Monday, April 9, 2018

Time (Clock of the Heart)

Karma's not just a bitch; sometimes karma is downright kind.

When I boarded the sold-out northbound train yesterday, it was to go see a sad friend who'd been recently, unexpectedly and summarily dismissed after nearly eight years in a relationship. Dumped, as some people like to put it. With a bit of experience in that arena myself, I set out to lend an ear and offer some perspective if it was wanted or needed. To be a friend.

Everyone handles a breakup differently but I knew my friend well enough to know she'd be capable of moving on more quickly than I had (though heaven knows practically anyone would) despite the cloud of sadness I'd heard in her voice in late night phone calls.

When she picked me up at the train station, I suspected that we wouldn't get out of the parking lot before diving into the topic du jour, but what I couldn't have anticipated was her enthusiastic response to my comment about dating to escape her doldrums.

It not only made perfect sense to her, she'd met a really nice guy night before last while out listening to live music by herself. They'd spent four hours watching the band, chatting and enjoying each other's company. Hell, he'd even walked her home.

As she was telling me this, she was marveling at how this seemingly terrific guy had just dropped from the sky and wondering if she'd hear from him again. A few hours later, he called to ask her out that evening and although she had a guest (if you can call me that), she didn't hesitate to accept. All I can tell you is that she was practically glowing when she left here.

And praise be, the second date was even better than the first.

Talking about it after she  got home (like pre-teens at a slumber party minus the zit cream and giggling), she marveled at all the things she already liked about him: how complimentary he was and how gentlemanly, how smart he was and how many shared interests they had and, significantly, how strong their chemistry  was.

How, she wondered, had this delightful man come into her life so unexpectedly and yet at an absolutely ideal time for her? How indeed.

My theory? She'd paid it forward with years in a relationship that didn't give her a lot of the things she'd wanted and needed (whether she allowed herself to acknowledge that or not) but wasn't being offered by her partner. Maybe she's taken the lessons learned from that unsuccessful relationship to ensure that this one unfolds in a way that's better for both of them. Or even that there's a lot more to be said for beginning a relationship at middle age than anyone tells you ahead of time.

But even if it's nothing more than dumb luck, there's a beauty to it happening now.

You can't always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need...and when karma's smiling on you, it can be so much better than anything you could have imagined.

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