I don’t know where you are, when we’ll meet or whether we’ve already met. But I do know that I will always choose to love you and have faith in you when the time comes. Every single day. Until then, this is an open letter I’ll keep close to my heart.
You will fall deeply and unconditionally in love with a man who cares to understand and accept you. He will show his empathy towards you through his speech and actions. He will love you unconditionally and faithfully, the same way you’ve fallen in love with him. He knows the value of a good woman and will choose you, and only you, especially in moments of fear, anger or disappointment.
When it comes to his time, he will show you that you are a priority. No work could ever be big enough or more important. Nonetheless, you will show him respect as work and his ambitious goals are equally important as yours. He will similarly treat you with respect and admiration. And he will not be ashamed, but proud of you as his partner and best friend.
Over time you will grow together and align in values. You will have beautiful children and build a home together. This man will not only want you to be a part of his life, he will build and cultivate a Christ-centered life with you. A choice he is not hesitant to make because having a family is something he has truly wanted for himself. He will never leave you or make you feel alone. He will protect you and care for you and your family as a symbol of his appreciation and gratitude for your life together. He will not take you, your commitment and love for granted.
You will grow old and have wonderful squishy little grandchildren running all around the house. Each day may not be perfect but always filled with a grateful heart and a joyous smile.
Stay hopeful. Have patience.
P.S. This letter is to those relentlessly putting their hearts on the line with the hope of a happier ending. Loving someone is the most courageous choice and action any of us can take. It requires trust, hope, friendship, integrity, vulnerability, commitment, and most of all, faith.
Your day will come, just be ready to receive and accept the love freely given to you.
It has been well over a month since I last posted a blog post. A lot of changes and transitions, professionally and personally, have happened over a short amount of time that I needed to take some space to distance myself from blogging for a while. Frankly, every week I would plan on writing a blog post on a topic that I’ve chosen weeks or even months ahead but it has been very difficult to sit down and actually write the post. Part of the reason is because there are a lot of thoughts running around in my head, some of which are incomplete and utterly confusing. This evening I decided to sit down and write this post because in retrospect, I created this blog because I wanted to take you all along in my journey. And it’s not a straight path, far from it.
Granted, I still don’t feel like I’m in the same headspace that I was in 6 months ago, but I thought it was important for me to write about forgiveness. Over the weekend, I wondered how could God be so forgiving of our mistakes over and over again? Why is it so hard for us to forgive others at the same degree?
Being human makes us susceptible to failures, imperfections and innumerable mistakes. It is and can be very difficult to forgive those who have wronged us repeatedly and ourselves. Pain, anger, embarrassment, pride and insecurities often take over so much so that we forget that we are all similarly human. We crave the same degree of infinite forgiveness that others seek of us, yet we often decline to show the same kindness. The only answer I can come up with that addresses my question adequately is love. Love at its purest form is patient, kind, humble, and of course forgiving. An elusive verb and feeling.
I guess the trick is to not take love for granted, but strengthen it.
P.S. Always choose forgiveness, even when it’s difficult. Harbouring bad feelings just isn’t worth it. Besides, you can’t change people… you can only love them.
It was my second Forró dance class when my fellow beginner dance partner and I learned how to spin. After practicing the basics a few more times, it suddenly occurred to me that learning how to dance is closely similar to learning how to be in a harmonious relationship. You need open communication, trust, intimacy and confidence in yourself and each other to gracefully move around the dance floor. Granted, you may step on each other’s feet once or twice, literally, but that’s totally fine because it’s far more important to follow the same rhythm.
Before realizing this, I knew my own shortcomings when it comes to being in a romantic relationship. Though I must say, there were four key aspects that I clearly need to work on as a dancer and partner.
The Value of Taking a Pause
In Forró, the beat goes like this: 1, 2, 3, PAUSE, 1, 2, 3, PAUSE, 1, 2, 3, PAUSE. The pause may not seem like a significant thing when it’s written like this but it is. I learned this the hard way by not taking a pause and setting a pace that was faster than my dance partner’s. Our instructor says that, “you fall into the pause, it has a heavier weight while the other steps/beats are lighter.” Not taking that important pause made it more difficult for my partner and I to mirror each other’s steps, and since my pace was faster, I inevitably messed up our rhythm. I needed to slow down instead of anticipating my next step because my partner is supposed to be leading me not the other way around.
Relationships are similar in a sense that we fall in love with our partners slowly.
All of that attraction and desire is present within the first few months, but if we don’t slow down and take our time enjoying each other’s company and learning about one another beyond superficialities, that fire burns relatively quickly. Leaving thinking about what could have been instead of what is.
Letting Someone Else Take Control
Growing up I was taught to be self-sufficient and independent. If I was hungry, I’ll go get something to eat or cook for myself. If there’s an assignment that I need to get done, I’ll to do it myself. I hope you can immediately see how this can be a problem in a partner dance where the control is not entirely mine.
In Forró, the man is responsible for taking the lead, guiding the woman between bases and spins. There’s an unspoken communication between each other, a sort of letting go that I was initially reluctant to do. Part of it is learning to rely on someone else, trusting him. Both of which, I have a problem doing easily outside of dance. Thing is, the moment I let my dance partner take the lead was the exact moment I started to enjoy myself. It wasn’t just about learning how to dance anymore, I was dancing.
In a relationship, at times it may be difficult to trust your partner because trust is such a fragile thing. We’re emotionally invested and hopeful that the person we are choosing to trust will not take that gesture for granted. After all, we do not only trust them to take care of our toes, our hearts too.
Stop Thinking Too Much!
While the instructors were teaching us more complicated spins and steps, I found myself thinking too much about where my feet should go or if I’m spinning in the right direction or whether I was off beat again. Doing so made it more difficult for my body to actually learn the steps and spins.
Similarly, we can get so caught up with what’s in our heads instead of what’s in our hearts sometimes that soon enough we end up in a downward spiral. Questioning every little detail that may or may not matter as much as we think it does. If only we took the time to pause and recognize that all of the thoughts in our head are mere thoughts. They only stop being thoughts when we act on them.
Intimacy isn’t just a physical thing it’s a transcendent connection.
My dance partner and I would sway for a minute or so to get a sense of the rhythm of the song. Often times, you’ll see dancers close their eyes to feel the music and to let intimacy build with their partner. Creating this connection to the music and your partner keeps you in synch as you dance around the dance floor.
It’s a culmination of letting go of your inhibitions, trust, being receptive of open communication and building a connection.
By all means, I won’t be a great Forró dancer right away. It takes practice and changing habits to have the skill level I want to have. I’m also not shy to admit that I haven’t been the greatest girlfriend/partner either, but I’m working on it.
P.S. My apologies for the photos, our dance social kept going as it rained.
This is my open letter to you on your first birthday.
I’m not sorry to tell you that I will not be the auntie that spoils silly. I will, however, teach you how to earn what you have and what it means to be happy even when you don’t have everything you want right now.
I won’t be the auntie who coddles you when you first fall off your bike either. I will, however, teach you how to get back up on that bike and ride it even if you’ve fallen many many times before.
I won’t let you get away when you get in trouble. I will, however, tell you that sometimes it’s okay to break the rules and live in the moment because we may not have another moment like this again.
I won’t tell you that you’re enough. I will, however, show you that you are more than enough and no one in the world can take that away from you.
I won’t be the one who tells you to dwell within your comfort zone. I will instead encourage you to see what the world has to offer and experience a rich and meaningful life.
I won’t turn you away when you get your heartbroken for the very first time. I will instead teach you that all the love you’ve given to someone else does not compare to the love you can infinitely make and give.
I won’t be watching you from the sidelines because I will always be there with you somehow, physically or otherwise.
I could add more to the list but let’s just take it one day at a time, shall we? 🙂
Someone once told me that you were going to change my life. And girl, you have! It has been an adventure watching you crawl all around the house; dancing with you as soon as the Tinga Tinga Tales theme song comes on and hiding items around the house because you just want to put everything in your mouth. You gave me a glimpse of the kind of parent I want to be…the kind of mother I hope to be.
Thank you for the cuddles and letting me kiss your chubby chubby cheeks (before waving me away anyway haha!) You probably won’t remember your first birthday, but that’s okay. We will have more birthdays to share. I hope you have an amazing day filled with laughter and love.
Happy birthday squishy face Lexi! I can’t wait to watch you grow every passing year.
P.S. It’s okay, we won’t tell your other auntie that I’m your favourite 😉