i have spent quite some time in dissecting and critiquing other people's relationships and marriages. assuming that i was surrounded by far from ideal marriages, i was quite clear on what i wanted or didn't want from a relationship. or so i thought. now, i wonder whether i was not too hasty to judge, too arrogant in my all-seeing-but-nil-knowing wisdom. each relationship is different, and what works for me, may not work for you; how did i not understand this most basic and obvious truism before?
how did i not realize the world that encompasses a relationship, one that i am finding both alien and unexpected? most importantly, why are my communication skills so rusty? navigating this new world without this essential set of skills is fraught with danger. having to explain myself, my feelings, my rationale is so darn hard. i have these wonderful girlfriends whom i rarely have to explain anything to, who share my thoughts and complete my sentences, who understand me better than i understand myself. communicating with them has been so simple, so easy.
these skills are not just useful in relationships; i recall complaining about interns at work who didn't just get it, who couldn't quite grasp what i wanted. my solution? do it myself. that was far simpler than wasting time and effort on getting someone else to understand, and then actually do the necessary work. i was in awe of this one colleague who was a genius at getting the interns to understand what he wanted. the rest of us were not so lucky.
little did i know that feelings and chemistry may initiate a good relationship, but have little to do with making it work. for that matter, little did i realize that a good relationship requires work, on a daily basis! i feel like a kid who jumped happily into the inviting blue sea without realizing that she didn't in fact know how to swim.
swimming lessons, anyone?!