“A good relationship is a lot like a car. If you want it to work smoothly, you gotta put a lot of work into it, and have the right tools.” — MacGyver
Sometimes when I look at the faces of people who have been very close to me I get the feeling that they are not the same person anymore. It’s the same faces, only a couple of years have passed but somehow that special something I loved about them is gone. I don’t know if my perception is playing tricks on me or they really changed.
Lately I was searching for a landscape photo and stumbled over some photos of my former girlfriend. I got very sad when I saw her face and thought about the good time we had. I met her a couple of days later, she told me what her plans for the next couple of months are, I did the same. To sum it up: I wouldn’t enjoy her plans and she wouldn’t be able to join mine (if we still were together). But the weirdest thing was when I looked her in the face and realized that “she” was gone. Same person, almost the same haircut, maybe two years passed since the photo was taken. Maybe it’s just that her way of looking at me changed. Not that open hearded, beloved look anymore. More distant, maybe even shy or scared.
Since we are not together anymore we both changed our life. As far as I can tell both lives improved somehow. She found a guy who understands her much better and loves her for what she is and not for what she could be and made some progress job-wise. I haven’t been that lucky on the relationship side yet but at least I managed to get my ass off the couch, turn the TV off, come up with “the plan” and got a job to raise the funds to actually do it.
It’s been a hard time but now I know that splitting up was the right thing to do. We could (and probably still can) give each other so much. But on the other hand we stood in each others way by wanting our partner to change. But we both couldn’t.
I really hope that we can adjust our relationship accordingly and that one day I can look in her face and see a little bit of this special something that I miss and love her as a close friend for what she is and not for what I wanted her to be.
This “perception vs. reality” thing reminds me of the allegory of the cave by Plato. My perception is the wall, my head is the cave and the stuff going happening on the walkway the “real life”. But my reaction to the revelation of the setup would be quite different. I embrace change and I’m eager to understand how stuff works. And I will certainly fight slavery and cruel experiments any time…