Love. A very little word, that covers an incredible range of attached emotions.
According to all romantic comedies love will conquer all. No matter how dumb the people have been, no matter how impossible the situation, love will shine through. It's just meant to be... and it is.
Back in reality. A little look back over my relationship history. Bit of a late start with serious girlfriends. I wasn't a particularly good looking, or confident teenager. But since then... serial monogamist is probably a an accurate, if not entirely flattering description. Lived with three different girls. Had other shorter relationships in-between the serious ones. I ended most, feeling guilt ridden that I was hurting someone whom I cared about. And I always did care... but deep down, knew I didn't love.
Nearly a year ago, things were different. I could feel a relationship that had felt different to any other slipping through my fingers. But in some ways that was the least of my worries. I was beginning to suffer from panic attacks I was permanently exhausted. The quality of my work was slipping. I couldn't concentrate on anything. I felt the deepest, clawing sadness, that I couldn't escape from. And to make matters worse, I had lost any ability to articulate what was going on.
Fast forward a few months, and the first girl I had ever known I was going to spend the rest of my life with was leaving. Moving out. The end of the relationship. She needed to for her own health and sanity as much as mine. The stress and strain of trying to cope with everything broke her too. I will feel eternally guilty for the pain I caused. There was no big bang. No finality. Just like the sea gradually reclaiming a sandcastle... it was gradually washed away, drowned in bigger individual problems.
As time went on, there were bouts of awkward, painful contact. I would be left reeling for days afterwards. It felt as though it would be better for both of us to simply not see each other at all. But there was always a curious, or fateful draw. And the meetings became less painful. There was always a feeling of deep emptiness afterwards though. We both opened up. Both talked. Both began to understand, forgive, move on. But as that happened, old emotions were reawakened. I don't think I ever stopped loving her, but at least when there was little or no contact, there was no reminder. It almost felt cruel. A few hours of blissful life in a bubble. Talking and laughing and being "us", before returning back to the house that used to be ours. To the double bed that I now sleep in the middle of. Despite this, I couldn't help but be drawn back for more. And neither could she. Regular Thursday evenings. The odd day trip. Sometimes staying over. Jokes and frivolous emails exchanged daily.
But all the time in our bubble. No real interaction with the other people who are important in our life. Always just us. Always with gnawing fears lurking in the back of our minds. Must not get too deep. Must not let this affect our own mental health. Must not get hurt. Must not fall back in love.
I fell back in love. She tells me she has too, and I believe her... except when I'm lying in bed by myself, feeling vulnerable and scared. Then, for a while at least, my mind runs riot. Thoughts of jealousy. Insecurity.
We talked. And still talk and talk. Do we do this? Do we really get back together, after everything? Are we strong enough to? Why weren't we strong enough before? Is this honestly the right thing to do? What happens if I get ill again? How would we cope? What if I hurt her? What if I get hurt? How do we rebuild the trust with friends who were there for me, but not her?
And now... limbo. Too in love to walk away. Too scared to take the next step. The safety of the bubble threatens to be popped. We both know that we need to make a decision. And have utter conviction in that choice.
This is never in those bastard films.
I don't want to lose her all over again. I need to be strong enough to be able to though.