We are strolling down the street, hand in hand, enjoying the warmth of the late afternoon sun on our faces. I stop to look in to the window of one of the shops, when J suddenly remarks “Have we really been together three and a half years?”.
I nod and smile “A record for you, huh?”.
He puts his arm around me and we continue down the street until we find a spot for lunch.
As he says it, I realize why I’ve been such a basket case this Christmas.
It is three and a half years in, and I don’t want to run.
In most of my relationships (and for the first couple of years of this one) I spent a great deal of time planning my escape route. Searching for the end of the stick of dynamite. Ready to strike a match and blow a rabbit hole through the structure of our relationship.
I’ve always had my parachute on stand-by, so that I didn’t have to be the one that got hurt.
See, I’ve always just assumed that whoever I loved was going to run.
I figured it was just something that people in love did.
Maybe it’s because of my parents, maybe it’s because of my own heartbreak, or maybe it’s because of Hollywood, but I’ve never believed in everlasting love.
Not believing in love has kept me safe from the total agony of being in it.
But somewhere in the past six months, I stopped functioning in escape mode.
For some reason, I let myself fall dangerously in love with the one I’d been trying to play it safe with for so long.
Somehow, even though my rational self tells me I’ve lost my mind, I’ve started thinking about marrying this guy.
And it’s agonizing because the further and faster I fall, the more I begin to see that I’ve had it all wrong.
Suddenly, I cannot avoid my own bullshit any longer. Because all the things I’ve run from in the past, are staring me in the face every time I look at him.
And I realized this Christmas that he doesn’t wasn’t to run either.
And it’s totally and utterly terrifying.
Because it means I’m going to have to step up.
It means I can’t keep being a mediocre version of myself. It means I’ve got to start believing in the woman he sees every time he looks at me. It means I’ve got to start creating goals that don’t involve dynamite sticks and rabbit holes.
It means I’ve got to start believing in everlasting love.