“Gratitude is the memory of the heart” — Jean Baptiste Massieu
(Conclusion – 2 parts)
(Continued from last week’s issue…)
LET’S do a reality check. So okay, your partner is the consummate slob and you have to pick up after him. He thinks he has a maid living with him for free. He has this maddening habit of not putting the toothpaste cap back on. That’s easy. Get one with a cap that snaps back on. The point is to find a way to work around an annoyance or when all else fails, accept the tiny irritations.
With time and patience, things get easier. As you get older and hopefully, wiser, your eyes dim and your hearing goes for a reason. You become less critical as you see the bigger picture more clearly and the end game is within sight. You become aware of your own mortality.
The point is that you can choose to look through the lens of kindness and forgiveness and instead see if he still has those itty bitty, wonderful things about him that attracted you to him in the first place. His sense of humor maybe or the way he still makes you laugh…
Love is a two-way street. Note how you behave towards him. How do you look to him? Do you take the time and the effort to look va-va-voom and give him that look that can make his heartbeat race just a tad? Or did you let yourself go, letting gravity and the ravages of time run rough shod over your physical appearance? Put up a fight. There’s help out there. Or do you nag him to death for every little thing? Do you make him feel small with your smartass barbs? Or does he feel he can soar like an eagle when you are around him?
Don’t buy into the modern concept of the throwaway or trade-up society that seems to imply you can change partners every five years or so. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. It may work for cars and appliances but falls flat for human relationships. Fix what can yet be fixed. Nurture what can grow into something beautiful. Eat humble pie, if you have to. There is no shame if you truly love. Ask a Higher Power to help you keep things whole.
When you value your partner and are mindful of him or her, it shows that you are grateful for his part in your life and that you are interested in going the distance and making the relationship work maybe even till life beyond death.
Taking your husband, wife or partner for granted is the biggest cause of so many divorces these days. If alarming numbers are to be believed, half the population already live in Splitsville.
There is a disproportionate number of single moms and single dads worldwide struggling with severely diminished finances and dealing with court-appointed visits. They juggle schedules, shuttling children in two locations and in cases of bitter, acrimonious divorces, compete for their children’s affections while complicating things further by starting up new relationships. All these are piled on top of broken, disappointed, cynical lives.
They are left to deal with what I call the BIG D’s – the doldrums of doubt, darkness, disease, depression, desperation, dejection, disappointment, discouragement and disillusionment. You just wish you can DELETE all these ugly D’s from your life. Some go to the deep end. Sadly, tragically some of these cases end in death.
Love has died. Nothing matters. Yet love, according to the “Desiderata” is as perennial as the grass. While there is life, hope springs eternal. Those who are not put off by a disastrous relationship think that the “right one” is just around the corner. Perhaps. But if they do not learn from their previous mistakes, they are doomed to repeat them. There’s that D again. They will cycle in and out of one disastrous relationship after the other.
Single parenthood is no cakewalk in most cases. Ask around. Do not believe the distortion of truth in movies spun by Hollywood or this trend of celebrities adopting babies and the media glamorizing the lives of single parents. That is one tall tale of an ego on overdrive. There is no romantic or comedic element in going it alone. Single parenthood is more like the Theater of the Absurd. The honest truth: there is little glamour or fun in single parenthood – in far too many cases, just an endless, harrowing tale of one struggle after the next.
There are exceptions of course. Unless you made a foolish or tragic fatal choice or fate played a dirty trick on you and you ended up meeting and marrying the partner from hell. He or she could be a sociopath, a psychopath, a criminal, a user, a liar, a pervert, a druggie, a murderer, a serial philanderer or just unfit to live in this planet with another human being.
Perhaps, the best way to happiness would be to love, appreciate and say “thank you” to the one you’re with every single day of your life together. And while you’re at it, blow a kiss to the heavens for making you a winner in the love lottery stakes sending you someone you love or can learn to love AND (THE BLESSING of all blessings) who loves you back!
Love is not a 50-50 proposition. It’s not even giving 110% of yourself to the other. It sounds sentimental, sappy and old fashioned but whether you like it or not, it is giving of yourself without counting the cost. It is the pure, intrinsic nature of life’s greatest mystery – LOVE.
Those couples buried six feet deep, side by side at Forest Lawn probably understood what love and devotion meant. Their souls may have fused. Their hearts in the life beyond beat as one. That is one story you can believe in.
(Or if you’re in for a laugh and have a sly, dry, wicked sense of humor, you might say those savvy couples probably got a twofer from the cemetery plot sales rep! LOL
How to find THE ONE if you’re on the hunt? Or how can you make THE ONE realize that you’re THE ONE for him or her without beating him or her over the head?
That is one story for yet another day.
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Nota Bene: Monette Adeva Maglaya is SVP of Asian Journal Publications, Inc. To send comments, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org