Yesterday I heard from my Ex that a friend had died that morning. Ex had been very close to the family these last few months and was with them in their home when his friend passed. The friend had been ill and failing fast, but even though his death was anticipated, it was still too soon and utterly tragic.
Since Mr. B is still out of town and I had way too much time to think, I started thinking about time. The friend and his wife had been married forty-some years and it still wasn't long enough. Ex and I were together thirty years all told and it was plenty long. Mr. B and I are coming up on one year. Given my morbid state of mind, I couldn't help but wonder how long we'll have. Do we have forty years? Thirty? I can't even let myself think of numbers smaller than that. Let's change the subject.
We aren't living together; we own our own homes. We live less than 10 minutes apart but seeing each other on weeknights is tough -- he gets up way too early for a long commute and my evening schedule is lockstep from the moment I get home with Young Son until I climb into bed a scant 4 hours later*. We manage to do dinner a couple times a week but he's exhausted and I'm weary and often distracted by what still needs to get done.
We do spend every weekend we can together, alternating between houses, but even then we aren't "living together"; we're in some sort of oddball quasi-dating/visiting mode, both separated from our usual routines. One of us is always not "at home".
Sometime I ask myself why.
Always my rational self immediately provides the same answer: Because, you fool, you are still less than 18 months out of an X-treme Long Term Relationship. Any rational person can see that you have no business moving in with anyone any time soon.
But... if there's one thing I've learned since I left my old life, it's that being rational isn't always the right answer. My rational mind is what held me rigidly in place for those last several years of my marriage, because it made sense, at great cost to my emotional self. And I'm still doing the repair work resulting from that course of action.
So does that mean I should throw caution to the wind and just move in with the guy**? Uh... probably not. I have allowed myself to start thinking about it a little more, but whenever I do, I get so bogged down in the logistics*** that I give up. Too many couches! Too many beds! Too many kitchen gadgets! Way too many books! And whose house is the most livable for the three of us? Truth be told, neither. So then what do we do? And that's where I usually give up.
But is that the kind of stuff that really matters when you look back at the story of a relationship? How much does it matter? And if that doesn't matter, then what does?
Our average age is 50, certainly old enough to know that we're neither invincible nor immortal. How sure is sure enough?
* And sometimes even sooner, this time of year!
** The guy who has been single most of his adult life? But that's another story.
*** And we won't even discuss the interpersonal stuff, habits, preferences, and all that... sigh.