No one really talks about how hard it is to start a relationship when you’re older.
Things were so different in your early twenties. You meet someone, and the relationship feels like a breeze.
You were young, inexperienced. And this is your first serious relationship so you were just like a sponge absorbing and learning about how to coexist with someone else. Not much conflict, you spend most of the relationship growing together, getting to know yourself better, and exploring. In a blink of an eye, 5 years has gone. And within that 5 years you’ve grown into a woman who is able to stand on her own two feet, you know where you’re going in life, what you’re going to do.
So now what?
You’re at a point where you’d have to decide on how your partner now fits into your life. You start feeling suffocated by the comforting, content life you have. You start pushing your partner, drag him along with you, wanting him to keep up. Desperately trying to get him to run beside you, at your pace.
And then you end up suffocating him as well. Out of breath, he refused to run further and decides to stay behind.
Shocked, you stood there for a moment. Taking in his choice, taking in his choice to let go of your hand.
And then, suppressing all the disappointment and pain, you turn your back towards him and keep running, going forward, leaving him behind you.
While you run, you bump into other people. Potential partners who seem to be running at the same pace as you are.
They join you on your journey, but somehow at every crossroad, either you, or him, would always make the choice to go the other way.
Every time that happens, you would stop in your tracks. And you would savor that moment he lets go of your hand. It always happens in a sort of cinematic slow motion in your mind.
And every time that happens, you always continue to run.
You see, when you’re older, you know that you are able to be on your own. So for two grown ups, with significant life experience to decide to keep holding hands and running on the same path for a long time (potentially forever), it takes, a lot.
Because you don’t start at ground zero. You don’t start with an empty piece of paper.
You both meet at a point where there are hundreds of skid marks, messy chaotic doodles all over tear stained paper.
and you have to both decide to hold each other’s ugly stained piece of paper and still be able to love it.