An expiry date is something everything has.
You could be forgiven thinking that I had entirely given up on romance. For a while I had. As far as I was concerned most relationships were having to do boring stuff I didn’t want to.
There are many different rules in a relationship that I never really cared to get my head around.
You’re told that you should always be honest with your partner yet when you’re at some mind-numbingly boring event that you’re told “would be good to go to” and this person you’re in a relationship turns to you and says “You don’t look like you’re enjoying yourself” the worst thing that you can do is reply “I’m not”
Don’t get me started on the never-ending food debate that occurs.
Them: “What do you want to do about food?”
Me: “I’m good.”
Them “You pick somewhere.”
Them “We had that recently”
Them “At this hour.”
Again I’m terrible at this because I don’t really care about food. You might need endless variety in your diet, not me. I’ll eat the same meal for weeks on end. Then I’ll get bored and switch over to something else, and the cycle begins anew.
I get that from my granny. She was never a big eater. I remember her on many occasions sitting at the head of the table, barely touching her own food while looking around at the rest of us at the table and bemoaning how she would have thought by now that science would have invented a pill that would supply you with all your nutrients so that you wouldn’t have to bother to eat. I hear your granny, the future promised us a lot. Where’re our hoverboards?
I’ve drifted wildly off point, you’ll have to forgive me at some point.
Where was I?
Oh yes, I was mostly done with the relationships for the foreseeable. I have this urge to be liked which would usually end up with me being deeply unhappy in the relationship and putting up with a lot of things that I didn’t like.
You know where this is headed right?
You’re smart, and that’s why you’re reading this. I met someone who destroyed all my misconceptions of what a relationship could be.
She left Belfast for good this morning.
Now you’re probably thinking that’s sad and it’s a shame. It’s actually not. Although we only spent a short time together, it was way more enjoyable than my last couple of relationships.
When we first started dating she was going for an interview for a job in London. Turns out she got it, when that happened I backed off a bit because a part of me thought that I was never going to see her again and that would be that.
A few weeks went by and then she got in touch again, and we reconnected and here’s the thing, I was glad that she did.
I’ve never had so much fun in a relationship. You’re probably thinking, it didn’t last that long, so you were still in the honeymoon stage, so it doesn’t count. You could be right, but there were so many signs that things would have been just as good in the long term.
First of all, I was never meant to feel guilty for telling the truth. If you want me to be honest with you, don’t make me feel sorry for doing it because it is just as handy for me to lie if it means a comfortable life.
Sometimes I’ll be honest to annoy people. People tell you that you should always know the truth, but few consider what that means.
Good time, not a long time
What I really enjoyed about the relationship was that there was an end in sight. It was out of our hands to an extent. There was no awkwardness or having to have conversations about “Where it’s going” and I felt all the more free for having it like that. She could walk at any time, but I could be myself, I could afford to let the mask slip.
Letting the mask slip is essential for me. It’s funny how you will hear the first world feminists tell you that men need to open up more about their feelings. Great in theory. Men have you ever made yourself genuinely vulnerable before a partner if you haven’t, don’t. By all means, tell them your concerns but for the love of God do not understand them your innermost thoughts. Men’s opinions are deep and dark. Most women can’t handle them.
I was fortunate enough to find someone who allayed my fears, and I didn’t have to reveal those thoughts. She kept a favourable cheerful disposition, and that meant that I didn’t get too profoundly at any point. Let’s be honest men and women approach problems differently. Men think every issue has a solution, women have a “speak the devil’s name to cast him out” strategy.
What am I trying to say in the course of this writing? You’ve been reading along thinking is there a point?
I’ve been standing at my chest of drawers typing away on my laptop thinking to myself, where am I going with this?
If you’re going to take anything away from this let it be as follows.
The universe or whatever you want to call it conspires to make hypocrites of us all at some point. You and I both know that person who has given up on finding someone, next thing you know they’re engaged. Maybe verbally stating to someone that you aren’t going to do something is the first step to doing it. Try it and let me know how you get on.
You can be content in a relationship. This is one that took me by surprise. You are maybe fortunate enough to have already worked this one out for yourself. I’ve always thought that part of being in a relationship was that there was still a base level of discomfort when you were with someone. This is the first relationship I’ve been in in a long time where the other person has been thoroughly chill.
Caring is overrated
You don’t need to care so much. Caring, and this is something that I’m going to tell you about in more detail at a later date, is overrated. Take life as it comes and make the most of what you got as it happens. The future and the past don’t exist so don’t worry about it.
A few years ago if something like this had happened, I would have been bitter that it was over and how it was so unfair. Not me of today. I’m happy that I got to have the time that I did.
If you ever read this.
Thank you, Saba.