Friday, 04.01.2011 - 12:50 pm.
So there is something I should address now. V brought this up in an e-mail to me and I thought, hey, yeah...I stopped thinking about this when I moved in Jake and we developed a romantic relationship.
First off, though, living with Jake is awesome. He has a perfect combination of things I like in a guy's mind: knowledge, humor, vocabulary, drive, scientific method, tendency to question many things (he's quite a feminist!). His heart is just as wonderful and he's a loving, supportive partner. He's easy to negotiate with, too, something I consider essential if you're living with someone.
So V asked me if I still planned on living on my own. See, things happened so fast with Jake and by now most aspects, if not all aspects of my new life are associated...hell, entangled with him.
This has me facing two potential problems. The first one is a possibility, perhaps not for the inmediate future but it's still there: what if things go wrong with Jake? If for some reason we stop getting along, and either of us, or both of us want out of the relationship? Of course I'd be the one to leave, as this is his apartment but that may be the least of my worries. A considerable amount of heartache and painful uprooting would be inevitable.
This brings me to the second problem: my independence. One of the main reasons why I needed to study abroad was to live on my own. I've made efforts not to be dependent on Jake, I've asked him to come with me downtown a few times but by now I know how to do it by myself, and most of the time I run my errands alone.
I have found myself wanting him to come with me, but I refuse to give in to that desire. And once I'm out the door, I'm happy to be alone. I haven't lost my joy for being alone, I assure you. In fact, I value solitude even more when I'm in a relatiohship. I always keep my safe space.
Sleeping with him also has me thinking. Because of his flu last week, and for other reasons these last two nights, we have slept each in our own bedroom and I've been fine with that. To me, there's nothing like having a bed to yourself. I've slept alone for 26 years and it never gets old. In that regard, I'm going to tell him to sleep apart every other night. I like waking up next to him, but I also like going to bed alone.
The issue of my independence (as well as forgiving the three jerks of 2009) is something I'd like to discuss in therapy. But I think I'm doing well, and living with a guy, especially with a guy like Jake, isn't a threat as long as I'm aware of potential relapses. I cook, do my laundry, ride the bus, use my own money, do grocery-shopping, make my contacts at the university...so does Jake. We manage to lead our own individual lives, aside from the one we're leading together.
Still, living alone is something I haven't ruled out. A friend of Jake's, also coworker, lives two floors down and is moving to Spain in October. I could take the apartment then, should I decide I want to live alone for a while and I'm able to afford it, which I probably would.
But I'll stay here for now. I can't deny that living with someone, more than with someone, a friend (not necessarily a guy), that in itself has been the key to why I haven't felt nostalgic, lost and lonely at all since I left home exactly a month ago. I spend the day alone, with enough time to do my own things while Jake's at work (my job is to study a master's degree; score!). I just have to be careful that he's not my only link to a social life, like it happened with Joseph, but I'm working on it, with study groups and the possibility of working at the psychology clinic (crossing my fingers).
The first problem is less likely to happen, at least in a near future, but it'd be way more serious if it does happen. For now, though, I just focus on doing my part in making our relationship work.
My friend V asked "Isn't it weird how some relationships have wonderful sex just naturally, and then other relationships that are emotionally satisfying require work?". And my friend Angel said I should take the opportunity to explore other realms aside from the sexual one. The good news is that sex isn't a complaint anymore. We're still working on it, so...yeah, that's the beauty of it: we're working on it.
Jake is worth taking my chances. But I found myself one of these days fantasizing about our future and worrying about what will happen to us when I have to go back to my country in two years and I stopped myself. It's exactly the same mistake I made with Joseph, thinking way ahead, frantically hanging onto someone, refusing to even think of letting them go.
Jake says he plans his academic life but his family and love life, that he can't plan it. I shouldn't do it either, you can't make future decisions for other people. I had a huge life plan that involved studying in North America with Joseph by my side; I'd be married to him and with a master's degree by now, that even sounds shameful and ridiculous nowadays. Instead, I'm studying in South America with a wonderful man who's closer to my dream man than Joseph (and keep in mind, Joseph was/is the love of my life). That actually sounds more exciting than the original plan, but you see, I'm living all this because my real life plans fell through.
If I'm in love with Jake? It's too early to tell. I'm getting to love him and I'm enjoying the process. I know I said I'd marry Joseph when I hadn't even met him. I fell in love with him when I saw him, yes, but let's be honest here, it takes a while to make these infatuations become serious. I was crazy about him but there was also awkwardness, especially when I'd learn he had something that turned me off (e.g. his horrendous grammar).
Being not attracted to Jake when we failed at sex the first time was a little like finding out about Joseph's complete disregard for the written language. But only in the sense that in the end, I discovered that my heart races over the guy in spite of that. Falling in love is a process, it's an emotional thing as well as a rational thing, at least for me. But I can't control the emotional aspect (see, Q didn't really wake something in me, however great he was in bed) and that's what guides my rational side. This includes my constant monitoring of the roles Jake and I are playing in this relationship.