Stripping my bed of its sheets, sorting laundry and stacking books on my night stand, I ignore an empty feeling gnawing at my gut. Menial tasks are always a good distraction. I sit on the edge of my bed, reaching down to unplug my charger and disconnect my phone. I notice an unread message from this morning. I chuckle to myself as I read the funny text from one of my dearest friends. I send a quick reply. She asks about my day and I tell her it was long, and that I’m feeling melancholy. I don’t want to type the word, I don’t want to whine, but I do it anyway. She responds, Yeah me too. Her husband is working out of the country these days, a plan they decided on together, still it’s rough for both of them to be apart.
We continue to text, comparing notes about our hectic, over scheduled weeks. Both of us work long days and we sometimes forget to make a plan for fun on the weekend. When Friday rolls around, we find ourselves alone because we were too busy to get our shit together for an evening out. I confess to her that even if I had a plan, I am often so tired that I prefer to relax and stay home. Then I text, that’s the beauty of having someone in your life . . . they are just there. Missing her husband, she agrees. As we share a little melancholy moment in cyberspace, my eyes well up with tears as I imagine my words reaching my friend’s tender heart. I tell her I’m sorry she is feeling blue. I have a commitment for the evening, and have to run, but we agree to an overnight trip very soon.
While I wash my face and change my clothes, I think about the great couples I know, my closet friends. They love spending one on one time together. Whether it’s sharing a meal, traveling, bingewatching cable shows or doing absolutely nothing at all; their partner is their number one choice for company. My friends remind me often that every relationship has its ups and downs, none are perfect. As a person who has been unsuccessful with coupledom, I remind them that I am concentrating on learning more about the ups as I try to crack the code to their success. What is their secret? How do they make it work? And for so long? I have NO idea. I do know that the longer I stay away from dating, and the more I observe the great qualities of the couples I love, the more I learn about good, solid relationships.
Tonight’s mini lesson . . .
It’s not enough that I love someone’s company, the way he laughs, or how he makes me feel. It’s not enough that I see a future. The person I choose has to love my company, he has to choose me too. And when he is tired after a long day, or an exhausting week . . . he is happy . . . just knowing I am there.