Allison and I have been dating for 18 months today (a year and a half, for the mathematically challenged). In some ways, it barely seems possible to have known her for that long: I can remember as if it were yesterday how I stiffened up like a board (no, my whole body, you pervert) when she first said “Hi, Ben.” I recall wondering “How did she find out I liked her? Son of a bitch!”
In other ways, though, it seems like I’ve been with her forever (I mean that in a good way), and it amazes me that I ended up with her at all. Her, likewise. The first time I ever talked to her (online, naturally), I asked her to a dance that I didn’t want to go to. Thankfully, she turned me down. Two conversations later, I admitted “I’m madly in love with you.” On October 28th, just before my sister’s wedding, we officially began “dating.” Five days later, my first slow dance. Strange, but ultimately satisfying.
Relationships are difficult. Two people have to learn to be comfortable with one another, physically yes, but emotionally as well, which tends to be much harder for young people; hell, for people in general. Differences have to be reconciled, schedules matched. Men and women, who fit perfectly in the biological sense, tend to have starkly contrasted personalities (if you didn’t know that, you’re a moron), but I’ve found that if you love someone, even the worst of their idiosyncrasies are insignificant. That’s what keeps people together, even when divorce rates are skyrocketing. That’s why I’m in love, and why 18 months is just a start.