Fifty-two dreams left on my list of 101 Dreams Come True I woke this morning thinking that I might be wrong in some of my thinking. The more I pondered, the more I began to wonder if as a society we have made serious mistakes in our thought process that leads to painful lives. You will have to bear with me, as these thoughts are coming from the recesses of my brain that have been smushed into submission by learned theories.
Yesterday, I received an email from a man with whom I'd shared a relationship for the last year. At times, he could be supportive of the website and my decision to pursue my dreams. At other times, he was angry, grumpy and distant when I spoke about actually pursuing anything that didn't include him. In the end he tried to change and was rather supportive when I went to Europe this last time, but while I traveled I realized how happy I was on my own. Upon returning, I didn't wish to be with him anymore. I'd spent eight months crying and no matter how much he said he changed I didn't wish to be hurt any longer or to fight to be who I am in a relationship. I didn't do this casually, I took time to think, but when I told him my choice his response was an email that went straight back to the fights that had made me cry for eight months.
When I received this man's email, I had to ask why I put up with hurting for so long. There was good in the relationship, and in some ways I was manipulated into falling into the beauty in a repeating pattern of good and then hurt. If I'm honest with myself, I stayed because in some ways I believed that by being this outgoing, independent woman, I was unlovable. There is still a certain idea of who a woman should be in a relationship and though I tried to fight the stigma I'm told on a regular basis that who I am is wrong.
Through the ups and downs of the last year I feared that I would end up alone; another reason I stayed. Yet, once I left, my happiness returned. I remembered who I was without the constant weight of the manipulation. In leaving, in feeling happy within myself, I woke up and wondered how I could've ever thought it was okay to be treated the way he treated me. Why couldn't my brain twist to this conclusions so much sooner?
I'm beginning to wonder how many other ideas keep me from living an even more incredible life. Maybe fighting to make something right isn't the way it's supposed to be. We are an intense society with our roots in hard work, determination, and struggle. I don't believe in complacency. I know I won't reach my goals without going after them, but maybe life is supposed to be about flowing instead of battling. And when something doesn't feel right, when it's an extreme struggle, maybe that's a sign that it's the wrong road.