Happy Monday, guys.
I hope your weekends were fun!
I spent the majority of mine feeling moody, and when I say moody, I mean ‘shedding-tears-and-screaming-out-of-nowhere‘ insane. That’s what I felt like doing, anyways.
After thinking about it for a while, I realized that my bad mood was more than likely being caused by the Sun entering Cancer, the sign of moodiness and feels. I guess it could’ve been my hormones or something but, come on — that doesn’t make much sense now, does it? Let’s not get carried away, guys. I digress.
Whatever it was, it got to the point where not even I could stand myself — and this was unfortunate, because I was forced to be with myself and my thoughts all weekend long. You know who also had to be with me all weekend? My partner. (A belated sorry to you! You did, however, happen to teach me a very valuable lesson, so thank you! Some good came out of this!)
For a little context, my partner and I do not live together. We have sort of gotten into this unspoken agreement where we stay with each other Friday night-Monday morning and spend our weekdays apart so we can each be productive, see friends, do our thing, etc. The fact I felt “less-than-optimal” on a weekend then, our “us-time“, was kinda lame in my eyes.
There I was; the big, black, passive aggressive cloud in the room who was ruining the weekend for us. I cared. I cared because if it had been him who was moody, which has happened before, I would’ve gotten upset, which has happened before. “We only see each other on the weekends and you’re feeling blah!? How DARE you?!” – Me.
This time however, when it was I who was not feeling well, my partner opted for holding space for me. How? I was hittin’ him with snide remarks left and right, reveling in my passive aggressiveness, and being a complete and total bitch. Meanwhile, he was asking if I was okay, if he could help in any way, and hugging me. I said no, so he just gave me my space and continued doing his thing. “I told you to leave me alone and you actually DID?!” – Also me.
HOW? Like, “Hellooooo, I am dying over here and yet there you are, not making my emotions about yourself, giving me my space (and also taking some for yourself), and going on about your day.” Whoa. So being totally rational and grounded while your partner’s having an emotional breakdown can actually be done?
This sparked my interest. I was angry and frustrated, but I was still observing his behavior. I was watching him! Like a psycho.
At one point, when it got too overbearing, he said: “Okay, I’m going for a drive and I’d like to go alone please because you’re being annoying”. Then he left. Ouch. But, wait a minute — “…A BOUNDARY. He just set up a boundary! How!?”.
He came back a bit later, and I was in bed reading a book. He said, “Hi babe, here”, and gave me a chocolate bar he’d bought while out on his drive. Dark chocolate, because it’s my favorite. Swoon, I see you & I am impressed.
He then got in the shower, sat next to me in bed, put his headphones on and started watching a show on his laptop, placing a single hand on my knee. Not a single word, completely unfazed, and peaceful. It was his way of saying, “I am here, I am present, but I am not going to engage”. And just like magic, poof. My anger eventually passed.
Amazing. The story would have probably ended differently if he had chosen to engage with my emotions; if he had tried to ‘fix’ me, for himself, just because it was the weekend. I’m guilty of doing this.
Instead of letting my emotions trigger him into fear, he chose to lean in to love. Whenever the roles are reversed, I let his emotions trigger me: “How can he feel upset if we’re together?” Making his emotions about myself, and feeling upset because he is, is a sign of codependency. Would you look at that — something I need to work on!
He also held space for my emotions even though he didn’t agree with them, and helped in my grounding by distancing himself from the situation (putting his headphones on & watching his own show) while still remaining present (sitting next to me, physical touch). He didn’t call me crazy or dramatic, but instead chose to not make himself a victim of my internal realm.
What a huge eye-opener and beautiful lesson for me to learn.
Our partners can be our greatest teachers if we let them. The people who might have the most medicine for us are the ones that scare or trigger us the most, because they mirror our insecurities and our shortcomings flawlessly. In my case, my partner serves this purpose. I am sure he learns from me as well.
The best relationships are not defined by grand gestures, exotic trips, or expensive meals. The best relationships are the ones that are done consciously. We shouldn’t be looking for “The One”, that’s too much pressure to put on someone. We should be looking for a partner whom we can evolve with. This is why it’s so important to know and own our baggage — because when a partner triggers it, and they will, we will realize this and choose to grow from it.
In this case, my partner catalyzed my healing just by remaining grounded in his truth. He didn’t do anything — didn’t ask me to fix my emotions, didn’t ask me to be less dramatic or kinder, didn’t hold me all day long in his arms. He let me be, and he let himself be. I wasn’t ready for that. Bravo. Lesson learned.
Until next time.