“April showers bring May flowers, but what do May flowers bring?”
While the smart-ass answer to that question is typically “pilgrims”- April’s showers cleared way for a lot of self-reflection, more than a little stress, a good amount of clarity- and a significant test to one of my relationships that came to a challenging crossroads this past May.
When it comes to my love life, I tend to be more private about things. Sure, I don’t shy away from crude/crass humor and sometimes gratuitous details about my sexual escapades and misadventures on social media outlets like Twitter or Tumblr (where those types of conversations seem to be fairly common and pretty normal) for a few laughs, and when people come right out and ask me about my dating situation or status- I’m always open for discussion- but I never really go in depth when it comes to disclosing my emotional attachment to whoever I’m seeing. I save that level of intimacy- the raw emotions, the tender moments, and even the not-so-pleasant disagreements- between him and myself. It’s something deeply personal and special- just between the two of us. In that respect- I try to keep it private.
However, May was the month where my relationship with a guy I’ve been dating for a long time was shaken up and my core values when it comes to relationships, self-respect, compromise and forgiveness were put to the test. A test I hadn’t studied for and was in no way prepared to face.
To summarize: I have been dating the same guy on and off for approximately fifteen years (yes, fifteen.) We met in high school, the way so many young, dumb- doe-eyed lovers do- and flirted shamelessly until he graduated two years before I did and headed off to college. We lost touch for a few short years, until fate (and MySpace- remember that mess?) brought us back together in our early twenties where we’ve carried on a pretty passionate romance ever since. There is a deep level of love, respect, support, understanding and patience between us. We may not always see eye-to-eye all the time- and we may even hurt each other on occasion- but I know we would do whatever we could for the other and I have been content with that for a long time now.
But this past month we reached a bit of a fork in the road as to where this relationship is headed and what is considered acceptable behavior from one another. We had differing opinions- which led to some unexpected revelations and hurt feelings- which prompted me to take a brief hiatus from social media (and from life in general, really) so that I could really do some soul-searching and reflection on my own without the distraction of others’ opinions or unsolicited advice.
The hiatus, however short- helped- as did taking the time to have a thorough conversation about how to proceed from here (and watching plenty of sad movies and having a good cry at some equally sad songs in my car.) I have opted to go down the path of forgiveness and moving forward through our challenges- but not without him compromising, too. It’s a two-way street, after all. One person cannot fix a relationship. It takes both people and a lot of hard work, sacrifice, and patience.
It really comes down to us still caring about each other tremendously. We owe it to ourselves not to let something like this break what we have built up together for so long. I plan on taking it day by day to see what happens- and ultimately letting fate intervene if necessary. It brought us together once before- and I’m confident it will step in again to direct me or give me a nudge in whatever direction if it’s needed.
As you can probably imagine, dealing with such an ordeal and so much re-evaluation took a toll on me this past month. I focused my energies into work, hitting the gym harder than what was probably necessary, and doing some remodeling to my home (photos will be up eventually!)– which left little to no room to blog properly. I had every intention of busting out some fun posts- but I admit I fell a little flat since I was emotionally and physically drained throughout 99.9% of May. My apologies for that one. That was all on me.
Thankfully, I feel I’m getting my strength, stamina, and motivation back- and I’m ready to do some serious catching up in June. I’ve made some travel arrangements for the upcoming weeks, I’ve started the rough drafts of some long overdue posts, I’ve moved my anticipated Springtime-giveaway to take place in early Summer, instead- and I’ve wanted to use my experiences in May to potentially focus on writing more personal posts/articles in the hopes of helping others who may be going through a similar situation- much like I did after my father passed away and I shared my struggle with coping with the consequent guilt/anxiety/panic attacks.
So here’s to bidding farewell to Spring- a season that fought hard to finally get here in New England- and left a trail of pollen in it’s wake (specifically all over my windshield) as it passed through and made plenty of room for 90ºF weather to march right in without warning. I’ve already got the air conditioning and fans set up and running steadily. It’s been brutally hot out lately.
I can’t complain too much, though. I do love the Summertime- as much as someone as pale as me can, anyway!
See you all in June!