Rules To Life and Love

The Rules To Follow:

1. Never give a second chance. If someone is okay with hurting you the first time, no matter how sorry they claim to be, they will be capable of doing it again; and trust me, it’ll hurt more the second time.

2. Do not be afraid to care “too much”. There will come a point in time where you may want to turn and hide in order to protect your heart, but the reward is so much sweeter when you allow yourself the opportunity to enjoy another’s company, even if it is only for a short while.

3. Always be yourself. Allow yourself the opportunity to say what comes to mind or dance when you feel the moment arises without the fear of what others will think. Those that judge you are not worth your time and you will know you have found someone special when they embrace the occasion to be silly with you.

4. Do not take yourself too seriously. There will always be tasks to complete, errands to run, chores to tend to; but there will not always be the perfect evening for a stroll. There will not always be the opportunity to be lazy and watch movies all day. There will be plenty of time in the future, enjoy your youth while you have the opening.

5. If something does not feel right, listen to the “whisper” of your instincts. If you have a feeling that something is going amiss or that your feelings are not being reciprocated, then perhaps further investigation should be concluded.

Love is all you need”- Those five words are what hang above my bed; an addition that was added to my bedroom after my boyfriend of 3 years cheated on me with my best friend/roommate during the spring break of my senior year at college. Some may say the phrase is a bizarre item for me to have given the circumstances. I, however, think it is unbelievably fitting. In the moment where two people you undeniably loved make you question what you know about love in general, it is those who remain by your side that make you understand more about love than you believed possible. It is the friend who sits in your car at 1am as you cry at the break of trust; it is the friends who let you sit on their doorstep at 2am and just let the silence envelop everything; it is the father-figure who struggles to not say “I told you so” as you explain why you look like hell the next morning. Those first few days post-breakup were perhaps the most trying I have had to experience. When you date somebody for an extended period of time, your paths become inevitably wrapped around one another. You walk the same routes you once took with them, but they no longer hold the same meanings. The pictures you once believed you would want to keep forever in order to hold the great memories of the past in place become a bitter reminder that even those you trust the most can betray you. For some, indulgences in “break-up foods” become the only option for coping. For others, being surrounded by friends and a set of never-ending activity is the only answer. My personal coping mechanism is to chop off my hair and add a set of piercings. I took this opportunity to begin anew and find myself. I began to go to places on my own without relying on the company of others. Slowly, it was as if a fog gradually lifted and I learned what I wanted in life and who I wanted to become and for that I must thank my ex. I thank him for providing support during my late night essays and cramming sessions throughout my college career. I thank him for giving me the knowledge of what I do and do not want in a relationship. I thank him for showing me that even when my trust has been irrevocably broken; it is possible to continue living.

Peace starts with yourself and grows”- The second set of words added to my bedroom décor. Nights are always the worst after a break-up. It is the time when you finally allow your mind to begin to cope with what has happened and to realize you are now sleeping alone in your bed, without anyone to hold you after seemingly never-ending night terrors, or to greet you in the morning with a simple “Good morning, beautiful,” and a kiss. However, even with missing those simplicities, I soon realized that if someone could behave in such an abysmal way then they were not worth my time. I turned nights into the points I would do the most activities in order to get it over with and start the next day. Night became my enemy and the world would only get better as the sun rose in the morning. I became a coffee drinker, a large feat in and of itself; I began to work on developing my relationships with the people I perhaps had under-appreciated in the past. Overall, I learned to find peace with the hand I was dealt in life and how to be content with my actions. I learned to step back and realize that at 21 years old, I do not need to have my entire life planned out. It’s okay to say you don’t know the answer to a problem. It’s okay to realize you perhaps do not know the first thing about being in a relationship, despite past experiences.

We think that hating is a weapon that attacks the person who harmed us. But hatred is a curved blade. And the harm we do, we do to ourselves.” –The quote that has resonated with me more than anything else in life. Reading this was the point where I realized forgiveness is something I must actively pursue in all aspects of life because it becomes overly tiresome to continuously and actively resent a person. You cannot find peace within if you are constantly on the verge of losing all control over your emotions. When I took the steps to forgive, I found that at some point I was okay and I stopped thinking of my past relationship and friendship altogether. At that point, I realized that perhaps I was not as invested into my relationship as I should have been and that all along I knew it would never work. That’s the point when I decided that the next relationship I entered, I would enter without any inhibitions. I decided that I would allow myself to be truly vulnerable for the first time and I would not worry about playing a game.

You must give everything to make your life as beautiful as the dreams that dance in your imagination.” Every girl grows up watching Disney Princess movies and reading books that allow them to escape into a magical and perfect universe where love always wins in the end and no matter how much a couple disagrees or what adversities they face, they will come out stronger and better. Every romance-movie lover will know Nicholas Sparks’ complete works and have The Notebook to be our ultimate love guide. However, it is perhaps this that makes love so hard for some to accept and enter into because everything and everyone will constantly be compared to what their imagination has decided is the correct behavior for their partner to act. As I entered my first relationship with the idea of not holding back, I found it hard to feel secure in myself. I found it is hard to live without the comforts you knew for so long. I discovered that to be so vulnerable, it is easy to feel insecure in yourself and your actions. It allows for doubt to creep in and to make you question the intentions and actions of your partner. In the end, although I attempted to give everything into a relationship that ultimately faltered, I discovered it must be a two-way street because nothing will work without communication, and no relationship will be successful if both are not doing everything to make their life as beautiful as the dreams they hold.

With the experiences of the past to guide the creation and use of the aforementioned rules, some may hope the next relationship they enter will finally result in the fantasy love story of their dreams. Some may simply hope the next relationship that ends will end amicably at the very least. I, on the other hand, have a different hope. My hope is that the next time I encounter a relationship; I will continue to grow and develop myself as a person, with the guidance of another as my equal. My hope is the next person I choose to let into my life, whether it be as a friend or more, will be somebody that will help me constantly find new ways to look at life and will go along with me on my adventures into the weird and unknown.