Second Chances

This may or may not be aptly named, you can decide that for yourself.

It’s common knowledge that we don’t often get a chance to re-do certain situations in life. With relationships, I don’t know that we ever get a real chance to redo anything. If you part ways with someone and come back to them, I don’t know that I call it a re-do because you both have had a chance to learn, grow, and (hopefully) come back to try to have a fresh start with each other. In that kind of situation, holding on to what was can be the end of what is before it gets started- I’d guess that the people in the relationship parted company for a reason.

Still, I think life (and God) sometimes give us a chance to see if we have really learned from our missteps (I won’t call them mistakes cuz I think if you learn something about yourself from a relationship that didn’t work out, then it wasn’t a mistake).  Sometimes that chance comes in the form of an ex who is “trying to do right by you”.  Other times, it comes in a form that you don’t expect; through the shared experience of a loved one.

I was talking to a loved one the other day about her man troubles, and I mean, I felt like I was listening to myself from more than a few years back.  The names and faces of the people in the story were different, but I’d be DAMNED if the story line wasn’t the same. I thought I’d shown I’d mastered that life lesson already…but I guess God wasn’t through with me yet.

To summarize: Boy and girl are together. Girl sees boy’s potential in being a good man, boy doesn’t really seem to be thinking about said potential. Boy doesn’t want girl to go out, so girl doesn’t. Boy goes out, girl says its not fair, boy says he won’t go out. Boy’s phone calls girl (on accident) and girl hears boy planning to go out. Girl asks boy about his plan, boy acts like he never made plans to go out. Girl is trying to decide if she wants to stay with boy.

I can’t say I this was my exact story (I never got a accidental phone call where I could hear plans being made) but while I was listening I caught myself reliving some of my past experiences.   As much as I wanted to tell her to cut her losses, I had to hold back. As a rule I try not to give advice; I’d rather play devils advocate.  I know people are going to make their own choices anyway, and I don’t need anyone to try to play the blame game with me (I didn’t tell you to do SH*T!).

At the end of the day, I decided to share my experiences with her. I hoped that she could learn from what I did and spare herself the ordeal. The danger in that hope is that the other person has to be able to identify with you or has to be ready to move from the more familiar (of being part of a couple) to the less familiar (of being single).  Because I said I felt like I was talking to an earlier version of my self, I knew the latter to be closer to the truth.  Hell, I know from my own journey that I really had to come to a place in myself where I was like F*CK THIS!! before I was able to make the decision to rid myself of the boy.

I always think about the type of mother I will be. I already know I’ll try to shield my children from the ugly things the world might show them, because I try to do it with my loved ones. As hard as it will be for me to let them learn their own lessons, I know it’s for the best. Experience will always be the best teacher.

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