Day 25: Love Lessons 101
[Posted originally from my Facebook-notes!]
I’m in one of those “random” moods wherein I post notes about my thoughts, hoping that I could inspire other people who are going through a few “bumps” in regards to relationships. I AM NOT bragging that I’m knowledgeable or that I want to preach, but that I simply want to encourage and uplift people’s self-esteem off the roof! I think one of the reasons why I’m doing this, it’s because I’ve heard quite a few stories about unbearable break-ups and unrequited love affairs. I’m just a happy person who would like to give back to the world- hoping that I could at least make someone just as happy or close to what I’m feeling right now.
So far, I’ve classified those different problems into different categories:
The Seeker, the Blind, the Giver, the Dreamer, and the Remainder.
1. For the Seeker who kept on dating but found no love after a few tries.
My best friend, Faith, has told me once, “I think it’s best that you stay single for awhile. Give yourself a break from dating. I know you don’t like the idea of being single, but I think you need to learn how to LOVE being alone.” I’m not proud to share that I’ve dated quite a few. A few of those guys were half-way decent, nowhere near-Brad Pitt looks and totally NOT in my league. Thinking back, how could I have dated those guys? What was I thinking? I would have never thought of asking those questions until I started giving myself a break: a break from seeing guys, a break from jumping into relationships that I wasn’t really up for in the first place, and a break to really sort out what I want in a person who I want to be with. It took a lot of thinking and a lot of spending quality time with myself that I loved being single. My goals in life were falling in the right places and unexpectedly, romance was waiting for it to happen and I wasn’t even expecting it. Love just happened to drop by when I’ve completely let myself go from looking for it. Bottom line, start taking a break and pay more attention to yourself, because your relationship with you is the one that will make you thrive in the harshest challenges you’ll go through in life. Stop seeking Mr. Right and start chasing You.
2. For the Blind who loved ever so dearly, but was cheated on and has the hardest time to let go.
Two words for you: Wake Up. I remember those days when I cried my eye balls out for a boy who ripped my heart in pieces when I found him naked with a supposedly nice neighborhood-friend. My family was very supportive of me, until one-day, my dad finally couldn’t take it and he snapped, “Stop crying. That’s what happens to you when you don’t know what you’re jumping in.” At that moment, a part of me just felt awful and I knew that I have to stop mourning. Life moves on. Of course, we don’t know what we’re jumping into most of the time, but we all have to take responsibility of our actions. I couldn’t just let myself cry over a boy and call it the end of the world for me. NO. I looked at my dad and a part of me woke up, “My life starts now. Second chances begin now. Try again NOW. Let go Now. Move on or you’ll get stuck.” Lesson learned: Let go and start moving on. There are, in fact, TONS of fishes out there, I’ve proven that myself. I’m still living happily after that horrible break-up, so you can too. You’ve been disrespected and you need to let yourself recuperate. I don’t care what type of person you’ve been with, but damage has already been done. They say, forgive and forget, but can you really forget?
3. For the Giver who poured everything into the relationship, but was left unrequited.
I think love is either a two way or a one-way street. To be in a two-way relationship, you’re lucky because that’s pretty rare to find. Carrie Bradshaw, the fictional character in Sex and the City, compared relationships and investing. She thought that dating or being in a relationship is almost like investing. Let’s just say the worth of your rent is the same worth as the money you’re giving away for profit. So, if you’re giving 100% for profit and you only get 50% back for income, you don’t get a month’s worth of salary. In fact, you’re pretty short in paying the next rent, that’s of course regardless of having previous savings and having cheap rent. Now let’s apply that into a relationship scenario: It’s almost like staying up for someone who promised to call you back so many times, but they were too busy, so you lose sleep when they, themselves get enough rest. Or you could be in a scenario when you drive someone for a 2- hour distance but doesn’t have the courtesy to chip in for your gas. Isn’t that unfair? You’re a giver and you’re very generous but you happen to be with the wrong person: the taker. There’s nothing wrong in giving, but there is only so much you can take. So start looking for your other pair: the giver. As Nat King Cole has classically sang it in history, “the greatest thing, you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.” Well said!
4. For the Dreamer who imagined a white picket-fenced house with a well-to-do prince charming, but found herself still sleeping.
You’re not sleeping beauty. I find humor in other women who are waiting for a Ryan Gosling look-alike. It’s like, they’re dreaming of their celebrity crush to marry them. If they don’t have a celebrity crush, they have a very detailed list: handsome, has money, has a decent job, has perfect teeth, very nice, sensitive, romantic and the list goes on and on. There’s nothing wrong in dreaming but that’s quite unrealistic. After dating a few guys, I don’t think I’ve met a well-rounded, perfect guy from head to feet. Then again, we all have our own definition of perfection. If we pushed our expectations aside and let ourselves go, we might just be able to find our own prince charming. As the Frog Prince story teaches us, “You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your handsome prince.”
5. For the Remainder who decides to wait and stay in an ambiguous relationship with boundless hope that the relationship will someday pick itself up from where it left off, but found doubt and confusion rather than closure.
It’s hard to get separated from the person you want to spend forever with, especially when they are half-way across the world or across the country. I’ve fallen madly in love with someone who was the epitome of what I define, prince charming. However, our relationship didn’t last because he had to go back to Italy or else he’ll get deported. I was the remainder in the relationship, being that I wanted to wait. I saw a future with him and I hoped every day for the next 12 months that we’re going to be together. With all the loving memories I had with him, it destroyed me because I couldn’t let go. It was impossible. I was completely devastated, lost and I looked for him in every guy to fill that loss. However, I realized that while he is in Italy, pursuing cooking and falling madly in love with traveling, I looked at myself not progressing but mourning with the memories he left behind. I thought it was unfair. I didn’t want to be the “remainder” of the relationship and so I started letting go, slowly until I recuperated. I know it’s hard to not wait for someone and sometimes it’s really based on your own choice, but you have to realize that you, yourself have your own needs too. Maybe right now, your paths aren’t meant to be and that you are meant for someone else better or that down the road, you’ll meet again. What really matters is, you’re happy. If you’re no longer happy in waiting, pull the plug and let go. If you’re happy in waiting, then stay for another extra mile. “When people walk away from you, let them go. Your destiny is never tied to anyone who leaves you and it doesn’t mean that they are bad people. It just means that their part in your story is over” –Unknown.
I’m not a relationship expert but I’ve based most of these from my past and from other people’s experiences. We all make mistakes and we all fall down even when we think we’re invincible. We’re all built to get hurt and learn. We shouldn’t get stuck.
I hope that you find this inspirational or interesting. I don’t want to cause a fuss, but I think it’s nice to pass what I’ve learned about dating. I guess part of the reason why I decided to do this, it’s because it’s another year for me and time has definitely taught me a plethora of lessons and I’m very lucky that I made it through every challenge and learned from them.
To the boys who made me cry and taught me lessons, thank you so much. To the friends who have been with me through it all, I love you! To my family who never stopped loving me, you have my heart! To the people who shared their stories and problems to me, I am very honored. To my Ricky, you are my light!