On expectations and relationships

I haven’t been blogging about non-school related things, especially on my thoughts, for a very long time, due to the hectic pace of university engineering life. But I just felt like blogging and writing down my thoughts.

I think humans are very amazing. They get hurt, but they manage to move on and then they heal themselves. And then they attempt to do the same thing again and again even when they get hurt before. And I’m talking about the action of falling for somebody. Isn’t that true? We get together with someone, learning more about the person, finding that the person is really incompatible with you, breaking up, feeling super upset over it with both parties feeling hurt, and then you think, “I really don’t want to do this again”. But yet I did.

I think every relationship teaches you something about yourself. Every relationship gives you a lesson on life to prepare you for the next. Every failure shows you how inadequately prepared you are, and shows you your flaws so you can improve. Every relationship prepares you for the next person that comes into your life.

And it’s all part of growing up. To those parents that absolutely forbid your children to go into a relationship until they started to work, then I say that they are going to miss out on a whole spectrum of growing up experiences. The experiences that teaches you how to care, how to love someone, how to say the right things to sooth your partner’s upset moods. The sheer magnitude of things you can learn about yourself and the things you do or can do, cannot be expressed by a few words.

The last relationship taught me many things about myself. About the things I want in my life. And I was happily holding on to those dreams, in my own lala land, thinking that how nice it would be if the girl loves me as much as I do for her. How nice would it be if we gave each other space to grow and have our own lives outside of the one we share. How nice it would be if she understand my concerns and insecurities, and if she can always make me feel treasured. How nice it would be if she suddenly jumps behinds me and hug me. How nice it would be if she will do special things for me like I do for her. How nice it would be if everyday was like that for the rest of our lives together.

Until I realize that I haven’t been really reflecting on myself much. Whilst it is good to discover what I want more out of the next girl that comes along, I probably should also think about what the next girl will want from me.

I was on the phone with baby duck on Friday, when I was still on the MRT on the journey home. We were sharing our experiences and we talk about the nice things we did, and the nice things our previous partners did for us. I am quite ashamed to say that I kept plenty of the unhappy memories with me. I don’t know why. Or is it that there were more of those memories than those that truly surprised me and made my day? I could remember things like the day I asked her to be my girlfriend, the first date, the second. The day she bought me a blister spray. Or maybe celebrating my birthday in a simple but nice way. Or making me cards. But I can’t remember much. Perhaps my mind has subconsiously choose to lock up those memories, clearing them for space for someone else who’ll give me more better memories.

And when I hear about baby duck’s, I realize, I wasn’t really such a fantastic boyfriend too. Other than paying for dates and dinner, I haven’t done much. I wasn’t entirely sweet on most occasions, and I have never planned a valentine’s day that went well. I have never bought something nice on random. I only buy things during special occasions. Even so, some stuff that I buy showed a lack of sincerity. Or my lack of creativity. And the things I buy arn’t expensive. They are relatively cheap.

I never bothered to dress up too. I always dressed like a typical engineer. I never did send her home much to her door step. Even when I drive, I didn’t walk her up all the time. When I took the bus from Toa Payoh to her house, she alights at her house bus stop and I continue the journey home. Why was I like that? Why didn’t I be more gentlemen? Looking back, I realized I was really lousy.

Sometimes it leaves me wondering. What is money for? Whilst it is good to have savings, and it is good to plan for retirement, have financial planning and so on, we must learn to be willing to spend some small money. Things like getting out of the bus and sending her to her door step probably costs more time and money in terms of the journey home, but it is simple things that I can do, but I didn’t. Even in university, when I had concession, I sent her to the interchange and waited for her to take her bus home, and I took the mrt back to save money. I don’t know. Was I just being stupid?

I never swam with her in my condo pool, never took her on a picnic. Never made breakfast for her. I only started going to breakfast with her in the later years of the relationship. I was contented being in a shell. I didn’t look out to the world to see the numerous possibilities there are in this world. I choose to remain afraid, wondering if my parents will disapprove, without realizing the one simple fact that I am already an adult, and I should start making my own decisions. Whilst I have to do things that consider the feelings of my family, there are other things that I can do which they won’t disapprove. All it takes is proper management.

I have always thought, if the girl feels unhappy and needs someone to talk to, what would I do? I have always just spoken on the phone, comforting her and letting her speak. I have never realized that sometimes just making a trip down would give her some form of comfort. I always thought it was an inconvenience. But now I think differently. I think there are things I can do on the train or bus. If I needed to catch up on lecture notes, I can read them on the train. If I needed to do programming, I can think about how to do it on the train, so I waste less time on it when I get myself to a computer. If I needed to learn a new language, I can read books on the train. I can manage my time effectively, it’s only whether I want to. I can balance my studies and time for her.

So I suddenly found myself asking myself yesterday. If baby duck is upset, what is stopping me from being the nicest guy in the world? I realize that other than weekdays, I can easily just inform my parents that I will be eating out, and just go out and be there for her. I can do that, can’t I?

I can be much better than before. The previous relationship taught me that. I can put in more effort.

But of course, I need to remain on track. I have to remember that building a relationship takes plenty of effort. Plenty of trust. Plenty of planning for special days. And building that perfect relationship means making her my best friend. Sharing my life with her. Enjoying the company. It means understanding her inadequacies and reassuring her, and vice versa. It means growing up together. It means realigning my dreams, modifying them to accommodate her.

This is what it means to be together.

There is only one you, I agree completely. And there is only one me. And I want this to happen: I=ME

2 thoughts on “On expectations and relationships

  1. All the best. Everyone learns to be a better person and everyone has their choice with their lives. You will be shock if you know me right now too coz pple change, for the better, at least for me. As we mature, the way we deal with relationships differ too. I am sorry but childish and petty fights did occur and we did not manage them well. Hope you will stay happy and, blissful. 🙂

  2. I know. 🙂 It’s all part of a growing process. I’m just happy we all learnt from it so we can become better for our future partners. 🙂 Take care too and be happy.

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