This is what my sweetheart said in relation to his work as an artist/ engineer, but it makes a good metaphor. Metaphor being sometimes the only way we can angle in to touch on a truth like seeing a faintly twinkling star better in peripheral vision. Relationship requirements: we are still working on these in our private hearts, and obliquely in our conversations, while we enjoy our time together one day at a time.
I am in the habit of writing to figure out what I think, feel, or even to change what I think or feel. A combination of story telling, logical analysis, poetry, and dream reflections helps me decide on next steps, examine my way of being and my road to growth and future developments I can face, embrace, or bring about.
How do I write about him, about us? He deserves his privacy, but also deserves to know that I’m a writer, and see if he’s comfortable with sometimes being a subject. This public forum (such as it is, without SEO) isn’t my journal, so rest assured I won’t be revealing any secrets, but I want to share some of the aspects that might strike a common cord, raise useful questions, provide hope or encouragement, tell a happy story, for a few readers.
I think I wrote a few months ago about re-awakening to the joys of life, how the phrase “I love my life,” with or without dating success, kept coming as I started building my life alone. That love of life just as is, without a strong leaning into anyone else’s or dependence on anyone else, I want to preserve. It seems to be a common thing, among women at least, to allow too much a loss of self in the process with joining lives with another. Although connecting in any profound way with another person is transformational and should be, and especially when we take years to create a family and raise children, I feel that in this part of my life I want to build an interesting life that is more grounded and centered in my own identity as it has been developed so far. I don’t want to be needed in the same way as I was as mother and homemaker.
But being alone with myself, with marginally special people only on the fringes and remaining dispensable to them is not what I want. I see that as a somewhat cowardly existence, and not fulfilling in the sense of what it means to be fully human. I don’t want to be that widow who says, okay I did relationships and sometimes they were pretty hard, so I’ll keep the writer’s group, work friendships, phone calls holidays with my grown children and a social media presence, but from now on all I want is my tidy house or apartment, Pilates class, my routine and my loyal, simple-minded, housebroken, hypoallergenic Labradoodle.
So, I’m in love, and, yes, willing to build a new one-of-a-kind relationship that sends ripples into the whole rest of my life. If he lives in another city, maybe on or both of us will change jobs and move to be together. Our kids and previous in-laws will be affected. Our friendships are and will continue to be affected. Our routines and how we pursue leisure, personal goals, and create will be affected.
How will it be? How do we want it to be? Will it be? We are still working on the requirements.