I have spent a great deal of time just brushing the romantic surface of life. Never inching forward into committal territory. Devoted deeply to my own self growth and development, the prospect of making time for another person regularly was not ideal.So instead, I focused on things that would not change their minds: my goals.
Still, life happens beyond our control, introducing us to the feats we have all tried so hard to resist. I am now a few months into my first relationship. Sure enough, it is nothing like I thought it would be. Here is what I have learned:
- My first relationship has not been like the movies. It wasn’t head over heels, can’t sleep, or can’t breath. Instead, it was baby steps into a place I felt comfortable.
- The new feelings that have grown inside of me are not devotion or extreme dependency. Instead, I’m learning that caring for myself is in fact a part of taking care of another person.
- There is no such thing as a relationship that will exist peacefully socially. Your own business is never bigger than the friends who truly believe they know better. And maybe they do.
- As time builds, so will equality in care.
- You will feel your independence leaking from your pores, dehydrating you of yourself. Replenish with time apart.
- Your significant other will be your kindest critique. Whether you overlook their bias is up to you.
- I may never feel ready to be part of a relationship. But this floating uncertainty, suspended by a strange aura of extreme comfort, will either force us to grow together or to grow apart.
Beyond all the clouds of doubt, I know that being fully present to another person has taught me the importance of being a part of the lives and relationships that brought me to where I am now. Healthy relationships are not what they are in the movies. They are not head over heels, crazy in love. Instead, they are calling your mom before she has to leave two or three messages. They are forgiving your father for hurting you when he was hurting himself. They are wanting to wake up in the morning and falling asleep at night to the precious hum of someone else’s breathing. Finally, they are present and not potential based.