a hope design

Love is a gamble

In Relationships on March 1, 2013 at 9:31 pm

When I was a little girl, I loved Kenny Rogers. This was long before his sex hotline scandal gave him an ewwww factor. Other than Ruby and Lucille, my favorite song was The Gambler.

As a kid, I thought it was about playing poker. But it’s really about love, isn’t it? Love is probably the biggest gamble we make in our lives.

Hearts

Ev’ry hand’s a winner and ev’ry hand’s a loser.

You gotta know when to hold ’em,

Know when to fold ’em.

Know when to walk away

And know when to run.

How do you know when you have a good hand? I’ve never been very good at gambling. I have never been lucky at slots either. I’ve always found the casinos to be a waste of time and money. Hell, I’ve only won a couple of prizes my whole life. One was tickets to a football game, and the other was tickets to a Vanilla Ice concert where I went on my second date with my second husband. Y’all know how that turned out.

Everyone says that no relationship is perfect. I’ve heard that many times. You have to accept that everyone has faults and then decide if you can live with the particular faults of your partner.

With my first two marriages, I decided I couldn’t live with the faults. I decided that there was no way I would ever be happy with certain aspects of each of those relationships. Despite how much it hurt, I called it quits. Looking back, I have at times questioned if I gave up too easily. I know I was very unhappy in both situations. I came to the realization that the man I married was never going to change – both times.

I’m not one to try to convince someone to change. You can talk to a person about what is bothering or hurting you a few times, but if they keep doing the same thing over and over, you have to cut bait and reel in your line.

Did I fold too quickly? Should I have bet another few rounds, invested more? The more you invest, the more it hurts when you lose.

Having given up twice, I was not so ready to give up this third time around. I was willing to invest more. I was willing to risk the hurt. Larry is unlike any man I’ve ever met. There is no bravado with him. He is straightforward and never puts on airs. He doesn’t expect to be impressed. He is genuine. He is sensitive, kind and honest. He likes whole oats, dried fruit and dark chocolate as much as I do.

I know you are all smirking, right? Love is blind! No one is perfect!

Indeed, no one is.

Larry is very bitter about romance and love. He’s willing to be the best friend you’ll ever have, but he’s “not ever going to be in love ever again.” Surprisingly, that was not a deal breaker for me. No matter that he would not say, “I love you,” his every action made me feel more loved than either of my husbands had with their daily vows of devotion. What are words when your time together is so rich with caring actions?

What is my perfect ex-boyfriend’s other negative trait?

Larry is a runner.

I’m not talking about marathons and 5Ks.

When we first met, we joked about the dinosaur in Toy Story. My favorite quote of Rex is, “Oh, great! Now I have GUILT!” Larry’s favorite Rex quote is “I don’t like confrontations!” If I get mad at Larry, he runs. He feels he’s not good enough and throws in the towel. Larry gives up.

Now, I’m a pretty laid back woman. I don’t yell. I don’t throw things. But how many men out there can go a full year without making a woman mad? NONE. It is impossible. There are certain times when a man can make a woman angry simply by being visible.

Larry has made me mad a total of three times in the last year. Larry has left me a total of three times in the last year.

The third time, last week when he was in Arizona, he came home and told me he didn’t want the responsibility of being a boyfriend to anyone anymore. I asked him to leave. “Now.”

I didn’t ask him to clarify. We didn’t talk about it.

I folded. I didn’t walk away. I ran.

When you add my lack of confidence in myself with Larry’s running, you get a crap hand.

I guess that’s when it’s best to fold — before you invest everything you have and before the other person decides they don’t want to play anymore.

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