College, and everything that it was pre-graduation, was a whirlwind that I thought I would never get through. Final exams, counting down the days, and wishing for clarity on an adult life that otherwise terrified me was enough to make my head spin. In the back of my mind was the ache that things didn't quite go the way I wanted them to in the love department.
I said more times than I can count, as I watched friends and friends of friends couple off happily, that I was going to die alone, or with an abundance of cats surrounding me as I longed for a love I'd never quite get.
Was it pathetic, by any stretch of the imagination? Oh, yes. Did I believe that to be fact despite this? Oh, yes I did.
Toward the end of my senior year, I vowed, in fact, to be the elusive, wine-drunk aunt that traveled all the time, only to be seen at Christmas.
And then I "met" my boyfriend.
What has followed since is fun-filled dates, cheeks that hurt from smiling, and getting to know the man that I consider my best friend more and more every day? Not a day goes by that I don't consider myself incredibly lucky to love him in the way that we love. I wouldn't want to make a fool of myself or laugh with anyone else. I wouldn't want to stuff my face with food or slow dance in a kitchen with anyone else. I certainly wouldn't want anyone else in the entire world to know me the way he does.
I've never loved as much or as deeply as I do with him. Knowing this now, and feeling the way that I do, I can't imagine ever feeling like I was going to be alone forever, and I hate to think about how broken and grossly irreparable I used to feel.
As my boyfriend, it isn't his job to fix those demons, no matter how dim they are now. It is not his job to pick up pieces that he didn't break. It isn't his job, necessarily, to ensure that I am this happy forever.
But he's here now. For now, I'll skip out on the cats.