Taking The Leap

IMG_7543I started this column a few months ago with a reflection on a failed shot at romance. That post told you everything you need to know about my life in the last few years: new convert unable to stop dating or shake off commitment issues, barely repentant scumbag, honest to a fault and confused about what Romance While Muslim may mean.

Since then, I’ve explored these issues in more depth, wandering through my psyche without a clue of where I was heading. And yet, suddenly I’m here, and it seems my destination was inevitable all along.

I met someone.

I’d like to tell you she had to pull down walls to get in. That I struggled, and remained strong in the apathy I had gotten so accustomed to. But the truth is, I said one thing, she said another, and suddenly the worries in my head were drowned out. I was available in a way I hadn’t known in years.

We started dating the third time we saw each other, hurtling over any blocks that had tripped me up in the past.

I can’t tell you what changed, but I’d like to think that figuring my shit out on here over the last few months played a role. Writing your way into romance? What could be better than that?

What I do know is that I subconsciously began to shift my behaviour in the days before I met her. They say you can’t convince someone to quit until they’re ready, and I guess I was.

I finally ended things with the inexperienced woman I described a couple posts ago. I had just met my current girlfriend, and liked a photo she posted on Instagram of the view from my condo. I knew what this would mean. My summer fling would see it, and the obvious would be confirmed for her: I was seeing other people.

That was enough to get her to decide to stop lying to herself, and finally ask me if I would date her. When I said no, she told me she couldn’t go on anymore. She couldn’t deal with the thought of me seeing another woman, even though I had seen multiple women over the last few months and she had never asked (if you’re reading this, I’m sorry.)

Then I cut out the rest of the group of women who had come to rely on me for 2 a.m. romps. Some told me they were happy for me, some didn’t say much at all.

I can imagine them all sitting with friends now, though, telling them about me.

“That lousy bastard! He fed me all this bullshit about not being able to settle down. And then he dates her? Three weeks in? He should be flogged.”

And I suspect you may be saying the same thing too.

I don’t blame you. I’ve talked a big game in the last few months, and then she looked at me the right way and it was all over.

The problems I’ve described are real though, so let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. I’ve solved one, but most remain. Will her Pakistani parents accept me? Will they ever even hear about me? Will my issues come back as the dust kicked up from our lustful dance settles?

It’s too early to tell, so maybe one day I’ll be back to sit around and tell you about my problems. But for now, things are good, and I don’t know how to write about happiness.

So, I’m going to take a step back, and do my best to enjoy. To immerse myself in the moment, and let it take me where it will.

If I crash up on the shore, you’ll hear about it. Until then, wish me a safe voyage.

Read more by Luca on love, sex & dating after converting to Islam, here.

Luca [pen name] is a journalist living in Canada.