How many times do you google something to check if it’s right? I often seem to miss a key part of a film or a funny part of a film because I’m googling to see how old the actor is to see which one of us was closer or I’m checking how to spell a word correctly or doing a ‘just in case’ check of the correct bus number or train time. I feel we have it too easy sometimes, always having a way of checking if we’re right but that’s not the same when it comes to relationships is it.
You can’t just google what the ‘best’ relationship looks like. There may be really good relationships out there but they work because they are unique to that pairing. Just because a couple has been together 40+ years doesn’t mean it’s the best, just because they are always happy when you see them doesn’t mean it’s the best, just because they have stable jobs, 2 children, a dog and go on holidays twice a year doesn’t mean it’s the best. Best means something different to everyone and why is it we’re looking for help on what ‘best’ looks like? Why can’t we accept and communication and challenge and evolve and grow together as a couple, why are we looking for a blueprint? Is it because we want ‘best’ to also be easy and to have a set of ways on doing it or is it because we want validation or commending for our work once we’ve got to the end goal?
Relationships are hard and they need to be worked on but the relationship with yourself is more important. You will change. They will change. You’ll also be changing together and at different speeds and sometimes in different directions. Each day is different you’ve somehow got to move forward being you, being part of a couple and together as two, it’s mad that they don’t teach you how to communicate and ways of responding to loved ones at school, life would actually be easier then no?
Part of the excitement of life is having someone along for the ride with you but when that ride comes off the rails slightly it’s easy to jump straight into the arms of your inner saboteur and listen to them. Bad days come and if you’re both having a bad day, it could be a really bad day for you both. A day is 24 hours and a lot can change in that time. Your happiness level is ever changing, your energy will change throughout the day and so will your opinion. Make time to reflect on yourself and allow time for them to do the same so you work together on understanding what happened and why it happened and get to the opening in the maze together, not apart.
When lockdown first hit, we needed things to do that didn’t involve leaving the house more than once a day and we got fully invested in subscribing to all these different TV services like Disney and Now TV etc and one thing we started watching (with wine or beer of course) was the Real Housewives. I can’t remember which version of it that we watched but a couple were going to marriage therapy or at least, they had a psychologist friend, and they asked for his advice because they were arguing a lot. He said ‘remember, you’re not battling against each other, you’re on the same side of the fight’ and that has stuck with me since because he’s right – in a relationship, you mostly want to resolve whatever issue you have and move on, happy. Funny thing is, the show made us argue more / made us more argumentative people in general because that’s all they did and you take on traits of your environment don’t you so we stopped watching that but I think about that saying each time we argue because arguing is just passion or frustration coming out and who best to take it out on but the person that’s with you by your side?
Writing, for me, is calming and gives me some serotonin and in a way, this has been cathartic for me to write this. I’ve got it in my head that saying sorry is a way of admitting fault and confirming that you have done something wrong that constitutes saying sorry but is that just the way I’ve been brought up? Saying sorry is a way of validating the other persons feelings. You might not think they are right (you probably think you are right, as I do…often…) but whether right or wrong, their feelings are valid and intended or not, if that person is upset, they’re upset, and they need you to apologise. You might not be apologising because you don’t think you done something wrong and even if that’s true or not, that person needs you, as the person on the other side, to make that move into no man's land and apologise so they can move forward towards you. That’s how you’re going to resolve it, to meet in the middle via communicating and if takes an apology, make it, because remember – you’re on the same side of the battle and sacrifices might need to be made.
You’re can’t google if you’re doing things right in life, I’m definitely probably doing a lot wrong in my life however they are opinions of people that need not weigh in on my life. I am the only one that can judge if I’m doing life right or wrong and even if I am doing it wrong, am I hurting anyone? Am I happy to do things wrong? Can I accept that not everything is in my control?
What you do or say right now doesn’t define you. We are all but a wee flower edging towards wherever the sun might take us, we can’t always see our next move or where the sun will be next or what life is going to be like tomorrow but being open to know that we might need to move certain ways on certain days allows us to accept this and move forward and toward a new you, a you more refined and hopefully, happier.
Musing of a man unqualified to offer such advice but if you got here, I hope it’s helped you in some way and thank you for reading.
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