I’ve learned how to love a man by watching wise women. Mostly, they’ve learned the way we all do—life. Some of the best relationships I’ve seen are third-rounders by try-harders determined to get it right. Others are first-timers who acknowledge luck, serendipity, and stick-to-it-ness.
My best friend learned by leaving and slamming the door for a damn good reason on the only man she ever loved—then, opening it to find him and love again.
Women getting love right, I salute you. Women who found your ideal mate, no matter how many frogs you fell for along the way, well done. Those of you stacking up the decades and gluing them together with joy, hard work, and well-earned connection, impressive.
From you women warriors, my family and friends, I’ve learned we each choose what works for us, what we’re attracted to, and what we cannot or will not tolerate. For me, it’s nonchalance that I absolutely refuse to endure. It’s connection and intimacy that invite me stay beyond reason.
I’ve learned one can see an upsetting truth about one’s mate and set it aside for the sake of the relationship. That doesn’t mean you’re stupid (or smart), just your eyes are open.
I’ve learned you have to want to stay. You have to want to make it work. Yet, you cannot manufacture those desires any more than you can make magically appear the one with whom you’ll feel that way.
But, when you do, as long as he also wants to stay and make it work, anything can be a source of growth.
Wise women, you’ve shown me marriage is a balance between working on it and letting go, being true to yourself by speaking your mind—even when you may look like a bitch or a baby—and respecting with compassion that your mate comes from a different perspective.
Watching you gals, I’ve seen the variety of relationships and marriages and how each pair is an entity of its own personality, rules and character. Ideally, whatever the shape, it represents a synergy in which two individuals become better because of the presence of the other.
You’ve kept me believing in serendipity, and yes, even in my fifties, there’s someone wonderful for me. I shall do my best to apply lessons learned. I’m no longer a girl. I’m a woman, a warrior for love.