Love After Divorce
Love is infectious. It's a physical feeling that makes you feel safe, comfortable, tingly and happy. Sometimes it makes you want to throw-up. I'm talking about romantic love. The type of love that hits you, seizes you and takes over your senses. For me, there was an instant reaction that took place. I knew immediately when our eyes met that I was attracted to him. He will tell you to this day that he was not attracted to me, that he didn't even like me and that his secretary talked him in to going on the second date. He sure looks that way doesn't he?
I don't believe in love at first sight because there are too many factors that you have to take in to consideration but there's no denying that internal explosion that happens when you lock eyes with someone you could potentially love.
I genuinely applaud women who have the will and self discipline to remain celibate and who don't move-in with their potential spouse before marrying. My fellow "Gen-X-ers" most likely remember hearing our parents and grandparents speak about the taboos of "living together" before the wedding! In 2012, if you don't live together first, you are right up there with Joan of Arc and Elizabeth Taylor!
So how do you know if you are in love? Really in love? That is THE question that so many people want the answer to. There is a difference between liking someone, loving them, being obsessed with a person and knowing that this is the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. It's simple.
When my ex-husband proposed to me, I had been out of college just over a year. My grandmother and I were roommates. I was working at a juvenile detention facility full-time and moonlighting in the evenings coaching gymnastics. Needless to say, I desperately needed rescuing. So I said yes, of course. I was about as close to love as the Eiffel Tower is to Panama. We met on a blind date and were engaged within six weeks. See where this is going? When my father was waiting with me to walk me down the aisle, I knew that I was doing the wrong thing. We were compatible, but why settle for compatible? My mother used to tell me, "you get what you settle for." It turns out, she was right. Nine years and two amazing kids later we were filing for divorce and it was the best thing we could have done.
I knew at that point that I would never love again and there was no chance I would ever get married again. Marriage was not for me. I had successfully proven to the world that I was the master of screwing up every meaningful relationship I had ever been in.
Isn't it great when life proves you wrong? The first time I looked into his eyes there was instant attraction. We met at a Starbucks. He offered to buy me coffee but I don't drink coffee so he paid for my hot chocolate. We talked casually and I noticed he was driving a police car. Immediately I assumed he would be like every cop I know: totally full of himself. Isn't it great when life proves you wrong?
We dated for a year before he asked me to move in with him which was terrifying. I wasn't sure I would ever start packing. Living on my own, not having to answer to any one for my whereabouts or my checking account balance had become very comfortable. It wasn't until two weeks before my lease expired that I even considered packing. I packed very slowly.
Four years later, Valentine's Day weekend, we went to his parent's house to pick up the gifts his parents had put together for the kids. We had agreed that we weren't doing anything for each other since Valentine's day was on a weekday. As the kids were opening their candy bags he knelt beside me and casually handed me a necklace box wrapped in gold paper. I didn't understand. He told me it was no big deal, just a little something he picked up. I slowly started unwrapping it because I believed him. It was a big deal. It was 2-carats of a big deal.
The difference between then and now is that this time I know it's right. I have no doubts. Yes, we fight but we get over it. If I could pass on one piece of advice to women everywhere it's just that - get over it because it's not worth hanging on to. There is no such thing as perfect love. Just a love that is perfect for you.
Champion your partner every chance you get. Be their biggest fan. If you aren't genuinely proud of their accomplishments, it's probably not meant to be. When one of you is having a difficult day, the other one is there to be supportive. It's a balance. Don't ever sacrifice yourself or your beliefs to be in a relationship. The moment you lose yourself is the moment it will spiral out of control.
Although it may not be the popular vote, you have to be physically attracted to the person you're with. When your significant other is the "hottest" person in the room, it changes things dramatically. I don't have the inclination to look at other men because of that very attraction.
I can't imagine my life without him and I wouldn't want to. So why bother? Use your energy finding reasons to stay together, not to break up. I know I'm with the right person because I can look into his eyes and know that even in my most vulnerable state he will protect me.
There are so many reasons I love him that it would be absurd to try to put it into one place all at one time. Nevertheless, I am going to try.
I love you because I can see myself in you.I see the person I want to be. I see today, tomorrow and all of the possibilities in between. I love you because with you I can make mistakes and know that you will be there to remind me that things will turn out just fine with a smile, a hug and your endless devotion. :) I love you because you have learned to tip-toe in the mornings, laugh with your entirety, apologize when it's warranted and hold me when you see me fall to my knees. I love you because you make glow-meals knowing that one day we both may actually glow and you eat them anyway. I love you because you put new tires on my car. I love you because you can fix a computer, tame a dog and melt my butter all by just a glance. I love you because you are strong and tender, you keep me safe and warm, you touch my mind, my body and my soul all at the same time. I love you because you're not afraid to ask my advice or admit your mistakes. I love you because you've taught me so much about myself, life, love and living. I love you because I can't imagine waking up without you next to me, or going to sleep without you there. I love you because this is an amazing adventure with you every day, good times and bad and I don't want to live this with anyone but you. I love you.
Hope this helps.