the weather, how’s your day?”
And both kind of skirting around the topic and then eventually it all just kind of started spilling out. We were like, “So, I’ve been hanging out with you a lot the past couple of weeks and it’s been really nice and I just wanted to let you know that I really have feelings for you.”
And it got to the point where it was like, “Oh well I also have feelings for you.”
So once it happened it felt like an entire weight was lifted off of my shoulders, so we were like, “Alright, well, you know what? Now that this is done, we’re all good to go, let’s go back on inside, you know, let’s talk to our friends and see what they have to say about it.”
So we walk on in and we’re holding hands as we walk in and everyone, as soon as they see us, they start clapping, they’re like, “Oh yeah! This is so great! We’re so glad you guys finally talked to each other.”
It was a time. As someone with anxiety, you kind of notice that all of the rough parts only usually take a couple of seconds, maybe 5 minutes at most, so as you go and as you start, you know, moving past certain things that terrify you, it’s kind of cool to just know that all of that stress that you were worried about is going to be gone. And who knows, you might, your life may be changed for the better, and in this case it did. My entire life changed indefinitely and couldn’t be happier about it.