Earlier today one of my younger cousins had a post on Facebook where she declared that she envied happy couples. It slowly came out through a few comments on her post about how some single people, or those in a relationship that is really going no where, where jealous of couples who just seem over the top lovely dovey.
One of my other cousins commented back something quite inspiring. I really wanted to copy his comment for posting here, but he deleted it (for some strange reason). However the gist of his comment was one of not settling for someone who seems to just want to be in a relationship, or even settling yourself with someone whom you seem to have more lust for rather then love. He said spending time with your partner is more then going to the movies, or out to eat at a fancy restaurant, but doing sharing things you both enjoy because spending time with that person is more than spending physical time together, but sharing of interests, life, and experiences. In addition, the couple still stays individuals, but you share your uniqueness with each other.
Reading his comment made me put some thought into my past relationships. There were times with my ex-husband where I felt that we really did share our lives. However I think there was a point after we had kids where he wanted to stay more of an individual and he looked down upon my effort to integrate myself into my family as a whole. I admit after I had “S” I felt like I lost a part of my independence, part of my personality, part of me. I think most of those feelings were in part due to PPD, but I still struggled between being immersed in being a doting mother and being my old self. Between work, chores around the house, and trying to spend quality time with “S” I routinely felt mentally and emotionally exhausted. After I was laid off I just poured more into spending quality time with “S” and keeping up with chores around the house. I still felt exhausted. I tried to dabble in socializing with other local moms, taking some classes, and getting back to gardening and hobbies. But each time I ventured into doing things that used to make me feel more myself my ex-husband complained that I never gave him the opportunity to do the same. He made me feel guilty for trying to get out of the emotional rut I was in. Funny thing was when I offered him the same opportunities all he wanted to do was play video games without interruption from me or “S”, which he usually did after “S” went to bed anyway, and I never interrupted him. This lead me to feel like he was distancing himself from me and in turn I just yearned to spend any time with him.
Well, enough about the ex-husband talk, now back to my point…. Since I felt so ignored by my ex-husband when I started to date “JS” I put so much value into the time we spent together that I didn’t care what we did as long as I was spending it with him.
After reading my cousin’s comment I wondered if I just put so much emphasis into spending time with “JS” that I might have overlooked whether or not we were sharing our moments with each other. I mean we spent a lot of time eating out and shopping. Not that I wanted to eat out that much, ad lord knows I never had money to go shopping, but I looked at it as time WITH “JS”, not two people sharing each other. I wonder if “JS” saw it that way back then just before our break up. He was very complimentary of me and our relationship, but later on said I lacked providing basic “needs” of his. Perhaps he needed more then just spending time together, perhaps he needed a partner who opened their life to him and shared it. I admit I don’t think I was doing that, and for that I feel guilty for squandering a good person that touched my heart so deeply.
All this reflecting has given me so much to think about. I am not going to dwell on the what ifs and why nots, but use this as a way to apply to any future relationship I may find myself in. I am not dating for the sake of dating. Nor do I want a relationship for the sake of being in a relationship. I want to find someone who I feel completes me and who enjoys me for being me.