*Originally posted June 28, 2013*
I always like when I hear someone say, “We’ll be there”, or “We’d love to!” It means that you and your partner are connected in a way that ensures that you are no longer just a singular person. You do things as a unit. But I’m coming to realize the importance of maintaining the “me” while still being very much an “us”.
As a singular person, I enjoy reading, going for walks, hanging out with my friends, drinking, bubble baths, dancing, singing, baking, and shopping. As a singular person, you find things to occupy your time and you find different people to spend your time with. As a “we” I enjoy going for walks, hanging out with the other half of my “we”, hanging out with friends, baking, watching movies, and talking. As a “we”, you find things to do together.
Somewhere along the line of going from a “me” to an “us” there comes a point where you can most assuredly lose your “me”. You begin to sacrifice the long bubble bath for a quick bite to eat with the other part of your “us”. You tell the guys that you can’t go to the pub because you’re going to be having a movie marathon with the other part of your “us”. Which, of course, is okay sometimes. But how do you know which times it’s okay to make those sacrifices and which times it is not?
I think that when it begins to interfere with your life (maybe you didn’t do your laundry, you didn’t go grocery shopping, your friends are starting to be annoyed that you’re always busy) then it is time to find your “me” again. There is nothing wrong with spending time by yourself, doing things that you like to do. For example, my boyfriend likes to play video games with his friends. Sometimes, I find it annoying and am frustrated that he doesn’t want to spend time with me. But, really, I think it’s okay to want to spend time doing what you like to do. (And to be honest, he does spend an exceptional amount of time with me). The important part is remembering that it is important to your “me” to actually do it. I know that I love long bubble baths and that it’s okay to have one and say, “I’m busy, I’ll be over in a bit.” But I don’t choose to do it nearly as often as I could/should. And I am coming to realize that making time for your “me” is an important part of maintaining a healthy “us”.
I am finding that a healthy “us” is not just an adorable couple who do everything together. It is not two halves that make a whole. It is two individuals, two “me”’s that fit together. After all, you did fall in love with the other half of your “us” because of the “me” that they were. Why lose that part of them to the trap of an unhealthy “us”? Why lose that part of yourself?
I’m not saying that I want to spend less time with my boyfriend. (Because, hello! Have you seen him? He’s gorgeous and I want that amazing man by my side all the time!) I’m saying that I want to keep being the person that he fell in love with and I want him to keep being the person that I fell in love with. I don’t want to be the reason (whether it’s a bad reason or not) that he doesn’t do the things he enjoys as much as he used to. And I don’t think I’m the first person to struggle with this balance or to realize its importance. And I’m sure I’m not going to be the last, either!