Before I met Mr. Right-Click, my longest relationship lasted two years, assuming you counted from the beginning of when I met the guy to the last time I ever spoke to him. If you counted actual time spent in the relationship, it was probably more like six months.
Normal people spend their youths flitting about from relationship to relationship, trying people on like a new dress or a pair of shoes. I used to watch those people when I was younger, thinking how great it would be to just be one of those women that men just liked. The sweet, kind girls with pretty hair, or even the ones who weren’t sweet but would always pretend to be.
For many years of my life, being one half of a real, honest-to-goodness couple seemed impossible. I wasn’t sure what it would be like to be one of the people who had real relationships that didn’t end in some kind of drunken fight or power struggle over who called whom when and for what reason. I wasn’t sure that I could even exist inside that kind of relationship, but I knew I wanted it. I think there was part of me that thought if I could just find that, everything else in my life would be fine.
People like to say that they meet their life partners when they weren’t looking for a relationship — it gratifies some kind of self-help truism in the collective unconscious. There had never been a time in my life that I wasn’t looking for a relationship, and when I met Mr. Right-Click I was on the tail end of a long foray into online dating that had resulted in a tome of interesting dating stories, but also tons of bitterness. I almost didn’t go to our first date. I almost decided that I had had enough.
But I did go.
Life doesn’t always adhere to consistent narratives, but even still you might find what you were looking for, even when you are actively looking, on that one time when you most didn’t want to go. And if you can find the strength to suit up and show up, even if only on the principle of the thing, you might find that is the day that you meet your best champion. That day might be the day you finally meet not just a man, but the man who not only knew how to love you without instruction, and the friend who would help you become the best version of yourself. The you that you never knew existed.
I cannot believe it’s been four years. I love you, Mr. Right-Click. Happy Anniversary.