I have recently ('cause I am slow on the uptake) realized that almost all of the relationships in my life that I hold in the highest regard have been through some roughness, some toughness, some things that I thought would be the end of the road. I give up on stuff easy--I always joke that Tholmers are quitters (we aren't, though)--and whenever I think a friendship is gone, I am just fine with it. And then about a week or two later, I can check back in and realize that I want that person in my life still, and then I will fight for it.
This girl I am friends with that I call my soulmate because our moods are always in sync, even though we live an hour-ish apart, and I have seen some bad days. People assume she is a pushover, the kind of person that does what her best friend wants to do just because she is her best friend and that's what best friends do. It is funny, the kind of women I have ended up choosing to spend my life with. I am an outspoken young lady, readily available to admit my flaws, readily able to admit when I am wrong, absolutely thoroughly open to new ideas, and opinions. I always surround myself with women who understand me on levels that I do not quite understand. This friend and I are so, so similar, besides her type-A personality and my "recklessness": "nah, I don't like asking for help, but I'm pretty sure this bus gets to your house just fine."
There are few people in the entire world who know that I do, in fact, have a "pushover" side, so let us just dismiss that as a characteristic of mine. Most people in the world know that I do not push over for very many. The fact that people believe this girl of mine is a pushover does not even bother her. When I have been accused of being a pushover, I lose my cool. I am not a pushover. This girl just shrugs, because why does she care if someone else thinks she is a pushover? She isn't, so who cares what someone else thinks of her? I admire that, I so admire that. She lacks that obnoxious necessity to prove herself that I obtain so strongly. I have to prove myself, and she just is. And we are the same, but she is so much more quiet about it.
She is the kind of friend that I absolutely never have to say, "don't judge me," before I tell her something, because why in the world would she judge me? Why should anyone? I value this friendship, so much more more than I can ever express in these words, on this page.
I have such a strange relationship with men, and whenever I am reflecting on my friendships with women, I end up transferring those same thoughts over to men. I am friends with a lot of men, turns out. I used to joke that I was only friends with men, and then I realized that almost every "friendship" I had with a man was riddled in "what ifs." That, my friends, is not a friend.
I was very, very good friends with a very, very tall young man in the beginning of college. When I met him, he was involved with a young woman who had gone to a university in Seattle, so they were attempting the long distance situation that seems like a great idea to early-aged college students. They were eighteen, but totally, totally in love, so of course they were going to withstand the: meeting of new people, choosing of a major, becoming an adult. Why wouldn't they? I believe they lasted for six months of his freshman year, and it turns out, they weren't all that in love after all. I had fallen for him about three months before they broke up, but I had kept quiet about it because I was not quite yet the home-wrecker I have been called these days. Though I fully believed in his relationship with that nice blonde, equally tall (well not equally tall) young woman, I realized I had been holding my breath for that weepy call I received the summer after our freshman year. Aw, she was never worth your time, anyway, my boy.
I never told that one how I felt. There is something about being under the age of twenty years old that makes you feel like the entire world will stop revolving if the person you love ever finds out that you love him. Hey, Tall Dude, I was totally in love with you because there was not another man I had ever met in my entire life that could listen to me talk about my issues with both my mother and my father. There still hasn't been, and I feel grateful, despite that soundless falling out we had about, go figure, your
The girlfriends, though, are the ones who make you feel like, never mind what you did or did not do right or wrong, I got your back. Even when we aren't friends anymore, the girl who had my back when I hated Mr. Height, and tried to like him when I decided we would be friends again, was the kind to flip-flop with me.
Boy, don't I wish.
When I started telling the boys I fell in love with that I was, well, in love with them, it did not get better. It did not get easier. I leaned on my independence to remind myself that I did not need a boyfriend, but unfortunately, it was never about having a boyfriend. I settled for not having a boyfriend for twenty-whatever years, and there was never the urge to have a titled relationship in my life. I, in fact, did not need a boyfriend. I, however, did fall in love with boy friends. So, what was there to do?
At this point, we all know about my ex-boyfriend. We all have one like him. I fall in love with men that I
I fall for complications.
My ex-boyfriend, who I gave three years and my virginity to, I do not lament any longer. I did not love him with the fervor in which I loved Nathan, the man I fell in love with when I was sixteen years old, and I did not love him with the determination in which I loved the one during and after him. He was not my Great Love, but he was the only one who could have given and taken from me what I would not have been able to give to anyone else.
He came to me, at a serendipitous time, it seems. He gave me the world, he gave me a community of people I am oh so grateful for, literally every day of my life. I knew we were meant to be together, but I did not know the why of it. I did not know we were meant to be for everyone else.
I consider myself an incredibly open person, so when I refuse to discuss a subject matter, I personally attempt an analysis of why or why not. There is a man I do not write about, I do not speak about, and it is not because I have a lack of words, it is because I made a promise.
And I keep those, not like I keep secrets.
Yesterday at work, my coworker hung a "Go Seahawks" sign from two photographers that work for our local newspaper. Later in the morning, a man that I have been previously involved with, came in to get his drink. He was discussing sports with someone, and I overheard some joke about not really knowing who the Seahawks were. He said something totally off-the-football-topic, and I sighed, "that's my kind of man."
It was probably three hours later that he and I got into a huge spat about some horribly stereotypical "Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus" argument. I told him, of all of the people I have ever known in my entire life, he frustrates me the most, not in a good way. He makes me punch-a-wall, break-my-phone angry with his stupidity. Smart men (which he is) should not be as stupid as he can be.
By the end of the night, I was pretty drunk, mostly asleep, legs draped insignificantly over him, The Godfather playing in the background, telling him how he doesn't speak Spanish enough. In Spanish, he told me that he knows...and I don't know the rest, because my Spanish is rusty this far out of high school.
There are moments, I wonder how or why some things work out and others do not. The lack of closure trips me like an invisible fence. I could spend the rest of my life on "what ifs."
That's where faith comes in. I believe that it will work itself out. I believe that the universe gave me a rough and unsatisfying three year relationship to realize that when The One seems like The One, he is not necessarily The One. I like to earn my keep.
I have so many women that I openly love and cherish, why does it have to be so different with men?
But what about those unclosed doors? I cannot fall asleep with my closet door open, how am I supposed to fall in love with my relationship doors wide open?