Peace. After having drinks with a woman I had a romantic relationship with, I came up with these words. As anyone who knows my story well, this blog is part of my therapy. It helps me with sorting out my feelings and gets me to a point of marking my progress. Below I will share what I think is a beautiful epiphany.
I don’t think it’s any secret that I’m really enamored with relationships, but not so much the pursuit of them but more so the machinations behind them. I am extremely fascinated by stories of my friends who find partners and even their dating triumphs and woes. I want to believe in the fact that we can find love and happiness in each other and that it can be sustained via hard work and true connection. In fact, I do believe in it ultimately but there exists in me a cynic who lives in a glass house during the summer. My doubts stem from my relationship failures and those of my close friends and family. When I’ve been hurt or have levied hurt onto another, I am reminded that relationships (especially romantic ones) are fragile things that require a gentle hand. When I see the hurt feelings of my loved ones, I am shown that love is a choice made harder by the many obstacles we face as people. Those obstacles are numerous: finances, emotional stability (the lack of it), a void of self-awareness and lasting issues of the past just to name a few.
I went out with a former partner and we did what former partners that have moved on do: catch up, make small talk, casually reminding each other why we dated in the first place, etc. For me, these moments are never awkward but I got the sense that for my friend, she had some struggles with it or felt some momentary pause — as if I didn’t want to know about her dating life. As I said, I’m intrigued by the process so I did want to know her dating life, her story…as freely as I shared mine. In fact, it is from this same woman I learned the valuable lesson of being genuine in hopes it inspires the same in others. But as the ice broke and the words flowed, I came to know she’s seeing someone and I was extremely happy about it. I know that some people find my gushing to be a bit much, but it is a very real thing. I am so happy when people I’ve cared about on a romantic level have moved on to healthy and fulfilling relationships. Like Tom said to Summer at the end of the movie 500 Days Of Summer, “I really hope you’re happy”. Of course, Tom went through hell with Summer (and so did I to a much lesser degree with this woman in question) but if you’ve seen the film, you get the sense he meant it. I know that my sentiment was very honest.
It was definitely bittersweet because you begin to question yourself and wonder why didn’t it work for the two of you. But if you’re truly a friend and loved that person, you can’t dwell on the many variables that determined the failure of your union. If it’s done, let it rest and heal from the loss as best you can. But beyond that moment of flashback, I literally beamed and felt a supreme sense of gratification. As anyone who knows me and the culture I am a part of, one of the ways we interpret love is by considering it a very high form of understanding. What that means is through learning, growing and doing things in tandem (mental and physical) with a person you enjoy, you come to understand them and appreciate all who they are. It becomes a symbiosis and a joining of lives. You become a unit, a team, a force. That is beautiful and I want everyone I know to feel that at least once in this existence.
My good friend and brother couldn’t be less enthused by my stances around this but I respect it. However, I tend to forgive and forget rather easily — perhaps something I do because I want the same in return if I’ve hurt or lost someone. I know his reasons to feel this way are valid but I do wish he’d take a higher road regarding his feelings. I can’t say that because of my fondness of my brother that I haven’t adopted some of his thoughts at times. I can be very final, very curt. I’ve even been curt to the woman that inspired this blog. I’ve said some mean things and I truly meant them. I hope that she knows deep down that my hurt feelings motivated those barbs and not how I truly regard her. However, it’s moot to worry for it now because it’s well beyond us.
I want to end this mini-novel I’m writing by saying to anyone reading to encourage the love in others, no matter the cost. Support the beauty of loving unions and relationships of all sorts but especially romantic ones. Let the love you witness amongst your loved ones inspire you to be greater and achieve what they have — even if you have to do it alone. Love yourself most of all and watch how contagious it is. Be a good ear and friend to those who need to talk and vent about their struggles with their relationships. Offer yourself as a sounding board if you can. Pull others up so that you too can know that the same will be due to you when the time comes.
I say all of this with Peace and Love,