I’ve been up since 5. That’s joy of having a two year old. He woke up and wanted nothing more than to take over my bed and watch the Magic School Bus. Tonight he’s going to go stay with Grandma for an overnight. Should be fun, I hope. I’ve had a bunch of thoughts running through my head this morning. Random ones, but I’d thought I’d share.
I am uncomfortable with people spending money on me. Funny, when you think about the fact that one of my “love languages” is gifts. I like to spoil others. If I’m spoiling myself, I like to include others. If I’ve given a gift, I like reciprocation. BUT … I don’t like it when someone spends more on me than what I feel I deserve. Maybe it’s because I make what I do. I like to go out for a fancy dinner every now and then, but I get awkward and uncomfortable when someone tries to pay for it for me. Why is that? Why isn’t someone else entitled do spoil me the way I do to others? Why does it freak me out so much?
Love. It’s complex. There are varying levels of it. I love my cat, I love my kids, I love my bro. Those are some levels. When I love a man – there are varying stages there too. The first stage for me is interesting. It slowly creeps up on you – and dawns on you that the person you’re with is someone who, if they were to walk out of your life, you’d be hurt by it. That’s typically when I know that I feel love towards a person. Then it grows … or doesn’t… from there. Sex is not something that I take lightly or give openly, unless there is that definite and real possibility that love is there or will be. Sex is the next stage. Women are known for getting more emotionally attached after sex, and this rings true for me as well. It is one of the reasons I am careful about sex. For me, I give a small piece of me to a man; and hope to receive a small piece of him in return. Reciprocation is a big key there.
The bro has a date tonight. I’m excited for him. I hope it goes well and is a huge success. We spent a bunch of time talking about the what if’s last night. What if she’s “the one”? What if she’s not? It’s certainly been interesting, with both of us single. We both have very different approaches, and very different “end goals”. He wants a wife and a family; having never experienced those for himself. I can’t imagine being a wife again. And yet, it’s kind of all I know. I was good at it. I don’t think I ever want to get married again. I want love, I want companionship, I want a best friend and an amazing sex life… but I no longer believe that marriage is one of the checkpoints on the list. I can’t have any more children, so that’s obviously another that’s not on my checklist. I should say this…I dream of finding that one person. I dream that they’ll ask my step dad permission (no one ever has). I dream that I’ll find that amazing love that will allow me to feel safe with the idea of marriage again…but, I don’t know that it’s realistic of me to dream like that.
Marriage is a piece of paper. You can have love and commitment and comfort and joy without that little piece of paper. It no longer means what it used to mean. When I married my first husband, I was 19. We were high school sweethearts. Being young and naive, I truly believed that your first should be your last. And he and I shared many firsts. I believed that love alone could conquer. It was so very different from what I had pictured in my head. I handled the abuse quite well, but when it spread to my new 1 month old daughter, we got out. After being together for 6 years, we got divorced. Waged war. I won. This state favors women. I gave him opportunities to prove he could get control of himself and be a dad, he chose not to. His loss.
With my last ex… I still believed in the absolute power of love alone. I thought love and my stubborn determination could help to change and improve the man for the better. I knew when I married him that he was a raging alcoholic, and I truly thought I could help him get better. That he’d choose love and a family over a lousy bottle of beer. 10 years. Ten years of telling myself every day that “someday, he’ll wake up and we’ll just have everything we wanted”. Ten years of ME working towards the things we wanted alone, while he would try and hide his habits and mistakes.
Love is not enough. The power of it, while fantastic and amazing… is not enough. There is so much more to factor into a relationship.
Compatibility, which also has a ton of layers to it. I can handle anyone for a short amount of time, even a few days. But what about over time? A year? eh – even that seems easy. When the two major relationships in your life were both longer term ones, it seems like a short one would be a cinch.
Compromise. Every relationship requires it.
Trust. This is a duh, or it damn well should be.
Openness. This is something I value. Be willing and able to share the thoughts I see cross your face, because lord knows, I’m going to ask. 🙂
Play. Whether with each other, games, with kids. There has to be a time for laughter and joy and play.
Alignment in Priorities. Whether these are life goals, or just feeling similar about how often to spend time together…priorities are important. How much of a priority to do you make each other? Myself, I have NO desire to be a man’s #1 priority. I like my space and independence too much. But I know I need to be a priority in some way to feel like I’m wanted and needed. I should rank in the top 5-6 hehe. If a crisis pops up in life, I want to know about it and not be the last to find out.
Affection. I’m affectionate. I like hugs and cuddles. I like to touch a person..as appropriate for the person of course.
Sexual Compatibility. This one’s a little tricky. Or at least it has the potential to be. And there’s a lot that factors in here too. Some say you either are compatible here or you aren’t. Others think it grows over time. I kind of find myself smack in the middle on this one. There damn well should be some spark there or what’s the point?! But the ability to always be successful … eh … I could see there being situations where 2 people, still kinda new to each other are going to fumble a little here and there. So that could take practice over time. Although when I say that – if you were to ask me how much time… I’d have NO clue.
Communication. This one is tricky too. How much is too much? How much is too little? What forms of communication are being used? Obviously in-person communication trumps all. I’ve never been much of a fan of phone calls. And lately, even texts drive me a little crazy. There’s too much room open for interpretation with them. Things get misread, or misunderstood.
Sigh. Well I obviously don’t have all the answers. But at least I understand the ingredients.