Can I Have this Dance

Harry: I had the best time last night. I’m on cloud 9

Me: Me too! Me too baby and you danced with me! It fell apart when I tried to lead.

Harry: Yes it did 🙂 But I get credit for dancing

Me: You get the lead from now on

Harry: 🙂

One of the things I’ve learned about myself since my divorce is that I really love to dance. I’m terrible at it, but I love it. I’m not quite as bad as Elaine from Seinfeld but I’m never gonna win a contest either. When I was little, the men in my family knew how to take a lady in his arms and twirl her around the dance floor. I always thought it was magic because his feet would tell my feet where to go and it all just worked.

It made my heart happy.

Knowing how to lead is more than having the right moves. It’s having the confidence that you can lead in the first place. And I might make some people feel uncomfortable here but I do feel strongly that it is the man’s place to lead. Not only in dancing but in personal relationships.

I think the man should pursue the woman. He should not be pushed into commitment but crave it himself. Someone has to drive, someone has to coach the team, someone has to lead. And someone always does. And while I’m all for women having the right to do and be what they want in most cases, I feel pretty strongly also, that in interpersonal relationships, when the power is turned upside down, it is a tragedy waiting to happen.

It is my opinion that men need respect, and if they don’t have it, they leave. Not all men, but many, because women have a hard time loving what they don’t respect. If a man gives the power of leadership to the woman, or she takes it for herself, then he is emasculated. And he will seek something else that makes him feel like a man. It might not be another woman. It might be sinking himself into a hobby, work, or his buddy crowd.

I’ve always been the leader in my relationships. With my ex it was just that he simply abdicated that leadership to me de facto. I lead in a way where I really did want his opinion and listened to his thoughts, but in the end, he knew and I knew that the decision to be made was mine.

When we were kids, my ex was the high school band president. And it was my first glimpse into what I could expect in my marriage. When there was a crisis, he was expected to have a meeting and rally the troops, give us all vision, and motivate us to do the right thing. But he just couldn’t do it. He was a really nice guy who had no clue how to lead.

With Martin, I told him that I wanted someone I could look up to and respect and who would be willing to lead. But that proved to be too tall an order for him. I lost respect for him with the lies and it became very clear he was not able to make the tough decisions needed to be a true leader. He wasn’t brave or confident enough.

From what Martin told me, he experienced a great amount of emasculation in his marriage. It is no wonder he had a hard time with me. And it was also practical issues with him. When he was here in the states he had trouble making change, as I did there. He had trouble driving, didn’t know the lay of the land or many of our customs and I found myself in the leadership position in that way too and literally in the driver’s seat.

The fact that I’m a very strong, intelligent woman makes things that much trickier. I do think. I have opinions. I want to know why we are doing this or that or the other thing. I want to understand and give input. And many men mistake that trait in me for wanting to be in charge. I’ve never wanted that. I need a man who is not threatened by it and who will not mistake it as a power play on my part. It’s just who I am.

Harry and I had our first evening date last night. We had appetizers and drinks on a rooftop lounge, we had dinner, and went to a little place and heard some jazz. We talked, we laughed, we ate, we danced, we walked, we kissed…a lot. Even though we were surrounded by people the entire evening, it was as if it were just he and I in our little love bubble. Lost in what was happening between the two of us alone.

It was spectacularly great. And I’m finding that so far I really like Harry’s leadership style. He is definitely in charge, which is a huge plus. He called all the shots last night but at the same time asked me what I wanted or thought. With Harry, I can relax and let him be the man. I don’t know how else to put it. And it feels really good.

It just feels like for the first time I have a man who wants to lead and is NOT afraid of the passion and sheer force of my thoughts….its something I’ve needed and wanted in a relationship my entire life. And he has in me, a woman who is an intelligent, compassionate partner who he can count on to add to the conversation and adore him at the same time. And that balance is hard to find. The fact that we’ve found it, is proving intoxicating for us both.

Is it possible to have balance in a relationship? I know we are not perfect people. And at times he will be unwise and make poor choices that will leave me shaking my head wondering what was he thinking. And I will disappoint him as well. I’m just wondering if this is the kind of relationship where it will truly be iron sharpening iron. Maybe we are both made of enough strength and love to be a mutually satisfying couple. The thought excites me and gives me hope.

I want this relationship to work. I don’t want it to trip over its two left feet because I’m pulling in one direction and he is pushing in another. That is how it was as soon as I got all excited and started to take the reigns during our dance. It really became quite funny, I’m sure, for people to watch us. Instead, I should have just relaxed and let him do his thing because those first few measures of our dance last night were just brilliant. It was like his body and his feet were guiding us together, moving as one. And for the smallest crack in time I remembered what it felt like to dance right. It is something I hope everyone gets to experience once in their lives.

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