Early last year, our old friend Larry Lefkowitz of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, wrote a loving essay for BoomerCafé about the wonderful new woman in his life. Alas, it did not last, and Larry writes today of lessons learned about life’s illusions.
For a little while now, I have felt guilty about something I wrote here about a year ago. I shared a bit of my private life, as we boomers sometimes do, to make others feel good or impart some hope. I’d met a lady, Ms. C, who seemed to be my match in almost every way. I was very happy. I wanted people to know that you shouldn’t give up on love, that it can happen late in life, that it can be different and better than any before.
I believed that. I still do.
Over the last year, I came to find that the qualities I most admired about my partner were worthy of that admiration, and my feelings intensified. But also over this period, I learned that she was either incapable of being “all in,” or maybe just “all in” with me. I wanted to enjoy life and the company of someone I loved and admired for the duration. Now living on the short side of the ledger, time becomes more precious. I pictured sitting and laughing on the porch, in the rockers, enjoying nature, reading, discussing things, playing Scrabble, and all of the rest.
She does not want that. She is a workaholic, and even being three years my senior, she knows and wants nothing more than to work seven days a week, up to 12 hours a day, and spend time with friends. She made no concentrated time for us. I adjusted to this because I felt a little time with her was better than any time without her, and this worked for many months. But then something happened that demonstrated to me that this was never going to change, and that she had other priorities than I had, and us in general. I was crestfallen, but had to realize what everyone else who knows us had already figured out. She is not the relationship kind.
I fabricated this wonderful relationship, making it to be ideal and heady, and ultimate, and I put it on BoomerCafé to share. I feel badly now, because it was not what I thought it was, or at least not what I wanted it to be.
This is a very difficult thing to reconcile at our age. For so many years I had avoided committed relationships for one reason or another, and now I had thoroughly committed and publicized it. Well, I am sorry, my friends. Sometimes, as we all know, things just don’t work out. I think it hurts a little more being older and having invested a few years, only to come up empty. But I am glad I gave it my all. I am glad I learned to commit again, to feel all the joy of being in love again, and to enjoy another person as I did.
Yes, my spirits are down, but they will not always be so, and I hope when I meet another worthy person that I give her all I have and she does the same for me. The corny expression that “hope springs eternal” is something to believe in.