I wasn’t ready.
Indeed, love comes whether we have braced ourselves for it or not. But commitment offers a choice, tapping us on the shoulder to say, “sorry to bother you. Is this a good time?”
Adam has never been married but wants to be one day. And he loves his gal. But his finances are in the crapper, his job is shit, life isn’t matching up with his goals and he just wants to flush the whole thing. Wherever he ends up, Adam wants this woman there with him. He’s just not sure where “there” is.
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We gals always make men the nucleus around which the rest of our lives float. But a man wants to invite a woman into a life that has already been made whole without her, perhaps even, in anticipation of her arrival. “I’m not ready” doesn’t always mean, “I’m not ready to stop chasing tail and playing beer pong with my buddies.” Often it means, “this table has not yet been set for two.”
And sometimes it means bigger questions are being asked. Am I ready to drop my defenses and let this other person see me warts and all? To feel so profoundly concerned about someone else’s well-being and allow this person’s presence to become necessary to my happiness? To surrender to love and risk losing it?
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While Adam considers this ultimatum, I hope his girlfriend sees how his mulling it over demonstrates the depth of his feelings. I hope she understands she’s not only asking for a wedding ceremony, she’s asking for a lifetime. And mostly, I hope she doesn’t push. Like jumping out of an airplane or eating seafood, if you act before the time is right, you’re only going to puke.