Yesterday, he left to watch a football game and I just smiled and said, good luck, I will see you tomorrow.I could have gone with him but the game didn’t seem interesting to me nor did I have the energy to stay out late. Instead I tried to read but was unsuccessful and ended up falling asleep on the couch just before 9 pm.
Not exactly how I pictured engaged life to be.
To be very honest, I wasn’t really okay that he left early- we already spend so little time together and when he does come over, especially on those specific evenings when I’m sick, tired, complaining about work, or just really, really in need of his support, we have to pick and choose what we discuss because my family is always around somewhere.
But to understand that he has his interests even though we are together is a fundamental element in any relationship. And I’ll tell you this, this was very hard for me to comprehend (sometimes it still is).
Maybe it’s because I got really excited and happy that I finally had someone to do things with. Before we met and began dating, I didn’t have this one constant person I could depend on to go out or share interests with. Whoever was available would tag alone, and if no one could, then the idea just didn’t happen. I missed out of doing a lot of things because I never really wanted to go alone.
I promised myself this wouldn’t be the case with this new relationship: that we have the freedom to go wherever we want and do whatever we want. I really didn’t factor in our individual selves at first. I really, really wanted for us to get along and to have as many interests in common as possible.
I remember after a while of dating, I convinced Ahmad to give my gym a trial. I had been there for a year and a half and thought it would be good for him and I thought, yay I’d get to see more of my boyfriend!
It wasn’t the right place for him and I barely got the chance to talk to him anyway because I was so focused on my workout and the music. He never renewed his membership and there were no hard feelings. In fact, I relished the fact that I had something all for me that i could just escape to.
A couple of months ago, I found myself thinking of signing up for Salsa classes. It was something I had always wanted to do but either never had the time or anyone to go with. It’s not something you do on your own, I thought.
So I proposed the idea to Ahmad. He said no the first time.
I asked again. He said no.
I went to the first class with my sister and liked it, but noticed the absence of male students, so I asked him to come try just once, and he said no for the third and final time, adding “I just don’t dance.”
Okay, maybe I asked more than three times (I still do sometimes just for the fun of it) until I got that it’s just not his thing.
It’s like him asking me to 1. become interested in motorcycles and Mustangs 2. support Inter Milan 3. play basketball with him- all things that are great and part of who he is, but just nowhere near appealing to me.
Often, we all get caught up in the early days of the relationship where you’re trying so hard to impress this potential new partner or where you want it to come across that you’re so in sync, you share all your hobbies and passions, allowing no room for you to be who you are. For lack of a better description, you become a blob.
Remember that before you met this person, you had your own life and your own things going on and they probably liked you because of that- and the opposite is true.
It’s not a good thing at all when you have to think long and hard about how your life used to be like before they came into it. Instead, think of how they enriched it and how they have supported you to become a better person.
Then, turn around and do the same for them (and don’t give them a hard time when they want to go out and watch a football game).