I start each morning with a prayer and conclude every night with one as well. It keeps me grounded. It helps me focus on other people besides myself and what I should be thankful for instead of what is missing in my life. This morning was no different. I got up and fed the cats and poured myself a cup of coffee. Since I didn’t have to go to work, I was able to relax, say my prayer and take some time to reflect on what I actually say to my angels, guides and God everyday.
It occurred to me this morning that while my life isn’t a picture-perfect rendition of a Norman Rockwell painting, it surely isn’t the muddied remains of a color theory project gone wrong. It’s not so much that I didn’t already know this as much as I needed to be reminded. I’m not of such high moral character that I would ever preach how one should live their life, behave or feel, but I do recognize we are all in search of the same thing. It’s not wealth or status or having the best house and car. It’s not even perfect health or love. It’s far more complex and that is why it is so often unattainable. I believe what we all yearn for is the need to be understood. It sounds like such a simple thing but if that were the case, we’d all be much happier. Children wouldn’t be testing their parents’ limits, couples wouldn’t be fighting over trivial matters and a lot of therapists would find themselves in the unemployment line. I’m not suggesting that understanding is the secret to a perfect life because that does not exist. Without some conflict, a person is not capable of learning the deeper meaning of life or realizing his or her own personal expansion. I do, however, think it is a cornerstone. Although understanding does not guarantee agreement or acceptance, it does allow for flexibility in thought patterns and offers a level of consciousness leaning towards mutual respect. When respect is practiced then it allows for all the other wonderful things we want such a happiness and love.
I’ve been in some particularly traumatic relationships throughout my life, but I wouldn’t be who I am today had I not experienced them. Each time, I learned valuable lessons that armed me with more knowledge and understanding to deal with subsequent relationships. I can honestly say that I am grateful for those lessons now that I have regained my equilibrium because I know I am in better shape to be successful in future relationships with both men and women. It doesn’t mean I don’t hurt sometimes or feel angry and violated, but I don’t harbor hatred or resentment for the pain I suffered. I take full responsibility for my role in those failed relationships because I enabled the behavior that ultimately caused our demise. I often say, “It’s a process,” and I remind others and myself that wisdom and understanding takes time. God didn’t send us here with a how-to manual, but He did equip us with intelligence to adapt and a heart to love.
I’ve been single over a year now. Before that, I settled for relationships that made me feel alone. So, is there a difference? Yes, the difference being that now I am in control of my destiny. It does not have control over me. I often hear people describe their relationships as abusive, lacking, complicated, inequitable and lonely. All those descriptions resonate with me still because I understand the pain that is attached to each of them. I was prisoner to those feelings for most of my life but not anymore. Now, when I hear people talk about their troubled relationships I listen because I care, but I am grateful for the life I have today. I understand what drove me to this point and I honor it. Through time and understanding I now accept we all have our own life path and not everyone is meant to be with us forever. Sometimes understanding yourself or someone you love or once loved is learning to let go. It’s God’s way or telling us that something or someone better suited to our needs is waiting for us. We just have to understand that it’s part of the plan and trust it will happen when we are ready to receive it.