I heard a great story years ago about a kid whose mom asked him to make her some eggs. She instructed him to scramble one and fry the other. He, being a “good egg” and of course wanting to please his mother, did just that. He stood and beamed proudly before his mother, presenting her with what he understood to be the answer to her heart’s (or stomach’s, if you will) desire; eggs, one scrambled, the other perfectly fried! “Oh. NO” she protested. “I wanted that one scrambled and the other one fried!” pointing ruthlessly at his obedient offering.
For me, this kind of crazy-making relationship is, at minimum, challenging, not to mention arduous, given all that we each attend to every day. Some version of: Dropping kids off after school (three different places, three different times); work deadlines; pressure to keep your job (which you were hoping to leave this summer to start your own gig); pressure to compete (especially now); pressure to be original (wow, that’s easy, since there hasn’t been an original thought in, what, a thousand years); friends calling in real crisis and friends in perpetual crisis; staying fit and young and sexy and time to re-do the kitchen, send the kid to college, get your parents in to an extended care home (if they don’t kill you first). And oh! I got my period and have had it for three weeks now (hmm, wonder what that means) checked the strange-shaped spot on my nose, mammogram apt. at 3, floss, (don’t forget to floss or you could have a root canal), and RELAX! why don’t you (with all that extra time). Yoga, yoga, yoga, but not before you flip off the prat who snuck in front of you in the parking lot and took your spot, ’cause obviously they needed it more than you, (so, naturally, you pray for him) and did you renew all your online monthly charges with your new credit card because the other one expired, and what was that hospital bill for, I wasn’t in the hospital last January, and did I forget to pick up the cleaning and what am I going to get my girlfriend for her birthday, (mental note, get Cathy a B-day pressie). OMG, I forgot to call my brother-it was his anniversary last week, or was that my niece’s graduation…no, the soccer championship. Speaking of grass, the dog ate the sprinkler line, I think it was the sprinkler line (I wonder if that’s expensive?). And answer my emails, on both accounts, which means I have to call Comcast…again, because it was down this am. And don’t forget to return that lady’s call, the really nice one I met at the fundraiser I was at a few months ago, that I ran into at Whole Foods and told her I would get together for tea this week for sure (which is what I said last time). Wait a minute, no beating myself up here, we are far more evolved than that…or are we? Arghhh.
Yay… now I get to go home, climb in the shower and get ready for my date tonight!!! Yipppeeeee. Better hurry, ’cause maybe, just maybe this one will be the one person in the whole wide world (or at least on this continental hemisphere) that will make all of this go away! Gee, that should be easy to do. The person I am manifesting will be; independently wealthy (one of us has to be) and all of his staff will be virtual and enlightened, perfectly adorable (even in a magnifying mirror), in excellent health with no present related concerns (he only drinks blessed water from Lourdes). His manner is impeccable, his style and taste are flawless, he meditates several hours a day and reads from the Koran as a hobby. He writes poetry that is manly, would rather poke his eye out than fart in public (or in your presence), prefers chick flicks, hates video games and thinks golf (actually, all sports) are a waste of time, when instead you could be having long, endless conversations together about whether you should go brunette or stay blonde. Insists on cooking and cleaning or going out (your pick), can’t wait to rub your feet or anything else you want rubbed because he has nothing better to do…
Sure, the thought of “that person” will give you a second wind, right? Let me just plug myself in and re-charge, to my human re-charger…oh, I don’t have a human being re-charger, damn it. Okay, so, I’ll just snap out of whatever, so I am sure to be fresh, present and emotionally uncluttered. I’ll remember to listen, which should be no problem, because after my lengthy 3-minute shower I most certainly should be perfectly refreshed (unless something is wrong with me); by then I should have nothing on my own mind and let them drain what little life there is left out of me while I blabber uncontrollably (yet perfectly poised) every possible thing about myself that will hopefully make them want to be with me (at least one more time) so I don’t have to kill myself or eat a quart of ice-cream because they weren’t the one I was looking for…again! THUD… @#$ %^&*
One point to make here is that most of our lives are full, or at least we perceive them to be filled with many things that are not always easy to manage day in and day out …gracefully and with a sincere, warm smile like in “Gone with the Wind” :0 Nope, most of us tend towards Scarlett O’Hara a little more…stressed out, and getting tired of it, too. So how do we go from overwhelm (or, at least, I am bloody tired and I really want a relationship) to gracefully finding that one special person who actually does make your load feel lighter?
a) Meet someone you’re attracted to and have sex right away since chemistry is the best indicator of a great choice of partner.
b) Sign up on every online dating service, line up endless dates and then, like a total maniac, unleash your inner daemons and hope one date finds this attractive?
c) Drink alcohol and or take a few sedatives, anti-whatever ( because, hey, everyone else does). Go to a bar or nightclub and get your groove going and then just see what happens, because you’re reasoning is in no way impaired…if anything, being high brings out your real self, and tons of people meet their soul mates in bars!
d) Stop…drop and roll?
e) Or maybe STOP, drop in with yourself and see first where you might be leaking some valuable life-force energy. (Hopefully you chose E, because otherwise I would have to slap the crap out of you-in a very loving way, of course.)
Relationship heads up:
If we don’t have time for ourselves…neither will they.
If we don’t MAKE time for ourselves…neither will they.
If we don’t know how to manage our own lives well…neither will they.
If we do find someone to “take us away from all this,” one or the other gets tired of the burden and eventually the relationship dies. Check the statistics; people who have the fewest relational tools are most likely to have dissatisfying and destructive relationships. Period.
Great relationship Shortcut (yes, there are a few)
Give yourself what you want from a partner and you’re exponentially more likely to attract a really good one!
And last, having tools and skills are pointless if we don’t use them so~ Self Care Tip: Surround yourself with supportive people and you are more likely to stay on your path of growth and good self-care, and leave what isn’t that behind!
Maryanne Comaroto is an internationally known relationship expert, talk show host and author. Her weekly live radio talk show reaches millions of listeners in the U.S. and around the world. Maryanne’s philosophy is “Great relationships begin within!” and her guest experts-Lama Surya Das, Jean Houston, Dawna Markova, Gay Hendricks, Neale Donald Walsh, John Gray, Riane Eisler and Gabrielle Roth, to name a few-talk openly about what it takes to create healthy, fulfilling, sustainable relationships.