Saturday, August 18, 2012

Straying Away

It was an honest mistake and, even though, I did not mean any harm by it, I can't honestly say that there was nothing remotely sinister behind my decision to talk to my friend's handsome Aussie friend that night at a club.

I suppose I was feeling a bit lonely and I was feeling particularly friendly because the Aussie bought us girls a bottle of Belvedere to share. And then there were several rounds of shots that I simply could not refuse.

The Aussie and I talked extensively that night, but I was fluttering around from person to person being overly social and not paying any attention to anyone in particular. But perhaps... No, not perhaps... With all certainty, he felt like there was a bit of a connection. And I guess that can happen...  that fabricated type of a connection that can only happen in a nightclub. After a few rounds of drinks and a few accidental looks at each other, he felt persuaded to ask for my number.

He knew I had a boyfriend from the very moment we met and though I felt compelled to insist that he did not need my number, he somehow obtained it anyway. (To be fair, I was probably the one giving it to him, though I must have been pretty drunk, as I do not recall any such interaction.)

I should not have been surprised when he texted me the next day. What should have surprised me was that I texted him back and we carried on an on-and-off conversation for the next two weeks... Chatting about this and that, and me allowing him to simply say "hey" to me in a seemingly-innocent manner all up until the point when my boyfriend came back from the army and just happened to glance at my phone and see the Aussie's name light up on my iPhone screen.

I knew that the Aussie knew that I had a boyfriend. Yet, somehow, even though I could never admit it to my boyfriend ("We're just friends!" I insisted to him over and over again), I felt that I was enjoying the attention of a guy who was clearly trying to forge a connection with me, regardless of the fact that I was attached.

I refused to understand my boyfriend's concerns. I refused to see why he thought that my daily long-distance conversations with a 2-week friend could be misconstrued as inappropriate. I had to sleep on it and wake up with a clear head the next day in order to understand exactly what was going on.

The truth is... it's hard to let go of old habits. Like a dedicated bachelor, I refused to let go of the right to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I refused to account for someone else's feelings. I refused to be unselfish.

The thing is.... ultimately, it is MY problem that I was enjoying prolonged attention from a clearly-interesed guy. It is MY problem that I still party way harder than my 21-year old boyfriend. It is MY problem that I can't see why he is feeling insecure when I come home at 5am when he is training to serve and protect his country and doesn't even get to get a glimpse at an occasional pretty girl when he wants to.

It is, therefore, my duty to change my ways a bit before it's too late and he loses his trust in me. Perhaps, it is time to grow up a bit and whole-heartedly commit to one man and one man only.

After all, why not make a sacrifice for the guy who I feel I can spend the rest of my life with?

I suppose, at the very least, I should give it a try.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Met the Parents

It's never as bad as you imagine it to be.

Sure, I drank about three glasses of wine prior to the meet-and-greet but, in all fairness, this helped me calm my nerves down and somehow helped me not make a fool out of myself.

After the dinner, we walked back to my house (only a short distance away from the restaurant). His eyes shined with happiness as he held my hand and I didn't have to ask whether or not his parents took a liking to me. I knew that regardless of how they felt about our age difference, I succeeded in impressing them.

I could tell by his face that I'd received a stamp of approval from his mom and his step-father and that's all I needed to know. He stopped me on a crossover bridge on the way to my house, and kissed me just the way I wanted to be kissed. I felt like this was one of those life-imitates-movie kind of moments that would take the onlooking audience's breath away, because they'd know that they were witnessing two people in love.

Only a couple of days later, he had to pack up and leave for the army but, luckily, going to the army here is not like going to the army in many other countries. I will see him again in three short weeks (though right now, it feels like an eternity), and then again, every weekend thereafter.

I can't say whether or not our differences in our backgrounds, age, upbringing will ever tear us apart. And I can't tell how serious it is going to get in the long term, though he tells me he wants this to last forever.

All I know is that I am happy. In this foreign country, thousands of miles away from my parents and my childhood friends, I feel like I found my other home.

Since home is where the heart is.