Personal Growth In a Relationship

I’m realizing that the problem that I have with volleyball coach is not new, it was one of the deciding factors of why I ended my 4 year relationship with my ex-boyfriend who predates this blog.  With my ex-boyfriend, I felt that he was not capable of juggling his social life, family obligations, school, work and hobbies.  With all of those things, it seemed that he did not have room to be with me.  Being with volleyball coach feels kind of similar, but I feel more mature now and I’m realizing that part of it is a problem with me.  My life is certainly not as full, and actually I will push things aside to prioritize things that I feel are more important.  I have many things going on, but I put a few things on top of that list and maybe it is me who needs to have a more rounded life.

In some ways I feel envious of volleyball coach.  He’s had a career that seems much less demanding than mine, and he did a really good job at focusing his energy to grow as a person through sports, particularly volleyball.  I’m envious because I feel like I’m a failure in making productive use of my free time.  Sure, I sacrificed a lot to get a professional designation, but for two years after that much of my free time went towards partying and doing mundane things with my drinking friends.  I felt that I missed out on partying, so I went and did that when I was finally able to, only to realize that it was not at all fulfilling.  And playing volleyball has always been a part of my life that I feel that I’ve failed the hardest at.  I love the sport, despite not being very good at it.  I’ve fought my parents many times to allow me to continue playing.  I’ve been the worst player on my team and felt completely demoralized by it, but I kept going.  I’ve tried out for teams that have rejected me.  I moved on to playing recreationally as an adult but admit that I’m still traumatized by the pressure.  It was the sport that taught me sportsmanship, discipline, and teamwork.  Yeah, I admit that I’m a total failure at it, but at the same time it still gives me joy to have a good rally every now and then.  It makes me totally envious that he is amazing at it, and has taken it so far through his personal dedication to it.

Since I’ve met volleyball coach, I’ve started to play more volleyball. Initially, he encouraged me to go out to skill development lessons where he coached.  It was something that I was contemplating on doing for fun and to meet people anyway.  I used to do bootcamp classes and now I’ve completely dropped that and replaced it with volleyball.  He’s noticed that and has been encouraging me to go back.  I think he wants me to have my own thing; my own hobbies, interests, passions.

Being with volleyball coach makes me feel fulfilled.  It feels good to not have to worry about dating and finding a partner that I am compatible with.  I can say that I already have that.  It’s not like I take it for granted, but maybe it is a good time now to refocus on myself and do what I want to do.  It certainly seems like that is what he is doing.

Volleyball coach is aware that he has a responsibility to our relationship.  Today when I came to spectate his team play, he told me that he was doing this voluntarily and that it is quite exhausting.  He feels that he is learning a lot, but at the same time he can leave any time.  I think he said this to reiterate to me what his priorities are.

My relationships always feel difficult, but I think this one is simpler than I think it is.  Maybe as long as our priorities align, and we’re on the same page about things then we can continue to grow ourselves personally while still being together.  It certainly seems like I’ve come to a realization that this is a win-win situation.  I don’t need to be envious of his life, I know mine is pretty great and I just need to move forward and continue living it.  Maybe my original interpretation that he doesn’t have enough time or room for me in his life is not entirely accurate.


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