But, I’m not happy. 

This is a hard story to tell. It’s a hard realization to live. 

I’m not happy, but I want to be. 

Is he the one? Or, isn’t he? 

I’d trust my instincts, if they were clear. 

I’m having a hard time. 

We’re having a hard time.

This will either make us…

or break us. 

It’s really simple and kinda complex. All our little problems have come to a head. It’s all the little ticks combining to work our nerves. All the little things have become a big thing, and they’re sucking all the air out of the relationship. 

Neither of us had done a fully committed relationship in a decade. Yep, a decade. There was that guy. He and I were involved, but it wasn’t solid. It wasn’t whole. It didn’t really work. And, he had a few girls. Neither of us have done this though. Not for a minute. Not in a minute. And, we didn’t totally miss it. 

Now, we’re smashed together. We’ve done the meet the family thing. We’ve committed. We’ve stretched ourselves thin for each other. We are in this thing. But, it all happened so fast. 

How did I go from a single mom to a girlfriend, future fiancé, one day wife, and hugging his family members in .002 seconds? What happened? When did it happen?

Why can’t I catch my breath?

What are we doing?

I felt like my identity was fading. I was signing up for things that were bigger than I could fathom. I was being sucked up in this relationship machine. I needed to escape. I was overwhelmed. 

I wasn’t happy. 

I needed to hit the pause button. I need to stop this and find myself in it. I had lost my voice. I was  just doing what I was supposed to do. I was getting drug along.

It wasn’t his intention. He hadn’t compromised in a decade. He has a strong personality. He was doing so many perfect relationship things. He was handing business. If I didn’t speak loud enough, his commanding presence just rolled right over me. 

I stopped talking. I stopped trying. I stopped being in the relationship. I started emotionally connecting elsewhere. I was shutting him out. I wasn’t happy. He couldn’t figure it out, because I wasn’t letting him in.

We’re in a tough space. We’re struggling. This is so hard. 

We aren’t happy. 

So, we are both living in this gray space. Neither of us is certain if we want to stay the course or cut and run. We aren’t done, but we aren’t convinced we should keep going. 

Damned if we do. 

Damned if we don’t. 

Exhausted. 

Why would I want a friendship with my exes?

There is a sincere part of me that believes that if it didn’t end in absolute chaos, 911 calls, or extreme threats we should be friends. Seriously. If we spent that much time in each other’s lives, loving each other, building a friendship, shouldn’t we remain friendly?

So friendly, not necessarily friends. Is that too much to ask?

Yes. Yes, it definitely is. 

I had to have this conversation, lose this battle, and eat poorly seasoned crow on this one. 

I’m only speaking for myself. 

I have had this STRONG desire to maintain this “friendship” with an ex. It’s been ridiculous, at times. But, why? Why have I fought the new man, the ex, and myself for a friendship that’s not really worth it? Because I like to win, and I hate to lose. 

I like to win. 

I hate to lose. 

It’s that simple. 

I invested a lot in that relationship. I gave so much of myself, and I lost…technically. He and I didn’t work. It wasn’t a happily ever after situation. We didn’t sail off into the sunset, well not together. 

And, I was crushed. Not because we were a good fit. Nope. Not because we had both tried so hard. Nope. I was crushed, I am crushed, because I put forth so much energy and effort for nothing. 

I know. I know. It’s the journey and the lesson, but those aren’t tangible. 

I didn’t feel the love he spoke. I didn’t get the baby we wanted. I didn’t get anything but a handful of empty promises and some debilitating headaches. I lost. 

I know. I know. I dodged a major bullet. I avoided a life time of excuses, misunderstandings, and let downs. I know. I really do, but it’s hard to trade that for the tangible. 

So, I accepted “friendly”. I actually initiated it, and I even pushed for it. Because, it means I don’t walk away empty handed. 

I’m not proud of this. 

Am I still in love with this ex? Am I expecting us to work out?

No. Nah. Nope. Not even. 

It wasn’t a good relationship. He wasn’t good for me. I wasn’t right for him. It was toxic at points, and the high points are covered in sex. We weren’t good for each other. We weren’t in the same place. We don’t have the same set of values. Nothing worked. 

I don’t want to go back. I don’t think I could handle another run. I barely made it out the first time. 

I just don’t want to feel like it was all pointless. I don’t want to feel like a loser. I don’t want to have lost. 

Sheesh. 

What about the new guy? Am I willing to sacrifice the new hopeful situation for the old tragic guarantee?

No. Nah. Nope. Not even.

I guess not. But, I kinda do every time I hold out for the win, huh?

This is a classic reason, season, lifetime situation.  Was the relationship meant to last for a season or a lifetime? Or, was there just a reason to it? Am I going to sacrifice a reason relationship for a lifetime relationship? 

No. Nah. Nope. Not even. 

I have to force myself to take this loss. I have to let go of the ALL the different relationships I planned with this man before it cost me the real relationship I’m living with my man. Duh. 

That’s the real win. 

Cue DJ Khaled’s All I Do Is Win

This shouldn’t be complicated. 

I only want two things. I want someone to believe in me, and I want someone to fight for me. That’s it. It’s that simple. 

My last two relationships blew up in my face. They were both men that promised me something they couldn’t commit to. I was hurt. I tried so hard, and I remained their friends. I’m supportive. I cheer for them. I want the best for them. I know it will never progress. 

I fought for them. I loved them. I sacrificed for them. I would bend nearly in half. I was in. Both times. And, it didn’t work. They couldn’t, or wouldn’t, come through for me consistently. They were both so broken, and I was ill equipped to fix them. 

And, I gave up. After minutes, months, and years of doing my part, I gave up. Do you know how hard it is to walk away from someone who tells you they love you? It’s devestating. Because if you’d said that you didn’t love me it would all make sense. 

I tried. I know I tried.

I’m not really seeing anyone anymore. 

I’ve been giving benefit of the doubt. I thought maybe I’d overreacted. I started easing myself back into…whatever this is. I thought maybe I was being too sensitive. Things will probably get better, right? 

The other shoe dropped instead. 

He and I talked late in the week, last week. I was letting the earlier stuff go. Starting fresh. I’d had a rough day. I’d had a really rough day. He reached out. The uneasiness I’d felt before seemed small in relation to this person asking what was wrong. 

I started where I was right then. I’d forgotten that I’d pulled away, and he didn’t have much of the back story. So I started to tell him how this man came into my house. That was just one of the things that happened, but it was the one that had me most uncomfortable. Some man had come into my house while I was in the shower and my sick kid was asleep on the couch. The hell?!

He was surprised. Me too. And, I’m the girl you like telling you about a situation that could have ended really bad. You’re surprised. I get that. 

As I started the story, he got a call. He clicked over the first time, but when they called back he had to take it. Okay. I get it. But, he never called me back. 

He got busy. I get it. 

But, he sent me a text later saying goodnight. Huh? 

I text back that he never called me back. 

Ignored.

Ignored?

I. Hate. To. Be. Ignored. 

You never called back. I was upset. I hadn’t spoken to many people about what happened. And, finally I could just own my feelings with this guy and say I’d been really scared. And, you never called back. 

The next day I get a good morning text. I responded that he’d never called back. I was expecting news that would put my spoiled, selfish ass, in check. Something big may have happened. Someone, somewhere, wasn’t safe. The bad that could have happened to me, could have actually happened to someone he really cared about. He was gonna probably put me in my place, huh?

Nah. 

He got something to eat. He got his mom something to eat. He did housework. He watched TV. He took a shower. He went to bed. 

Okay. That was my response text. Okay. 

He apologized. I said okay again. 

Then I called him. He was busy. He said he would call back. And, he did. 

I kinda went left. Adult-like, though. I told it like it was with few bad words and no name calling. 

This isn’t the first or second time this has happened. But, this time I was actually looking forward to putting this mayhem on his plate. I was scared and upset, and this was an ideal time for him to save the day. I was gonna be a damsel. I was gonna be in distress. Try something different. 

Never again, though. 

I told him that I expect what I give. If I forget, or get busy, and don’t come through, I offer an explanation and apology. No one has to tell me or remind me. It’s like owing money. I always remember who I owe. Just own it! 

Again, I was highly emotional due to circumstance, but we had also already had this conversation a few other times. Once when I politely asked, and again when I owed the apology for not doing what I said I would do because something came up. My face got rubbed all in that one, and I was forced to just own what happened. And again just like this, but without my temper tantrum. 

So, he’s on ice. Or, I’m on ice. This whole thing is on ice. I just need a break. It’s too soon for all this damn drama. 

“What a wicked way, to treat the girl that loves you…”

“What a wicked way to treat the girl that loves you…”

I’m not much of a Beyoncé fan. Just telling the truth. I think she’s talented, but I don’t subscribe to the beehive. 

But when you’re picking your heart up off the floor and your emotions have been spinning out of control, an album like Lemonade will speak to you. 

Right now the song Hold Up means everything to me. I know, I’m late. 

“What’s worse, looking jealous or crazy?”

I still don’t know, and I’ve been both. 

It’s over now. I wish I could say I got the strength to walk away, but really he cancelled the insanity. I would still be deep in dumb shit, wondering when it would end. Actually, I was praying it would get better. I’m not sure why. 

This was a horrible relationship, but he only did what I allowed. I wasn’t his victim. I was madly in love with a man that wasn’t ready for me to be madly in love with him.

He pushed me away, and I ran back. I was like a stray cat, and he fed me. He kept feeding me. I didn’t know if I was supposed to stay or move on. It was emotional chaos. 

Ouch. 

It’s not my finest hour, or 105120+ hours, or 1095+ days, or 156+ weeks, or 36+ months, or 3+ years. 

It was a foolish relationship, and that’s not typically me. I usually keep my head on straight. I don’t get caught up in the silliness of love. I love with logic and stay rational. I listen to my head. I examine every reservation. Usually. 

I’m not embarrassed. I’m still a little wounded. Still hurt. But, I’m rational on the other side. I’m feeling strong. And, I’m going to be just fine. 

I feel like myself again.

I’m seeing someone.

I’m seeing someone. It’s the graduation from dating. It’s moving into a more permanent place. This is the start of a relationship. And, I’m nervous. 

I’m trying to live in the moment. I’m trying to enjoy something that I’m not necessarily certain of. And although it’s not hard, it’s not that easy either. 

He knew me from way back. Shopped with me during my initial retail days. Flirted, but never moved forward. Took a chance almost 20 years later.

And…

That’s where the post ended, almost a week ago. I was planning to finish it. Waiting to get a little more depth. Wanting to have this amazing first entry to reference at the engagement party. 

That didn’t work out as planned. 

He wasn’t right. The reservations were choking out the good parts, and I couldn’t figure out what made it worth it. It didn’t feel good. 

We weren’t communicating well. We were only about 60 days in. The conversation was well received in the moment, but completely lost moments later. No plans were being made. No actions were taking place. Time was wasted. I didn’t want to keep trying because we made a great story. I want to make a great life instead. 

So, I cut and ran. We’d already tried again and started over. I couldn’t do this again. 

Because, it’s not supposed to be this hard. 

Fresh start. New me. No do-overs. 

I committed to making major changes in my life today. And, I’ve been successful. 

I’m getting rid of toxic people in my life. No more holding on to relationships that aren’t promoting happiness. 

I’m trying to lose some weight and get healthier. I’m focusing on calorie and step counting, meal prep, and better food choices. 

I’m standing up and speaking out for myself. 

I’m committing to having a better life. 

Day 1 is done. 

I hope tomorrow is just as easy.