Finding love can be like walking a tightrope
By Addison Brae
While I was jogging in my neighborhood park right before Valentine’s Day a few years ago, I saw a guy walking on a tightrope. I always wondered how people learn how to walk on a tightrope. They practice. He tied a narrow nylon strap to two trees and walked on it between them. It reminded me how much dating is like walking a tightrope.
So many girls, me included, want to believe a guy really feels something for us. They go through the act of it, but do they really? How do we walk the tightrope of real or not? How do we learn to see the signs and accept the truth? We practice.
This was my first Valentine’s as a newly single (again) when I was going through the adjustments of shaking off a painful marriage and relearning what love’s all about. Those single years and experiences inspired Becker Circle. In many romance novels, at least one main character walks that tightrope of whether their romantic interest is into them or not. It’s the thrill of the chase, the uncertainty, the vulnerability, and the games that make reading romance fun. They also keep finding love interesting, and sometimes painful.
That night after seeing the guy on the tightrope, I met a really nice woman who had moved away recently and left a guy she cared very much about behind. She told me how difficult it was for her to break away from here—her friends, the place she had called home, from him. A friend of his said he never really cared for her. He respected her, but there’s just nothing there. She stayed the weekend with him, which likely made it even harder to accept the truth.
When the guy I was dating at the time visited next, I faced the truth of what a tightrope our relationship was. We had a blast when we were together, but us as a couple was fiction.
Balancing this tightrope is especially difficult for anyone coming out of an emotionally or physically abusive relationship. Relearning to love ourselves and not repeat the past is harder than it sounds. I drew from a few of my comical and heartbreaking experiences to develop Gillian, the main character in Becker Circle. She falls for the charmers and regrets each experience. One seduces her but the next morning doesn’t remember being with her. Another’s playfulness after too many cocktails turns violent. She learns from each, and finally discovers real love.
Finding love’s a tightrope for everyone—in fiction and real life. Valentine’s Day is a great day to practice.
About Addison Brae
Addison Brae lives on the edge of downtown Dallas, Texas. She’s been writing since childhood and continues as an independent marketing consultant. She’s addicted to reading and enjoys jogging, sipping red wine, traveling the world, collecting interesting cocktail recipes, binge-watching TV series, vintage clothing, and hanging out with her artistic other half and their neurotic cat Lucy.
About Becker Circle
My first and only boyfriend believed I was too gutless to leave. He was dead wrong. My name’s Gillian. I graduated Harvard early and left his hot temper and everyone else behind for Dallas. Determined to make it on my own, I land a second job bartending at the neighborhood pub smack in drama central where most every jerk in the neighborhood hits on me—at a huge price.
A week into the job, the neighborhood’s very popular drug dealer falls to his death a few feet from the table I’m serving. The cops say suicide, but the hot guitar player in the band and I suspect foul play, and I intend to prove it. We dig deeper, grow closer, and make a shocking discovery, we know the murderer. Watch the trailer.