It is inevitable that there will be complications when new people are involved. My previously (dis)ordered life becomes a futile attempt to absorb the changes, to make sense of the relationship, to get back on an even keel. And that is without even taking into account that great incongruity we like to call love.
An emotional connection seems to be more or less an attempt at quarantine. I see it as basic rather than necessary, which means that I plan the relationship around it rather than try to fit it to my life. I absorb the experience (snake and prey image comes to mind), keep it separate from the rest until I understand in what way it will change me, putting forward and rejecting several scenarios until I eventually stumble over the one that fits… and stumble is the right word, as logic doesn’t have much to do with it. Then, and only then, when the understanding feels comfortable for me, will I break the walls that separate it from the other parts of my life and start integrating it.
So meeting a new person starts with a lot of time and energy, angst and shyness, talking and silence, touch and distance. I am impatient both by nature and because I cannot hold this new relationship separate for too long (I do have a life, you know? 😛 )
Occasionally I will push a bit. Sometimes I push with people who do not seem to want a relationship. At other times I push with people who take a very cerebral approach to relationships. Yes, I know it is mostly a waste of time, and the pushes are as gentle as I can make them, as you cannot force love, even when it is obviously possible.
I try to take into account what that person wants even when it is clear to me that what is wanted is very different from what is needed. I try to help. I leave doors open long after they should be closed. I gather odd bits of information and try to fit them in ever-changing jigsaw puzzles. I trust in fate (the billiard game approach to life). I predict the results accurately and then it’s just a question of waiting (another thing I am not good at; stubbornness can be and is substituted) for the time to be. Time will be. Sometimes years later, sometimes next month.
What that person wants from the relationship is mostly clear very early on. I can usually supply it, too. Not always, and that is a sadness. Not in the sense of “you can’t please everybody” but in terms of “the time isn’t right”.
I have toxic and unhelpful relationships. I argue and debate in equal measures. I occasionally slam doors and my tone of voice is usually loud. I laugh a lot (just as loudly) and sometimes get teary eyed. I learn from each and every encounter. I get inspired. I share. I listen and in listening and knowing a person that emotional connection is founded and lasts for as long as I remember.
Does that look like too much work? It is a lot of work but “too much” implies that the relationship is not worth it. I have never had a relationship that was not worth it. Any effort that I have expended is more than a hundred fold repaid in joy and learning and beauty.