Love is a choice. Every day I choose him.
“When you pick a partner, you pick a story. So what kind of story are you going to write?” – Ester Perel
July 2013, Friday night in a bar in Madrid. I had no intention of meeting my future boyfriend that night or any other night that year in fact. I was happily single, enjoying my time in my new city with my new friends. We noticed each other immediately and all it took on my part was an encouraging smile. As he and his friends walked over to where my friend and I were dancing (I think we were the only people on the dance floor; if there’s music, that’s where you’ll find me) I already felt the butterflies. Well, there’s a lot more to the story but after some dancing and kissing and chatting (I’m not going to lie, it happened in that order), we exchanged numbers. I was leaving Madrid for 5 weeks over the summer so we had 10 days to see each other from the night we met.
I told him I wasn’t looking for a boyfriend but was happy to enjoy some time together. Maybe it was the fact I knew I was leaving or that he wasn’t what I thought I wanted in a longterm boyfriend that I let my guard down. Without realising, I opened my heart to him and at the same time he was offering his to me. We lived some ‘locuras’ during the days before I left, and it was enough that I couldn’t stop thinking about him for the next few weeks. He couldn’t wait until I came back to Madrid so booked a flight to London to see me. I guess the story is pretty romantic but to me it was the change that happened inside me that was the most beautiful thing. The walls I had built, the stories I had told myself about what I wanted were all disintegrating. So much of the time when it comes to love, we stand in our own way. Not this time.
I came back to Madrid at the end of the summer so excited to see him and ready (but scared) to start our relationship together. Why scared? Well, love is scary at the best of times, there are no guarantees, but this was so unfamiliar. He was 4 years younger than me, I barely spoke Spanish, he barely spoke English, our upbringings were so different, I had a Masters degree, he never finished college. But still, I chose love over logic. Despite our differences we seemed compatible in terms of personalities and values. So we moved in together after 6 months, now 7 years later we are planning our wedding and I couldn’t be happier.
“Natalie makes me feel so loved each day. Over time she has shown me how to take care of our love and improve every area of our relationship. Thanks to her knowledge and application we feel stronger than ever together.” – Jordan