Loaned one of my coworkers “Iron Lace” the other day and she is almost done with it. We got to talking last night about the book and the characters which made me think of the book again – the people and how mistakes they made clouded the rest of their lives.
I wasn’t thinking of it when I went to bed but it must have stayed in my subconscious somewhat. I really can’t remember too many specifics of the dream – only the last question and my answer as I woke up.
I was sitting somewhere – an outside cafe by the beach – there was a candle softly flickering on the little table and the sounds of gentle waves in the background. I couldn’t see the man who sat across the table from me but he held my hands in his at the center of the table so I know he was there. There was soft jazz playing somewhere and a seabreeze made everything perfect.
He leaned closer and whispered “why is there no ring on your finger?” I got the feeling of a strong presences across the table – like it was someone that I cared deeply about. My answer woke me and I’ve been thinking about it every since. I whispered back “forever was too long” then opened my eyes.
So here are my conscious thoughts about that statement. When I was in my twenties I was proposed to three times, twice in my thirties and once in my forties. Each and every time the same quick calculation ran like a slot machine in my head – could I stand living with, being a constant companion to, stick with no matter what, the man before me for 60+, 50+, 40+ years?
I plan on living well into my 80’s and maybe even longer. Granted, it doesn’t mean whomever I would marry would live that long but still – they might. The answer was always NO. Hell, most of them I had been dating for months and was already getting sick of them so how would I feel 10 years down the line?
Gary was the last one and I knew there was no way the relationship was going anywhere. We dated almost four years and I was sick of him before the first year was up. Why did we stay together? I didn’t know anyone else in that area and it was nice having a friend I could rely on. Don’t make me out to be the bad guy – he didn’t want to break up and knew it wasn’t going anywhere either when he was honest with himself. Even after the breakup, he still wanted to be friends but I really was tired of him then – the sight of him made me cringe.
God knows I am so far from perfect – it wasn’t that I thought I was too good for him at all. I just knew it wouldn’t work in the long run and had to be true to myself. It was a mutual breakup – there weren’t tears, yelling or anything else – we discussed it like adults, hugged and separated.
If I were to feel sorry about any of the endings, it was the one in my early twenties when the guy thought he was so in love with me that I destroyed his life (yeah, he got over it). But really, that would have been 60+ years of waking up next to the same person, kissing the same person, having sex with the same person…the mystery would have died and then what would we have done for the next 50 years but coexist? That doesn’t sound inviting at all.
When I was young, I always said I had plenty of time to marry. Really didn’t even think I would consider it until my 50’s which are now on the horizon. Do I think I will marry now? No, I think I will remain single – I don’t see the point anymore and hopefully I’ll have grandchildren soon to focus on.
That isn’t to say I wouldn’t be up for meeting that handsome man who sat across the table from me on a beach far, far away from all this winter chill. 🙂