Sunday, January 17, 2010

Opening The Vault: Part Sixty One

Milestone birthdays inevitably find you taking stock of your life -- and who’s in it. I found myself doing a lot of reflecting when I crossed the threshhold of 25.

At the time, I was seven months into a relationship with dashing, noble Brit David and five months into coping with my mother’s passing. I now Open The Vault and take you back to January of ‘99...

January 21st, 1999
New York, NY

Dear Diary,

Well, I am officially 25 years old today. More than any other birthday so far, this is the one that’s giving me pause.

Up until now, age has been almost irrelevant in my life. Between dating older men and the 25 years that separated Mom and Dad, I always felt age was more a state of mind than a number. Now, though, I’m suddenly very mindful of it.

The biggest reason for that is losing Mom. But it’s also because this is the first birthday that finds me thinking about my career and having a family someday -- and David has a lot to do with that.

Me at 25: Sitting in front of a few of the 300 roses David gave me

He overwhelmed me last night when I came home to 25 dozen roses. Yes, that’s right -- 25 DOZEN!! That’s 300 to be exact (well, 298 -- 2 didn’t make it, LOL). They’re the same rich array of colors as the 5 dozen D gave me last month. My room looks and smells like a botanical garden.

He’s pretty amazing.

* * *
January 23rd, 1999

I’m up early because of drilling outside. It’s only exacerbating the pounding in my head of frustrating thoughts about David.

I love him -- of that I have no uncertainty. He has 85% of what I’ve been looking for in a man. The question is, will the 15% that’s missing eventually drive us apart?

Though we’re compatible in many ways, I can’t deny that I wish we had more ‘deep and meaningful conversations,’ as D puts it. I fear that his seeming inability to give me the kind of dialogue that I need will eventually pull us apart.

Then, there’s the matter of my lingering distractions about Sparky. I was convinced back in November that he posed no threat to David and me. But it scares me that two months later, he still takes up space in my brain.

Distractions disappear when I feel like David and I are really communicating. I just want that to be more of a regular occurrence.

* * *

The ghost of my ex would be the least of my problems with David as our different personalities became an increasingly difficult obstacle to overcome.


highheelgal said...

My most recent ex always made the comment that he and I were "so different." He was more laid back and I am outgoing. I thought we complemented each other, but apparently, it was more of a problem for him and perhaps that's one reason he chose to end us. Meaningful conversations are important and personalities definitely play a role in that, but at what point can opposites attract? Or is that just a meaningless cliche?

Melissa said...

I think -- as we both experienced -- opposites do attract. The part of that cliche that's missing, though, is it's what you have in common with a partner that sustains a relationship. Personality differences can be complimentary, but I think it depends on how big of a gap there is between the two.

Ron said...

From my perspective- I've seen a few couples end because of just this sort of difference. I've not experienced this personally as I avoid women on either extreme since I know it won't work. I would say most guys wanted out not because of the actual difference in desire to socialize but rather they felt their GF's behavior was inappropriate. Just my observation.

Melissa said...

Hi Ron -- Thanks for chiming in with the guy's perspective. Having experienced personally this scenario, and known many women who have as well, I would say women have opted out not because of a difference in the desire to socialize, but because of the BF's lack of ability to. It can be exhausting to be with a guy who is usually silent and awkward in social situations.