Thursday, February 16, 2006

One Day at a Time

I think that it's mainly a control issue. Romantic relationships have been the one thing in my life that I haven't been able to steer in any direction that I wanted them to go. Everything else is relatively easy to control, as long as I have a clear view of what I want - job, where to live, who to be friends with, what hobbies to partake in - all of those things I can handle.

So I start off by playing it cool. Whatever, anything goes, this is fun, but I don't really need it, that kind of thing. But within a matter of weeks, the "shoulds" come into play. "Well, we've been dating for two weeks, I should see him this weekend." Or, "If he doesn't call me today, I should be mad and not answer his call right away."

I know how irrational both of those sentences sound, along with all of the other "should" sentences that creep into my mind. I know it. But I can't help thinking them.

So occasionally you meet someone who follows all of the "shoulds". Oh my God, he's playing everything by the book. Wow, he wants to hang out with me. Holy crap, he's treating me with respect. Um... I have a great time with him. Shit, this is good.

And that's when the real panicking starts.

Because past experience has told you that it's only a matter of time until he disappoints you. You're not in the clear yet, don't let your guard down. You've gotten this far before to only have the rug ripped out from under your feet before, it could easily happen again.

So you start second guessing everything that you do and say. Is it safe to ask him to come over for dinner? Does this story about something you did in college make you sound fun and full of life, or stupid and immature? If you reach out and kiss him, will you seem clingy, or will be appreciate the gesture?

And the biggest one of all - should you come clean a little bit about the anxiety that you're feeling? Not a major confessional or anything, just maybe a small explanation of why you may seem a little tense, or why you have trouble letting your guard down?

There's something really scary about the thought of making yourself vulnerable like that. On one hand, you can definitely be surprised at what people can handle, and isn't it our vulnerabilities that make us human and lovable? On the other hand, what if he can't handle it and freaks out because it's too soon, or he sucks, or it makes you seem like a complete nut job?

You ponder. And you worry. And you think.

Then you talk to a couple of good friends, hungry for assurances that you have nothing to worry about and that you're doing good. Sure, you have these issues, but you're handling them well. You're doing good.

Take things one day at a time, they tell you.

And then you stop. That's brilliant! One day at a time. Don't worry about what is going to happen tomorrow, or this weekend, or next week, or next month, or next year. Stop and enjoy his company. Enjoy the fact that you have someone to cook for tonight. Enjoy his kisses. Enjoy life in the now, or you might miss it - which is really your biggest fear anyway.


Blogger Pink Lemonade Diva said...

you make it sound so do-able.

3:59 PM  
Blogger Paige Jennifer said...

great last line!

5:07 PM  

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