Ideal Relationships

Right person, wrong time.

This phrase I could never really understand, up until these few weeks.

If you like someone enough, shouldn’t that be a reason to be with them? How can timing influence something so much that you’re willing to give up what you like? I just didn’t understand.

This summer I told myself not to get involved with guys. I wanted to focus on myself, the relationships I had with friends and family, and develop a stronger curriculum vitae. My mind kept telling me that it wasn’t a good idea to get involved with a guy. I told myself no guys. Why did a guy happen then, Casey?

Flashback a month and a half ago, I started talking again with a guy who I had met in a club. No, not one of those clubs with alcohol – I mean just like a typical extracurricular club that we both decided to join during our undergrad. Before this, our relationship was purely professional. He was/still is two years older than me, and the conversation topics we had were pretty simple: school, club confirmations, and the occasional “help me with my research please”. I thought he was kind of cute when I first met him, but I never cared to start anything with him and just did not have the time or energy to approach him during the academic year – plus it would lead to awkward conversations about school….and what would I even have to say to him?

We saw each other one day while I was in summer school, and we walked and talked for a bit. Typical ‘I don’t want to end this awkwardly but this is really awkward’ kind of conversations happened, at least that’s what it felt like on my end. I didn’t think much of it. Still thought he was sort of attractive, sort of my ‘type’. He initiated conversation by ‘poking me’ on Facebook a week later. My friend said he was flirting. I didn’t think so. We started talking, coincidentally saw each other during lunch, ate together. He messaged me to meet when I was free, uh oh. I remember not knowing whether this was just a friendly hangout, or a date (re: my confusion from a previous guy). I told myself it was a date that day, dressed presentable, went out with him.

Long story short, I probably had the best first date I had ever been on. We went to a board game café (last minute change of plans), a fun taco restaurant, a walk, and an unexpected movie at his place. Definitely not the most romantic places that I’ve been taken on, but it wasn’t the places we went that made it so amazing, it was my date (him). I didn’t have to constantly search for conversations, I didn’t have to try to think of something to say. We didn’t have to agree on everything. The conversations were fluid, we connected. I remember thinking “Wow. This guy is actually really great.”

Flashforward to a few dates later, we were hitting road bumps. Things were starting to get serious and I was starting to really like him (as I’m hoping he was, me). We started having serious conversations about the future. He is leaving for medical school in a little less than two months. We were and are still worried.

Consequences of this:

  1. Will not be living in the same city (1 hour away)
  2. He will be starting an intense schooling process, and does not want to go into medical school with a relationship because he does not know about how the workload will be, environment etc.
  3. He is worried we will only be able to see each other once a month (which is not enough in both of our eyes)

He brought these points up to me early on in our ‘serious talks’. I countered him with

  1. 1 hour isn’t even considered long distance
  2. I told him I understood this point, and that I would be willing to continue what we had up until his schooling starts, and give him around two months after to figure himself out (sort of like a hold off period), and rekindle things after.
  3. I go home relatively often (almost every weekend), which allows us to spend more time together.

Throughout this process, his friends have been pushing for him to end things with me. They tell him that even committed relationships that have been going on for years in medical school, end in the first few months when someone goes to med. Whenever he decides to end it in his mind, we meet up and he can’t put himself to doing it. I like him too much right now to end things with him, instead. I’ve gone on so many dates with guys this year, yet I always end up not sticking it through after a max of 2 dates because I just don’t end up connecting with them. He is honestly one of the only guys I have truly wanted to care about. He tells me that I make things hard. He likes me too much to end things when we meet up.

“I don’t know wtf I’m doing.” 8 words I’ve come to despise (especially coming out of his mouth, yet he says this so often now).

I’ve questioned myself on why I like him: he is definitely my type, the way he doesn’t know how to smile in photos and gives this really awkward lip up smile thing, the way my head perfectly lies on his chest when we stand together and I can hear his heartbeat, HIS SMELL (>>>???? I DON’T KNOW WHY HE SMELLS THIS GOOD!! HOW IS IT EVEN POSSIBLE), the way he looks at me in silence, his blue (i think they’re kind of green) eyes, HIS WITTY WITTY TEXTS that often make me laugh and make my bad days good, the way he cuddles with me, how safe he makes me feel when we’re together, how big his hands are when they’re interlaced with mine, when he bearhugs me and wraps his legs around mine, the way he bends to kiss me because he’s way too tall, the way he wraps his arms around me, how brilliant he is and how he doesn’t even know of it, when I call him up last minute because I get lonely and he always makes time for me, how you can tell through his actions and words that he actually really cares about me, his patience, his really big arms (although I always make fun of how ‘tiny’ they are) and how my fingers can’t fully surround them, the way my clothes and bed sheets smell after he lies on them for a few hours, our little movie dates (even the movies end up being pretty bad), his way of building things from nothing ft. home movie theatre printer set up (he should be an engineer), how much he cares for his aunt (it’s actually really cute), when he calls me cute, his white detectable shoes that he literally wears everywhere, how his feet are almost double the size of mine, how he’s actually really really really shy on the inside (TIS SO CUTE) but does not give off that vibe in social situations AHHHH

Caption that I was going to post on Instagram with a picture (but decided not to), created one day after a dinner date where we made pasta and he chopped up the brocolli and said that “it looks like gnomes live in here” and made me die laughing, and then proceeded to dance with me in the kitchen, while waiting for the pasta to cook:

You held my hand and spontaneously decided to dance with me. In that moment, I knew I couldn’t let you go.

F this. yeah I think I really like him. What do I do?

Right person, wrong time.

What is actually important?

 

“most importantly love
like it’s the only thing you know how
at the end of the day all this
means nothing
this page
where you’re sitting
your degree
your job
the money
nothing even matters
except love and human connection
who you loved
and how deeply you loved them
how you touched the people around you
and how much you gave them”

I recently got obsessed with the book Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur. I have never resonated with so many pages of a bound set of sheets. Reflection at it’s greatest.

I’m personally at fault for getting caught up with what will not matter in the end. Does that make me hypocritical? Probably. I obsess about my grades, what shampoo I’m going to buy at the Shoppers across the street, how high my desk lamp is when I’m studying, how dry my hair should be before leaving residence to class so I can look somewhat presentable in the morning, and all the other little things. The things that don’t even matter. I remind myself daily to concentrate on building ‘human connection’; I remind myself to focus on the bigger picture. It’s just so hard to find Waldo sometimes when there are so many other cool characters on a page that keep distracting you from your task.

Even when I give an attempt in being more sociable or finding love, there are just so many obstacles. As a university student, I’m sure many people are able to relate to the harsh reality that the workload builds up really fast if you don’t stay on top of your classes. Do I give up time that could be spent studying and getting a better grade, for more enjoyable events? If I end up not studying for the subject that week, should I not stress about it because it won’t matter hopefully in the long run?

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When you’re looking at a day to day schedule as packed as mine, and you are three weeks behind in two courses, have to schedule in another group meeting for that day, and a friend calls and asks you to be there for him because of a personal situation that just happened, what do you accommodate first? When your schedule is already always packed from 8:30AM-12:00AM daily, can you really fit anything else in? I am definitely very appreciative of a select few of my friends who are extremely understanding of my busy schedule. But really, how do you prioritize your time when almost everything seems like it is demanding attention? On this particular Friday, I remember not having the time to write a club application, pushing back watching the two physics modules from three weeks ago (in addition to one more module that was not scheduled in yet – T4M1), and asking my friends to continuously push back the Jam Session that we had scheduled for later that night. I clearly recall constantly reminding myself that people come first, that day – that school could come second or third or fourth or fifth – and that I needed to be there for my friend when he was in need. But after that day, when I pushed everything back, I got swamped and still am swamped with not only my coursework, which I have not touched since writing midterms other than mandatory project meetings and the associated work, but also was swamped in the research I was performing. The quality of my work definitely has decreased as more things have piled up.

But human connection still comes first right? So when should I start worrying about school? When do I say no to comforting another individual? Is it ever acceptable to say no when someone evidently trusts you and has turned to you for help during a low in their life?

It’s frustrating when you’ve put in so much effort and time into a person, and they don’t invest the same amount of time in you when you’re in need. It’s frustrating when you’ve invested so much time into a potential future with a significant other, and it doesn’t work out in the end. It really does feel like wasted time. Maybe I’m being selfish, but time is not something that is just floats around for me. I schedule things into a calendar weeks in advance so that I know exactly when I have commitments and how many other things I can schedule in for that day.

It’s also extremely frustrating when people can’t figure out concrete plans when I schedule things a few days in advance. For example, a friend and I planned to study in a cute cafe the following week and when scheduling:

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I totally understand where people are coming from, and by no means does this make him a bad friend (I totally love your company, if you’re reading this!!), but it’s frustrating because my schedule fills up extremely fast and so I have to note concrete times and places ahead of time.

I guess I also wanted to touch on relationships with a significant other. Let’s face it: most relationships don’t last a lifetime. If you spend 3 years with a person, and then break up, was there a point to the relationship? I’ve always never been the one for a short-term relationship. I’ve always had the mentality that If I choose to get in another relationship, it might as well be for the long-term because I just don’t think I have the time to spare for someone who will not end up being in my life forever. It’s just a struggle within itself because I’m never really okay with starting something new with someone for the fear that I’ll be wasting time when it doesn’t work out in the end.

“nothing even matters
except love and human connection”

So I disagree with this quote, because if who you thought was the love of your life ends up exiting out of your life, then you’ve lost whatever you could’ve been spending your time doing instead of nurturing the relationship that never lasted.

Because I am not sure how to measure the opportunity cost of doing certain things rather than others.

Because people flake.

Because people are not always there for you.

Because I don’t want to regret having chosen a human being over something more concrete and reliable – my grades, research, and personal development.

 

P.S. Dilly if you’re reading this, shoutout to you for always being so understanding and supportive, being there whenever I need to talk, tolerating my busy schedule by staying on campus to wait for me to hangout even though I push them hours back sometimes. You are truly a gold star. You are the friend I’ve always wished I had (and finally do have), and I’m sorry if I’ve ever been a disappointment. You have never flaked on me and you’re literally so real. Thank you for being you.

You are different.

F-

I’ve never been someone to run from a situation when it gets hard. It was the only thing that I knew in a relationship of any sort – family, friends, guys: if you trust someone, you will get through it together. Through thick and through thin, right?

I never thought I would have ever fallen for a guy like you. Although I have denied this for so long, my friends throughout all years of my life have always pointed out that I had a specific ‘type’. Very tall, athletic (preferably a swimmer), brunette dark shaggy hair, nice eyes, built but not too built, would be how my high school best friend would describe it. But you? You were different.

Our one date. I didn’t even know it was a date. We were I guess you could say friends at this point, purely platonic. We had previously talked about people we were interested in, with each other. I knew about the past girls you had liked. You knew about the guys I had had a thing for. You knew I was looking for love, I knew you were looking for love. We both had discussed our previous love life a month ago. You were interested in a girl who was not interested in pursuing anything relationship-wise. I was interested…well you didn’t know this, but I was interested in an older guy with (you guessed it!) brown hair and big blue eyes – a nickname a good friend of mine even referred him to as.

And then one day you insisted that I hangout with you that Friday night to cook, bake and watch movies. I agreed. You texted later that week to finalize plans. I voiced my excitement over text and told you I was ecstatic about this fun-filled night. Still platonic, right?

Flash-forward to that Friday night. I had a bad headache but popped an Advil because I hate cancelling on others the day of. We went to the grocery store to pick up cooking ingredients before heading to your place. While cooking, occasionally you would place your hand on the small of my back and I pretended not to notice. It was purely platonic…right? While eating our meal, you sat closely next to me, thigh touching thigh. I pretended not to notice, and I’m surprised that I didn’t move my legs. Still platonic?

We explore your hobbies displayed all over your apartment: on your bookshelves, on your desk, on your window sills. I realize how much I didn’t know about you and how truly interested I am in getting to know you and your quirks better. How did I not know about these things sooner? We could’ve had endless conversations and nerded out about plants and Western Blots. I realized how much I appreciated this moment in time.

We attempt to find something to watch on Netflix. Want to find a picky movie/TV watcher?  That’s me! It took me by surprise that you were so patient about what we watched, while I fumbled through all the possible shows. Midway through a movie, we switched because I didn’t understand the jokes. You didn’t get fed-up. Still…platonic?

You start leaning on me. We start cuddling. You tell me you like me. I realize that this night is a date. But it takes two to cuddle and I have not pushed you off. We kiss after the movie. Definitely not platonic. My mind at this moment is racing so fast because I don’t know what has happened. You apologize for kissing me too early, and not taking it slow. I don’t know how to respond, but I just know that I want to say the right thing. Minutes of awkward silence later, I finally am able to compile my thoughts and let you know that I want to take it slow and get to know you better. I tell you that I wasn’t looking for a first year relationship and all that stuff. You rebuttal and say that first year is almost over. I forget to thank you and accept your apology.

I take the next few days to really think about what had happened and what I really want. I had never seen you as someone more than a friend, until that night. It could have been so much easier if you had any blaring flaws. You’re patient, accepting, smart, have amazing hobbies, not too clingy and will thus lead an individual productive life, very nice, well-spoken, and in general, well-liked. I attempt to give myself reasons not to like you – to not give you a chance. I probably ended up falling for you too hard within those days, because there were no flaws that I could really point out. It was unfortunate because I liked another guy before you came along, but the more I thought about you, the more I realized how much better you would be for me, long-term. My feelings for that other guy quickly dissipated. 

Fast-forward to two days before our next date. We spontaneously hung-out briefly in the evening and talked about sweaters. You had bought a new sweater and really liked it. You noted that when you’re in a relationship with someone, they always steal your sweaters. You told me not to steal this new one. Oh boy, he’s funny too. I tried not to chuckle, but ended up snarking a comment “You know I’d steal it just to annoy you”.

You had a meeting that night. You didn’t tell me what happened, but a friend noted to me a week later that a conversation came up about regrets. You spoke about how you regret wanting to move things too fast, and that you didn’t want friends with benefits. You like feeling things. Others’ comments included that first year relationships are stupid, university relationships are stupid, people don’t enter relationships because they are scared of commitment.

Two days later – the date we set for our next date. You sit down with me and start with “So I’ve been thinking”. Shit. This is not okay. What did I do now? You tell me that it’s not me, it’s you. Typical. You talk about how you don’t know if you want to enter a first-year relationship, how you don’t want to do long-distance over the 4 months of summer. You talk about how you like me as a person and my personality. You talk about how you’ve been asked for friends with benefits from multiple people this year and that it’s not something that you want. I’m very confused. You talk about how university might not be the right time to date. I ask when would be. You say after school, maybe 10 years down the line.

I call you that night to clarify things for myself and to ask if it was anything that I did or if there was anything that I could do. Again, not someone to back down when things turn awry. You say that there are reasons that you can’t discuss with me and that long distance sucks and that you like me as a person and that feelings change and that you thought you were ready for a relationship last week, but you don’t feel the same this week and that you’ll be busy next year and that you thought I was looking to blame myself and give myself another reason for whatever happened or why those feelings changed, but that there was no other reason. It just didn’t and still doesn’t add up in my head. You say you thought about it for a week. It has only been two days since the mood shifted between us, I thought in my head. I really didn’t know what was going on.

I’ve never been hung-up on any guy. I’ve always moved on easily. I’ve also never fallen for anyone this quick. It has always taken me a while to really like a person. What was different about you was that you were real and you were everything different about every other guy that I’ve been in a relationship with or liked. For once, I felt like I chose the nice guy – the ‘right’ guy, yet it still didn’t work out. There was something about you, after one night, that made me linger for days. There was something different about you. Some reason that I cared so much about you to have to go home that weekend and reflect on the situation. Some reason that I have decided to write this lengthy blogpost. Perhaps I’m just frustrated about how confused I am. Perhaps I just truly am trying to fix something that wasn’t mine to be fixed. Perhaps I’m disappointed that our friendship will never be like it used to. I am still confused and a little sad about what has happened. I don’t know what it is, but you are definitely special.

Thank you for whatever we had, and I hope that you find whatever you’re looking for or resolve whatever still needs to be resolved for you. I’ll be here if you ever need to talk.

xoxo,

C

Your eyes.

Your eyes. Don’t even get me started. I could stare forever in those hazel eyes of yours. When we look into each others’ eyes, I feel like everything bad happening in my life has sizzled away. Your eyes wash away my fears, my pessimism, my self-doubt. You make me feel on top of the world. You make me feel like everything is okay.

Your smile. Not just your typical big smile, but your half-smile. The grin you display in the selfies you send to me. The smile that displays the two dimples nestled perfectly on your cheeks. The one where you can see your smile lines aligned right around your mouth, almost touching those dimples. The one that is worth a thousand stars.

Your heartbeat. The heartbeat that pounces so fiercely, yet is so calming. When I huddle into your chest, all I can hear are those soft, yet powerful flutters. How could a heart like yours, so perfect and beautiful sounding, have ever have been dysfunctional. I could listen to it all day.

Your hands. Those big hands that engulf my small little ones when they interlace. The ones that sit perfectly with mine after they somehow dance to each other after those playful tickle fights of ours. The ones that hold mine and make me feel stronger, and more connected. The ones that make me feel safe.

And for a moment every time when we’re alone I think to myself ‘can this be it‘. But then all the excitement and hopefulness washes away and I’m sitting back at square one, somehow knowing that we can never be.

Cloud 10

But when the world comes crumbling down, and I mean every aspect of it, what are you supposed to do? Family problems? Think about the guy you might like or the relationship you might be in. Think about those good times. But what if that part of your world ends up falling apart too? Go to work and forget about your problems at least from 9-5. And what if work is a shitty place to be at that time too? Unfriendly and blameful coworkers? Rude and pushy managers? Personal discontent? Perhaps I can go out with my friends after and spend money of a stress-relieving shopping spree, is a common thought. But what if your friends are having their own issues? Or you don’t have anyone that you trust to confide in?

I never really understood why people tried to drink away their pain until this week. If you’re having a shitty time, what exactly are you expected to do? It was in that moment of weakness, having no one to turn to, that I felt empty. Felt like I had hit rock-bottom. The world is a terrible place to live in. People are terrible things to be around.

There is no one there to be there for you at the lowest point of your life, just remember that. Everyone leaves when times get rough. So when you’re looking for advice, look in the mirror. You are the only person you can trust. You are the only person that will be there for yourself 24/7. You are the only person that can climb yourself out of this terrible hole that the earth has put you in. You are better than them.

But for now, all you can think about is how shitty your life is, so just drink up. Cry if you have to. For now, just appreciate your rundown soul. It will be okay, I hope.

Now that, my friend, is the best reason to be on cloud 10, if it existed.

They Who Act Like Lions

They don’t understand me. They don’t understand how I feel or how I want to express myself. They are self-righteous and think the world of themselves. They leave me feeling trapped in time, making me feel smaller and smaller every second. They’ll never agree to my point of view. They just don’t understand.

They want to feel full of pride. They want to be right. They don’t want to lose. They form a pack against me, aiming for my head, waiting until I surrender. They yell insults at me and raise their voices above mine – regarding my every move as a fault. They know my weaknesses too, and use them like knives, stabbing me in the back when I fall down.

I want to cry a river of emotions, yet I can’t show them weakness. From experience, I know that weakness only results in even more hurtful remarks. I attack back – a natural instinct of mine. My voice is so weak, compared to theirs, which reminds me of a lion’s roar.

I now feel lost. They now feel powerful. They know that they win every time, so they continue to rip me into shreds. They know that I’ll eventually fall onto my knees and drown in tears. They know that I’ll hit rock bottom, in the ocean down below.

They know I’ll swim back to them, as I’ll have no where else to go.

Until the cycle begins again.

And I know it will.

Because it always does.

They ask me why I don’t trust them sometimes. Why I rely on others. I tell them that others understand me and don’t treat me like a deer waiting to become a lion’s dinner.

Self-interest

People are so insensitive and egocentric sometimes. You wish that they could see through your eyes; wish that they could understand your point of view. In reality, they don’t give a damn about how you feel. We’re all human – selfish human beings that only thrive to make ourselves better. You might not admit it, but deep down inside, you know that that’s the truth. We care about others to an extent. Past that extent, we live in our own world.

Not to say that people don’t actually care about their loved ones, but rather that we all have people in our lives that we couldn’t really care less about. Those people that we don’t acknowledge in our everyday routines. Those people that we were once friends with. Those people that we ignore if we’re having a bad day and don’t want to hold a conversation. Those are the people who might be hurting the most, yet we pass them as if we don’t care. What if they’re fighting a harder battle? Would we care then? What makes humans care? What makes us act upon self-interest?

Sometimes

Sometimes I expect so much from others. In retrospect, others also expect a vast amount from me. Sometimes I feel like I never meet the expectations of everyone around me; family, friends, even coworkers. Sometimes these expectations are met, but with every ability comes an incompetence. Sometimes I feel like I’ve achieved, only to realize that my achievement doesn’t actually matter and that the happiness I feel will only be temporary. Sometimes I reach high points in my life and start to actually believe that I’m going somewhere in life.

But then I realize that I’m a nobody. The world will keep turning with or without me. Sometimes expectations will never become reality, because my expectations don’t matter in the bigger picture.