A New Adventure

The past few weeks have indeed been challenging with several factors as the cause. The amount of stress I’ve been dealing with has certainly been exacerbated by my lack of sleep. Juggling my time between my teacher-related duties and my gentleman, I haven’t had much time to really think about anything else but my desire to have a child.

Yes, I am still seeing him who has since made it clear to me that to have a child would make him greatly uncomfortable. A quiet sadness filled the air when he finally told me and upon his gentle coaxing, I refused to share my thoughts with him. It was too painful. I have grown fond of him- in fact, the word love enters my mind when I think of him. To know that he does not wish to take this journey with me— although he’s shown me in other ways his deep affection for me— is heartbreaking.

His decision has nothing to do with whether or not I will stay with him. He seems to have no intention of letting me go. And I decided that I want him to stay in my life in the role he currently occupies. But I also later told him that with or without him, I am pursuing my wish to have a child. He figured as much, he admitted.

I have to say that my initial hope was to go through this process in a much less expensive way. Previously, thoughts of IVF and fertility treatments and hormone therapy were issues I had not even considered. They are now things I will have to start looking into. Thus, my journey begins down a route I had not expected. I have to follow my desire, allowing myself to explore what can possibly be a new adventure in pursuit of my dream.

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Thoughts running through my mind. Chaotic thoughts that prevent me from taking the next logical step. He admitted that he is unsure; that his path is not clear right now. He is not saying no; he is not saying yes. Yet, he realizes that “it’s either have this child with Cathy or lose her.” Thoughts of having a child is not something he entertained at this age so he’s feeling very cautious- he doesn’t want to make any mistakes.

I’m not angry- because there is no solution in anger. There is no peace in anger. What I am is disappointed. Disappointed in a man I thought would be there for me. There is also understanding. I understand his position. I must respect his thoughts and his feelings, for they have never changed. It is rare that a man will change his life’s blueprint for a woman, no matter how much he cares for her. But there is no anger.

Am I too understanding? Well, I have to understand that this is something he is not 100% on board with. I don’t want to bring a child into this world with the knowledge that she wasn’t 100% wanted to begin with. I want this child of mine to know unconditional love from anyone she is in contact with in her early years. Let her own experiences as a growing being teach her what she does and does not like in this world. But entering the world should be a pleasant and loving experience for her so I don’t want her in an atmosphere of uncertainty. I am certain I want to bring her forth into the world. My partner must be too. If not, then God will give me the strength and the perseverance to do this on my own.

I am not angry. But I am starting to know peace and with that, I shall form my own solutions.

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An important Decision

Our conversation about my wanting a child and my gentleman not seeing himself with one at this stage in his life kept replaying in my mind. My thoughts were consumed with the fact that I had to now make a very important decision- whether to stay with this man or keep it moving. But I had already grown attached to him and found myself not wanting him out of my life.

We saw each other a few days later and had a lovely visit, resuming our normal banter and playfulness. However, every now and then, I would say something that emphasized my need to be with someone who wanted what I wanted. As I left him the next morning, he asked, “Are you breaking up with me?” I couldn’t answer that question- I wasn’t ready to. Instead I said something like, “Well, does it make sense for us to stay together when we want different things?” But somewhere between my question and my leaving his apartment, he believed that I did break up with him. I learned this through our next exchange via text. We had a chuckle over the misunderstanding but the thought weighed heavily upon both of us- so much so that it actually did feel like our brief relationship was very much coming to an end.

The following evening, he invited me to the movies in a quite natural way- considering the big topic that loomed over us. And quite naturally, I accepted. Yes, I was very hesitant. Why were we doing this to ourselves- holding onto feelings and keeping an attachment that would very soon have to be severed? Despite my hesitation, I found myself unable to say no.

Our time together felt very much like a date between two people who liked each other but were still at a very new and awkward stage in their relationship. Talk of my wanting a child never made it to the surface. It seemed to have simply hung in the air somewhere above and around us, quietly reminding us why our conversation was so strained that night.

A few days later, my gentleman and I discussed my desire to have a child. I explained to him that because I’ve never experienced that which my body was designed to do, I didn’t feel like a complete woman. He admitted that he had been thinking about it and he amazingly put himself into the equation. As he harbored thoughts of what we’d already shared between us, he asked himself, “What if this is as good as it gets?” He didn’t want to lose me because of this thing that had seemed to come between us. He was willing, he said, to get his sperm tested. I didn’t want him to get into any situation he didn’t want just for me yet he assured me that if he did this, it would be because he wanted it. I became  very emotional.

Later, I texted him, thanking him for talking to me about my desire to have a baby and for considering himself in a situation he previously didn’t even want. All for me. I emphasized to him that no matter what happened, I wanted him to know how very touched I was by his offer. I ended my text to him, saying “You mean so much to me.”

His response was so sweet, thanking me for the kind words. He wrote that he appreciated me and what I wanted. He expressed his gratefulness to be even a small part of my process. After telling me just how awesome he thought I was, he closed his text, saying “And you mean so much to me as well.”

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I was extremely touched. How could I let him go?

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A Frank Discussion

We were coming to the end of our dinner one evening when my gentleman mentioned that he wanted us to have a frank and adult discussion about where our relationship was going. He’d been in relationships before where he and his significant others never talked about the direction of their relationship and he didn’t want to make the same mistake with me.

He expressed that he was starting to have tender feelings toward me. Sometimes, he confessed, he felt that he was the only one between us that felt such ‘tenderness’. In other words, he felt that I was guarded and that I was not letting him in. I have to admit: his saying that did not make me feel good. I was, in fact, guarding my heart, attempting to protect my feelings against a possible negative response from finally confronting him about my wish to have a child. So right then and there, I made the decision to tell him my “secret”, the only thing I found myself previously unable to talk to him about before.

Upon mentioning to him my wish to have a child and to be with someone who wants that with me, he maintained his position about why he did not want children. At his age, he wanted to enjoy his life with travel and his music, among other things. I listened. Who was I to judge him? He felt like that part of his life (having children) had passed him by. I certainly didn’t want to pressure him but I had to let him know how much I had always wanted this for myself.

We were both emotional as we lifted ourselves from the dinner table and sat together on his couch. Knowing what this revelation meant for us, we held each other in an embrace, not wishing to- and almost unable to let go.

I told him that for a woman to stay in a relationship that she knows won’t provide her with what she wants is pointless and an unfortunate waste of her time. I needed to find someone who wanted the same thing. He held me tighter saying, “We don’t have to make a decision now, do we?” And I felt the same way. I realized then that I didn’t want to end things with him. At all. But I had to think realistically. Could I stay with him and not have my baby? I would grow to resent him. What if he were to change his mind for me (which I certainly didn’t expect)? Would he grow to resent me?

Now, faced with the threat of terminating our relationship, I suddenly realized how much this man actually meant to me. I realized then why this was one of the most important relationships I’d ever been in. He is the first man that I’ve ever felt so comfortable with in ALL areas of my life. I literally could talk to him about anything and feel no judgement from him- just an understanding followed by an intelligent conversation, mixed in with some humor that always left me feeling good about myself, about him, and about us as a couple. How could I let that go to find someone who may or may not exist for me in the near future?

That night, he drove me home, expressing that he was glad we had our conversation and that it made him feel closer to me. I felt a deeper connection to him as well. But what good was it going to do for us if the very conversation that brought us closer was the one that proved we should be apart?

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Blog Talk

It’s been quite some time since my brief scare that my seasoned gentleman had come across my blog page (“He’s Following Me…” 9.03.17). Remember that I was nervous about how he would react to me and my blog given the fact that he is featured in the last few posts.

Though I was briefly relieved that he had no idea of my blog’s existence, I knew that it was time to tell him about it before he did actually find out on his own. I respected him and our relationship enough to tell him about it.
One day, a week after my scare, we were spending some time together. I don’t quite remember exactly what but something he said gave me the green light to open up a conversation about it.

“My novel isn’t the only writing that I do,” I had said to him. The look on his face was expectant, waiting for me to go on.
“Well,” I continued, “You know that I’ve been single for quite some time now and I always questioned why because it really bothered me. So I decided to start a blog about my single life, calling it The Reluctant Bachelorette. It’s about me being single and exploring why I’m single. It’s about my dating life and my thoughts about it all And the last few posts have been about you because you’re part of my dating life now.”
Whew! I was relieved that I finally told him but now I awaited his response. He listened carefully to what I said and when I finished, his mouth formed a slight smile and he said, “How can we market this into a script for television?”

I loved his response! And I greatly appreciated the fact that he was so cool about being featured in something to which he did not give his consent. I did assure him that I did not use his name nor did I mention where or how we met. I told him that nothing I wrote undermined him as a person. He wasn’t crazy about my calling him The Seasoned Gentleman but he was still a good sport about it.

I expected him to immediately look it up and start to read it but he continued our light conversation and didn’t bring it up again until a few days later.

We were on our way home from the beach one afternoon when he asked me about it. I took the opportunity to read to him the posts in which he was featured. He listened carefully as I read, laughing at the appropriate times and commenting on what I’d written (he was very impressed with himself when I read about my pounding heart as he reached in to kiss me on our first date). I paused often to ask him if he was okay with what he was hearing about himself. He assured me he was, pointing out that my blog is very much about myself and my experiences and he was just an added character I used in order to tell my story. He did, however, cringe every time I mentioned the seasoned gentleman and any time I referred to his age. But when I was all done, he told me he really liked it and he liked my writing style.

Once again, I was excited to finally have my “secret” exposed. Knowing that he was so cool about it was another thing that made me feel like this guy was so great. And I gotta say, I felt so lucky to be spending so much time with him. I felt a little closer to him at that point. I was enjoying my time with him and finally not concerning myself with thoughts of what I wanted from the relationship. But was I kidding myself? There was still the other “secret” I was keeping to myself…