Taking the plunge into a new romantic relationship combines a whole mess of feelings. It's scary, exciting, and most of all, completely uncharted territory. Perhaps you've endured a thick enough slew of past relationships to earn you a ribbing serial monogamist title among friends. Or maybe this relationship is a rare break in your life of otherwise perpetual singledom. Either way, each relationship is absolutely unique and navigating those foreign waters is going to be different each time, too. You've got a boo—this boo—now, and that means stuff has to and inevitably will change.
I find it endlessly fascinating all the euphemisms we use when we talk about love. Many liken the sweeping moments, the swimmy head, and the overall vibes of being newly in love to actual insanity. We say we're "crazy over" someone, or that someone makes us feel "out of control". All of this isn't a coincidence: The rush of dopamine and serotonin people experience in conjunction with new love surely sways our brains to act in differently than it does with it's a Single Person Brain, right? New relationships, in a certain light, make us feel a little bonkers—and that's normal. With a bit of distance and clarity, we can see clearly that we're not crazy (or at least not crazier than usual)—we're just embarking on a new relationship. These crazy feelings, too, shall pass.
Suddenly there's this impossibly wonderful human who hangs around a lot and has sex with you. Fantastic! Your gratitude morphs into a delirious enthusiasm for stuff as banal as ironing. EVERYTHING IS THE BEST. NOTHING WILL EVER BE BAD AGAIN. THE BUS IS LATE? WHO CARES! LIFE IS AMAZING AND PERFECT NOW!
As enthusiastically as you DEFINITELY COMPLETELY BELIEVE that this new love is going to be the person whose arms you die in, but other than THAT hard certainty, when you're in a new relationship, you find yourself weirdly open to anything. Like, you have your boundaries in regards to your own safety and emotional well-being, but other than that, you can pretty much get onboard with anything. No one has ever been more game to try to new activities and take up new hobbies than someone in the first stretch of a relationship. You may have developed a deep and meaningful friendship with your manicurist but when New Boo asks you to join them on a rock climbing adventure, you're already hiding your fresh paint job with chalk.
Pretending you don't need sleep
This is a very common side-effect of new relationships: You stay up way too late because you're out dancing with your new SO. Basically, just because there's the new person who you can't get enough of, you like to pretend work in the morning doesn't exist. The reality (whether you want to admit it right now or not, you love-sick fool) is that work does exist, and as a result, you're perpetually exhausted. (Because on top staying up late, hellooo, morning sex will probably happen thus robbing you of extra hours to snooze. WORTH IT.)
Spending money you don't have
Budget? LOL, what budget? All those dopamine rushes tend to act as a potent amnesia agent when it comes to your finances. Ever since you found yourself faced with the choice between super fun boning marathons and going grocery shopping, overpriced delivery dinners seem necessary.
"Six AM yoga every day is totally doable!" says only a person in a new relationship. The incomparable high you feel during a new relationship gives you permeates all facets of your life—sometimes in attainably productive ways, other times in more pie-in-the-sky ways. Like, you're just running around making the kind of promises that only an insane person would ever think of uttering.
Ignoring a need to spend time alone
Sure, you used to take infinite pleasure in your weekly bubble bath and catching up with Girls (real talk: Learning to balance my laptop on a closed toilet lid to stream Netflix while submerged CHANGED MY LIFE), but like...them. Them. You compromise necessary hours spent alone to accommodate getting more face time with your new love because honestly, you cannot get enough.
Desperation to impress
Never in a million years would you otherwise entertain the idea of wearing a push-up bra to bed. Or leaping from your warm, cozy bed sanctuary before New Boo wakes for a quick swish of mouthwash. Why are you scrubbing your toilet so hard right now, bb? Oh right, because you're in a new relationship. The maddening compulsion to make every detail of your life as flawless as possible for as long as possible is turned up to 10.
Crushing insecurity and jealousy
Who is that person you're talking to right now? I don't know them therefore they are certainly trying to steal you away from me and/or they are your ex and you are realizing right now that you are still in love with them. Once the relationship grows in confidence over time, you stop noticing such things. Early on, however, you can't help but compare yourself to others who might in some alternate universe beckon New Boo away from you.
Just keep in mind these little insane impulses will wither and disappear in due time. You're just beginning to learn each other as individuals as together. And remember: This new person you're so crazy about? They chose you back. Stop fretting and start digging on this new adventure—because eventually, it's going to grow into you two farting in front of each other and sharing a Pinterest board of low-carb recipes to try. Enjoy the madness in the meantime.
Images: Aimee Custis Photography/Flickr; Giphy (9)