I thought Boyfriend deciding that I shouldn’t join him at the funeral meant he didn’t need me, I thought it meant that he didn’t want me around when he was most vulnerable and that worried me — but that wasn’t the case.
Some people grieve differently, I know that, but as the child of a broken marriage, as a young woman who has zero contact with the majority of her family I cannot understand why you wouldn’t want someone you love holding your hand when you need it most; but Boyfriend has a family and that day he was the one doing the handholding, he was the one acting as the rock for his family. He wasn’t able to be weak when everyone else needed him to be strong. When he did need me was the night before as he lay on my chest quietly talking about his hero, explaining that he didn’t want to go to the visitation and trying his best to share everything that made his grandfather so great with a woman who had only met him once.
There in the darkness on the night before that was when he needed me because that was when he let himself give in and be the one who needed people.
Our relationship isn’t perfect; I’m stubborn, neurotic and afraid to let myself be honest with the people I care about most because losing them isn’t an option he’s intense, silent and dorky but we work together and after this I’m convinced that we can make it through anything. This summer he watched me break down when my Mum got sick, he watched me cry because my Great Uncle is sick and my father kept me away from my Mum’s family for so long that I feel like just as I get to know all the wonderful people in my life they are leaving and he watched me start a new job after losing what I thought was my dream job. Through everything Boyfriend was my rock and this time it was my turn; this time I had to be strong so that he could be sad.
I thought I was losing Boyfriend last week, I worried that not wanting me to be at the funeral meant that he didn’t need me but he really did just want me to meet his family under better conditions and if I was there he would have been able to break when he needed to be strong. Today I know that we can look to the future, stronger for what we’ve been through and for the first time in months looking at happy things on the calendar instead of worrying that tomorrow will bring another disaster.
Today I learned that when you love someone you need to take them at their word, people who love you won’t lie to you in a dire situation they will be heartbreakingly honest with you and if you can take that if you can be with them in the way that they need you’ll have a real partner.
Tomorrow is a new day and there is a lot to look forward to this month, including my first anniversary since the Big Ex.