Friends forever… ’til death do us part…or so they say.
Bonds that stand the test of time are beautiful, rare and deserve to be celebrated.
But not every relationship falls into this category. In fact, we’d save the world a lot of suffering if we all could just agree to agree that not all relationships –even extremely loving and precious ones- are meant to last.
Because…What happens if it no longer feels good to have a relationship with a person we still deeply love?
-Maybe you’ve made a transformative change in your life and the other no longer matches where you are, energetically, spiritually, geographically.
-Maybe they’ve changed, and you’ve found their new changes do not resonate with your values, or how you want to feel in this relationship.
-You’ve REALLY, really tried to make it work… adjusted yourself, tried to make it okay…only to realize, over and over again, that you are trying convince yourself all is okay when it isn’t and hasn’t been for a long while.
One of the immutable realities of being human is people change, and not always at the same rate. Some relationships are lifelong. Others are not.
That’s where seeing all of our connections with one another as a GIFT (versus something we can control at will), is helpful. Sometimes connections arrive in our life very easily. Other times, it feels like we are in a perpetual barren winter. With anyone, we cannot control how long we are together, the nature of our bond. Or the duration and seasonality of our winters of solitude, or bountiful springtimes of connection.
This is the mysterious Nature of relationship. We learn to trust there is a hidden seasonality to our relationships, an intelligent rhythm underneath the ebb and flow. We choose to love others as we love a flower, for as long as it holds vitality. We learn to honor the cycles of any particular connection, and to listen to Truth about it carried on the winds of our heart. We learn when to love, and when to let go.
And still. Why are we still having difficulty letting go?
Guilt. One of us doesn’t feel good but the other of us is seemingly okay. They may insist they are happy, there is no problem (whether or not this is True is a whole other subject!). Then begins the guilt. We don’t want to abandon, hurt, disappoint or be their source of suffering – all normal and natural reactions…but it is important to recognize when guilt is rapidly becoming the main driver of our connection.
Cultural programming. The conditioning around sticking with another person through thick and thin, is real. It’s imperative to recognize when this is damaging your ability to sit in your Truth. In a culture where loyalty, monogamy and self-sacrifice are rewarded norms, leaving a relationship makes us a “bad person” “selfish”. But maintaining a relationship only out of loyalty is truly not good for either of you. It does not model integrity or authenticity. If you think it is, do you want to be known as a Martyr in this lifetime or for living your Authentic Truth?
Good times. How can good times keep us from moving forward? Joy makes a relationship last! It is cosmic sticky glue. Remembering joy, however, is not the same as living it in the Now. When we get attached to what was, not what is, we are not living in the present. Questions I consistently ask myself: Is this relationship joyful, on the whole? Does it feel good to me? If it is consistently bringing me more distress than joy, it’s a sign that it may not be meant to continue. Plus, the question alerts me to boundaries I may not be honoring in myself.
Fear of being alone. It’s understandable, especially during this pandemic time. Our human condition is interdependence and connection, at core. Honestly, we would all be in very dire straits without one another. From the sidewalk we walk on to the food we eat and the electricity we use… none of this is made possible without others. Reflecting, on a daily basis, on the many lives and beings that invisibly and meaningfully contribute (and have contributed) to mine helps me to feel a richer sense of inter-relationship to All of Life. And, by the Grace of the Law of Attraction, the energy of feeling connected tends to open up more opportunities for creative experiences of authentic connection.
A note about family relationships: There is a popular belief that we incarnate with our family for a reason. While essentially true, self-sacrifice, guilt, obligation, and learning to transcend abuse so we can stay in relationships with people we don’t like are NOT Spiritual reasons nor apart of the Divine Plan (perhaps this was once true; it is not any longer). There is only one reason to stay in ANY relationship: it feels Right, in your Soul, to be in relationship with them. This Rightness of Soul reflects your true and heartfelt desire to be here, and is not an Ego construct.
This Halloween marks the six-year anniversary of my book Karmic Dates and Momentary Mates: The Astrology of the Fifth House — my most popular book yet (at least, according to Amazon). Whether you need support and permission to outgrow a relationship, to release shame about past relationships, release yourself from the burden of carrying the cultural myth of All Relationships Are Supposed to Last Forever, or you’d like to gain greater self-understanding about your own relationship patterns…it is a wonderful resource.
Even though we are all now living in a remarkably different, more socially isolated, world… you are still growing, changing. Know this: The most important relationship you will ever have is the one you have with YOU (and if you need support in this, you may enjoy my magical-soul mojo-filled book A Love Alchemist’s Notebook– also available as a pleasurable audiobook. Yes, I read to you!) . As you allow yourself to evolve and gently unravel old ways of being, trust that the right relationships will resonate with this expanded and empowered YOU. ‘Tis the season!