I’ve never gone slowly before. I’m the type of woman who goes with what I’m feeling about ninety-five percent of the time. I don’t always think things through, as I probably should. Honestly, I don’t really love to think about things too much. It’s hard to figure things out when I consider all the possibilities. Kind of makes my head hurt.
With relationships I’m the worst. In the past, if I’ve really liked him, and he really liked me, and we hung out a few times, and talked all the time… we were pretty much an item in a matter of weeks. I’m talking exclusive, committed, and official. And in the case of the two relationships I had in my twenties, we were then married in a matter of months.
When I got married the first time, he selected the ring at six months. Proposed at one year. The second time around, we moved in at three months and were married at eight.
That’s how I’ve moved historically. An impulsive and hopeless romantic.
-Now. I’m not saying that’s the reason those marriages didn’t work out. It could definitely be a contributing factor, but I do believe and know love doesn’t have to take forever to be real or to last.
Everyone’s story is different.
I’m simply choosing to take a different approach this time around.
Just taking my time this time, that’s all.
There’s been this one. We. Have. Gone. So. Slowly.
And it’s my favorite thing ever, swear.
Well. On most days.
There are moments when I relapse, and I’m like, “Wait. What is happening? We’ve been dating for how long? And we’re not official? We’re not a ‘thing’ yet?”
And I’ll have the urge to ask questions/get answers/define us/ OR ‘break-up”.
I have to consciously slow my thoughts, and it’s easier said than done.
BUT. When I do slow them? When I am successful at taking my time? I truly enjoy the process.
First of all, there is no pressure from either end. There’s no plan, which alleviates the stress brought on by wanting everything to be exactly how you imagine it to be.
The only thing happening, really, is a budding friendship, large deposits of good feels, fun, enjoyment, laughter, new experiences, long ‘getting to know you’ talks, and a great foundation for whatever may come next.
If we go further, we’ve laid solid groundwork.
And if we don’t, we’ve had a meaningful adventure, and we walk away with the potential of being good friends, or at the very least having a lasting, mutual respect and well wishes for one another.
Going slowly feels that way. Feels like a real progression as opposed to infatuation. I’m not infatuated here. I’m completely in tune with every feeling associated with the situation and can decipher between genuine and imagined feelings. I am aware at every turn of emotions. I can give you examples of why/what/when my feelings change or progress.
That may sound like a lot, but it’s necessary for an impulsive person like me.
Infatuation, potential, and dreams are all it took in the past for me to get locked into a relationship. And things fell apart and fell hard when reality set in. Hearts were broken beyond repair.
So, I’m all for doing things this way.
Slow and steady.
What it looks like:
In going slow there are far less talks of the future. It’s usually about the now (‘now’ rarely stretching beyond a month). There’s no wasted time with ideas of an imagined relationship or talks of, “If we were together”, or “When we get married”, or “I wanna take you here and do this for you.” So, in other words, there are no pointless lies between us. No false hopes being created. No empty promises. There’s only, “Yo. today is Friday, so Sunday let’s go here and do this.” And then Sunday comes two days later, and bam! We go to the place, do the thing we planned, and all is well in the world and between us. We remain in the moment.
Dave Hollister released a new album this past Friday, and on it there’s a song that talks about a man investing in a woman. He says:
“...Every time I keep a promise, it’s like I’m making a deposit.”
Those words have so much significance and are so relevant to me right now in this “take it slow” experiment/experience.
In going slow, we are building up a trust of sorts. The investments are not necessarily intended to get us from one level to the next, but they are there if we ever desire to pull from them. It's so nice to actually see a person's character in action over time, and not just take their word for who they think they are. Like, show me who you are; don't tell me.
Dave goes on to say:
“… I’ll let it keep on adding up, and with some luck I’ll be rich enough.”
In other words, all that investing could really have a huge pay off in the end.
In the past I’ve signed contracts based on verbal promises. Truth be told, words are just not good enough, you know? But when you’re rushing and in that infatuation phase, it all seems so real and so believable.
My mind wasn’t clear when I was rushing that way. All I knew is that I was in love, and I wanted that particular feeling to last forever. In reality, though, relationships don’t work that way. The infatuation phase eventually wears off. It revisits from time to time, but for the most part life and reality take up that mental space.
So, I’m going slowly on purpose. Like, literally making it a real priority.
Because I just think it’s important that I don’t make the same mistakes over and over. And I think it’s important that I try different approaches in life and see what works best for me. Just because I’ve never been good at going slow doesn’t mean I cant be good at going slow. I’ve made great strides. Seriously. I’m impressed I’ve made it this long without being married again.
It helps that this particular one is so chill. So easy. So perfect for a “slowly” kinda relationship. I mean, no questions, no suspicions, no problems, no worries, no pressure. It’s almost unsettling. As I type this, the impulsive me is like, “Why IS he so calm all the dang time?” But the new, slow and easy me is like, “Because what is there to be anxious about?”
It’s new. This organic love-lifestyle is all brand new for me. But it is a needed and welcomed change to the way I do things. I’m learning more and more about self-control. I’m learning to wait. I’m learning about not being in control all the time. Do you know how valuable these lessons are?
I’m being enriched by the experience on a daily.