I know it may seem strange to pay homage to an ex, and even stranger to think they deserve a special thank you. But every ex, whether an ex-boyfriend or an ex-husband has taught us something about life, love and most importantly our self. Don’t you think that deserves recognition?
If you would have told me a few years ago that I would one day dedicate an article to all my ex-boyfriends thanking them for every tear, pain and frustration they had caused me, I would tell you to keep dreaming. I probably would even go as far as considering you to seek help for your hallucinations. But that seemed to be the case when a recent run-in with an ex-boyfriend ignited my quest down memory lane of all my past failed relationships. I began to replay the final moments of each relationship, wishing I would have handled them much differently. I wished I would have been more patient and less unforgiving. I wished I would have been a bit wiser and less naÃ¯ve. I wished I would have been more honest and less trying to save face. I wished I did not listen to others advice and followed my heart. I wished I expressed my expectations rather than assumed they knew. I wished I knew what I know now. After analyzing all of the “could have”, “should have” and “would have’s”, I realized I learned something from each one of them. I learned all of the things I’m now wishing I had done differently back then. I’m now more patient, forgiving and honest. I now know a failed relationship doesn’t mean that I’m a failure. I’m now stronger. I’m now smarter. I’m now wiser. I’m now a grown woman. I now know that because of my past I’m a better person and girlfriend today. With this, I now know each purpose the relationship served.
We all forget that pain and disappointment are one of the most valuable teachers. We women especially, scorn ourselves with hurt and baggage from a relationship gone wrong, when we really need to take that opportunity to grow in wisdom, courage, and self awareness. Instead of bad mouthing and regretting our ex’s, let’s be thankful for them. No matter the reason or who was at fault for the breakup, the one thing that’s guaranteed is a lesson. Like me, you may not learn it until years later. But once you do, take a moment to say thank you. I just did.