Love at my age is a mixed bag of emotions. You reach in to grab a handful and never know if you will come out with fear or joy.
By the time you reach your 30s, most of us have had our share of relationships of every category – puppy love, first love, flings, true love, friends with benefits, one night stands, cohabitation, engagements or even marriages. No matter if these relationships brought you smile or tears they still affect you in some way and the accumulation of all of that gets brought with you into a new relationship and into the arms of the poor sap who has to deal with it all.
So it is with these emotions, for better or worse, that I have entered into my current relationship. I am insanely in love and much happier than I have been in a very long time. I couldn’t ask for more. I am even more fortunate that he and I have been close friends for 7 years. The fact that he knows me so well and vice versa has made it that much easier to deal with these past emotions because we have been present in each other’s lives during most of the big relationships. There is great comfort in knowing that he loves me in spite of all of that chaos from the past.
However despite how much I trust him and how mutual our love is, those “Cinderella scars” (see one of the first posts on this blog) still resurface and stab What Ifs into my mind…What if he’s like the others? What if he cheats on me? What if he leaves me? What if he lies? It is a constant struggle to remind myself that HE IS NOT THEM. He actually helped me get over them over the years. The key is to focus on all of the good things he does for me everyday that reminds me of his love for me.
On the other end of this emotional scale is the joy. I cannot express how glad I am that I didn’t get married sooner because at my age I have gained a greater amount of confidence. I know what I want and what I won’t accept. I’m more tolerant, more patient and more rational. I think before I act or speak (I don’t know about you but I certainly didn’t have that skill in my early 20s). Handling a serious relationship at this level of maturity is less stressful. I appreciate him and what he brings to the relationship more now because I am more secure with who I am and what I can bring to the relationship.
Perhaps it’s because he’s my best friend or perhaps it’s because we are both older and more mature, but I feel an intense amount of satisfaction and a deeper connection with him than any of the others in the past because I’m finally ready for this…