“I thought you liked older men?!” my best friend asked, with a puzzled look.
“I figured you might want to date an MBA type like yourself!” my mom said, bewildered at my choice.
“Dude, he doesn’t even read books and he is into every sport there is!” my sister was aghast.
Yes, he didn’t fit my bill and he didn’t check all boxes on my check list but by golly, he makes my heart flutter and toes curl up like no one ever has. He is nothing I expected but everything I needed!!!
I had been heartbroken, left to gather pieces of my shattered self after a two year relationship. A tumultuous relationship that gave me a high like none other, yet led me down to the depths of depression. We were the power couple, we aced all the campus competitions and landed plum jobs on campus, we were the IT couple- so perfect for each other. But we weren’t. He was feeding off my insecurity and abused my trust; it was an ordeal to just realize what was happening and to break it off. He was older than me, wiser than me, so fu*$%g hot and so wrong for me!
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And then HE came into my life, he was a breath of fresh air from the stuffy suits I had met at MBA school. It wasn’t love at first sight, he was my junior from college and I had spent a couple of years treating him like a minion. We weren’t best friends either, and had drifted apart after my graduation but bumped into each other at a friend’s wedding. I like to think it was serendipity.
Boy, had he grown out of those idiotic sports jerseys he used to wear at college all the time! He looked dapper in the suit he wore for the wedding, okay, yes; I hadn’t gotten over my suits obsession then. He had turned into this suave, well natured gentleman, nothing like the cocky sorts I had dated. I proclaimed that intelligent men turned me on, their argumentativeness acted like foreplay but it’s not hot when that intellect is used to undermine you. This guy was not like those men, he listened and I loved to talk. I realized I needed my opinion to be valued, I didn’t want to be brushed off and this guy hung on to every word I said.
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I knew how to do my job well and needed no one to tell me how it should be done, I had enough of gyaan being thrown my way, with this guy I didn’t have to be bothered by that. My work was separate from my personal life, I discussed my day with him but I never had to listen to him dictating what the best strategy to tackle an issue was. I realized I didn’t need someone who helped my career; I just needed someone who understood I had a career which was important to me.
I enjoyed tuning the world out watching cheesy TV dramas and eating my popcorn while sipping wine a’la Olivia Pope. He enjoyed watching his football matches with his friends eating pizza. I immersed myself sometimes in reading “Forbes” and other times reading Sidney Sheldon. He got his news and views from ESPN Sports. I realized I didn’t want someone to share my interests; I needed someone who lets me continue having mine.
In a world where my dating app lets me find someone who has similar tastes, I have begun to believe that similarity breeds contempt! If you are like me, you know too much, you advise too much, you end up controlling too much and that’s not a recipe for success. I realized that he is the “One” when it dawned on me that he is nothing I wanted, but everything that I needed.
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