Ah, relationships (part one)

Out for a run today and for me, running is therapeutic. My mind wanders and my issues that are stirring about in my life rise to the surface to be attended to. Some days my running allows thoughts of turmoil and strife to settle and quiet and provide me with a sorely needed solace of quietude and calmness. Other times, my running brings those issues to the forefront and I use that time to focus and problem solve; bringing a determined process of resolution to something that needs the attention. Today was a different type of thought process all together for me.

Today’s run was both introspective and productive which is a new one for me. As I began my run my body felt heavy and slow. Sluggish and hard to move as I felt as though I was lifting and dropping each foot with tremendous effort.  My spirit soared though and it felt, inside, good to run. Such a disconnect between my body and mind however had me seriously considering turning back and just going home instead of pushing through. I kept going though… giving myself permission to move slowly and to stop and walk when I needed to. After about half an hour of this my body started to settle and as that happened, my thoughts came up, as they do. One of the things that came to the front of my mind was the following…

I was thinking today about a workshop I attending this past weekend on jealousy and communication and it made me think about the how’s and whys of relationships.

I’ve had 2 marriages and a few longer term relationships and they have each been unique and different in their own ways. I have, after much thought and soul-searching, accepted that they were not “failures” in making it work but rather experiences that have allowed me to grow and learn and move forward. They have brought me to the place where I am now with a better knowledge of myself and an understanding more fully of what is, for me, a need versus a want in a partner and in a committed relationship.

Having just recently ended a long term, committed relationship with a partner that I loved deeply and was hurt by I have been taking time to sort through my emotions and to start to move past the hurt and the sadness of it ending and look to what I am taking away from this experience. A big one for me is the truth that I need to not allow myself to be treated as less than what I deserve. I value respect, honesty and a willingness to communicate too much to not have them as an integral part of a relationship. Lesson learned.

I also am taking away a very distinct belief and understanding, true understanding, that I am enough for myself. I don’t need a partner in my life to fulfill my needs and my desires for companionship and caring and love. I have found that the love I have always had for my own company and solitude is still present. That in order for me to be content, I only need to know myself and understand myself. With that realization has come a freedom from the sadness of losing a partner and a joy in knowing that I am choosing to be single now. That I am making a conscious decision to take the time that I need to be with my own thoughts and my own musings on finding and enveloping who I am so that when the time is right I will find the partner that complements my life and time and energy. Someone who will enhance my life and be there to enjoy the moments of joy.  A partner to journey the rougher times with and offer support to each other, out of love and compassion and understanding. An understanding that will be fostered from 2 people who know themselves well enough to know what they need from someone else.

A wonderful ideal and one that doesn’t just happen but rather takes time and work and commitment to being willing to put in that time and effort. The rewards are worth it though. The reality is that the effort and the commitment start with putting in the work and the brutal honesty needed to build the strongest foundational relationship of all though – my relationship with myself.

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