The Gamble

“Love and relationships” has to be one of my least favorite topics of conversation. Topics involving love regarding family is acceptable, and referring to relationships in the form of friendships is tolerable but when you combine the two words together they take on an entirely new meaning. Love in a relationship. If someone brings it up with me that is when I will be getting uncomfortable and weird.

The very first time I gambled with my heart, I lost the hand and my heart came back broken. After completely mishandling my first serious relationship I let myself go through months of feeling humiliated, unwanted and broken-hearted but I came to the conclusion that I was more at fault than him, I put on my best poker face and I told myself that I would never let it happen again. I toughened-up and gave myself a set of unwritten rules to be followed implicitly. But I will write them for you now.

Number One-I do not introduce my family or friends until I feel it is appropriate, which still hasn’t happened yet.

Number Two-I do not publicly announce new relationships until I am ready. This means no social media posts or pictures, I believe in discretion.

Number Three- I’m selective about the people I talk to when needing advice about the relationship, again…discretion.

Number Four-I never lay my cards out on the table first; this is often misinterpreted as hostility or a lack of interest.

Number Five-If I commit to the relationship there are only two things that will definitely lose him a second chance, hitting me and cheating on me. Almost anything else can be forgiven or compromised.

Finally-I will never say, “I love you” first again.

I know it seems really extreme but having rules does not keep me from loving people, it just protects me from getting hurt bad enough to lose all trust in love, because if that were ever to happen life would be too intolerably sad.

As cruel as it may seem, sometimes you have to take a step back and evaluate the people that surround you and ask yourself what they bring into your life or, possibly what they take from it. And when there’s someone new entering your life you have to consider how they will make you a better person and you should definitely be honest about what you are bringing into their life.

I have never been one of those girls who dreamed about weddings and husbands, babies and worthy pediatricians, reliable family-sized vehicles and carpools, houses in the suburbs with picket fences. When I thought about those things essentially what I saw was a life lived for everyone except you. In fact at one point the notion of spending the rest of my life with one man actually gave me hives.

But recently I’ve realized that there is no perfect hand in life, not really. If you want to raise a family in the traditional manner, then do it. If you want to be the alternative parent that enjoys the mosh-pit while your kid is on your hip wearing a badass concert T, then do it. To be someone’s spouse or someone’s parent or both does not mean you give up everything about yourself. You just have to design your own life and make of it what you will. I am not saying that I want those things I’m just beginning to accept the possibility of wanting those things (most likely due to my upcoming birthday). But regardless of that I never want to rule out a life that could be great.

I do not like it when the stakes are raised and I would really like to avoid this because it goes against my “rules” but recently someone kinda great has laid his cards out on the table in front of me and I did not reciprocate. Now I am sensing tension that was not there before and a sudden lack of interest. Yes, it could be in my head and if it is than this is about to get embarrassing, who am I fooling? It’s embarassing either way.

Sometimes, okay almost always, I struggle with expressing how I feel. Truthfully, I think I am afraid my feelings will be unrequited, making me feel unworthy and rejected because when it comes to my heart I can be irrational, self conscious and overprotective. Therefore writing is a better outlet for me, it’s how I clear the nerves and relax and when I do that my thoughts become coherent and truthful. So here are my cards…

-I like that when I say something completely humiliating you never make me feel bad about it, never, not once.

-I like your adorable dimples, although to be fair I love dimples on anyone so that’s really more about me than you.

-I like that you make me laugh, a lot.

-I like that you never get upset about being the punch line, you just go with it.

-I like that you’re forward, even though it makes me uncomfortable sometimes it’s still nice to be challenged.

-I really like that you don’t get jealous, giving a girl room to breathe.

-I like that you are old fashioned.

-I like that you don’t let me have my way all the time, it drives me crazy (as in I think it’s hot).

-I like your smile.

-I like your “confidence” I’d call it arrogance, but I think you’d prefer the term confident.

-I like when you crinkle your nose at me.

-I like that you don’t accept my unnecessary apologies.

-I like your eclectic taste in music.

-I like your kind heart.

-I like how open-minded you are.

-I like that you are a complete attention whore, because I am not and it takes the attention off of me.

-I like the way you give me butterflies, because it’s been a while since someone has.

I do feel it is way too soon to reveal how I’m feeling because I do still have doubts about whatever this may or may not be. I won’t lie either, I absolutely do not feel good about expressing something so personal and private in such a public manner but sometimes you have to gamble, taking that risk that could go horribly wrong or incredibly right letting the chips fall where they may, go big or go home.

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