Today is the four-month anniversary of when I met Greg. Lucky me! Gosh, we had some stumbling blocks early on, mostly pertaining to our respective children. I won't jinx myself by declaring them over, by any means*, but we've hit a nice balance. It's been *less* time together, but it's been *better* time together. And really, we hit full throttle there very quickly when his daughter wasn't living at home and my kids were gone half-time.
*Just yesterday, I had a long moment of "I don't want to be around these children, and they're mine and I love them to death...why would anyone OPT to be around these children??" Similarly, I have had moments of "OMG I have three children - I am sooo not looking to take on more children, nearly grown or not."
Anyway, Greg's awesome. I'm pretty bonkers about him, if you want the truth. It has been a long time since I've felt this way about anyone! And I'm having this adult moment where I realize that more than being bonkers about him - I respect him, which is so key to the downfall of my marriage. I always respected X a lot for what he was: a good man and a loving father. But we had such differences about jobs and stability and so much else... until recently, I had no idea what a deal breaker this is for me. X wanted to be self-employed. I base so much of my security and happiness on a steady paycheck. Our financial difficulties always seemed like such an easy fix to me ("GET A REAL JOB!"). (Haha, it wasn't until later that I also applied the scrutiny to myself of "stop spending money like you're printing it at home." Self-examination isn't easy, you know.)
I say this because the universe must have known what I was looking for in a man, and threw it at me in spades. Umm, I am moderately fiscally responsible. I pay my bills (sometimes creatively or strategically), I pay into my pension plan, I don't put my account into the red before payday. But God help me if payday didn't come at precisely in-dire-need-of-cash o'clock every two weeks! Greg's not like that. If I developed some new passion for couponing (which I do not intend to do), he would be over the moon, I'll bet.
Greg is high-end fiscally responsible. I have heard that people like this exist in the world, but we do not run in the same circles. :) I say this only because he just dropped by to say hello, and we were chatting, and we were talking about the DIFFICULTIES of parenting on a single income - my lease is up next month (we each pay $1700/mo in rent/mortgage - this is CHALLENGING on one income, I tell you). And there was an awkward, nervous but excited, oh-this-is-so-premature reference to maybe this situation changing for both of us down the road. And we laughed, and I had butterflies in my tummy, and then he said, "I'm good at putting away money. Probably more than you'd like." And I had to laugh. Yep, I believe that one, fo'sho.
I tell you this because I am just a little giddy when I think about him. And inside me there is this little 1950s woman voice (I think I look like Joan Holloway from Mad Men when this voice emerges) that says, "Yesssssss...take care of me!" Sure, my strong, independent career-mom voice says, "I can do it my own damn self, thankyouverymuch." But part of me still says, "Protect me from this big, bad world, I am so freaking tiiiiirrreeeeeddd."
Uh, where was I going with this? I guess besides sparks coming from our finger tips when we touch, and an irrepressible urge to sit on his lap in the lobby of my building when he drops by, and WHO HAS MADE OUT LIKE THIS SINCE HIGH SCHOOL??, and just this overwhelming sense of adoration and respect for him, well, he's just a keeper all around. Love it. And because he's strong in areas where I'm weak, I am enjoying this feeling of just wanting to be a better person. Wherever this relationship goes, I'm trying to savor that feeling of wanting to do better, for me. It's cool. I like it.
We'll see where it goes. We will not be without continued challenges. I've sort of been holding my kids in my back pocket, not wanting them to get too attached to him, should things not work out. And honestly, I am frequently overwhelmed enough as a parent that it is hard for me to imagine him choosing to be part of this mess as a long-term prospect. :) But at some point, we're going to have to look at that issue a bit more closely, because a man that isn't part of my kids' lives is not on the menu. And we are heading in that direction - coyly talking about future plans and a long-term future together. The timeline may move faster sometimes than I would like. He's a planner, and I am a damsel in distress who loves being around him. I envision a real loggerhead in the not-soon-but-not-too-distant future, pertaining to places of residence. As I have probably said, I am satisfied-but-not-really-content with a long-term plan of getting his daughter through high school (in three years), then looking at where we would live. Which would be where I live. Which is a place that I love. Which is close to my work and has great schools. On the other hand, I think that timeline will be too long for him. I think he is already looking at my daughter's transition to high school in a year+ as an opportunity to move my kids. Which is not a plan I like. Which is really far from where I live. Which is in a town I do not like. Which is really far from my work. Which has comparatively bad schools.
I'm sometimes impulsive and frequently spontaneous and occasionally impetuous. But one thing I am really good at is setting goals and putting in my time to make it happen. So, when I say we can do this until his daughter graduates in three years and goes off to college, we can do this. To me, it's a drop in the bucket, because it preserves what's important to me. And when I say I have a lot to learn from him, well, he has a lot to learn from me, too. I suspect we'll wrassle with this subject down the road, just like my easy-spending blood ran a little cold with "putting away more money than I'd like." (A part of my brain screamed in terror, "WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?? WHAT DOES THAT MEAN??")
This post wasn't supposed to be a biopsy of our relationship to date. It was just supposed to say I'm feeling a little giddy and a lot in love, with someone I respect and admire, which is a pretty darn good feeling!
Oh! Today is Day Eight smoke-free. I have to say, this Chantix is working pretty stupendously well for me. I've kept it at the low dose, I'm not noticing my emotions tanking, no dark thoughts, no nightmares. Every once awhile it pops into my head, "Heeeyyyy, time for a smoke!" but the urge fades quickly. Here's to continued success!