Fine tuning

Guitar by petur r

By mid-June my relationship with brand-new boyfriend was already flying high, he quickly winded up to be my main priority throughout the days. He literally was my first thought as I opened my eyes in the morning and my last thought before I fell asleep. And the same was happening to him; “I’m thinking of you all the time” he told me one day, while I was driving in my car.

I had never felt so positively irrational in all my life, but my fears were still there and, luckily enough, so was my therapist.

“I’m afraid it’s not going to work between us. I’m opening up to him so much and I am afraid that this will hurt me. My breakdown hasn’t happened that long ago, my wounds are still fresh.”

My therapist nodded, less than 3 months before I was fainting on the floor terrified of my own shadow, after all.

“Could it be a matter of distrust?” she asked me. “It could be.” I replied.

It definitely was.

She helped me understand how much of what we had been discussing until then was also a possible proof of my troubles trusting the others. She was right, what I used to think of as my independence was likely a consequence of my inability to trust the others completely. For some reasons that we were going to investigate in the future, I tended to do things by myself, so that I could avoid putting my life, my feelings, or my achievements in someone else’s hands.

This step was eye-opening for me, but for sure it wasn’t enough to make me blindly and suddenly embrace my faith in the others.

I couldn’t enable my trust for him by the wave of a magic wand, but what I turned out to be doing in the following weeks was to slightly reshape the expectations I had from our relationship.
When it all started, I was expecting it to be the Love of My Life (Capital Letters intended). I wanted it to be Perfect and, knowing my flaws and his history, I definitely knew that perfection was off the table.

Somehow, after talking about it with my therapist, I managed to lower the bar; another kind of miracle for me, since I’m the girl who can’t help but raising the bar in an exhausting and suffocating never-ending cycle.

I acknowledged I was enjoying my time with him, I was appreciating my slow discovery of my new side as a partner and a lover. I was relishing the moments, so I realized I didn’t really need any promises, plans, or long-term commitments. In other words, I was just realizing that I could do without controlling it all, I realized that I could enjoy it completely, by being “here and now” in my relationship with him, seizing moment after moment. And – once again – getting a sense of my impossibility to control his reactions, his reliability and therefore the outcome of our relationship, made me feel slightly relieved, as some of the responsibilities were being removed off my shoulders.

 


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