My Self Proclaimed Mission If I Choose to Accept It
I have been contemplating this issue: can you teach someone how to love you? There has been information, far more researched than I have done, about learning your partner’s love language. Other information regarding, loving yourself so you can express this to your partner is another valid point of view. So I am venturing into this area, can I teach someone to love me?
Listen, I’m not talking about “getting” someone to love me, I believe that feeling must exist first before moving forward. But, can I have the self-awareness, clarity, patience and the teaching abilities required to accomplish this task?
I have hesitated writing this blog because I don’t want it to come off as bashing the male gender. So here is my disclaimer, I LOVE men!! I like their energy, enjoy their humor and company. Often choose to be in their company over same sex gatherings.
Having said this, I am acutely aware of the differences that are so apparent between the sexes. Again, I feel the need for a disclaimer, (political correctness and all), not all men are the way I may describe them. Not all women are the way I may generalize them. But, c’mon people, books have been written, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. There are innate differences. I have come face to face with this often recently and I began to wonder, with some mad super hero skills could I bridge the gap. Would it be worth the effort?
So let me begin with a bit of honesty and believe me, this is tough to share being I want approval and acceptance. I have made a commitment to myself, in this blog, to be honest. So here it goes. I am venturing into the waters, perhaps physically and intellectually shallow, albeit deeper emotionally, (ok, now I’m just avoiding stating this), revisiting a relationship with my ex. Yes, the one that left for another woman. Yes, the love of my life. Yes, the one that has been a main focus of this blog and the one I have been attempting to recreate the exorcism as seen performed by Linda Blair, spinning my head around and spewing the symbolic pain and hurt from my soul. Yes, that guy.
I have wandered around the emotional, relationship desert and realized I love him. My heart and feelings had not lessened in the depth of love that existed for him. I kept trying to expel him from my life and heart and continued to feel he, at this moment, is my choice. He remains, the love of my life. I have prayed for god to changed his heart and actions or change mine. So, the two of us are faced with the opportunity to see where this relationship may go.
There have been many gifts this breakup has afforded me. I have realized I made his life, my life. I melted comfortably into his needs, desires, wishes and dreams. Time away has allowed me to see my dreams and my need to have MY life, separate of his. I have also learned compassion, empathy and understanding are all wonderful things to offer my partner. I also see where I need to lay down clearer base line needs, perhaps rules, for this relationship or any other I may venture into.
We had a recent conversation where I was talking about feelings, (not his strength), and he said, “You know I’m not good at these type of conversations”. I said I understand but they need to happen, perhaps in small doses, but in order for us to be successful they will have to happen often. I spent a few more moments talking about feelings and then said, I heard the emotional timer go off. He’d done a good 5 minutes of intense conversation and we could move on to a more neutral topic like sports.
So I have had 8 almost 9 months to move my emotional self to a different space, one more confident with myself. Perhaps understanding what I need/want in a relationship. Even figuring out what I want my life to look like separate from a partner. I’ve come to enjoy my time alone. I have learned how to fill my heart and soul to some extent. I am still finding those activities, both recreational and business focused that are building a stronger me, more secure and confident me.
So I am attempting to create a different relationship reality than I have had previously. My ex, (we haven’t established he’s my guy so the label remains the EX), is a typical guy (ok folks, remember the disclaimer). He loves sports, doesn’t really want to talk about feelings, wants to keep things comfortable and focused on him and ultimately wants me to know he loves me without really having to say it or show it too effusively.
Can he learn? Can I? In fairness, I am as different to him as he is too me. I just perceive myself to be the emotional superior in this relationship and I think he would agree (I mean he would, after the planets align and Ireland win the 2018 World Cup), but he would. I know I have the capacity to see him and his needs and in fairness to him I see changes he is willing to make and is making.
I know honest communication is key. No more can I tip toe around issues that need to be brought to light. And no, he won’t bring them up. He’s that kind of guy. Yet, he has been willing to listen and participate in some honest conversations about where we need to start from, finding new directions.
I’m not without faults and I definitely have my own learning curve, which I attempt to keep in check. I want to be successful at this relationship thing. I hope it’s with this man. He still gives me butterflies. When he is open and lets me in, there is nothing better. I am cautiously optimistic. I’m hopeful. I’m also keeping my options open until he is able to claim I’m the one. I need that from whomever I partner with.
I know I deserve to be someone’s priority. I know that person needs to take the same measure of risk I’m willing to take. I’m willing to risk my heart, what is your bet?