Things I’ve Learned About Relationships In the Last 6 Months

I guess it’s been a while since I’ve said too much about how it’s been going with Flea Market Guy. I think partly because I didn’t want to jinx anything and partly because, as humans, we have a tendency to talk about the bad stuff and not the good stuff because we think as soon as we start talking about the good stuff, something bad will happen. Or is that just me?

Things have been going extraordinarily well. We have learned a lot about each other and about relationships through this journey of ours.

I’ve always been what you could classify as a “romantic.” I wanted to feel sparks and butterflies when I was with someone and when the sparks died and the butterflies flew away, so did I. I was no longer interested in the boring parts of any relationship- long term or one night. I will say that I can partly blame the men I was picking on my inability to stay interested. I always had a tendency to date men who were either weak or not very smart. Not always, but mostly. I would joke and say my picker was broken. And it was for a very long time.

And when I met Flea Market Guy, we just clicked. Maybe in a butterfly sort of way or a sparky kind of way. I actually don’t really remember. I just remember that after 5 minutes with him, I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him in one way or another.

If you are a veteran to this blog then you know the ups and downs we had. If you are new, here are the Cliff’s Notes version of what happened:

Flea Market Guy and I met – at a flea market, hence the name. We hit it off really well for a few months. He was a raging alcoholic who made poor life choices when it came to love and life. Not violent, thankfully, just stupid.  I didn’t want to be bothered with all that so I walked away which consisted of blocking the phone number and deleting the contact info. Then I moved on. Other dates. Lots of me time. I had almost forgotten about him altogether because I knew I deserved so much more. Fast forward about 6 months. I was working a gig and the girl I was working with had to text some info to me. I gave her my number. She text me her info and some glitch in the matrix or a cell tower somehow unblocked his number and her text came through FROM HIS NUMBER, which I didn’t recognize because I had blocked it and deleted it and had long forgotten about it. But when I text her back, the text actually went to him. It’s like fate was intervening. And I do believe in fate. He ended up calling me to see if I was OK and I explained what had happened even though he thought I was crazy and didn’t believe me, but I guess I would have thought the same thing if I were him. He asked me to dinner. He hadn’t really done anything unforgivable to me the first time around and it takes me a while to learn my lessons, so I said yes and we met for a drink and then dinner.

I could tell he was still drinking. And then he told me had a problem and he was miserable and still drinking, even more than before,  and he missed us going out together because we always had so much fun and all his other dates sucked because they weren’t me. And of course, one look at his face and I was right back to being all in with him. So we started seeing each other again. He was still attempting to juggle other women and there was a small amount of drama but every day I just loved him more and more. And the more he tried to quit drinking, the more I wanted to help him. He eventually lost everything- his job, his apartment, almost me. I was hanging by a thread. He was hanging by less than a thread.

I went to help him move his stuff out of his apartment and into storage. He didn’t know where he was going to stay. I suggested his ex girlfriend’s house because she likes to hang around him like a helicopter mom. He assured me that wasn’t going to happen and eventually broke down and asked if he could stay with me.

Fast forward almost 6 months. We’ve been living together and he’s been completely sober, which I mentioned in my New Year’s Day-ish blog. This last couple weeks have made a turn to the more committed side on both of our parts. We ended up joining our cell phone plan to cut expenses and he added me to his car insurance since my car died and sometimes I drive his. And we share a couple credit cards. In all of my years of dating, I’ve never shared anything with a man. I’ve never had a man that I wanted to. Well, maybe one, but it wasn’t in his plan and so I moved on.

So now we are in this place that feels very committed and very relationshippy. And it has been a sobering experience- literally and figuratively. And it’s scary- for both of us.

I have learned a lot about relationships that I never really knew before.

I learned that while do you need to know when to walk away, sometimes, you need to know when to fight for what you want. I’ve learned that love can go a long way when it comes to helping someone heal themselves and face their demons. I have learned that all those 50+ year marriages didn’t come easy. I learned that relationships take work and not everybody’s relationship looks the same just like not everybody’s work in a relationship looks the same. I have learned that if you feel like it is worth fighting for, then don’t worry about what anyone says and try your hardest. Not forever, but just until you figure out if it is really not worth it or if it can be fixed.

And if it can be fixed, I’ve learned that sometimes it’s better than you could have ever imagined. I’ve learned that chemistry is important in a relationship. I’ve learned that communication- hard, sometimes hurtful, glaringly honest communication is what has to happen sometimes. I’ve learned that the saying, “when you know, you know,” is true and scary. And I’m happy that we took the chance ended up where we are today.

I hope it lasts forever, but mostly, I hope that everyone gets a chance to feel this way at least once in their life, even if it doesn’t last forever.

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