So, this post is a bit of a therapy exercise. Sara suggested I reframe a recent event we discussed in a way that made me feel empowered. So here goes:
I met a man recently who appeared to have many of the traits that I was looking for. We had some really terrific dates, and it looked like we might have a lot of potential.
However, I realized fairly quickly that he did not seem to be ready for the kind of relationship I was looking for. He was developing feelings for me, he said, but felt he owed it to himself to see what else was out there. I kindly told him that I had no interest in doing the “pick-me” dance. I suggested that if he felt it was essential to his happiness to explore his options, he was very free to do so, but I declined to be one of those options. We wished each other the best.
It was not how I had pictured things working out; however, I felt proud of myself for staying calm and maintaining my dignity. I remembered that this was not about me, but about his own history and baggage. I chose to be on my own and be open to meeting someone who wanted me and ONLY me. I knew I was worthy of that, and acted accordingly. I am so, so proud of that.
Um, that actually felt really amazing. I think I might make this a regular thing and maybe rewrite some other stories from my past.
If you’re interested in doing the same, it’s pretty easy. I found a good article on “How to Rewrite Your Life Story” that can help you get started. It suggests, “There are two types of interpretations—those that empower you and those that disempower you. … Rewriting your story requires that you take an honest look at where you blame other people or circumstances for the way your life has turned out. … If you find that you’re harboring resentment, ask yourself what you learned from that person or situation. Frame the story in the positive. Think about what gifts have manifested in your life as a result of you not having had your needs or wants met at that time.”
In my story, instead of seeing myself as being hurt by someone who wasn’t ready for the same thing I was, I focused on what I had enjoyed about our time together, my reaction and how good it felt to make a decision that reinforced what I have been working on in therapy regarding loving myself and enforcing healthy boundaries.