The soldier came in on Friday night (a week before my 22nd) to spend his four day weekend with me. After a not so smooth Friday night – we got lost in Orlando 2 or 3 times with Bri and Des – and a Saturday morning full of, well, one of those quick summer showers in a relationship, we decided to head to my favorite bar Tampa, Ybor Cigars Plus.
I’m not a a cigar girl, primarily because I just can’t smoke without coughing for a few days after, but I love this little piece of heaven. It has bar stools along the bar, a few tables and a bar table along the far wall. There’s a small dance floor, but when do Latinos actually need a designated area to dance? There’s a stage where live music is played on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the night depending on the weekend. I usually make it there around 11 p.m. and stay a bit past 1 a.m. and depending on how people feel it will either be a few couples or a small group or two. . .or packed back to back. Regardless of how busy it is. . .it is part of my heaven with how intoxicating the cigar smoke is and with Presidente beer and mojitos I adore.
Well, the soldier and I headed out last night after an exhausting day and to be completely honest. . .after having the kind of relationship where we always had to worry about the future regardless of how much we wanted to live in the “now,” these nights that are making me fall in love with this guy all over again. Last night we laughed, dance (thanks to one of the veteranos at the bar whom always makes me get up and dance) and found peace in the middle of a bar with strangers who became friends for the night.
Things are definitely not perfect between the soldier and I because of his career as an officer in the Army and my hopes of pursuing graduate school for journalism has limited the amount of time we’ve been able to be together since we meet in December of 2005. I don’t regret falling for him, but I do regret the fact that we have had few times when we thought we were done. I don’t regret letting him into my life, but I do regret those times that I pushed him away, which resulted in making it difficult for us to take each other seriously at times. I don’t regret loving him, but I do regret how long it’s taken me to let go of my attitude that I often give to him when he’s just being himself.
This weekend I’ve learned:
- to be patient when someone may not meet your expectations because you were too blind to see your expectations were robbing that someone of being completely happy
- love is a beautiful mix of actions and words and maybe a figurative slap in the face when you can’t see the beauty in a relationship right away because of your selfish tears
- salsa makes me smile even though I’m still learning to move with that beat