Monday, September 7, 2009

My Love...In Balance With My Life

Moderation has never been a personal strength of mine. I can't control myself with a carton of mint chocolate chip ice cream. When I drink it usually ends up with me, waking up on the train in a foggy haze around 5:00 a.m. Even when I read a good book, I can't put it down until I am done (or I get impatient and skim to the end to see what happens). Lack of self-discipline? You can dress it up and call it a zest for life.

And so, it's not a surprise that I cannot get enough of... love. Of being in love. In short, it is my preferred drug.

So when I had that first taste of love, you can imagine I was a bit...extreme.

My sophomore year of college I innocently I met a boy in Philosophy class and I was immediately infatuated as I listened to him debate with the professor about Plato and Aristotle. Quickly we declared our passionate love for each other and spent every waking moment together. But even quicker gone were my sorority responsibilities, my involvement with my volleyball intramural league, and those late night talks with the roommate about the meaning of life-- all were erased in order to nurture my new love. And I was damn okay with it.

And when that love came and ended (as maybe all first loves ought to), I woke up from that haze. I built up my ammunition once more. "No longer will I be that girl!" I cried out to myself so many years ago. I thought I learned an important life lesson: don't ever drop your girlfriends for a damn guy.

Slowly but surely, I repaired friendships, made (and kept!) plans with girlfriends, and was able to be by myself on a saturday night without panicking that I was going to be a feared cat lady in 20 years. I was at a place where I wanted to be. In fact, I was SO independent that years later, I decided I was going to move across the country to big and bad-ass New York City. I formally announced my individualism as I packed a suitcase, signed an apartment lease, and pursued my masters at NYU.

I was overjoyed with myself, my independence, and my fearlessness to conquer life. I quickly made close girlfriends. I was estatic-- I had my own posse! An entourage to call my own! People that would have my back in a fight (if I condoned physical violence)! And I had it in New York City! I was unstoppable!

Take two.

I met a boy. No, this time, it was a man. On the subway. And yes, it is as cliche as it sounds. It was perfect. He made me laugh harder than anyone before. He put me above anything else. He was a boy that that I easily and effortlessly fell in love with.

And guess what happened, ladies. That girl came back.

She came back, a little at a time. And not without me trying to fight her away. But with all the exhiliarating experiences of a new relationship, all the Sunday mornings in bed, all the intimate secrets shared and all the other things that make single people gag and want to hang themselves...I quickly forgot about the weekend brunches with the girls. I ignored phone calls, made excuses, feigned sicknesses...all in the name of love. And selfishness.

So now, instead of being 18 and infatuated with my boyfriend, I am 25...sigh...and infatuated with my boyfriend. Not as bad this time around, of course. I didn't go 7 years without learning anything...But let's just say that if it is brunch downtown with a friend versus a Sunday morning in bed with pancakes, you can bet your first born that I'm snug as a bug under the covers, reminding him that I like my pancakes with blueberries and a hint of cinnamon.
You know when people say, "Just listen to your body. Your body will tell you what's wrong." Well, my body is screaming at me. I can't pretend anymore. There is incredible imbalance in my heart, and though I've tried to ignore it and tried to distract myself... it is becoming more and more apparent with each day that passes.

Something is missing.

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