I aggravatedly stir milk into my coffee as the waiter of the brunch place walks by us for the third time without taking our order. On the surface it may seem like I'm annoyed with the wait, but beneath the bite of my lip and furrowing of my brow it's something a bit more sinister that has me dismayed - the inevitable couple's fight in public. As I lean over my coffee to watch the swirl of white meld in with the brown all the things I wanted to say when we were alone come flooding into my head, threatening to pour out into the mug clutched between my fingers.
The truth is, we never fight, at least not in the traditional sense, and so it's hard to actually express ourselves when the time comes to step back and look at things objectively. Maybe I could have done better at planning more for us to do, but there's an explanation there as to why I wasn't, it's just not on the tip of my tongue as it seems to be for those movie couples. A witty remark, a heart-wrenching response, something with a punch to convey the true character of our protagonist. I just sit silently and stare off at the generic recording of a fish tank playing on the big screen TV above a nearby table.
I'd love to say that passion is enough to keep relationships on track, but sometimes it's not. Sometimes you need open conversations that involve a thesis or a concluding paragraph. Unfortunately, spoken word is not my forte and so I regress to written methods of communication. Text message rants seem to be my favourite and allow me to express myself without the feeling of impending tears or harsh words. A calculated response to a necessary part of any relationship.
It's taken me a while to recognize how important communication is, but even longer to allow whatever is communicated to actually seep into me and my actions. It's one thing to say you can change and another to actually take the steps to do it. Coming from someone who hates confrontation of any sort, I can honestly say that I've finally learned it's importance. It doesn't mean you are rude, aggressive or insensitive. On the contrary, it can be argued that confrontation reflects your sensitivity that much more - opening yourself up to regurgitate all the emotions you've been holding back or concerns you've been hiding. While the thought of it still makes me extremely uncomfortable, I've already decided that it will become a bigger part of my life and a skill to hone for future obstacles.