Taking a risk for a new relationship? Can’t move on from the past? Or did you walk outside and forget your pants?
As usual when I have too many ideas floating around in my head for an article I asked a friend for an idea. Sometimes I just see too many trees and I can’t find the forest to pick a topic myself. My friend responded in a 50 word text where she outlined a 7 book series broadly titled Men, Get Your Shit Together. I was quite impressed how much she packed into those 50 words. Yet this sort of text works for me, and having found the forest I can now pick the tree I’m interested in. Towards the end of this text my friend wrote “Every relationship is a risk … For the woman too. No risk, no gain.” Of course I love coming across mixed up clichés and relationship risk is a worthy topic to write about, so without further introductions.
“When you shoot for the stars it’s hard to breathe in space.”
You know that feeling don’t you guys. That dread right in the pit of your diaphragm, your brains have just leaked out your ears, your throat is dry and you feel exactly like you are in one of those childhood dreams standing naked in front of a class room. You went ahead and did something stupid, Didn’t you? You placed this poor girl up in the heavens, a star a billion light years away and then launched yourself into space. Well of course you can’t breathe; she didn’t ask you to put her all the way out there and now you’re probably going to die alone, voiceless from lack of social graces. That girl you are after isn’t a star; she’s just a girl hoping some guy she likes will talk to her. So take the risk, show her you’re interested and talk to her. You have 100 conversations a day; you are more than capable of doing this. The only risk is she will say no or be dis-interested. How would that be different then if you had chosen not to walk into that club tonight and had never met her?
“When carrying the weight of the world what are you going to do with all that dirt?”
If you find yourself thinking “All Women …” Stop right there. Do you see what you just did? You picked up an entire world full of women and put it into your back pack. Yup, heaviest damn baggage you have ever had to carry. Do you know what happens when you laden yourself with that much soil. The only women you will catch have purses just as heavy; the rest will run right the hell away. I get it, you’ve been burnt, heartbroken, cheated on, abused, nagged and whatever else happened in the past. Yes some women are like that, and yes some men are assholes, it happens. Do you know what healthy people do when they pick up that much soil? The shovel it out and plant a garden, yup the bullshit from the past makes a good fertilizer if you take the time to work with it. Healthy people grow from their past. They learn to see the motives behind behaviors of others so they don’t fall for it again, they take the time to work out what role they themselves played in the mess, they plant the seeds of self-growth so when it comes time to start dating again they have this mighty fine garden to attract the right lovers.
“Geronimooooo!!! Wait, where’s the bungee cord?”
Did you forget something? Did you find yourself falling heart over brains in love? Have you rearranged your life to accommodate someone else, ditched all your friends and made life altering decisions? Have a thought for the rest of us, we’ll have to clean up the splattered mess you’ll end up making in three months’ time. It is one thing to take a risk but it’s another thing entirely to forget to use your head. Your heart should guide your passions but the head should rule with cold iron reason. When you give up huge chunks of your life you are sacrificing things which had meaning to you. Are you going to be worth dating if you give those things up? When you don’t spend time apart you lose the side of you that has adventures, will you be as interesting if you no longer have adventures? When you alter your life for someone else will they still love the altered life? When it ends in a splat, and if you change enough it will assuredly end, some of those things you gave up you may never be able to get back, some alterations will be permanent and some friends won’t want to be there to clean up the mess. It’s one thing to take a risk but take the time to check the bungee cord is fastened. Some journeys may only be one way.
“With Great Power Comes Great Shocks”
We are the sum total of a billion years of evolution, we have been given the incredible power of rational thought and a drive powered by primal passions. They are right when they say love can move mountains and we have been given the brains to build the machinery to do it too. Yet it is our own power which shoots us down from the heavens, burdens us with the mistakes of relationships past or makes us forget to check our tethers. When we can’t approach a girl we are attracted too it’s a simple electrical charge, less than the charge from a battery, which stops us taking a risk. When we are afraid of what will happen in the future it is nothing more than a memory, a recollection igniting a fear to prevent us from taking a risk. It’s a risk we should take, the risk that the future could be different because you learnt from your past, that you aren’t doomed to repeat it. Yet we have also been given the power to evaluate our risks, to determine if they are worth taking and mitigate them when we can. Jumping from a cliff might be certain death yet a bungee cord turns it into an adventure, a tale worth telling of fears battled and conquered. We have the power of love and it is worth riding that lightning bolt, just don’t forget to ground yourself.
Photo: Getty Images
*A minstrel was a medieval European bard who performed songs whose lyrics told stories of distant places or of existing or imaginary historical events. Although minstrels created their own tales, often they would memorize and embellish the works of others. The Modern Minstrel observes the world around him and shares it with us as lyrical story. This series was inspired by Luke Davis, whose eye for story and ear for lyrical prose are featured here.
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