Heads up, this one was a tear jerker for me.
Relationships. Something many of us strive to understand, think we understand or have given up understanding. That is until something comes along and hits us over the head and makes us realize… oh crap. Why didn’t I see that when I was in it? This weekend that hammer over the head came along in the form of the movie, 500 Days of Summer. If you haven’t seen it, I won’t spoil the ending and get out there and see it. Male or female! In the movie there were a lot of parallels to my relationship of 4.5 years that has ended semi-recently and it was really weird seeing many of the nuances and relationship issues he and I encountered. More than anything though, there was one quote in particular that really got me thinking more about relationships than anything else (Ok, I lied… SPOILER ALERT!!!)
“Well, you know, I guess it's 'cause I was sitting in a deli and reading Dorian Gray and a guy comes up to me and asks me about it and… now he’s my husband… So, what if I'd gone to the movies? What if I had gone somewhere else for lunch? What if I'd gotten there 10 minutes later? It was - it was meant to be. And... I just kept thinking... Tom was right… It just wasn't me that you were right about.”
So, are our relationships just some great cosmic lineup that brings two of us together at just the right time and the right place for just the right amount of time that we bring something into each other’s lives that is missing? Or is it all something that we dissect to the point of attributing any relationship we are in into some cosmic reasoning as to why it happened?
This quote hit me… and hit me hard when I read it as I’ve probably been dissecting my semi-recently ended engagement pretty closely, and not really coming up as to any answers other than we grew apart. When I wonder, how we could grow apart when essentially we were the same people we were 4.5 years ago when we started dating? I continue to look back and question at times, for reasons that may or may not be revealed in another post, why I stayed with him to begin with? Then it starts to come together.
Using the quote as a reference point, I think back to what I gained from this. The best and most apparent, are some of the best girlfriends I could ever have in my life. In particular, two of my very best friends Anna and Katie (Renee is the third… but we knew each other previously.) Without my ex, K, and I being together I never would have met them. Before I met these two, I had lots of friends, girls and guys alike, but I had never really known the value of true friends. I mean, we would be there for each other when it was convenient for the other, but it was never like this.
We’ll start off with Katie for example. Katie had grown up with K, they went to high school, ran in the same group of friends, etc. So she was “his” friend going into things. After the first time she and I met though, we knew it was magic. It was a chance thing that she happened to be at K’s best friend’s house, where I was often the only female. She and I sat and talked by default, but by the end of the night, I knew that Katie was someone who would be there forever and ever. What if I hadn’t gone over there that night? What if? Just like the Dorian Gray book, us being the only females brought us together as one. She was there beside me holding my sister and my hands as they carried my mom off after one of her suicide attempts. After a huge fight between K and I where I was left broken hearted, she was there to pick the pieces off the ground and help me to begin gluing them back together. When she moved away, I was devastated, when she came back, I jumped for joy. I just keep thinking, if it wasn’t for me being with K, at that exact moment in time, would our bond ever be as strong as this? So thank you Katie.
Then there is Anna, who I haven’t known quite as long as Katie, but will forever be a part of my life and my heart as well. Again, we met by chance, at a place I wouldn’t be without K. It was a birthday party for one of K’s friends that a bunch of our mutual friends were attending. This dark haired girl walked in with a friend I had known for years, we’ll call him Jared, and I exclaimed in my state, “So this is the flavor of the week (or something equally derogatory.)” As he paraded her around, I tried to talk for a bit, but kept my distance as I knew she would be leaving soon, and honestly… I had no idea who this girl was. She was some random girl and I never really thought of her again… That is until that June when I was spending a lot of time with her ex-roommates at her former house. See, K was gone for almost a full year off and on last year, and I was alone in Manhattan. I had known two of her former roommates for a very long time, and longed for the escape from Manhattan for the chill environment of Lawrence. Now, I knew that she lived there again, but I still didn’t know much about her. That was until the night that I just happened to be in the basement until 3am, mainly because I was too tired to drive home, and she pranced into the room and sat on the arm of the chair next to me and whispered, “Shhh.. don’t tell anyone, but I’m a stripper.” It was from that point on we bonded. It was almost instant trust that she shared with me, and I shared with her all of our secrets. There was something, where all the stars aligned and it just worked, because honestly, in almost any other universe, I probably wouldn’t have given her a chance (not for being a stripper…!) This almost instant bond has continued for over a year now, and she’s probably the closest to me of all my friends. We’ve shared each other’s ups and downs and I know that she has completely motivated me to where I am today. She’s the friend who has been there pushing me in all my endeavors, from school, to losing weight, to being financially responsible and culminating in the latest which is getting me out of the relationship that had grown emotionally dangerous for me and being my rock to cry to. Even at 5am after a fight, she would answer her phone and say get over here and cry. She took me out to celebrate the culmination of my LSAT and to celebrate me receiving a mediocre score despite everything I’ve been through. Somehow, this pint-size ray of sunshine just happened to be there at the right place/right time for us to build this relationship. (Ok… seriously… in tears right now.) So thank you Anna.
So as I sit here, and try to over analyze what went wrong with K and I, I am lucky enough to look at what went right. If it wasn’t for that moment in time that everything lined up just perfectly with K, that we thought we had a shot at the rest of our lives together. Maybe we missed it by a millisecond, maybe it’s not the way the universe works. No matter what the case, the stars lined up perfectly that even though what I thought was supposed to be the most fulfilling relationship in my life, my marriage to a man I loved dearly, and will always have a place in my heart for, has ended. I somehow out of this, gained two of the three brightest stars in my life. Without these amazing ladies, I don’t know where I’d be.
Was it meant to be? Who knows. Think about it, in ten minutes, ten hours, ten days or years from now, someone may waltz into your life and you have no reason or idea why. Just remember, life works in funny ways. Some relationships have to end, to have another one begin. Also, give a few chances... if that person hasn’t done anything blatantly wrong, maybe the stars are getting ready to align to provide you with something amazing you wouldn’t have known without it, or after a few chances... maybe it is just a dud :) What I do know, is that if I’m asked, do I believe sometimes things are just meant to be... I'll say absolutely.