Am I feeling what I think I’m feeling; The hope, the heat, the fear?

The new year might only be not even a month old, but so far 2013 is going down in my life as one of the best years ever.

I am employed full time at a job that I kind of like most of the time. Sometimes I even get paid to write, (not my own stuff, but writing is writing).

I have an amazing girlfriend. Like, you’re all jealous that my girlfriend is as awesome as she is. Or would be if you met her. Which you all totally should because she’s awesome.

Okay, awesome is going to lose meaning, so let’s mix up our adjective use a bit here shall we?

Let’s back up to the dark ages a bit shall we so that you can get the best understanding of how incredible my girl is, hmmm?

I’ve had three girlfriends. My first girlfriend, we’ll call her B, she was a lot of my firsts. But it never really felt right, though I thought it should so I tried to force it into something it never should have been. That lasted about a month and a half. In retrospect, the anger I felt at the end was anger that I hadn’t been the one to end it.

Then, my second girlfriend, we’ll call her AP, we were together for six and a half years. AP was everything that B wasn’t, but it still wasn’t quite right. Where B only liked me for what I could do for her physically, AP liked being able to manipulate me into doing what she wanted. But it was way more subtle than what B did. I’m not explaining this very well, trying to keep things PG and keeping anonymity is making this difficult.

I’m not sure that AP manipulated and controlled consciously, but by the time the relationship was over, it became clear that she had been an anvil holding me down, that the relationship had been controlling and emotionally abusive.

AP kept me pretty isolated from my friends, kept me from making new friends, didn’t really want to have anything to do with the Gay community here (for fear that I would see another girl who better struck my fancy and I would leave her), and kept me pretty lonely. When we would go out with my friends or family, she always had something negative to say about them. Always something judgmental and cruel. And yet, when we went out with her friends, I had nothing but positive things to say about them.

I never did chores right, I was lazy, unmotivated, inconsiderate, rude, socially unacceptable, why couldn’t I just get on board with how things were MEANT to be?

My geekiness was an embarrassment to be covered up and avoided where ever possible. Don’t let go, don’t have fun. Don’t dance. Don’t sing. I started to believe I was Baptist!

Don’t be yourself. In other words.

So I spent the better part of 6 years trying to be the person that AP wanted me to be. And it didn’t work. I couldn’t ever get anything right, there was more friction than not. But I didn’t leave, because I thought I loved her. I thought she loved me. But had I listened to that little voice in the back of my head, I would have known from the beginning that it really wasn’t as perfect as I had believed it.

When it ended, it felt like a relief. I could regain my life! But where to begin? I had been someone not myself for years, I had to go all the way back to high school to start to figure out who I was before I was shoved into an ill-fitting mold and told to conform.

My (now) roommate moved in, and he and I began growing into real live people together. He growing up into a great guy, me, figuring out who I am again.

So here I was at the end of 2012, just laid off from my seasonal job at UPS, no prospects in that regard, and feeling lonely because my roommate had gotten a job and was working constantly. So I opened up one of the online dating profiles I had set up, and started searching around, and low and behold this girl catches my eye. Her screen name is from a Robert Heinlein book, she’s really attractive, she likes guns, she like science fiction, she seems really intelligent! I type out a message (of course at this moment I was still subscribing to my 21 year old male roommate’s advice on how to get girls and the message consisted of three words – ‘hi I’m Sarah.’) and send it. Now I had sent out other messages of this sort before and it was rare that I ever heard back from anyone, so when I got a reply, I was flabbergasted. We started talking, and I was liking everything that I was hearing, so I asked her out. Then I waited impatiently for the date.

The date (my first in almost 7 years) went better than I anticipated. The date survived two different location changes (from getting coffee, to getting dinner, to her apartment to hang out). It would have continued until later in the evening if I hadn’t had to leave to go get my roommate from work.

It went so well that despite me being home sick the next day, she brought me dinner. And invited me to meet a bunch of her friends the next night for pizza and beer.

The biggest thing I should mention at this point was the fact that with both B and AP, I slept with them on the first date. With this girl (who I just realized I haven’t given letters to yet, but will be AB), I didn’t sleep with her on the first date, the second, the third, the fourth, the fifth, or the sixth. It wasn’t until a week into dating her that I actually slept with her. And waiting, that made a great deal of difference. I already knew her (maybe not everything) before we made that jump to lovers. (Okay, that word is kinda cringe worthy I apologize). But in that time before intimacy, we talked, about EVERYTHING. About our pasts, about our likes, dislikes, dreams, goals, theoretical situations regarding zombie infection… you know, typical stuff.

We even talked about our fears, how we had both thought we’d fallen in love with our ex’s only to find out after the relationship was over that it wasn’t love.  How we both could feel ourselves falling, but that we didn’t want to jump into anything before we were sure what we were feeling was real.

But by naming our fears, both of us realized that we’d had reservations before that we hadn’t paid attention to, but by looking for those same reservations this time, we had learned from our mistakes.

So we admitted it. We were falling in love with each other. And yes, we’re doing the very traditional lesbian thing by falling in love within a week or two of beginning to date. But we’ve both been hurt before, and we know that what we’re feeling is so incredible that we can’t deny what it is.

So now I’m in a relationship with AB, and she’s just utterly fantastic. She loves me for being myself, geekiness, awkwardness in social situations, tendency to sing and dance along with music, sometimes known for making crude sexual suggestions…. she loves it all. And I find it just incredibly easy to be a great girlfriend to her. I make the coffee in the morning and bring it to her in bed, its so easy to do little things like that, but she treats every little thing like a big thing, and it just makes me so freaking happy to make her smile like I do. So I do more things, and she does things that makes me smile, and we just make each other happy. And  I’m even happier just because I can be me, that just being me makes her happy. That she makes me happy just being her.

It’s still too soon to say much more than I love her, she loves me, and that we make each other happy. But for now, that’s more than enough.

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