It was beautiful. I can’t even express the immaculate beauty of what I saw before me. Oh, and the art too. There was an exhibition that was open, displaying many wondrous pieces of Himalayan art, but we didn’t check it out. Instead, we found an outdoor patio near its restaurant with a few empty tables and a couple of chairs. It seemed like some designated or just deserted spot meant for smokers or something, only we were fortunate enough to spot any ashtrays—not that anything could kill the mood or the feelings I was experiencing. So we sat there for at least two straight hours, just talking, and getting to know each other better. I was in heaven.
As we were talking and taking turns listening to each other, I noticed how my comfort level felt more at ease and relaxed, as opposed to how I felt when we were talking at the temple. My guard was down. I was learning all about this beautiful man, and at such a level that was much deeper than I had even hoped. Every little thing about Ricky seemed to be perfect, and almost too good to be true. Don’t say it, don’t even utter the words—I know, too good to be true is usually…
Just then, Ricky asked me a question that I didn’t exactly try to avoid, but I had hoped that maybe he wouldn’t have asked in the first place. Maybe it was wishful thinking that he wouldn’t bring up my ex, or ask me about any of my past relationships. But what choice did I have, but to respond. I felt that honesty was everything, and I needed to tell him the truth from the very get-go, as opposed to holding in my bad experience from the fear that maybe he’d judge me or think that I wasn’t ready to love and commit to someone new.
I’ve always found that people tend to think that you need a long time in between relationships, so that you’ll have an open heart or so that you don’t bring in any baggage of wounds or heartache that you might have experienced. And although that’s usually more prominent in situations where there was abuse, I’ve never been the type to carry around negativity from past situations into beautiful and new beginnings. But instead, I’ve always believed in giving promising situations and new people that you meet a fresh, blank, clean slate.
The last thing that I’d ever want would be to drag in any negative emotions or bitterness from “what’s his name” into this promising new situation—or at least towards the promise of what this could become with Ricky. Ricky had what I would best describe as a “soul.” I know, I know, that’s kind of unusual to say, being that we all have a soul. But he just seemed like he was all heart and so authentic beyond words that, I viewed him as having this big beautiful soul. He would radiate this positive light and good energy when he would speak, and that light would melt my whole being, where I’d feel just like a pile of hot wax just lying there on a table, waiting for someone to scrape me up.
He melted me in a way that I’ve never been melted before, and I wouldn’t want anything to remotely take this feeling away. All I could think was, what did I need to do to make this work? And although I wasn’t skeptical, pessimistic, or trying to drag in any baggage from my past, I was going into this situation with Ricky cautiously, and maybe even a little scared. The truth is, I was scared, because I’ve never experienced the feelings that I was having before, or anything even remotely like them.
I was honest, an open book, and I told Ricky what I’d gone through. Of course, I left out the gruesome details and all, but I gave him the gist of what went down and how I felt that I’d learned from it. And then he asked me, “Why did you stay with such a jerk for so long? You seem so “together” and just too good for that.” He added, “You’re so beautiful, it just hurts me to know what you went through.”
“Ricky,” I uttered. “I don’t know why I stayed with him for so long. But maybe it was just something that I needed to go through in order to become more resilient and a better person. Maybe it took me letting go of him before being able to fully recognize how toxic he and the situation was. I mean, no one should put up with a partner that doesn’t act like one or one that talks down to them and makes them feel small and unworthy.”
“Anyway,” Ricky said. “It’s in the past. And I’m really glad that you left when you did at least. I just wish I was there to protect you, or even more so, I wish that I had met you first.”
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