A couple nights ago I went out with TheBoy’s step-sister and a good friend to listen to live jazz, have dinner, drink some good wine and generally catch up. Over the years that TheBoy and I have been together I’ve really come to love his family and feel most days like they are my own. Recently his sister has moved closer to us and I’ve been dying to take advantage of this opportunity to have “girl time”.
As girls do, the conversation quickly turned to men, both Step-Sister and Good Friend are single and dating with new prospective love interests on the horizon. I love hearing all the new, first date jitters, the will he call, should I see him tonight, initial chemistry and attraction stories… It reminds me of when TheBoy and I first were dating.
And of course, no matter how hard I try for it not to, the conversation always turns to us, to me and TheBoy, our relationship check up if you will. But Step-Sister asked me something the other night that really made me stop and think, really THINK.
“What would you being doing differently now, if (TheBoy) weren’t in the picture?”
Maybe it was the martini I had while listening to the music and waiting for our table, maybe it was the glass of wine with dinner, or the two glasses afterwards… But for the first time I actually let myself think about the answers to this question.
Because really? What happily coupled person thinks about what their life would be like as a single? Isn’t that akin to waking up married but dreaming of divorce? It just seems like a bad idea to me – I’m committed to “us” so I make progress for “us” right? What’s this “me” stuff anyway.
But you know… I had some interesting realizations that night. About myself. About what I want for the future. And it wasn’t anything like what I thought they would be… It’s shocking for me to think too long about now, much less say aloud. I might even deny it in polite company. My friends would never in a million years believe me.
Is this what growing up is about? I stare at myself in the mirror in the mornings now and am not sure I recognize the woman I see reflected there.