When I fell in love with Sam, I realised maybe I hadn’t ever really been in love with anyone before.
It was sudden, strong, and unexpected. It was random, really. The universe had constructed incredibly specific circumstances completely out of my control and rolled me into a situation I never dreamed would happen, like a rock crashing down a steep hill into water.
I was falling – sinking. And it felt unlike anything I’d ever experienced before.
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We met at a mutual friend’s apartment. A few weeks after we’d started dating, both of us expressed how, for different reasons, we almost didn’t end up there together on the same night.
He rarely came to that apartment, so it’s doubtful we would’ve met at a different time. And I was planning on staying in until a friend really pushed for me to come out.
Fate is a really strong word, but we have lessons to learn in this life, and the universe had a big one for me.
Later in the night that we had met, our small group walked seven blocks to a party and glided through the globs of people. But all I could see was him.
We ended up talking, alone, late into the morning hours. He had a girlfriend and broke up with her the very next day.
So began our short-lived, mess of a love story.
The destructive nature of insecurity.
Falling in love with Sam was easy. Maintaining our relationship was hard. I didn’t know how to be in love with someone. I didn’t know how to nurture, or how to respect, or how to care for — I only knew the destructive behaviour I’d become so accustomed to from previous relationships.
Underneath the piles of mental clutter, I really just wanted Sam to love me back.
You wouldn’t know that, though, from the way I behaved with him.
Why did I think I was pulling him closer, when I was really just pushing him away? I learned the answer to this the hard way.
I needed to know Sam cared about me. Not that he’d done anything to demonstrate otherwise, but I needed to be reminded. On a daily basis.
It started with the occasional phone call, where I’d express nervousness about how much I liked him and if those feelings were returned. He’d laugh, a genuine kindness in his voice, saying he felt the same way.
But my tolerance was getting higher, and I needed more.
One of the last times I had ever spoken to him, I was at a party with one of my friends. I had a few drinks, and I missed him. I started texting him and trying to think of ways for him to demonstrate how much he cared about me.