ZenMom is kinda new to me but I have fallen in love with her writing. She is a Mom of two boys and as she says, "madly in love with my husband". I'm excited for her fresh look on her life and her relationships!!! Click here to learn more about ZenMom... and Welcome!
I have a fabulous marriage. But, like everybody else, I had "failed" relationships before I made the right match.
Except they weren't "failures". Not at all.
They all ended, yes. And some ended badly. But that doesn't mean they were failures. And it doesn't mean they were wastes of time. Just the opposite, in fact. If it were not for those early relationships, I would not be who I am or where I am today.
I learned a lot about life and love and ME from those "failures".
Some of those lessons were beautiful - little whispers of happy wisdom laid gently into my psyche. And some tore my heart open, leaving scar tissue that changed my whole perception of life and love.
But I'm thankful for both kinds.
I'm thankful for the high school crush who was my first experience with that heart-racing rush of infatuation. He left me breathless and taught me that boys that age are fun, but irresponsible. And that girls that age are over-dramatic. And that love is not really about breathlessness and drama.
I'm so thankful for my first "real" love, who was - before, during and after our brief romance - a true friend. He taught me that love should be playful and tender. And that, when romantic loves ends, it is possible for it to evolve into something even better.
I'm thankful for the college lover who taught me so much about passion ... including the painful lesson that passion alone is not enough to sustain a relationship.
I'm thankful for the ones who showed me my own boundaries - the places I would and would not go for love.
I'm thankful for my platonic men friends. They taught me that not every relationship with the opposite sex has to be about sex or romance. I especially appreciate the few men friends I have with whom I can joke and flirt and be myself without worrying they might take things the wrong way.
I'm thankful for the ones who taught me that sometimes men can be sweet and charming and nice ... and still break your heart.
That's a tough lesson to learn: That not everyone who hurts you is evil. Sometimes there is no "bad guy" ... just very bad decisions.
I think I might be most thankful for the men who hurt me. Who used me. Who lied to me. Who cheated on me. Who betrayed my trust. They helped me realize some of the most valuable lessons of all.
Between them, all of these men taught me balance. The balance between protecting your heart and opening your heart to the possibilities of love. And they taught me to recognize what love IS and what love ISN'T.
And those lessons paid off for me: I am now married to the love of my life and I couldn't be happier.
I could have walked away from these "failed" relationships learning nothing ... or learning the wrong things. I could have become jaded. I could have fostered hatred in my heart. I could have given in to despair or anger. I could look back with regret.
But I chose - and continue to choose - to see the good. To be thankful.
Even for the scars.
What about you? Do have lessons learned from past loves?
5 days ago