I went to see Dr. W yesterday and not surprisingly the topic of the hour was Jesse. I had told Dr. W last week about going to my friend Jackie’s wedding this past weekend and how I feared that it would stir up some very selfish feelings of insecurity and uncertainty of the future of my relationship. When she asked me about the wedding, I very happily told her that I was successful in pushing those issues out of my mind for once and truly enjoying the special occasion that was the wedding.
I told Dr. W about the two girls who sat at our table at the reception. Both of them, on separate occasions while the other wasn’t at the table, asked me and Jesse if we were married. One of them, the more flighty and intrusive one, actually asked us a series of questions—Are you married? Do you have kids? Are you engaged? Do you live together? Jesse and I, certainly surprised by her interest (and the interrogation aspect of it all), answered each one with some amusement.
The other one, while Jesse was away from the table, asked me if we were married. I told her that we weren’t. Immediately, I felt sad. I assumed she was going to ask me whether we were engaged. It is that assumption that upset me. However, she didn’t ask me that. She followed my answer with this comment: “Well, you two seem married.” Huh? “What do you mean by that?” I asked, unintentionally defensive. She responded, “I didn’t mean it in a bad way. I was just watching you two and I noticed that you seem very comfortable with each other.” I confirmed her assumption by telling her, “Yes, we are very comfortable with each other. At times, it does feel like we’ve known each other forever.”
When I told Dr. W this story, she was very curious about this girl and what she noticed. “How is it that you and Jesse convey a comfort with each other? What is it about you two that she noticed? How do you act with Jesse?” I was confused and didn’t really know how to answer these questions. Unsure of what she was getting at, I told her, “I don’t know. I really can’t observe myself with him. But this isn’t the first time someone has made a comment like that.” She replied, “I wonder why that is—this vibe that you two give off that other people pick up on.”
Even as I type this, I’m not sure what she was trying to get me to open up about. So I focused on the ‘comfort’ factor. “Well, Jesse and I are pretty comfortable with each other. Even from the beginning, nothing in our relationship felt forced or uncomfortable. Everything felt natural, as if this is just how things are supposed to be.” Dr. W nodded as she scribbled some notes. I continued with this story,
Very early in our relationship, Jesse and I were talking on the phone during one of our many marathon phone chats. I’ve always been a pretty straightforward person. And because I was still somewhat cynical about love at the time, I wanted to make sure that Jesse knew what he was getting himself into. So I told him about all of my faults and idiosyncrasies. I told him that I’m whiny, not sometimes but most of the time. I told him that I’m needy. I told him that I’m stubborn. I told him that I just have to be right all of the time. I told him about all the imperfections I could think of. And then I said to him, “Despite all of this, you still want to be with me. Why?” I remember his reaction like it was yesterday. Jesse laughed to himself and said, “All of that stuff is really not that bad. Believe me. I KNOW crazy. And you? Well you just make sense to me. I understand why you are the way you are and it’s ok.” Jesse’s said a lot of nice things to me during our years together and that one is honestly one of my favorites.
There hasn’t been much progress on the marriage issue, I’m afraid to report. I’m not quite sure what progress looks like (besides a proposal, I guess, and I’m not expecting that at all). I really wish I could get time to speed up to the point where Jesse will want to marry me (I sound strangely confident that's going to happen some day, don't I?).
Until then, I’ll just stress about it.