I was married very young. The first time. The second time, I was old enough to know better.
Turns out that I was modeling my relationships after my parent’s relationship. When the first one ended tumultuously, I made a decision that I was not going to experience that kind of jealousy, disgust and pain ever again.
My parents married very young and are still together. As much as they argue and cause each other discomfort, they still love each other. I mostly believe it, but choose to remove the drama from my relationships. It’s unnecessary as I learned in my second marriage.
My second husband and I rarely argued. We got along very well, so well that we became more like roommates than lovers. The passion was just not strong enough (or tended enough) after the babies came.
So, when my second marriage ended, I decided to figure out who the heck I was first, and then invite people into my sphere from there. I became determined to NOT be co-dependent and to be true to myself, no matter how difficult it was to face.
I waited six months to “date” and then committed to dating as many people as I needed to in order to clarify what I really wanted from a lover and partner.
It took two and a half years.
A lot of clarifying experiences with “boys” showed me that I had used my relationships with men to determine my self worth. That was a hard pill to swallow. One particular “boy” brought me to my knees, figuratively. That was when I decided it was time to love myself before I let anyone else love me, or experience the brilliance that I had to offer.
I swore off men and became open to the idea that maybe women could love and respect me more than men. A friend suggested I make a list for the universe to know what I wanted in a man.
I did better.
I made lists of the things I loved about each of my lovers. Some had one thing on their list, others had many. This group of lists became my order to the universe.
And then I let go.
A beautiful man walked into my life one day after yoga. It was one of those movie meet cutes that had to go down in the books as the most ridiculously silly experience when meeting a lover.
As usual, I was pulled into an affair, but this time without sex, because it felt different. I wanted to see what happened if I didn’t engage on that level. But I allowed myself to fall in love.
It was a very short affair. Ending one night when I proclaimed that I wanted somebody to love and he was unwilling to be that person.
I walked out the door and never looked back.
Days later, while still in love, but not yearning for the return, there was a hug with a man that I had been working with for a couple years.
Our solar plexuses exploded. We both felt it.
And so it began. The most rewarding and fulfilling relationship with my best friend, my partner and my confidant.
Nearly 3 years after separating from my husband, I fell in love again.
We are still madly in love, creating a beautiful life with boundaries, not holding each other accountable for our happiness and loving like we have never loved before.
My lesson to you is this: Sometimes you need to go in a direction that you wouldn’t normally want to go in in order to figure out exactly what you want and don’t want so that you can focus on what you really want and go for it. True clarity.
Share in the comments below any clarifying experiences you have had while dating.
Athena, aka Gazella