I'm apparently on the brink of getting engaged. I'm not sure exactly how to feel about that. It's not with Derrick, the person I truly thought of as the "love of my life" for years. He and I officially called it quits for good in May. No, it's with Eric, an old friend of mine I reconnected with right after Derrick and I ended things.
Eric and I knew each other 9 years ago. We met through a mutual friend, Cassie. Cassie and I met through my best friend, but really, we became friends through an online journaling site. She and I started out just reading each other's journals and then within a few months, we started hanging out in person. Before I knew it, she was someone I considered my closest friend and for a year, we spent so much time both on and offline together.
Through her, I got to be closer with Eric. He and I had a mutual interest in each other, but we had one major roadblock: I was dating Derrick at the time. Things came to a head after we expressed our feelings for each other because I wasn't willing to break things off with Derrick. We stopped speaking 9 years ago this month. And then, after Derrick and I finally ended our on-again, off-again relationship, I started re-reading all of my old journal entries from the first time I dated Derrick. Through that re-reading and reliving of those experiences, I realized I still had a lot of buried feelings for Eric. So, I contacted him and Cassie.
And now, Eric and I are pursuing a relationship, and he's already bought a ring. I reconnected with him in May. It's now, well, almost September, but still, it's not been that long. I was with Derrick for over 4 years and never got to marriage. I'm afraid I'm reliving the past. I'm afraid I'm going to make the same mistakes that led to an unhappy and borderline abusive marriage. I've been down this road before, and I keep arguing with myself over things. Eric is not like my ex husband. He has a lot going for him my ex husband did not have when I met him and agreed to marry him (after only a month of dating...). He has things like a career, a degree, and is looking into buying a house.
But I still have my misgivings. I know I'm ready to try again for marriage, I just didn't think I would be with someone other than Derrick. However, I know that I still love Eric very much, and I think that because we never gave the relationship a real shot, it's only fair to see it through. That doesn't mean I have to marry him, but I...want to. I feel something for him I've never felt before. He gets me on a level that even Derrick, someone I still consider my best friend, hasn't connected with me on. We have a lot more in common than I think I ever realized, and even though his geekier habits do tend to make me cringe sometimes, I also find them endearing.
He ordered the ring on Wednesday. He said it will be here in 2-3 weeks, and he gave me a timeframe of October. But he also told me a story that the jeweler he went to had shared with him. He said that a lot of times, the men who come into the jewelry shop have an idea in mind of how they want to propose, but then once they get the ring, they abandon their plans and propose as soon as possible because they want to see that ring on their beloved's finger.
Eric jokingly asked me what he should do if he got struck with what we have coined "ring fever."
I told him to take two tylenol and take a nap.