I fell down. And it hurt because most falls, actually all falls, hurt don’t they? I suppose it comes down to how much it hurts. So I fell down and it hurt, but not that much. I was in a relationship for about 5 months and it recently ended. It ended with the quietness of of a sunset but with less dazzle. To go forward, sometimes you have to go back, right? So let’s recap…I met this guy and we hit it off immediately. We were clearly attracted to one another. The first date we spent a significant amount of time together because Chris (not his real name) asked me to go with him to his cousin’s birthday party.
Oh and just to make things interesting, we’d be riding to this party, which was an hour away, with his mom, brother, and sister-in-law. I think I had an out-of-body moment when I agreed to go because this was way out of my comfort zone y’all!
One more time: an hour away, with his mom, brother, and sister-in-law
An hour away, with his mom, brother, and sister-in-law
I mean this was so far out of my comfort zone that I couldn’t even see it. I rationalized my decision by assuring myself I’d learn a lot about this man in one setting, principally whether I’d want to continue to get to know him or never see him again.
I guess you know how that night turned out right?
So what happens next, you ask? Well within a month we were exchanging ‘I love you’s’ and in a committed relationship. Yeah…we were moving at warp speed. Sigh. By month two I’d met his son and daughters and the word ‘wedding’ had worked its way into our conversations. Yep, you read that correctly. Smdh. Let’s keep it moving to month three, shall we? Because this is where it gets really interesting. It’s November and I’m starting to notice some things but I’m also telling the little voice in my head to shut up because this man wants to marry me.
But the voice doesn’t shut up. At. All. It doesn’t shut up thru my birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Years. Not only can I not unhear (yes, I know that’s not a word) the voice but I’m also noticing more things that don’t make sense. And as Judge Judy says,
Then we start having disagreements and I’m not sure if he’s more concerned about how things look from the outside or about how things actually are. I notice he very rarely acknowledges any wrongdoing nor does he apologize when he’s done something that’s say…inconsiderate or just flat out wrong. I notice that he doesn’t really call me, rather he seems to prefer to communicate via text or in person. I notice his follow-thru is not what it was at the beginning. And yet I still stayed.
Then when the voice in my head had enough, my dad said something, which is profound because he rarely gives his opinion when it’s not solicited. Now my dad’s voice I cannot ignore. Weirdly, his opinion allowed me permission to accept that this relationship wouldn’t last forever. This guy was not, in fact, the “one” as it were. But with that thought came the realization that I was letting fear keep me in this relationship. Fear of what you ask?
Why fear of being alone! Duh. Seriously though, I could no longer run from this truth. I thought I’d conquered this fear. hell I thought I did “single” very well thank you very much. I even thought I perfected it. Yet there I was trying to convince myself that this was my future husband…and failing miserably. So it’d seem I’d gotten accustomed to telling myself two lies. Now I don’t want you to think this guy was a terrible boyfriend because he wasn’t. And believe me when I tell you I’ve had one of those.
Rather, it became obvious that we weren’t meant to spend a lifetime together. And at some point, I had to realize I’m only good at wearing a mask but for so long. In conclusion of this long and windy tale (thank you for sticking with me through it, by the way), here are three “lessons” I’ve learned, so hopefully, you don’t have to-
- Take the time to really get to know someone before you decide to commit to them. I’m 100% sure that if we hadn’t been so quick moving at the beginning that we could’ve saved ourselves the heartbreak at the end. I don’t even think we would have made it the entire 5 months.
- Always, always, always listen to the voice in your head. This cannot be overemphasized. It’s there for a reason you guys and at no point will the voice go away. Not. One. Time. You cannot outrun it. There is nothing you can do or say to quell it. Nothing. You cannot negotiate with it.
- Do not be swayed by the pressure (real or otherwise) from friends or family to stay. True story: one of my girlfriends would check-in with me every few weeks just to see how my relationship was going. She did this because she’s in love and wants everyone else to be as well. Here’s another example: On Christmas my cousin walked up and gave me a hug after learning my boyfriend was with me. You see how these subtle interactions can potentially impact how you see things?
I think I’ve written all I can write about this short chapter in the book of my life. Again, thank you for sticking with me through this tale. I’m interested in reading about what lessons you’ve learned from your relationships. Please share in the comments section below.