(Street art – Hosier Lane Melbourne, January 2014)
When I started to go on dates with my boyfriend, I remember telling Tash that I just don’t have time for a boyfriend. I guess it was one of the excuses I used to keep my heart safe. And it was also true – I have so much going on that I didn’t think I’d have time for a man in my life. I wondered how I’d schedule in boyfriend time.
The sharing-time part of my relationship took some getting used to. I’ve been single for a long time. And only child. A sole dweller since moving out of home 11 years ago. I’m driven, focused on my goals and probably a little selfish. I worried that I would not accomplish my goals in a relationship. For a few weeks I felt suffocated, I just wanted some time on my own. Looking back, I must have been pushing him away. He wanted to spend every minute with me. I didn’t want to see him every day. I wanted to continue to have my own time – I didn’t want my life to change. But I wanted love too.
I read this article on Elephant Journal – it’s on how to love the independent girl. It spoke to me.
“She’s the self-sufficient, somewhat mysterious go-getter with big dreams and an even bigger heart, though not everyone sees it at first glance.
Some might see her as cold and distant, because she needs a significant amount of alone time to keep her from feeling scattered and spread so thin that she disappears. Sure, she has family and friends with whom she loves to spend much of her time, but it’s in her nature to crave those precious hours of solitude—being only with her thoughts, completely alone in a crowd or in the vastness of a quiet scene.
Some call it antisocial; she calls it sanity.”
That girl is me. I love being alone.
I love my time on the couch writing and drinking wine on a Friday night. I love playing music loudly. I love falling asleep to I love to get up when I want, go where I want and do what I want. Being alone lets me think, let’s me be me. I am an extrovert who needs to wind down in my own space. I love being alone.
And now he’s here, because I love him, I’ve made time. I love being with him.
The more I see him the more I want to see him. We’ve reached a comfortable stage where we can sit quietly doing our own thing, or doing things apart and then coming together. Sometimes I ask him what his favourite part of the day was and he says “all of it, because it was spent with you”. I feel the same. I can’t imagine life without him now.
I’ve talked to him about the need for my independence. I’ve told him I don’t want him to lose who he was before he met me.
As I write this, he’s doing what he likes to do – bike mechanic stuff. We’ve texted a few times. Told each other “I love you” and discussed My Kitchen Rules. Later we will send goodnight messages, sappy and romantic. And there will be a beautiful wake up message for me in the morning: “have a wonderful day my princess”.
We spend weekends together – usually Friday to Monday – and one or two nights in the week. I like this alone time, I know he does too. I like that I will see him in two days time. I am so excited about seeing him. (Though not sure how we will fare with six weeks apart.)
Being Miss Independent has been a challenge when it comes to love. My independence has been a brick wall I’ve had to dismantle a little to let him in – luckily that happened very early on. There’s a fear of losing who I am. But I know I won’t because of the love and support he continually shows me. Love is about compromise and life change. My life had to change.
I am still always super busy. I set time aside. I make to-do lists. I have let a few things go (admittedly as much as I love falling asleep in his arms, I miss falling asleep listening to podcasts). I say no more often. I ask him for help. I rest. I get stuff done. I’m still Miss Independent, only a little less.
Are you independent? How did life change when you found love?