I was reading Real Simple the other day, and came across an article on “The Woman That Changed My Life”. I read through it and there were some really interesting ways in which people had changed lives, kidney donations, workout buddies, or career mentors; and it got me thinking about the people that have changed my life.
I have had many people in the last few years that have really had a lasting effect on my life. There are my best friends, three ex boyfriends [it’s high school – don’t give me that judge-face], certain teachers, and even some people that I really just don’t like at all – I never said they all had good lasting effects.
You hardly ever meet someone and think upon meeting them “this person is going to change my life.” I didn’t think “this girl is going to be my rock. The person I can talk to about anything” when I met Amanda – I actually hated her when I first met her. The first time my ski coach paired me with Tennille to ride up the chairlift wasn’t the time when I realized that she would be the one to keep me down to earth, and make me really consider certain life choices I’d made. The quiet, yet beautiful, girl, Grace, who was always with Amanda, did I think that I would one day consider her like a sister? No. I thought “oh look, that annoying chick has a quiet friend. Poor quiet girl…” I didn’t even consider that the silly long-haired kid that everyone said looked like Jesus who sat next to me in French 9 would end up being my first love [until much later, of course], my first real heartbreak, and the person who finally taught me to just chill out and enjoy life.
All of these people have had some really amazing effects on my life – and I love them all – but there is one more person that really changed my life. My most recent ex [I’m hesitant to even call him that… a previous… hmph… explains it better] reminded me that my intuition is most often right, and trust is earned – and you actually have to work to earn it. He taught me that you shouldn’t think twice about changing your plans [be those your weekend plans with the girls, or your plans for university] for someone else. In fact, he taught me you shouldn’t even think about that at all – don’t entertain the thought. It’s your life, and you should always think about you first – at least in the years where you are becoming the person you are going to be for the rest of your life.
This person also reminded me of things that first love taught me – things I hadn’t really realized until I’d experienced the other side of a relationship. He made me realize that not everything has to happen all at once. You don’t have to tell someone you love them right away, especially if you don’t, and that when things are broken it often takes two people, and a whole lot of time and patience to fix them – something that I wish I had taken the time to learn when it really mattered. Although, in some cases, you shouldn’t waste your time trying to fix something that has been broken the whole time. Actually, sometimes it’s one of those instances where it’s like Mum in the free store: “Mother, that is broken, dirty, and not worth your time”, “But it’s pretty…”, “You don’t need it. You feel like you need it, but it’s just going to clutter the already cluttered shelf where you keep your teacup collection” – don’t even go there in the first place!
Anyway, I’m getting all off track. What I’m trying to get at is that everyone in your life has the opportunity to teach you something. They may not sit down and give you a lesson on Swedish verbs [although I would be entirely open to Swedish lessons!], but they will show you things about yourself, or about other people that will turn out to be very valuable in later life. Unfortunately sometimes it seems you learn these things too late [for instance learning too consider things from a different person’s perspective], but not all is lost! If you’re too late to save that part of your life, don’t forget that those lessons can be applied to other parts of your life.