Who isn’t constantly challenged by personal relationships? Some days everything flows along like a babbling brook, whereas others days are like navigating white water rapids. Wouldn’t it be nice if the flow of energy was more consistent? Importantly what can we do to make that happen? I know from the work I’ve done on myself in the past, it starts with me first. We have to be able to balance our needs with those of others without compromising what’s important.
I’ve lived a very different life to most. I have been incredibly privileged with opportunities, travelled broadly for work and play, had long term relationships with incredible people, always fended for myself and worked for every penny I have, needless to say I’m extremely independent. (I wonder where I got that from Mum?) …so, I’m a challenge to be with!
That’s gives me incredible freedom to choose my own path, celebrate wins, make mistakes, and importantly be the creator of the life I am meant to live. How lucky and grateful I am.
I’m always reminded though of how unlike my life is to many of my friends and colleagues who I’m surround by, who have created their own family enjoying parenthood and the joys and sense of fulfilment that goes along with that. That’s a life I’ll never know, but one things for sure, there is up’s and down’s on both sides.
I’ve spoken to women who are happily single, happily married and happily divorced. We all go through interesting stages in life but as you get older, I think it becomes even more thought-provoking because we are in the process of changing both emotionally and physically, not to mention the obvious changes of maturing kids needing you less. That in itself can have an enormous impact on your equilibrium.
So here we all are, trying to find the continuum of happiness we so dearly desire. Is it too much to want the perfect relationship? Do they actually exist? How hard do you want to work to sustain what you have and when do you pull the mirror to your face and realise it’s time to move on?
I was sitting talking to a girlfriend the other day and we spoke openly about what’s important in our lives, where we would compromise in a relationship and what we would never give up. Jen and I are very different, she’s got three adult kids, divorced but now happy in a loving relationship and over the moon to be welcoming in her first grandchild later this year. She has always been such a great mum and to see her excited about being a grandmother is a gorgeous thing. She is a giver first and foremost and her kids are everything.
Here I am, also divorced, in a loving relationship, at a stage where I’m building a business, treasure my weekends to do the things I love playing golf with great mates, entertaining at home, weekends away and spending time with my fluffball Billie. But both of us are very clear on what we want for the future and when you get to our age, I think we’ve earned the right to make it happen.
At the end of the day, what I have learnt is that whomever you are with, you have to make sure you have shared values, are aligned with similar goals for the future, never lose your sense of ‘self’ in a relationship, and have the ability to appreciate we are all human, doing our best and no-one is perfect.