In the final revision of my novel What’s Left, the voice and direction of the story changed greatly. For one thing, it became much more Cassia’s own.
To my surprise, some of the material about her father lost its urgency or importance. Here was one passage that would be refocused and condensed:
The crucial turning point comes, she says, just before Baba arrives here. Tara’s always defended her own space — what she perceives as her essential freedom — and as long as he could accept that, they could spend time together. At heart, though, he’d require more commitment than she would offer, but this once, knowing he’d be headed to the monastery, the situation forced him to take that out of the equation. He had to admit he had no idea what would follow his cloistered withdrawal from the world, and demanding a commitment he couldn’t return at this time would be unrealistic and unfair. That insight, in turn, gave both of them a rare freedom space to concentrate on the present rather than planning an ironclad future together. We can enjoy the next few months together, at best, and they could take everything at that. It was the healthiest — and most rewarding — relationship he’d had. Neither was clinging to the other.
When it comes to relationships, individuals can vary greatly in their needs and expectations and what they can provide for their partner.
Would you feel comfortable in a relationship like this? For how long?