My gf and I recently moved in together. While unpacking my life, I came across a collection of cards and romantic notes from a previous relationship and wasn’t sure what to do with them.

You hang on to these things because they represent significant moments and people in your life — and it’s occasionally nice to revisit those memories even if you’ve moved on. I had a read but felt weird keeping reminders of an ex in my new love nest, so decided to let them go.

As part of the spring clean, I went through some old email folders and came across a very significant exchange from almost 10 years ago. I’d been “out” for less than a year and had recently discovered what this “love” business was all about.

Here’s part of an email I sent to the girl who brought me out of my shell.

“I’ve discovered a new world over the past few months and I’m feeling like an older person for some reason — guess I’m maturing at last.

“I think I’m more confident now than I ever have been (scared all the same), but confident in the sense that I know I have the capacity to feel.

“This is a big sexuality thing. I feel like such a silly goose — having gone through relationships in the past, waiting for a passion to kick in. Waiting, waiting, waiting. Then getting completely angry and frustrated with myself because it’s like where’s my fucking heart? Feeling like I’m emotionally inept.

“It’s hard when you’re an achiever in lots of other areas and the one thing that seems so easy and natural to everyone else — the stuff that makes life really beautiful — you can’t seem to get!

“It’s like — give me the fucking textbook on human emotion. This is probably why I’m interested in cyborgs as well! The idea of innate and organic development compared to programmed learning. Whatever!

“You asked me when we were walking to the supermarket if I could deal with holding hands with a girl in public. Fuck. If the girl whose hand I was holding made the fire burn inside then I’d want to shout it from the fucking rooftops!”

Unfortunately, this girl already had a girlfriend (who busted us having sex in their garage) so the experience taught me a thing or two! But it sums up my coming out experience — quite a revelation.

By MONIQUE SCHAFTER

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