… Suffering from one. Recent chats with my boyfriend and a close friend have pushed me to question my habits, predicaments, behaviours, thought processes. Even my self-perception, which is pretty unchanging. I’ve been wanting to do a sort of re-evaluation of all things that make me me for a while anyway. Scrubbing away the debris of old likes and re-instilling my excitement for what used to make me tick. I cleared out all my old homemade compilation CDs. Rearranged the piles of Have/Sell/Empty DVDs. Gok-Wan-ed my wardrobe. Am trying to make more time to rediscover the joy of reading. There are lots of things I have forgotten about or neglected somehow. Now I am trying to bring them back. But only what I need.
This recent quandary is to do with who I am in a social context. Up until a few years ago, I was a very quiet, solitary, independent woman who had a favourite colour, a favourite meal, and a lot of alone time. Then a relationship hit. Things got serious and I got paid a lot of attention. It’s been hard to shake the feelings of manipulation and subversion I was left with. I think I felt suppressed for the first time. My feelings were out of my control. I was not allowed what I considered basic freedoms without a garnishing guilt.
Now, in a much freer position and circumstance, I have been taking advantage of my born-again teenage status. I am allowed to network, have active friendships, invest time in various areas of my life and relationships; whatever I feel like at the time. I have a very accepting boyfriend. My problem lies exactly here. He is the kind who loves me unconditionally, farts and all. And I worry that I am swaying too far in the opposite extreme from where I was before. Am I being too selfish? I have been most disconcerted (in a constructive, pensive way) by how my friends see us in comparison to themselves. Which has been merely solid food for thought. I understand that our own life has to be determined by what we find works best for us. That’s just it. Getting the balance right so that it serves both of us well. An unhappy him makes for an unhappy me, and vice versa.
I am starting to see myself as a grown up. He and I are alone in our world. When we live together, it will be me and him vs the world, using our tools, our habits, our vocabulary, to make sense of the day-to-day and to reach a new kind of harmony together. Alone together.
With that in sight, I think I have been trying to cram friend time and social activities in as much free space as possible, making the most of this ‘freedom’. Sometimes forgetting that the freedom also allows for me to choose to spend time with the boyfriend, should that be my first choice. Which it is. I look forward to him being around in my space full-time. Maybe I can distance myself from these presuppositions enough to gauge exactly what it is I (we) need, to fit in the necessary alone time and also the together time.