So you’re a doc, a foreign cuisine and Corona happened. (Bye bye 2022. With love. Part 2 )

I suppose in personal life, a major part of what 2022 taught me was, a woman needs to pair up with the other half who is emotionally, intellectually and financially on a similar level as she is. When I mean emotionally; with a similar level of life experiences, maturity and a zest for life. I have realised it is also important to consider whether your partner had a similar upbringing and a background to yours. And I will explain my reasons in the following paragraphs.  Intellectually in a sense, the decision to not date a medical person was entirely up to me so I didn’t expect my partners to know the human body inside and out. But at a level where you can see that there is an understanding and reliability; that  you can trust them with some major decisions that are going to affect both of your lives in the long run. And ‘yes’ financially. Everyone wants their partners to have a stable job that pays them out and allows them to be independent people of their own and yes’, that was an important thing for me as well. But after certain experiences in life like running around London city with 10£ in pocket to last me the whole day, I knew people’s situation changed so it was never an ‘it’ factor for me, up until now. 

At my age, I cannot risk making random decisions anymore. Unfortunately neither do I have time like in my teens to amend those over the years and turn a new leaf. Foolish decisions ‘now’ will impact every aspect of my life. Of Course there is mental health but in the same tug, other areas of  my livelihood; like family & friendships, social status and job prospects will come undone. When I was in my early teens, I used to look at people as ‘old’ not in a bad way, but as someone who is wise, knows who they are, where they stand and what their roles and purpose are; having been through plenty ordeals in their early years shaping and shifting them to their now ‘present’, at pinnacle of their lives. In my thirties now, I know how wrong my thoughts were. In my mind I don’t feel like I have aged at all, from my late teens. I still do stupid things, like commit to a relationship for 8 months with the first guy I met on a dating app. Like that time, I showed up on a photoshoot in london. Or going back  in a relationship for another year with a guy with whom I knew I had no future. Standing in 2023, I feel confident about not repeating those mistakes. At times I lash out, being bitter to the men but ‘hey’ I have moved on. I seem to forget sometimes there was a reason why they were ex’s right? Now, I try to be emotionally corked at all times hahaha. I mean, I am trying to be self aware  how I respond and react to things. I am conscious about where I vest my emotions. In today’s world one needs to be. Heart in your sleeves and you might end up being dead in a gutter, from your mansion down to sleeping bags on streets, behind the prison bars for the crimes you didn’t commit or the commonest of all, being a stepping stone for people looking for easy rides when you are working to your bones. Gold diggers. 

I want to be emotionally mature enough to feel that a girl in me can trust the adult I have become. That she is trustworthy with her decisions without doubts and fears in my mind and, she has thoroughly thought about all the consequences of her actions. That I can be the daughter I was born to be and enjoy my childhood as I was meant to like any child. So I have memories I could laugh about someday looking back. Not having to wake up one day in my thirties and suddenly realising time has left me behind. 

Standing in 2023, I don’t think I will ever be ready to be a mother. Until, I feel confident that I can raise a happy little smart girl, on my own. With no security, no fall back or reassurance needed from anyone else. ‘That I am her mother and I know best for her. And I will do my best’. I don’t think I will be ready, until I am 100% ready to sacrifice my independence and part of life like I watched mother did so. It would be good to have a trustworthy partner and at the same level of emotional maturity to be able to take that responsibility but who am I kidding? The world we live in, from a woman’s perspective, I am only coming across men who have a tag on their forehead written  ‘It’s okay I’ll sow the seeds but I will never be ready for responsibility.’

As a partner, you are either 100% in it or not. You will change diapers as much as I will and you’ll miss your social events as much as I will. If you are not all in on it, I (we- speaking for all women) don’t want your liabilities and lazy ass delta genes. WE will respect you more, if you are honest and open about it in the first instance. At least that way, we had options but we chose it to be that way.

People are in different stages of life. Some never want children. Some are not in that phase to take responsibility. I don’t feel at all that I am there neither.  Of course, so don’t sow your seeds then. Definitely not on a phase, when you are hanging out in pubs 24/7 with your lads, playing games 24/7 with your boys, living cheque to cheque but your clothes cost you more than you can afford and, definitely not when you are jobless. The list goes on and on. It may sound that I am quoting obvious but I don’t think most men nowadays have a clue at all. I don’t know if its the social medias or the construct of the social ideology we live in, people have latest i-phones in their hands but not a bit of common sense, latest technologies but are dumber than ever. Having babies is not fashion, impregnating a woman is not a mark of your manhood; responsibility is commitment, not everyone is built for it. Like look into yourselves, please don’t act 16 on a 30 year old body. You are heading fast forward on your route to becoming a peeping tom and mom’s whispering to their children ‘don’t go near that man baby creep’. Look at yourselves too ladies, there is difference being treated right with gifts and being bought with gifts. Don’t complain about losing your man to second woman if you only married him in first instance for money. For god sake, stop being victims. You make women who actually are victims puke in their throats. Its a hard realisation but grow up, time will only move forward. Soon you will all be 16 on a 70 year old bodies. Wrinkly, cranky and crazy.

Only words (So you’re a doc, a foreign cuisine and Corona happened)

Don’t forget to wish your friend birthday today’, my ex Rhyri used to text me, to remind me to wish my friend, not his, my friend, on her special day. How out of ordinary was that?

I was never good at it. I mean with remembering dates. The number of times I have forgotten important dates for events, occasions and celebrations of families and friends surrounding me is insane. It is kind of remarkable how I have still managed to cling on to them despite all that though. They have been forgiving.

I remember that one particular day like it was just yesterday, when I really felt the pain Joey had in his eyes as he waited for minutes and more so, for me to guess a 3rd time to tell for certain what his birth date was. We had been through this many times in the past. Surely I must have cared enough to memorise. Especially since it was also our anniversary date. Here is the thing; on back of my mind there are hundreds of random things queued up to just jump out and scream surprise. I have excellent memory for most ridiculous things that I cannot seem to erase away even if I tried to, but these, the most important details I need to have ready on tip of my tongue to shoot like a bullet and with 100% accuracy, for reasons that still baffles me, I could never register.

Don’t do that. Hang up on the phone abruptly. It doesn’t have to be awkward’. Rhyri’s voice is still crystal clear in my head.

It took me 3 years of good practice to reply promptly every time my phone blinked then and over time to be the first one to message. To learn reciprocity of caring and commitment values. To appreciate importance of good communication. To understand that when one is mad at one’s person for any reason, one just doesn’t shut the phone down and disappear for 3 days. He had tracked every one of my friends and managed to pin down my location that time. Who does that in today’s day and age? Especially past our 20s. We have lost that patience to accept dramas and tantrum fits. We now expect perfection from our partners. Constantly pressed for our times outside working clocks we only value absolute fits to the checklist, the creme de la creme. So please, if you have that somebody willing to accept you for your flaws and put that effort on you, treat them well. Value them. I will tell you, they are very rare. Those moments are rare too. The days when you loved whole heartedly without any hesitation, were loved back without any boundaries, when the world was less cruel and no-one knew what heartbreak was.

Stepping on my thirties, I realise most of us now come to the door with baggages of our own. I, now, understand what Ted was talking about in ‘how i met your mother’. Our minds are mature and more open but our hearts are still a bit reluctant. It might scoot over the border for a time testing the field, anxiously, to be certain it is safe; but at the signal of one wrong thing, the siren goes off. It is then like stepping in the minefield. We are out of there so fast, you’ll never know we were even there on the first place.

‘If we ever break up. The next guy better be very thankful to me because he has no idea how much of work I had to put on you’, Rhyri used to say. It has been so long we have separated our ways, thankfully though we have still managed to stay friends. He chose some other parts of the world, I chose UK. He had responsibilities and I had mine. Of course we said things, did some things to hurt each other but we forgave and we moved on. We accepted our eventualities, honesty and respected each-others decisions.

The saddest part about walking away from a couple relationship for me, is losing that amazing friend you found in your partner. You can even cope with losing the romantic aspects- flowers, sex and dates, but its losing a friend that is the most difficult part. A friend you shared your happy days with, sad days with, confided your fears with, dreamt a future together with. For me, I am what I am today of my associations with them, of my environment that they were major part of and of the energies, the investments, time, love, care, patience and so much more they have given to me. As an introvert personality type, you can imagine how precious my circle of friendship is for me. I can count them on my fingers but for each one of them my loyalty is absolute.

I don’t understand why do I have to walk away from that friendship to start something new? Is there a possibility that this newness can be something entirely separate and beautiful beginning on its own? Why does everything have to disappear now that we no longer have those romantic commitments with them?

‘If you had what I had, may be you’d understand.’ I monologue in my head, listening to him and listening to my friends. Its not about the counts, the numbers of partners one has had that the men and the women these days parade as though they were their victories. Body over bodies, soul over souls and to still walk alone as though you are hunting lives to feel a little bit alive yourself? That does-not appeal to me. You should have seen us, we were trumpeter swans, mates for life, living in our own secluded world, alive, perpetual in a loop, lost to each other in that time frame. That is what I want.

‘No‘, I said. ‘I cannot cut them off my life’.

‘You are hoarding people like you are hoarding things. You need to let go off things that you no longer need’. One of my best friends said sitting next to me, explaining to me, why she thought what my current date was asking, was reasonable.

‘But you don’t know. He doesn’t know, how important they are in my life’. I protested.

‘But they are gone. And now he should be the most important part in your life. Look’. She put her hand on her chest and slowly spoke, ‘you still keep them here, but they don’t have to know, no one has to know. You keep them there and move on. If you don’t let them go, you’ll never move on’.

There is some hurt, some sourness, some crude exchange of glances, gestures and words when couples breakup. Sometimes the agony lasts for days, sometimes months, occasionally years. Various reasons to part different ways. But ex’s are not necessarily bad people and just because we broke up doesn’t necessarily mean, it was a bad relationship or a traumatic one. I feel the word breakup is unnecessarily demonised. We learn from each moments and each people we come across with. Often in life, we have to let go off amazing people whom had we met in different time and space, we would have never let go. People discover themselves in relationships. To be able to give someone a priority over your own, is an amazing thing. That is the most selfish and unselfish thing one can do for oneself at the same time. I wish I could explain the reason why I said that, but it is.

My opinion might be different from someone else’s or everyone. But that was my experience. I would be lying if I say, I didn’t appreciate and live every moment of it, with them. Even the rough days. So, I am adamant to keep them in my life. Yes there is a question if one is unable to unhinge friendship from previous romantic afflictions, but we are all adults. That is where trust and loyalty comes. Keeping them in life doesn’t mean I’ll see them everyday or cheat on my partner. ‘Would you please look at yourself? Why would I ever do anything stupid to lose you?’. I just don’t want to be 70 or 80 and be wondering whatever happened to them, like they were some strangers I never gave a damn about.

If I ever chose to completely cut off ties with them for any reason. I hope they know that I fought to keep them in my life. And I hope, they would too. I hope, if the conversation ever popped up even after decades about our relationship, they have some good words to say. Because, if for any reason my world ended tomorrow and I was to die without having a chance to say goodbyes, I would want them to come to my funeral and bid me farewell. I would want them to hold my hands one last time. Goodbyes are only words. It won’t mean a thing unless I am down on my last breath. It won’t ever mean a thing.

A friendship in a relationship is a best thing to have. Look for that, search for that. I hope, when stars align we’ll all find love, all that and more we are looking in our one partner. Like trumpeter swans, we will be mates for life then.

Beautiful, precious and together. Oh’ even the thought of it makes me smile. Trust me, at the end, it would be all worth it.

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