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Relationship Lessons Learnt
In life there are many opportunities to grow, to become stronger and more in line with our values and authenticity. Recently I had one of these experiences. I am in the process of changing. I can feel it stirring inside me, even as I type this. In the past it was only in hindsight that I realised changes had taken place. I no longer have to wait months or even years to identify these life-changing moments. In the past I was needy, clingy and desperately seeking love, from any source. I have had several amazing relationships and I have grown from each and every one. Co-dependency is an issue that runs in my family. I think that women are often encouraged to be in the background making sure that their husbands and partners lives run smoothly. We are not encouraged to have friendships outside of the relationship. This would be seen as your husband not being enough for you and you wouldn't want to convey that, now would you? Well at least that was the impression I got from my role-models and all the fairy tales that I read. I have done a lot of work around this issue. The books 'Men Are From Mars and Women Are From Venus' by John Gray and 'The Five Love Languages' by Gary Chapman are two books that are on my essential reading list. They both cover being authentic in relationships and it was through these two books that I learnt to release my hold on these childhood beliefs and start investigating a new reality. A reality in which we acknowledge that men and women will never be enough for one another. We each have different needs and need to meet these needs with members of the same sex. Thus I began my journey to get back in touch with my feminine side.
I am growing into this femininity, it feels so strange after trying to conform to the standards of a predominately male world, but I continue the journey as it feels right and authentic. With these new guidelines in place, I decided a couple of months ago that I was ready to start dating again. I had gained a lot of knowledge, self-respect and confidence from the books I had read and from practicing these new skills with my (now-ex) finace. I had gained a friend in my ex but my heart wanted love. A man that would respect me and this journey that I am on. Someone that I could share myself with and to continue to develop skills alongside. I decided to wet my feet with friendships. I don't know many people in the area where I live after such a long time being confined due to illness. I wanted this to change. I learnt that it is vital to 'spread the load' so to speak and that it is not fair for one person to be your sole confidant and moral booster. I want to have a network of friends in place before I enter another serious relationship so I have joined a weekly board game club, I have started Laughter Yoga and I am trying to get in touch with people more regularly.
I didn't really expect to meet anyone that would be a 'Soulmate'. I just wanted upbeat positive people to spend my time with so I could continue to raise my vibration. I had a few friends that I wanted to stay in contact with but I also wanted to expand my horizons. I met one new friend who inspired me to finally take the plunge and become vegan. I really admire his commitment to health and his great knowledge in this area. I enjoy hanging out with him and the texts that we share. Life was becoming more like the place I envisioned, rather than the lonely single life that I had endured for a month before realising that I needed to do more. Then someone came into my life that I could imagine getting to know as more than a friend. The moment that I met this man, I felt that we were 'meant' to meet. I knew that we had at least a lesson to learn from one another. Despite my learning that men need space after meeting a woman in which to process their thoughts and feelings, I resorted to my previous state of fear that I had imagined the connection we had. I reached out and he reminded me that I had agreed to giving him his space. I could have chosen to be devastated and in all honesty, I shed a couple of tears. Then I shook myself off and realised that I could reframe this. He had clearly stated his boundaries. I had over-stepped them. He gently and lovingly shared his feelings and reminded me of our agreement. It was a very interesting lesson to learn after all.
Perhaps this is to be it, the only lesson I learn from this amazing man. It is early days of our acquaintance after all, but perhaps this is merely one of many. All I know, is that I am grateful for this reminder that life is a series of lessons and experiences. We can take each one either negatively or positively. Yes, it can take a lot of energy to reframe things. But it is worth it. In the past I would have been crying myself to sleep, now instead I have a huge grin on my face (and the desire to write). I am so very grateful for this 'mistake' that I made. We all need to fail and get back up. In doing this over and over we learn. We learn about ourselves and we learn about the world. I am proud to see that I am changing, that I will be better at boundaries and at relationships after this lesson. I really can't ask for anything else at this stage in the journey.
A recently engaged girl in her mid-thirties living and loving life as best she can. Passionate about health, art and personal development with a side order of getting organised. A business woman, a sexual authenticity coach and a mixed-media artist.