There is no way I can type these words in good conscience, without first acknowledging the wonderful Rosie Culture, an insightful blogger who a while back wrote Breaking Up With The Places I’ve Been, and the content from that post was enough to ignite a spark of inspiration for me.
In that post Ms Rosie talks about the importance of not getting too stuck in the past…and I wholeheartedly agree…but while reading the post, I experienced a subtle tinge of inner conflict because I often tend to drift into the rose coloured haze of my past relationships, sometimes without intentionally meaning to meander into the memories…
Before I go any further let me just impart a disclaimer of the upmost integrity; I got married in the sweltering summer of 2018, and there is no way I would have ever considered walking into the union if I wasn’t deeply in love with my wife and fully understood the concept of mutual respect, appreciation and acceptance, therefore nothing written is a reflection of my current relationship status.
To further make sure I don’t have to file for divorce earlier than anticipated, this post comes with the pre-approved editorial blessing of my wife because when we met much of my personality was previously molded, formed and shaped by the past relationships of women she will never know…but arguably is indirectly indebted to?
I must admit on occasion I’ve reminisced in days gone by, with people who are no longer in my life or have moved on. My out of control ego often creates a fictional narrative where I secretly imagine an ex who had a hard time trying to get over me since we parted ways…
But, the reality is, that is not true.
Social media tells me otherwise, because there are exes who have since met new partners and have moved into rich, dense relationship territories that are far more fulfilling. This doesn’t change the fact that every past relationship and circumstance taught me a little more about myself, even if at the time I wasn’t fully aware that class was in session. Trying to be an active friend with an ex is like attempting to be Guinness world record tight rope walker Freddy Knock, it’s practically impossible! Although walking a high wire, tightrope act can be achieved with razor-sharp focus, training, inner-confidence, effort and balance…most people can’t do it.
Yet, I see nothing wrong with dwelling in the memories of an experience to make sense of it; to learn from it, to grow from it, to understand how and why it made you feel a certain way. To revisit the world of relationship nostalgia, because we swim in the pool of nostalgia for other scenarios; high school, first kiss, the birth of our children, the summer of ……. (fill in the blank) even the year we cried watching our favourite Marvel characters on the big screen in Avengers: End Game.
Nostalgia, isn’t an exact science and you have to be delicate with it, because if relationship nostalgia is a bottle of medicinal cough syrup, you’ve got to make sure you read the label and are aware of the potential side effects of delusion. As warm as nostalgic memories are on those cold nights, that person is an ex for a reason and if it didn’t work out, destiny probably made the right call.
It’s rare we meet the one person, at a high school dance that we spend the rest of our lives with. We will all experience various relationship interactions before we find that special someone we’ll want to spend quality time with…but that doesn’t mean a current relationship invalids the imprint made of those who have gone before. In fact, for better or worse it was the dysfunctional artistry of those prior relationships that assisted in sculpting who we are and furthered our understanding of what we want…or don’t want…in a relationship.
Until next time.