It’s not about being willing, it’s about being prudent.
January 7, 2023
I’m on the cusp of something really big and really great but it might not be what I thought it was.
I met someone, someone really special. And things were going well, well, they’re still going well. The direction has changed. I’m trying to figure out how I feel about that.
I have always known it is more likely than not I will meet my Person. That I will fall in love and that it will be mutual, that we will be in lock step and want the same things, have the same desires for relationship. And I will marry. There won’t be a happily ever after because there’s no magic to any of it. But I will find the thing – yes – the magical thing – which has eluded me up until now. I know that’s coming. I thought perhaps it was here. And perhaps it is! But perhaps not.
It was a bit of time in coming, coming to this conclusion that it is indeed what I want at this point in my life. That I do indeed want the Full Meal Deal and will settle for no less going forward. So ironic that the man that got me to this place of realization is now telling me he wants something different. I was so afraid to assume for so long that he really truly was in it. And he told me over and again that yes, he’s truly in it. And I finally believed that and I finally rested in that. But then he realized he wants something a bit different. Now I find he’s in it, but on terms that may not be acceptable for me moving forward. Geez. Could I not get a break from the Universe? I mean… Really?
I should feel scared and panicky, and I’m sure that’s coming, I’ll have those spells of extreme insecurity and terror to push through. I really want this. I really really want this. I don’t like that I want it, I am frustrated with myself for wanting it. But can we talk ourselves out of wanting what we want? Should we talk ourselves out of it? Are we being true to ourselves when we gloss over and pretend things are OK when they’re really not OK? I don’t think so. Not in this particular scenario. Because that’s all I’ve done all my life. Talk myself out of wanting what I truly want. It’s not compromise that has cost me, it’s my ready willingness to settle for less than what I want, and more importantly, less than what I deserve.
I love this man, but he’s not the final answer. No one is, really. It’s a combination of so many things. Mostly, I’m coming to understand, it’s all about timing. When two people meet, who aren’t really compatible on the face of things, and yet they are looking for the same type of relationship, they have the same goals for how they want to live out the very last few decades of their lives, making that active choice to be together is what makes it work. And I think both David and I are ready to make that choice. Unfortunately, it’s never quite as simple as we’d like.
I’ve pushed and pushed him to think about things, to really get clear on what he wants. And by golly, he up and went and did just that! I’ve always known he has a much greater need for solitude than I do, but I told myself we could work it out. I often said, “We’re so different…” And David explained he didn’t think we were, at first, but after a while, he stopped doing that. Because we’re so different.
When I’m in it with someone, I need to be with someone that has a similar need to spend time with me, just hanging in the same space, just being in physical proximity with one another. It’s not that I need constant conversation, but I have a very high need for social interaction. It’s not that I can’t sit in a room with someone and read quietly or make jewelry while they read. I absolutely can do that. But I don’t want to sit in a room alone, I don’t want to live in an apartment alone, where I spend hours and even days on end with no one else in my space. I don’t want to be that alone. Not ever again.
I value solitude, but I easily slip into loneliness which is a short slippery slide from depression. And depression can really sneak up on me, and get really bad really fast and it can and has taken me down hard. I was in the hospital a short four months ago. And that’s always in the back of mind. I’m always thinking, “How can I stay out of the hospital?” I am ever vigilant. I can’t afford another hospital stay. They are effective in the short-term, but they are pure torture. I am wholly committed to do whatever is necessary to remain mentally stable at all costs. I know too much solitude and isolation renders me helpless against the demise of my own mind. I know that to stay mentally healthy, as healthy as is possible for me to be, I have to be around people.
That makes it sound as if I’m looking to a man to fill my need for companionship. Yes, in part. But putting the entire responsibility on a partner is not realistic, and it’s also not what I want or expect. I will always need a group of people, a variety of friends, to spend time with, to converse with. One person cannot meet my need entirely, and I am not at all foolish enough to believe that or put that kind of pressure on one person. But I do expect to be relatively well matched in my need to be with my other. And I’m with someone with whom I am not relatively well matched in that aspect. I was hoping we were, but we’re not. And no amount of wishing things were other than they are is going to change our basic natures.
Change is possible but change to this big piece of one’s core makeup is usually incrementally slow and incredibly painful. Is it worth it? To change oneself in order to be right for the person we want to be with? Yes, in the end. But the end may be years in coming. And the interim is fraught with frustration and provides a ready breeding ground for resentments, the kind that can and do often bring the whole relationship tumbling down, and its participants destroyed. Often, it's just too daunting an undertaking. It’s not about being willing, it’s about being prudent. Most people simply forego making the change and move on. And that may be what I must do.
Have I been a fool? Again? To throw my shoulder into this whole thing and push on through? To believe this might be it, this time? No, not at all. Or if I am a fool, I picked the right thing to be foolish about. I’m actually incredibly proud of myself for letting myself rest in the love this man has for me. And make no mistake, he does love me, very much. I recognized that, and I gave in to that, and I matched that. And all of that was good and right. But now is the time to get really real, really honest about compatibility.
It's not a done deal, it’s not a complete rule out. I’ve actually no idea which way this will go. I can imagine either direction.