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“It’s the problem with fairy tales. From far away, they seem so perfect. But up close, they’re just as complicated as real life.” ― Soman Chainani, A World Without Princes

I am in Brazil at the moment staying with my parents so my brother can take a vacation.  I am juggling a few things, and any time life gets crazy I neglect my blog. Forgive me, I am always trying to do better, and be more present.  I will get there.

In the meantime I feel I need to write about my relationship with B.  This is the first of a couple of posts, as it will take me awhile to write all I need to.

If you have been reading my blog you will already know about some of my relationship with B.  It has not been a bed of roses.  We have had our ups and downs.  I kept holding on to the relationship, even though, something, that I couldn’t put my finger on, kept giving me pause. Perhaps the fact that I think that relationships should be easy and fun at the beginning and this one has been a struggle.

I think this is a cautionary tale. A story about falling in love with the potential and promise of a person, and not the reality.  This is about not wanting to give up on something that seems so great and meant to be, and ignoring that little voice inside.

But, before I get to the present moment,  let me recap the last few months for the new readers.

B and I had originally met 5 years ago.  At that time I felt that the reason he disappeared after a few dates was because he was still mourning a wife that had passed away a couple of years before.  I felt he liked me but couldn’t let go the idea of being a victim of a cruel world that took his wife.  He later told me that he thought I was not interested in him because I was spending a lot time with my sister and best friend that were visiting for one month.  

He had stopped calling. I didn’t pursue him.  I was sad but was okay with it.  I felt that if I were to have a relationship with him I would be always competing with a dead wife. No one can compete with a dead spouse that has become a saint.  

Fast forward 5 years to a few months ago when we saw each other again on Bumble.  We reconnected, started talking and after some back and forth and some canceled dates on both sides, we met.

The chemistry was still there and we started dating.  Having a second chance after 5 years felt like a love story!  We both felt that we had wasted 5 years and felt blessed that we now had another chance.

He was kind, thoughtful, opened car doors, brought me flowers, etc.  All seemed perfect, yet something was giving me pause.  I thought it was fear.

“Thorough examination will do the healthy no harm, and it may bless the sick.” ― Charles H. Spurgeon

Fear of hurting him and getting hurt.  I would voice those fears.  I would keep talking about all the potential issues that we would face.  I would ask him not to pressure me and not to give me any reason to run.  I realized I had to change that attitude and made an effort to focus on the now and not overthink things. I didn’t always succeed.

He continued showering with flowers and compliments.  The more compliments he paid,  the more I wanted to run. I didn’t quite know why.  Was I concerned that the 10 years age difference was too much?  Was his eagerness too much, too soon? Was I worried with the fact that he hated airplanes and airports, while I love to fly? Or was I just trying to sabotage this relationship?

Then I went to Brazil for 10 days. Beforehand, I discussed with him the fact that I was going and would bring my mother back with me.  I mentioned that upon my return my time would be limited but I would see him as much as I could.  I asked for his patience and understanding.

While in Brazil I decided to make more of an effort to keep in touch since he often complained that we needed to talk more on the phone. I called him every night to say good night.  Things seemed to be on track.

One day on the phone, when I  was telling him something about my brother’s girlfriend, I accidently said boyfriend when I meant to say brother.  He overreacted. Even after clarifying things and laughing about it, he text me after to make sure that I was being honest with him; wanting to know for sure that I didn’t have a boyfriend. I don’t my honesty being questioned.  He seemed insecure.

At times when we texted, he would complain that my texts lacked warmth, that it seemed I was texting a friend.  I would explain, and remind him,  that this is a brand new relationship, that we are getting to know each other.  I would ask him to realize that I don’t dedicate this much time and attention to any friend. The sheer fact that I was texting him every day showed that I cared and was making an attempt to be in touch.  I felt pressured.  He seemed needy.

At times it felt a bit suffocating, and then I would remind myself of the potential here.  The handsome, successful guy that adored me and wanted to give me the world, was right here wanting me.  A guy with whom I had great chemistry with. And yet something seemed off.

To be continued…

ps. I am disabling comments on this post until the end of the trilogy

“…when somebody says, “I regret nothing,” it’s like you’re willfully not confronting your life. You’re leaving your life unexamined. And I think there’s something in our society that says, Yeah, don’t examine it. Be heedless. Here’s a checklist. Occupy your time and be productive.

I mean, what does it say about us that we regret nothing?”
― Wajahat Ali