Friday, 21 November 2014

Otherwise known as the things that forced me to grow up

In life we keep coming back to those people whose presence in our lives left a footprint or two. We may not realise it at the time, but in becoming a part of our lives, they were teaching us something. These are some of those lessons.

On identifying true colours

But there was something about him. He was the guy that everybody wants to be near. I was somewhat sure I could not keep up. He was intoxicatingly attractive in his own way. We dived into this thing together. I saw similarities between us and this created an artificial sense of security on my part. I ignored the rest.

I am sure there were good moments, but these quickly faded. I don’t visit them very often and they dissolve into the background. In the foreground was the after math of the break up. I was no stranger to break-ups. A person’s character is most obvious in how they deal with a break up, almost similar to how they manage to find a parking spot when there was none to be found. Or if they decide to tag along on one of your shopping trips. He was used to shortcuts; it was if he was entitled to such convenience. This preference for shortcuts was one of the many red flags that I ignored and came back to punch me straight on my face, nearly broke my nose and left me bleeding.

On knowing oneself

He was destined to save the world – literally. He was no superhero, but he might as well have been one. I don’t think he goes around with cape, but if he does, it would be a green one. This was a man who singlehandedly goes for what he wanted, and it stung that I wasn’t one of those things.

Overtime, it became clear that it was the best thing that ever happened to us. What he wanted was and still is everything I didn’t want. I didn’t know myself then, and it scares me that he knew me so well. We made this crazy pact to get together if we were still single at a certain time. I wasn’t single and neither was he. It’s all good, my friend. Everything is like they are supposed to be. He is still saving the world, and is bloody good at that.

On physical attraction

He had a certain aura about him, primarily because he was so bloody handsome. Those eyes, those eyebrows and gawd, he was easily the tallest person that I had ever dated. It was pure, primal attraction on my part; and as I subsequently found out, physical attraction was an untamable beast. Therefore it was rather ironic that physically, our compatibility never tested, let alone eventuated. It was, however, the source of many terrible decisions that could have and should have been avoided.

Looking back, I am fascinated to no end – what is it about physical attraction that made you willing to overlook everything else? Like that one time when he told you that he was (ironically) physically intimate with another girl, which ‘didn’t mean anything’. Physical attraction cannot and should not be the single determining factor in this thing called compatibility in a relationship. Its importance is often overrated, although it doesn't mean that its subscribers are shallow. What it does mean is that their language of love involves physical touch.

On bragging

He was (and still is) the son of a rich man who flaunted his wealth on a regular basis, starting with his choice of car, which was his thanks to his parents' generosity. I used to think that this is a function of the rather shallow environment that he grew up in, or rather, operated in, but some years later, I discovered that old habits die hard. We were in a club, amongst all places, with some friends, some of whom he had just met, and there he was, bragging about his latest conquests - cars, houses and other equally materialistic pursuits.

What he didn't know (and may never find out in this life time) was the number of people who were repulsed by his actions. Instead of talking to people and getting to know them better, he was busy establishing status - that somehow, because of his acquisition of the things that displays success (which combined together screams success), he was better than the rest of us. On the other hand, I couldn't care less. So what you're rich? That doesn't (and didn't) impress me much.

On that note, so what you're educated? That doesn't impress me much.

What impresses me? Your character, your attitude, how you treat other people (with kindness), how you treat yourself (with compassion), and that you act with integrity, uphold honesty and genuinely embrace vulnerability.

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