A First Date with the 'Ex'
This past Saturday night, I painstakingly made plans to reconnect with a past lover of mine. You know how ‘fun’ that can be. And, this was not just any lover; this ‘Ex’ had the potential to be the One, but I was not ready. Almost two months had passed since I decided to take an open-ended break. The typical, but true and appropriate, It’s-not-you-It’s-me situation. And now, my heart was finally open to meet, hash it out, see what remained. I, we, deserved a fresh start.
Of course, I did my best all day Saturday to manufacture any legit reason to flake. But I knew that backing out would only prolong the fear of the new unknown and ruin my chances. Could I make it work this time? Was I truly ready? I dragged myself into my car and drove to our old stomping grounds, tonight’s meeting place. Resistance, unfamiliarity, anticipation kept me glued in my seat and I stayed in the parking lot for a good thirty minutes.
Old memories of the fiery love-hate roller coaster ride and vivid illusions of tonight’s potential wreck played out in my mind, psyching me out big time. So I began talking to myself, practiced in my head, delivered a charming self pep-talk; I created a game plan that I’d stick to if things got weird and drew up a solid entrance and exit strategy. When the stakes are high, you resort to desperate and hilarious measures.
With one last “You can do this, Lara,” I jumped out of my car. I marched right in to the building. Fired up by the catchy top 40’s beat pumping from the speakers, I forged up the stairs to the second floor where we would always meet.
I climbed the last step, and I spotted her.
Her long, lean and perfect contours stood majestically by the far window across from me. That was where she would always wait for me. When I had made my decision to spend some time apart, I relied on the hope that I could always come back again. And seeing her standing there confident, nonchalant, with no judgements, confirmed that. It was just like old times.
Except this time, I was different. I caught myself smiling. I took a deep breath, walked over and before making a move or saying a word, I stopped simply to look at her. I had fresh eyes. I beheld her with a new-found gratitude, appreciation, respect, desire and love -- no longer plagued with fear, resistance, need, frustration, failure, expectation.
It was that sensation when you just know. You have that feeling that something is different, that you’ve changed, dare I say, transformed. Here’s this relationship for which you endured turmoil and pain, motivated by the chase for perfection. And now, you’re crazy enough to revisit that madness, not because you miss and want to repeat the drama, but because you know that you lost yourself the first time, and will take ownership to create a different outcome this time.
Now, your mindset is on point, you have the right intentions, you know what you want, you have everything to give, because you’ve done the hard work to get clear. Sure, you don’t know what you are getting into as it all feels new. Because you are stronger and have reconnected with yourself and your purpose, you are willing to face the potential struggles along the way. You’ve also accepted that this path is going to be a process, a long-term series of choices. And the best part is that it’s going to be fun and enjoyable, because Fear is no longer your driver. You are now acting from, and are sustained by, Love, gratitude, and self-compassion. And, after all, you are certain that this relationship, which holds your passion and true love, this One is worth it.
In that moment, I reached my hands out without hesitation and felt the spark and warmth of a natural and revived connection. "Yes, I have missed you," I whispered. I held that beautiful glorious goddess of a barbell in my hands and proceeded to do what I came to do.
It got hot and heavy. =D