If you read my first article Sometimes It Is Who You Know, you would be aware that for the first time in over a decade, I am new to being single. For those who missed the article, the relationship I endured with my ex-husband was not what you would call ideal and led to a messy divorce.
My time since the divorce has been a learning experience, particularly when it comes to relationships. Recently, I came to a very profound understanding about how relationships should work.
After being introduced to a friend's flat mate, I discovered the value of having someone who is generous, caring and supportive and how this can improve your quality of life. Apparently I set the bar quite low with respect to relationship values, but I think the bar I set has given me an insight into the unintentional complacency that occurs when people take their relationships or situations for granted and fail to notice what goes on in day to day life.
One thing I won’t do is take any positive relationship for granted. At first it was unbelievably hard for me to let my guard down and let someone into my life; after being so hurt I was not sure it was a risk I was willing or ready to take. To say ‘I love you’ again is to give a person power over you and the ability to hurt you. My sister convinced me that, despite the risks, this was a chance that was worth taking if I wanted to move forward. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made!
It is amazing to have someone who genuinely wants nothing but the best for you, who inspires you to be everything you can be and more; someone you can share hopes, dreams and fears with. Real relationships are enjoyed with people who you can trust wholly and completely without judgement or criticism: if it’s important to you it’s important to them.
The main characteristic in any relationship is trust, however I think sometimes we take that at face value; we trust the person not to deceive us or betray us in anyway, but what about trust in knowing that you can confide anything to them and that they will always look out for your well-being and have your best interests at heart?
It is only when we don't have the support and respect of our partners that we tend to make an issue of it. Take a moment to think of the small things that actually mean so much, whether it’s a simple note, a dinner, or a call to remind you you’re being thought of.
Now take a moment to imagine how hard it would be if the person you have come to rely on and look forward to seeing each day was no longer there. That’s what my partner’s parents recently had to face; due to work commitments they will spend the majority of the year apart.
If you only had a few weekends a year to spend together, you should ensure you treasure that time and make a concerted effort to enjoy the time together. Even though most people do not have to deal with the tyranny of distance, it is still important to take time out to remember what’s really important.
Relationships aren’t unique to husbands, wives, girlfriends or boyfriends, most people are blessed to have family and friends surrounding them.
I know without my friends and family I never would have made it through my recent period of stress, and for that I can’t thank them enough. The only thing I can do is make sure I take the time to let them know how special they are to me and how much their support and love means to me.
I see people in the position I was in and it breaks my heart. In a nutshell, the message here is you can't miss what you don't have. As I have said before, it’s easy to become complacent in something that’s not working, the hard part is having the courage to change it. The same can be said for emotional status. For those who are lucky enough to already have someone who loves, cares and is an inspiration, remember to treasure those values and take the time to show your appreciation. For those who don't, you deserve the best, so get to finding it!