Agree with it or not, February is the month of love. Once its edges begin to peek into the calendar, your neighborhood drug store will look as if a pink heart bomb took refuge on its walls, and we will all be thrusted into the thought of relationships. The juicy word and complicated web of goodness in our lives. Relationships are very much always the theme, but this month we are not-so-subtlety reminded.
Couple. The word can be loaded, non? When you’ve moved back to Miami and are trying to forge your first years of adulthood, being in a couple means different things than it did in highschool or college. While being single is a fabulous topsy turvy ride, it’s an exploration of the self. Being part of a couple takes this exploration a step further, as you observe who you are in a partnership and add a whole other person to the psychological party. It can get tricky, but it’s the stuff of complex sweetness that keeps us merging into coupledom like a modern day Noah’s Arc.
There are, of course, different stages to being in a couple, for instance, the early unknowns. At the beginning, it’s always wonderful, full of constant text messages, embarrassing boy glow and tons of sex. All the time. At some point, and definitely into your late 20’s, the future talk begins to seep its way in. You’re not married, so there is no concrete forever you’ve etched into the eyes of the law or the lord. But you’re not single, so there’s this ambiguous future with a human that you quite enjoy. You may feel strange bringing up bigger long term topics. It’s a tricky dichotomy because at this stage it’s natural to begin planning for the long term, but you really want to enjoy the moment and not put that big ass pressure on the seedling of your baby relationship. We get it.
In Miami, and many big cities, the pressure of time is not as imminent, which is fantastic. High five progressiveness. What I mean is, this town caters to enjoying and elongating this coupled lifestyle. You are given free reign to enjoy being with each other. It’s not a small town where most people are married quite early, and many young professionals here tend to wait longer. For many groups of friends, you’ll find a nice mix of couples and singles, with the few married ones gradually committing. It’s an even terrain versus other cities where you may be the last man standing in your mid twenties. The horror.
If the beginning doesn’t come to an unseemly end in the wake of future talk, you will graduate to the yummy couple space. This bubble is a cocoon of comfort so freakin’ cute, it’s like a puppy mated with a Netflix night. Those forever words like marriage, buying property, even children (eekk!) are now flown about like sugar sprinkles in cup of froyo. Your friends will call you ridiculous. Your couple may have an acronym. You may even move in together. It’s all very adorable and life-mergy.
Around this point you may even have found your couple crush, which every couple inevitably has. While the singles still go out with the couples, many times what’s on the agenda will be different. For these occasions, every couple dates another couple. Like your single days, the hunt continues well into your relationship as you double date yourselves until you've found the ones. This couple crush is the peanut butter to your jelly, the birds to your bees and your favorite drinking buddies. You've got text message threads to keep in touch, they are your Wynwood Art Walk partners and you always know who throws down what in your Cards Against Humanity games.
Miami, in my humble opinion, is a playground for this stage. There’s an overabundance of real estate to make your own love pad and plenty of creatively interesting activities to do with your mate and couple crush. It’s a growing hub for holistic couple livin’, and much like being in a relationship, this city ebbs and flows constantly evolving into something better.
Happy love month,