This entry began on a plane as I was listening to a Missy Higgins album. The very first song from the album 'On a Clear Night' was called 'Where I Stood' and the line that jumped out at me was "coz I don't know who I am, who I am without you. All I know is that I should "
I have been there before. After 18 years in one relationship ( from aged 18 to 36) I woke up one day when it was over, looked in the mirror and realised that I had no idea who I was anymore. The clothes I wore, the way I did my hair, even the food I ate were all bi-products of me compromising so much of my natural evolution in a desperate attempt to stay compatible with the person I made vows to fresh out of childhood. The reality of that is had we not made those " to death do us part " vows we would have both outgrown that relationship in another 2 or years or so.
Again I thank him again for having the courage to set us both free because that was the event that led to me going in search of my true self.
My initial email to Jason whom I had been friends with since aged 7 but had no contact with for those 18 years went like this :
"Hi Jason do you remember me? And if you do remember me do you remember what I used to be like because the events of the last 18 have changed me so much I don't know who I am anymore"
Luckily he did remember me!! Not only that but he was in a similar boat to me so we set about helping each other find our " old selves" and have then gone on to support each other as we keep evolving in a manner that stays true to ourselves.
Living within ownership love we run the risk of compromising so much of our natural evolution in a desperate attempt to stay compatible with the person we have vowed to stay connected to. I've basically repeated this sentence because I feel it is the key to my message in this entry.
So what is our "natural evolution" ?
Life Is full of choices, from little things like what we are going to eat and wear, what our hobbies and interests are , to major things like where we want to work and live.
Some of us change our mind a lot!! My "Facebook memories" remind me that this time last year I was joined at the hip to my sewing machine, the year before it was my guitar and this year I'm busy writing online about polyamory and also progressive Christianity. If we are still alive we are growing and changing.
Natural evolution is unencumbered growth.
We tend to chain ourselves to a lot of "have to" and much of this is in an attempt to stay on the same page as the person with which we have joined ourself. We forget that the person we are with was attracted to us because of our uniqueness and we strive to either stay the same as we were or the same as they are. This can cause us to make seemingly "little" sacrifices which have the danger of adding up to a complete loss of self outside of that relationship.
Now of course we do have some responsibilities, especially when we have young children. I for one have an adult non verbal son with significant autism who lives with me full time so I am not just free to take off around Australia like I would love to. But within those responsibilities we still have choices and we owe it to ourselves to live a life in keeping with most authentic self we are at the time.
Assuming from this point on that this rings true for you I have the following advice:
For those of you who are single try to avoid trapping yourselves into relationships that stunt your ability to be your true self. This might sound obvious but it never ceases to amaze me when a friend decides that some guy is " the one" even though he cannot live with "xyz" about her and she rationalises to herself that it's all ok and she will just change for him.
For those of you in relationships already it is entirely possible to evolve your relationship, hence this blog being called "The Relationships Evolution".
All of these concepts are essential if you want to evolve your relationship to polyamory but also a much happier way to live in monogamy if that is what you choose.