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November 8, 2004

Half Full:
Life's Journey

BY
BELIA RODRIGUEZ

I just got back from a weekend in Paris. What an amazing city! I fell in love with the people and the food. I have never seen so many beautiful bodies. They do a lot of walking and their food is terribly fresh, organic and delicious. After walking 30+ miles myself in three days, no wonder they look good. I was hoping I came back with the body of Demi Moore and the accent of Catherine Deneuve. Turns out I lost both at the baggage carousel at Charles de Gaulle airport.

Life's Journey
Paris is the city of love, it’s true. The Seine river surrounds the city, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful, it’s rich with culture, and history. It’s bubbling with couples of all kinds, in love, wandering about holding hands, kissing, being. I got to do one of my favorite past-times: sit at a café and write while people watching and thinking about life, people, and relationships.

Relationships and break-ups, it’s all the same, no matter who you are--gay, straight, man or woman, we’re all just humans.

I believe in relationships, but they're a learning experience. We aren’t born knowing how to have a great one; they're all practice leading to the Big Game. As humans, we are preprogrammed to couple. We are all alike, we need another person...one person to understand us, to support us, to love us unconditionally as we need to love equally in return. But we spend so much time living in fear of not ever finding it that we sometimes sabotage our current relationships. Sometimes we just don’t know any better. We don’t have a clue what we're doing and certainly not why we’re doing it. That is the evolutionary process we go through from youth to maturity.

Though, by the way, maturity is non-existent. Learned that last week. By definition, we never reach maturity. As a wise young friend said, fruit on a tree mature, we are not fruit so we never reach maturity. It's true as a matter of fact. We progress on the path to it but we never reach it.

It means we're all on a path, some decide to stand and wait---like in Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett. You can stand and wait, but Godot never comes. Or you can move forward on that path and overcome the obstacles and change your views, and adjust your way of thinking; have your moments of epiphany on life—on who you are or who you aren't, why you are or why you're not. It's the beautiful part of life, it’s the journey not the destination that is wonderful.

It's absolutely magnificent for one to be single. It's very healthy and empowering. Weak are the ones who jump straight into another relationship without “Me” time. You never experience the growth, you're too busy trying to please someone else or impress someone else. When the person you should be trying to impress is yourself. When we break up, two people were the problem, not just one. We are both to blame, we both carry fault and error. If we don’t evaluate what we contributed to the failure of that relationship, how can we rectify it? Therefore, we're doomed to repeat it.

My friend said to me, "the grass always looks greener on the other side; but all grass needs to me mowed, it’s just different grass".

Most people overlook all of this rudimentary information. The path of least resistance is always to find someone new to escape in, but you're only escaping yourself momentarily.

I take the courageous route. I take time to heal after every relationship. I do my post mortems and evaluate myself. I simplify it, I look at the ugly part of me and I ask myself, “how does that serve you”? And when I cannot make sense of the answer out loud, when I can't even buy my own hype, then it's time to let it go, fix it.

I owe it to myself to be better. First and foremost, it's for myself. I have to sleep well at night and I have to like my mug in the mirror. Second, I owe it to the next beautiful person that takes me up on my offer to share our lives together (even if it’s momentary), I owe it to them to be a better person. They deserve that. Do you know why?

I make better choices every time I allow myself to heal. I'm building up for the Big Game, the Real Thing. And I intend to win.

*** After studying the French for a weekend, I am off to the other end of the spectrum, to study the people in LA. Somehow, I think I’ll like Paris, France more but if I run into Paris Hilton, then it may be a different story. I’ll let you know next month.

 
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