I think what was most different about my relationship with Jay was that I went into it with eyes wide open.
Because Jay and I had months of getting to know each other before we were physically in the same space, before we even really "met", we'd talked about a lot, and I knew a lot about him.
Usually, going into a relationship with someone, I'm going off of the vibe I have from having met them, and then getting involved, and then getting to know them, which is different, and maybe harder, because once you're involved it's harder to back away when things come up that make you uncomfortable, or go against your comfort zone levels.
With Jay, there were a number of things that made me uncomfortable. Things that I knew about, and made a conscious decision to go ahead with being in a relationship with him, despite these things.
Why did I do that?
I'm not sure, exactly. Because it felt right. Because I felt that the good and wonderful things about him could outweigh the rest in the long run. Because I wanted to push myself. Because life is short, and love is worth it?
Do I regret making those choices? No.
Am I relieved now that Jay and I are no longer in a relationship? Honestly? Not as relieved as I would have thought.
But all this to say, I knew, going in, what I was getting into. And I knew, months and months ago, half a year ago, really, that Jay wasn't sure he was going to stay in town. Actually, I think, remembering how heartbroken I was then, that I knew he wasn't going to stay in town.
I thought we'd make the distance thing work, I did. I thought maybe into Fall, maybe not quite. And I knew the relationship wasn't everything I wanted, and as some of you have pointed out, everything I deserved.
I wrote myself an email mid-April:
"Maybe I just accept I won't get what I need from this relationship for a while, or often... or maybe ever. And that I will only know after a time if I am still getting enough to keep going."
So it's not as if I wasn't aware.
Did I put up with a lot? I'd say a "medium". Because the good was really good. Because I loved him. Because he loved me. Because it was wonderful to be loved, and it made me so happy to love.
Does Jay have the potential to be a wonderful, life-long partner for me? Yes. But don't I say that about every man I love? Don't I see the potential, the best in all of them? Is that not why I love them and have them in my life?
Maybe Jay and I are meant to be.
I say that at the end of every relationship too, I think.
Maybe I'll half wait for us to get back together until the time comes when (if?) I find someone new and move on.
I know I always do that. Always, in the back of my mind wait for them to come running back.
Except this time, it was me who left. Me who said, enough. Not enough.
I could have ridden it out. Could have kept us an us. Maybe that's still happening in some way, a little. Maybe having him back in my life is enough to keep me feeling loved, and attractive and content enough to just be. Because I shudder at the idea of trying to date again.
I feel dizzy thinking about starting the process all over again.
So I'm not going to.
I'm not with Jay, but I'm not *not* with Jay either. I still love him in moments, and am extremely frustrated by him in others.
I still value what we had, and sometimes want it back, and sometimes know it's better to not be.
It'll be what it is, and time will sort it, and us, and me.
But I'm never going to be naive about him. My eyes have always been wide open.