Hindsight Observatory

We all know hindsight is 20/20, but I’d like to give my foresight for “next time” a little Lasik surgery. Since I’ve been sporting my singleton status for a while now, I’ve had some time to work on both. I’ve learned valuable lessons on the outskirts. When someone shows you who they are, listen. Learn when to walk away. Pick your battles. And possibly? Spend a little more time observing your relationship with a clear set of eyes.

I recently spent a whole lotta time on a plane. On my flight back from the MIA, I sat next to a married couple. They seemed pleasant. Neither “forgot” anything in their bag as soon as they sat down, both stowed their bags under their respective seats (more importantly NOT under my foot area), and everything was kept in an upright/locked position until the bing.

As we settled into the flight, I observed. If it weren’t for people watching, my life would have a LOT less meaning. Then they began to conversate* and I did my best impression of reading a magazine. All of a sudden I heard her say, “No, really. Tell me what ELSE bothers you about me.” I’m not any kind of relationship expert, but I can tell you THAT conversation wasn’t going anywhere productive.

From my I’m-not-emotionally-involved-so-I-get-to-the-play-the-impartial-third-party stoop, there was a simple solution. You’re on vacation or at the very least, you’ve been given 4 hours of uninterrupted quiet time. Take a deep breath. Think about the situation from the for a bit and determine whether this fight you so desperately need to have, right this moment, is really necessary. Then I found myself thinking, if people spent a little more time observing the situation and a little less time jumping right into epic conversations, wouldn’t we be better off in relationships? I’m great at offering this advice to someone else. I strive to do this in every friendship. But, give me a boyfriend and I pretty much kick that all too mature stoop right out from under me.

I’m ALL for talking about your issues, but you can’t take what you say back. That fight you can’t wait to have? That jab you can’t wait to take? You can’t remove any of the hurt you cause. And you certainly can’t be proud of the way you acted if you take it too far.

What I can promise you from experience is this…

There will be a day, probably not long from now, when the two of you are no longer together. No matter how hot, smart, funny, great you think you are…someone WILL eventually tire of your shiz if you’re a constant (insert derogatory word of choice here). You’ll take this moment to “stand up for yourself” and you’ll rationalize that he KNOWS the desk is “your” area, so why the H does he throw his t-shirts all over your perfect writing desk? Then a few months later you’ll sit down in a quiet apartment to write on your immaculately clean desk and you’ll realize how empty that “perfect” desk looks without his ratty t-shirts. And as you sell the desk, you’ll wish you’d just shut up about your ONE place to write. Because maybe, just maybe? In hindsight? Sitting next to him, snuggled up in your bed WAS the best and most inspiring place to write anyway.

Now, I wasn’t in a healthy relationship. The “learn when to walk away” bit was the important lesson there. But, I’d like to take what I’ve learned in past relationships and as a singleton and make my foresight match my hindsight for once. Maybe THAT is the whole point of growing up? Growing better.

*I make up my own words, a lot. It would be a good idea to embrace it :).


Anonymous said...

Wow, good blog. I really like this thought and I will embrace it and cuddle with it and call it Squishy. I have one note to add to this which is you should not have those conversations on your cell phone in front of people (at a store, bank, work). It can wait tell you get home and most of the time when you talk in person it's much better. I have never been one to argue and my past relationships have been really nice because of this. I don't let the little things get to me. Also, I have noticed when you respect each other it goes a long way. Just my .02c

Graygrrrl said...

I love inappropriate conversations in public places (except in the bathroom. Seriously, get off the phone. No one wants to listen to you go #2).
If only we could remember the lessons learned in hindsight in the present. I'm pretty sure that would make you a genius or some sort of super hero!

PS- thanks for blogging girl! Always love to read what you have to say

shine said...

I have a whole "our team" thing to say about this, but I don't want to type it out. I'm lazy.

Buy me some coffee and I'll tell you my secrets. Not that you don't know them already.

Seriously, though, this is a great blog. I love that you started your own blog and that you're actually writing. Because the things you have to say? Are things we can all relate to. Keep it up, woman (or I'll kick you in your ass).

Gofahne said...

Jet - I love that you called this squishy :). Also, the reason you never fight in relationships is because you fight with everyone at bars protecting us! :)

Bevin - I know! That's my goal. Learn from my experiences. Amazing concept!
PS to your PS - thank you SO much!

Shine - Consider the coffee bought-en! And I'm too afraid of all of my friends not to keep this up anyway :)

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