2009-2014… the current duration of my relationship with my bff/fiance/Marine/dude.
During my freshman year, I had to take a 3 quarter class called DOC (I forget what the “D” and “O” were, but “C” was for “culture”) and my fave teaching assistant for 2 of the quarters was pretty cool. I’ll always remember the one day she came in irritated and depressed. My suitemate and I asked her what was wrong, and she told us her boyfriend of 7 years broke up with her. SEVEN YEARS!
We were stunned when she told us and tried to offer whatever comfort our 19 year old selves could dish up. But what could we say?! She was around my age now, 27-29, and to us, 7 years was basically a decade/eternity.
Two things haunted me:
-How do you invest such a huge chunk of your life and not know who he/she is within the first few years?
-How long does it take to really get to know someone?
Since then I’ve experienced the highs and lows of being in both long-term and super short-term relationships. Before I met the guy I promised to be with until death do us part, I thought I had Relationships 101 figured out. Be honest, acknowledge when you’re wrong, and do what is right for you.
Well, there’s more to it than just a 3-part mantra. 5 years of anything will eventually get you out of your comfort zone and show you there are NEW experiences and emotions to encounter. Unpredictable situations that have no black & white solution.
Our relationship still surprises me after 5 years. I thought we were destined for this exciting if not unpredictable life in the Marine Corps. It took me a year to embrace it, and once I did I was in love with it. In those first 4 years of our relationship, I thought I knew who he was and who I was. The 5th year hit, and things changed.
A lifetime career in the Marine Corps was now off the table, and we were in foreign waters together. My “do what is right for you” rule SO does not apply in this situation. I know it seems incredibly selfish, but when you’ve been doing the same thing for 5 years and you’re told it’s no longer an option, your first instinct is to lash out and try to hold onto it for a little longer or find fault in the messenger. It took me a moment to get out of my selfish bubble and see the same scenario through his eyes. I am ashamed it took me so long, and I would’ve never guessed that would be my response, but it goes back to my first question: how do you invest so much time and not know who he is and who YOU are?
So, how long does it take to get to know someone? Lifetime movies tell us never: “Guess what? Your lover is the Craigslist Killer that’s eluded the FBI for 10 years! Didn’t see that coming when you married him 6 years ago, huh?” For my TA, it took 7 years. What I’m slowly learning is that it’s not about being able to compartmentalize the person you’re with, but figuring out what it means to be with someone. After 5 years, I have a pretty good picture of who he is, but I will never be able to say I know who he is because that part about him will change again in 5 years. As will I.
Last night, I dreamed Martin Garrix and I were dating.
Yes. The Dutch dj. He turned 18 in May so I guess that makes it legal and ok for me to dream about.
I woke up thinking “WHAT?! I haven’t listened to any of his songs in the last 3 weeks!” *shrug*
Just an FYI when you fly with United, if they screw you over, their phone and Twitter CS reps will only be helpful if your reservation is active. If you’ve already arrived at your destination and try to complain about how they treated you or how they CANCELLED your return flight reservation without your knowledge, they will make you go through their website form to file a complaint. They refuse to listen to you until you create the website submission. I made the mistake of putting it off because all I wanted was to go home and not deal with another United rep for the duration of my 4th of July weekend. So now I am waiting on a response that may never come. The next time United or any airline tries to mess with you, raise hell RIGHT AWAY.
(That was my FB status forewarning others how unhelpful United is.)
Background story on my experience with United.
On June 26, I flew into Dulles on a red eye flight. I was supposed to get on an airplane and fly to State College, PA at 8:30A. At 7:00A or so they basically announce that our flight is delayed and EIGHT people would have to give up their seats on the flight before we could take off. Finally at 10:30A I can board the airplane without being the sacrificial lamb who would have to sacrifice their spot on the flight. I get on and my seat doesn’t exist. Because they had to switch out planes, my Row 1 seat was no longer there and I had to wait for all 30+ passengers to board before I could claim an open seat.
Fine. We sit and sit for 20+ minutes only to be told to DEPLANE because there is an issue with the aircraft. Ok, better now than in the air, right?
United employees tell us to go from Terminal A to Terminal D for a new flight. All 30+ of us speedwalk and take the shuttle to Terminal D. 15 minutes later, we arrive to Terminal D, only to be told to go back to Terminal A. Are you serious?
We get to Terminal A and they tell us our flight is CANCELLED. After being given options to fly out to other airports I decide to fly to Altoona airport.
After 7 hours at Dulles, I finally get to go to my destination.
FAST FORWARD TO THE DAY OF MY RETURN FLIGHT.
The night before I received an email notifying me of auto check-in was not possible and I would have to check-in at the airport. No biggie since stuff like that happens.
The day of my flight I receive an email notice that my fiance’s flight (the one I am on as well since I reserved both of ours under my email) has been delayed by almost 3 hours. I didn’t get any notice. Again, whatever.
Arrive at the airport around 12:30p for a 1:51p flight that’s been delayed to 4:40p. Fiance checks-in without a problem. I go to check in and my reservation DOES NOT EXIST. Turns out that when they cancelled my State College flight the week before, it led to a chain effect where they cancelled my return flight. The attendant who rescheduled my flight to Altoona did not tell me that. I received NO verbal or electronic acknowledgment of said cancellation. Luckily, there was ONE seat left on the flight and they were able to put me on it. What if the flight was completely booked by the time I found out?!
Well, by the grace of kindness, the State College rep put us on a State College to Chicago to San Diego itinerary so we could catch our flight to SD in time.
I am upset because United gave me a truly frustrating response to this entire experience. I don’t blame them for aircraft failure or weather issues. I blame them for not notifying me of my CANCELLED RESERVATION. YOU DON’T CANCEL A WHOLE FLIGHT ON A PASSENGER WHO PAID $400 to fly with you!!!!!!!!