All the Things I Never Say

Do you ever do that thing where you think of everything you’re going to say, and then you just don’t? That’s my life. Although, many of these things I would never even think of saying aloud, they are true nonetheless.

 

To my boyfriend:

I love you more than I thought I would ever love anyone romantically. And that scares me.

I would marry you tomorrow, even though I know it would be a bad idea.

I’m willing to work around my schedule to see you, but I feel like you aren’t willing to do the same.

I am busier than you.

Why didn’t you invite me to <insert event or holiday here>?

How come you can’t meet up with your friends AND hand out with me?

I would call you 5 times a day if I could do it without feeling crazy. (So instead I will just call you never)

I’m afraid that you don’t love me as much as I love you. Also, you have no idea how much I love you… because I don’t want to scare you. And I wonder, maybe I don’t know how much you love me either? Can you tell me, please?

I imagine marrying you and having the cutest babies in the whole world. I have ideas for names.

I imagine my wedding…to you. But don’t worry, I’ve been imagining my wedding since way before we started dating, the only difference is the you. (P.S. our colors are orange and green and I don’t care if it looks like Halloween!)

If I could not think about babies and marriage and moving in together I would!!! But I can’t control my thoughts, so get over it! I’m not going to drag you to the alter or anything.

 

At a job interview:

Why do you want to work for us? Because I need a paycheck.

What is your classroom management strategy? I couldn’t care less that students are talking, texting, passing notes, or not paying attention.

I never wanted to be a teacher. This is my backup plan. (I don’t even say this to myself! But slightly drunk me says, “it’s the truthhhhh!” Hopefully sober me disagrees tomorrow)

 

To my parents:

Ehhhh….I pretty much tell my mom EVERYTHING (like, way too much). She knows me better than I know myself.

 

Conclusion: I guess we all have a filter for a reason, just don’t let it get in the way when it’s important. That’s what drunk-texting is for! Have a good night, and tell someone that you love them way too much! (I’m not quite intoxicated enough for that, but it sounds fun!)

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Harder Than I Expected

So, my relationship has been a bit of a roller coaster lately. Last month I wrote about how I was completely, hopelessly in love, but I warned that I may feel completely different in a few weeks. And I did. I didn’t really matter that I had kind of seen it coming, it was still somehow a shock.

When I saw him a month ago it was perfect. Then, within days it was going downhill again. Communication was the culprit once again. I knew it would be a busy month for both of us and we wouldn’t be able to see each other, but I didn’t expect the texting to become so sporadic and the Skyping to become non-existent. We didn’t speak for four weeks, and it was driving me insane most of the time.

The real problem was that I thought he didn’t care at all. I thought that he didn’t even notice the lack of communication, I thought that’s how he wanted it. And when I went to see him this weekend I thought that he didn’t really want to see me. Of course, without communicating, how are you supposed to predict what someone else is thinking? That didn’t stop me from trying though.

I was half expecting to get into a heated argument and break up with him (though I knew that if that happened I would regret it instantly). I was even more afraid that he was going to break up with me. Apparently he was thinking the same thing.

I knew that we needed to talk. I didn’t know that he was itching to talk even more than me. The talking. That was hard. Way harder than I expected.

I suppose we haven’t had many serious conversations. At least none about our relationship and our needs. Nearly a year and a half into this relationship, it was way past due.

For a few moments, when the conversation shifted into serious territory, I really thought it was over. He grasped for the words he needed and panic flooded through my veins. I recoiled a few inches away from him, bracing myself. Holding my breath, and pulling at the roots of my hair, I waited for the tiniest eternity. Until he finally asked if I ever feel like our relationship is fantastic when we’re together and then when we’re apart it just gets gradually worse and worse. YES!!! That it exactly how I feel! I had no clue he felt the same way I felt. And he exhaled in relief to know that I felt as he felt. How had we both been feeling the same thing and assuming the exact opposite? How had we both been hurting and neither of us had seen it?

The conversation that followed took many unsuspecting turns, but it did not end in a break up. It did end in a better understanding of each other, which was what we needed. I finally said what I’d been thinking for far longer than I will ever admit: I need more. I need more than texting every other night and visits once a month. I need more than lukewarm feelings and endless questions. And I got what I needed, which was not – as I had expected – the promise of weekly Skype sessions and the occasional phone call. I learned what I can expect, and I learned not to jump to conclusions. I also learned that I need to be more supportive. We can both do better. We need to, if this is going to work. And I want it to work. More than I’ve ever wanted anything.

I never thought I would care so much. I never thought this would be so hard. I thought that as soon as this became too hard it would be over. But I can’t imagine it being over. And that scares me. What if I’m too in love? Is there such a thing? I’ve always been scared of being too invested, caring too much. That’s how you get hurt. That’s how you end up curled in a ball on your floor crying hysterically while a bowl of ice cream melts into a sad puddle nearby. That’s how I picture it anyway, the aftermath of a broken heart. I hope (possibly futilely) that I never know better.

Trusting My Emotions

It’s amazing how much feelings can change and shift in such a short time span. Sometimes I’m confused by my feelings. And sometimes I just can’t believe the sheer volume of my feelings.

I just re-read a blog post I wrote 6 months ago (in August) about my relationship and I had completely forgotten how strongly I felt at the time. I remember being mad at my boyfriend, but I didn’t remember how frustrated I was with our relationship as a whole. I do, however, distinctly remember how quickly those feeling thawed once I actually got to see him and speak to him (okay, it actually took several hours, but I think that’s quick considering I had been annoyed with him for weeks).

My feelings for him are always amplified when he’s around or right after he’s left. This makes me nervous. Yes, right now I am head-over-heels. But how will I feel in 3 weeks? If my feelings are so changeable, are they still real?

While my boyfriend was visiting for Valentine’s Day he mentioned how different we were. Having been on my second glass of wine, I jokingly took a great deal of offense to this. But there are many ways in which we are very different (not that there’s a problem with this, as he reminded me “opposites attract” and we always have stuff to talk/argue about). One of our biggest differences, in my opinion, is his tendency to be rational and my tendency to be emotional. It’s not that I don’t think rationally, I just think that emotions can be equally as important.

What I’m trying to get at, in far too many words, is that I place a lot of stock in my emotions. And when I’m feeling emotions that are new to me, I don’t know what to make of it.

This being the first time I’ve ever been in a relationship, I’m having lots of new feeling. Most notably, I can’t really grasp just how much I like my boyfriend. I’ve never liked anyone this much. I’ve never enjoyed spending time with anyone (including my mom!) as much as I enjoy spending time with him.

Considering that 6 months ago I felt like our relation ship was on the verge of collapse, I don’t know if I can trust my emotions. But now – and I would never tell him this – I can’t think about my future without thinking about him.

Is this how everyone feels with their first love? Does it make any difference that I’m 23 and not 16? Will I be reading this in 3 years (or 6 months!) and once again be feeling differently? Or will I still be so in love that I can hardly process it?

I don’t know. But I do know that right now I’m in love and it’s good. Really good. And I guess nothing else really matters.

Long Distance

Grad school has brought me many new challenges, stuff I never had to deal with as an undergrad. Most noticeably, maintaining a long distance relationship – or any relationship for that matter.

I’ve had to deal with homesickness and feeling lonely. But this feels different. I change my mind about my boyfriend on a daily basis. Granted, I wasn’t 100% happy with how our relationship went this summer. I felt like I didn’t see him enough and he felt like we saw each other all the time. It’s a little bit more complicated than that (at least to me… but then again, I never even told him that I felt like that) but that’s the easiest way to describe it.

For the first few days after I moved away I was too caught up in the excitement and nerves of starting something new. Then I started to miss him, really intensely at times. But before long I started getting annoyed. I felt (and still feel) like he wasn’t taking any initiative. He never called me, he never suggested we Skype. If we did Skype it was because I suggested it. We still texted daily, but it didn’t feel like enough. (I’m writing this all in the past tense, but really I still feel the same in many ways)

I thought that I was finally not missing him anymore. And that scared me. Because I haven’t seen him in nearly 6 weeks and if I don’t miss him then I figure that maybe I don’t love him anymore. Maybe I’ve felt ignored for too long, maybe my feelings have changed.

But then I got a voice mail from him, and the sound of his voice just made something in me crumble. And I’m right back to where I was at the very beginning: missing him.

My ever changing feelings are starting to drive me crazy. Sometimes it’s even hard to concentrate on my school work (granted, some of the readings are so boring). And sometimes (right now) I just need to get my feelings written down so that I can try to sort through them. I haven’t come to any conclusions, but I’ve organized my thoughts. And sometimes that’s all that you can do.

How Can You Know It Will Last Forever

It’s been 5 months since I officially started dating my boyfriend. He’s my first love. My first everything.

I don’t know what it’s like to be in love with anyone else. I hear all these stories that when you start dating “The One” you will know the difference. It will feel different. But how will I ever know if my love for him is different than for everyone else, when I’ve never loved anyone else. (I’m talking about romantic love exclusively, or course. I’m not some heartless person. I love a lot of people, but I don’t want to rip their clothes off)

Maybe it’s just because he’s my first love that I can’t imagine loving anyone else. I’m sure a lot of people feel that way with their first love. Maybe in a few years I will look back with a greater understanding and it will all make sense. Maybe I’ll find someone else and it will feel different. But somewhere deep in my heart I know that no matter who I end up with, I will always have some love for my first. Not that I won’t be able to let him go, but I will always care about him.

Chances are we won’t be together for as long as I imagine when I let myself dream. And if this thing ends, I will know that it just isn’t meant to be. But I also know that if we somehow end up together forever, I will be happy with that. Not just content, but extremely happy.

Of course, maybe 5 months isn’t long enough to know any of this. But I can’t keep myself from thinking about it.

The “L” Word

Four months after making our relationship “official”, my boyfriend and I finally said the elusive “L” word… well, I finally let it slip, and then we said it in a more romantic way.

For the past month it has seemed that in every tv show I was watching there was an “L” word episode where two characters clearly loved each other but were afraid to say it until one character let the word slip in some awkward way. I was determined not to let this happen.

For a month I tried my hardest not to say the word every time we said goodbye or hung up from a Skype call or cuddled on the couch. I was going to say it when the time was right. Or better yet, I was going to wait for HIM to say it at the right time and then I would look him in the eyes and smile slowly and tell him that I love him too.

That did not happen.

Somehow, it ended up happening just like it happens in the TV shows. I held it in and I waited and waited until I couldn’t wait anymore. Then I let it slip when we were joking around, in a more awkward way than I’ve seen on any TV show.

It went something like this: he was doing something stupid and I jokingly said, “I’d love you even if you were …[you’ll have to fill in the blank yourself, because it wasn’t the nicest word, although I’m sure it’s not what you’re thinking]”. Followed quickly with “Sorry…” because I’d realized what I’d said and I thought I’d ruined the moment. We sat awkwardly for a few seconds before continuing with whatever random conversation we’d been having. But a few minutes later he stopped and asked why I said I was sorry. I might have some serious short-term memory problems because I literally had no clue he was talking about, and that’s what I told him and he must have thought I was lying. A few minutes later while we were making out it finally hit me what he was talking about. Then, finally, he said “I have really strong feelings for you.” And I took a deep breath and said “I love you”… only it was much harder to say that I expected. The words caught in my throat and came out so quiet they were hardly even a whisper. “What?” was his oh-so-romantic response. So I took a deep breath and said it again, this time just barely load enough for him to hear. And he said he loves me too.

And in the end, even though I made a mess of things, it was perfect and beautiful and a little bit funny.

I wouldn’t change how it happened, although I don’t know why it took me so long to say it and why it was so hard to get out when I finally did say it. That’s where my story is different from the TV shows and the movies. I couldn’t shout it from the roof tops, I could barely whisper it! There were so many moments when I wanted to say it, when I felt it, but I could not bring the words to my lips. I do love him. I loved for quite some time before I said it. And I wanted to tell him so badly. But there is such a heaviness in that word. It means so much, I wanted to be certain that I meant it when I said it. But I can’t help thinking about all the time that we wasted not telling each other how we felt, even though it was so obvious.

I’m glad we can say it now. It feels wonderful and freeing and even kind of magical.

Falling in Love… It’s Not Like in the Movies

Ok, so I’m going to be cheesy for a while (I apologize in advanced).

Last summer I worked in a sandwich shop (I still work there, unfortunately) and I worked with a guy I went to high school with (well, we’ve actually known each other since elementary school). Long story short: I really liked him and apparently he liked me too, and when he went back to school we kept in touch and when he came home for Thanksgiving break I took him as my date to my cousin’s wedding, and we decided right there to make it official (even on Facebook!) and we’ve been together since then. (Don’t judge me for the run-on sentence, I realize it’s not grammatically correct and I don’t care.)

I’m 22 and he’s 22 and this is the first time either of us have been in a relationship (also, we shared our first kiss and all that stuff – I will be writing about that soon because I think it’s stupid that society makes us feel bad if we haven’t been kissed by the time we’re 16. And my first kiss at 22 was probably the most perfect first kiss in the history of first kisses, just sayin’).

So everything is new and sparkly and perfect. Honestly, I’m afraid it might be too perfect. Seriously, how can it be this good! It’s even better than in the movies! I thought that movie love was the pinnacle; life could never be as good as fiction. But it’s actually better!

Maybe it’s really not as good as I think, and maybe every relationship feels this good in the beginning. I don’t know. I don’t have anything to compare this to. And since I’ve never done this before, I really don’t know if I am in love, as the title of this post may suggest. I’m certainly in the process of “falling” in love, but as to when I will know for certain that I’ve finished falling, I haven’t got a clue. How do you know when you’re in love? I don’t know. But it’s good, and I couldn’t ask for anything more.

I do know that it can’t stay this good forever. I’m naïve, I will admit, but I’m not so naïve that I think this will always be perfect. Chances are high that this relationship will end – most relationships end. (I’m just going to make up a fake statistic, but if I had to guess I would say at least 95% of relationships end. Think about it: most people date several people before they get married, and many marriages end too.) I can’t see it ending any time in the foreseeable future, but I also can’t foresee what I will have for lunch tomorrow. It might end, it will probably end, but that’s ok. Because it has been absolutely amazing.

I am dating someone who is kind and smart and thoughtful and ambitious and hardworking and sweet and respectful and attractive and nerdy and who likes me more than I ever thought anyone would. I still can’t believe how lucky I am, because this is better than I thought it could ever get.