“In a relationship” but I’m not, yet I am. Wait…what?
We’ve all seen the status posts on social media sites where someone you know has entered into a relationship with someone else. Whether it is dating or engaged or married or any of the infinite other ways that one can be in a relationship. We smile, we send congratulations, and we experience a variety of emotions. Happy for them, cynical over how long it will last, jealous that we are unable to post the same status notification, among the many other possible emotions that flood through us at that moment.
Before my husband died, he told me repeatedly that he knew he was going to go before me and that he wanted me to promise that I would find someone else and not be alone. He refused to listen to anything I said about the possibility of him being mistaken and kept demanding that I promise. Which I finally began to do just to get him to drop the subject. To prove to me he was right and I was wrong, he did die first-obviously. Have I kept my promise? In a way, yes, but not as he wanted.
At my age, I will soon be crossing the line to sixty-four, I have become more cautious and yes, picky. The thing is though, we should all be more careful in who we get into a relationship with. Slow down, take your time, get to actually know each other. Even if you aren’t looking for someone to give you the reason to change that single status to in a relationship, it is still important to know the other person better.
Some of my thoughts on relationships in no particular order.
Know, really know, the type person you are looking for. Think about it long and hard. Make a list if you must of what traits and qualities you want and what you won’t tolerate. Then determine to stick to them. Especially the won’t tolerate list, because trust me, you aren’t changing anyone. You will be doing everyone a good deed to abstain from a relationship where you think you can change someone’s less than stellar traits. Otherwise you and they are in for nothing but heartache and battles. Can people change? Oh yes, but its one hundred percent up to them and if their desires.
Know yourself. Know who you are, what you seek for yourself. Not you in a relationship, but you. Learn to be fully comfortable with yourself at all times. Only when you can be comfortable alone, can you be comfortable as part of a couple. But it is also important to know which things are set in stone and which can be adjusted.
Never allow yourself to become desperate.
Never allow yourself to settle.
Never allow yourself to be manipulated.
Over the course of the past four plus years, I have been sort of involved with gentlemen that didn’t work out for a variety of reasons. I’ve dealt with anger, accusations, confusion, and more. I have chosen to consider each a lesson forward.
All of that, is about romantic relationships and we know, that is not the only type. I think though, that I will save that for a later write.
There is one relationship that has strengthened and grown though, that is my relationship with my Lord. That relationship has taught me to be still, to listen and to hear. I have learned peace in the struggles, faith in the outcomes. I have learned of strength I didn’t know I had. I have learned, where my shelter is in the storms of this life. Life is a journey, we are all traveling toward something. The special relationship that I have with my Lord, has shown me often, where my journey will lead me, even as I face the many struggles along the way.