Timing doesn’t heal all wounds

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When you break up with someone, there’s no real handbook to tell you how to best deal with it. Sure, there’s many self help books out there, but what works for one person, may not work for you. Ultimately, you have no choice but to figure it out on your own, with time your biggest hurdle in restoring happiness to your life once again. 

But time has a funny way of playing tricks on you. Sometimes a year feels like not long ago, sometimes you only met someone a month ago but it feels as though you’ve known them for a lifetime. Likewise, timing can be problematic when dealing with the end of a relationship. 


One day, you’re together. The next you’re not, and before you know it, two years have flown by and you’re left wondering where the hell the last 24 months went? You know that you’ve changed in that amount of time, however a small part of you has immortalized your former lover in a world that’s stuck two years prior. How strange it is to think that you know all this information about a human being. Their likes and dislikes, or their favorite movie or genre in music, only to separate and to have no use for this information anymore. 

The trouble is, this old information is deceiving, because the person you knew and loved two years ago, has now changed, just as you have, and realizing this can be difficult to come to terms with. 


As many of you know, my long journey of healing had for the most part been dealt with, or so I thought. Unfortunately, in this age of social media, it’s much easier to know people’s business, and friends of friends will talk, and things will get back to you. This is how new information on a former partner will slowly filter its way to you, and just when you think that you’ve dealt with everything that needs to be dealt with, a trigger will occur and you’ll find yourself asking – why do I care? Why has this effected me? And why am I upset? 

Yep, this was news to me too! 

The ‘Oh I thought I had dealt with that but I mustn’t have’ moment is exactly what happened to me two weeks ago, and what resulted was an influx of forgotten insecurities that flooded my memory once again. Feelings arose that reminded me what it once felt like to not feel adequate enough for someone. Feelings that reminded me that my former partner is out there living his life and is … HAPPY? 


Funnily enough, I too am happy in my new life, with my current partner who treats me like an absolute princess and who I love dearly. Having these emotions arise as a result of someone in your past causes a sense of guilt and confusion. It’s important to remember that this isn’t a reflection on the current relationship, rather feelings spawned completely from a subconscious repressed insecurity that had been pushed aside. 


The truth is, I do not harbor any feelings of wanting to get back with my ex, nor do I have any resentment towards him. You can work as hard as you like on yourself. Do the self care thing, see a therapist and talk to friends. But from time to time, little things will trigger the insecurities that have been embedded into your subconscious from a past relationship. 

And that’s totally okay. 

It doesn’t mean you still love them. 

It doesn’t mean you want to get back with them. 


My only advice is to be open and honest, particularly if you have moved on with a new partner. Open communication is our biggest asset and will be respected and appreciated by both sides. 

I can’t tell you if you’ll ever get over these insecurities. I myself don’t even know if it’s in the cards for me. What I can tell you however is to not dwell on these moments. Let them come, and let them go. 

Pick yourself up – and keep doing you. 

x love & light 

Cat 

Timing doesn’t heal all wounds

A Byron Retreat

***

Within my last relationship, for as long as I can remember, all I wanted was to book a small holiday and getaway.  It didn’t have to be as big as travelling overseas, nor did we have to go interstate, I would have been happy retreating to a small Victorian beach town. There was something about going on an explorative adventure with the one I loved which really appealed to me. Critics will tell you to hold off on going away with your partner because it can ‘make or break’ you, but I never saw it that way. I saw it as an opportunity to create new memories, and gain new experiences, learn new things, smell new smells, and expand our pallet with the tastes of new regions.

Unfortunately, the more I wanted and expressed this to him, the less he wanted to go away with me. I couldn’t understand after being in a relationship with me for three years, why he was always dismissive and disinterested in the idea. When it came to his mates asking him to go on trips however, he would greet the topic with much more enthusiasm. Was there something wrong with me? Was I not fun enough? This issue alone caused an array of insecurities within me as I struggled to understand the cause of his indifference. Perhaps this was one of many red flags, which ultimately lead to the demise of our relationship.

>> Fast forward two years >>

Step by step, I take in the sights and smells of the lush green leafy environment around me. Walking trails leading us through age old rainforests provide a tranquil and calming surrounding, leaving us at one with nature. A wild wallaby greets us as we explore the trails and wild bush turkeys scurry along the paths. The buzzing sound of insects increase as we walk by ponds scattered with lily pads and lotus flowers. Native birds sing to each other amongst the treetops. Finally, we reach meditation point – a bench overlooking the water, the epitome of stillness and mindfulness. Despite being at the peak of a relapse with my anxiety – I feel so safe and happy, I’m finally away with someone I love.

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Nick asked me to be his girlfriend after dating exclusively for 9 months. To be honest, we were exclusive from the first day we met. I lay down the law pretty quickly one that one … hey, can you blame me for not wanting to share my men!? Luckily for me he doesn’t like sharing his women either! This set up automatically provided us with a foundation of trust that we were able to build upon as we continued to get to know one another.  As I alluded to in my previous post, I have never dated anyone who knows the full extent of my anxiety, until I met Nick. He has taught me that I am worthy of love and being cared for wholeheartedly, despite having an anxiety disorder. I don’t feel like I need to hide the extent of my anxiety from him, if anything, he encourages me to teach him more about it so we can work together to better manage it. I can’t tell you how reassuring it is to feel as though we are combating this as a team.

You can just imagine my excitement when Nick suggested we go on a little trip together – a little retreat to help us relax before the busy Christmas period. I think I teared up when the topic was suggested. To think that someone who I had been dating for 6 months ‘unofficially’ – wanted to go away with me! I almost had to look twice, behind me, to make sure he wasn’t talking to someone else! And despite feeling very anxious the morning we were leaving, Nick held my hand, told me he loved me for the first time and said that we will get through this together. He asked me to be his girlfriend in this moment. #keeper #goals

The Byron at Byron Bay Resort & Spa offered the perfect getaway for optimum relaxation and tranquillity. I highly recommend this resort for those considering visiting the Byron Bay region and surrounds. Essentially, the resort is built within luscious rainforests, so you truly feel as though you are living amongst the trees. Walking trails within the resort allow you to explore the various wildlife, trees and fauna and there is even a trail leading to a beautiful lake. Another trail leads you to the lovely Tallow Beach – where Nick and I were lucky enough to spot a baby whale.

I can’t stress enough how vitalising this trip was, not only in helping me with my anxiety, but also for our relationship. I believe the trip brought us closer together, it was a well-deserved holiday after a tumultuous previous year (2015).

Being at one with nature is good for the soul, and I really felt this to be true while we were in Byron. Next week, I will post about our beautiful visit to Crystal Castle and Shambhala Gardens. All you crystal lovers out there – keep an eye out for that one!

In conclusion, I want to speak to those of you unsure or afraid of going away with your partner. Stop doubting yourself and the integrity of the relationship. Get out there and make new memories. You might discover something new about yourself or your partner that makes you fall in love all that much more. As far as I’m concerned, you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. Don’t let fear stop you from creating the best memories life has to offer.

Until next time,

Love & Light,

X Cat.

A Byron Retreat

Why you don’t have to settle for less, and why you probably still will…

***

As single women mature, they often hear the musings of their loved up friends and colleagues constantly telling them to stop being so fussy when it comes to men and dating. Luckily for me, I’m yet to hit that stage, although I have heard the complaints from many of my girlfriends, all of which are a vast array of ages, from late 20’s to early 50’s!

While I do agree that some women (and men) can sometimes set unrealistic expectations when looking for a potential partner – I truly believe that there are some major things that you should not have to settle for.

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This revelation is something that has only come to me now that I have met someone else – someone who I have much more in common with than anyone else I have ever dated. This is not to say that this undermines my past relationships as being a waste of time or worthless, rather, a lesson. I would not be able to appreciate my current situation if it weren’t for those past experiences. As they say, hindsight is 20/20 – and looking back, I was blinded, and I probably settled for much more than I should have. Our deepest values were on different pages – and this ultimately caused many issues.

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Like many women, the fear of being forever alone can get the better of you, and so you continue an exhausting cycle within a relationship that sees you happy only 40% of the time. As for the the rest of the time – you’re curled up in bed in a teary-eyed ball, with a tub of salted caramel Haagen Dasz ice cream and a mere table spoon as your only companion. Towards the end of my relationship, more often than not, I was always sad and I felt alone. How can someone be made to feel so alone when in a relationship?

Having said this, the situation wasn’t all bad, he never cheated on me, never laid a finger on me in an aggressive manner, and of course – I loved him. So why on earth would I break up with him? It is certainly a confusing cycle and when you’re stuck on that roller coaster of emotions, with its magnificently high ups and tortuous downs, you just don’t know what to do! Like me, you settle for the situation as is, because you think it could be worse, and you won’t know any better until you’re forced into a new relationship. Sure, it might be worse out there – but it also might be a million times better!

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I’m beginning to understand the importance of being on the same page as your significant other. Of course, a few differences keep things fun and interesting, but for the most part, your ideals, values and beliefs need to complement one another, in order for things to come naturally and easily.

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If you’re in a relationship that is causing you to fight in the first two months about some pretty major topics, then it is likely that this situation will only get worse – unless one of you settles. But you shouldn’t have to settle. Compromise and communication is integral in any relationship, but when you settle, the resentment from giving into something that goes against your own values can prove to be detrimental in the long run, and it works in a way in which compromise does not. There is a difference between settling and compromising – one will work negatively to tear you apart, and one will work to maturely bring you together.

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Whether the value in question relates to drugs, finances, religion, marriage, work ethic, children or whatever – if you have a strong set of beliefs regarding the subject matter, and your partner is on the opposing end of your belief – I’m sorry, but it’s a ticking time bomb – and shit will totally hit the fan sooner or later! It might not be a deal-breaker, but it will cause constant underlying friction. If you ask me, that’s no way to live, and being alone and happy is a small price to pay than to downgrade your set of values. This will also open you up to meeting someone who is on the same wavelength as you.

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Had I known this earlier, I wouldn’t have lasted in my own relationship for the amount of time that I did. But as I said, I needed to go through it in order to prepare me for the amazingness that would later be sent my way. The universe works in mysterious ways, but she damn well knows what she’s doing!

So this is my message to all of you out there stuck in your not-so-bad, can be great at times – but kind of mediocre relationships. If you’re disagreeing over something small – just let it go. But if its over something important to you, consider whether its really worth your time.

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Love & Light,
x Cat

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Why you don’t have to settle for less, and why you probably still will…

Can you learn to love again?

***

As the great Alfred Lord Tennyson once put it, ‘Tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all.’

In the early months following the demise of my relationship, I struggled to see how I would ever be able to love anyone as much as I loved him again. I was certain that we would spend the rest of our lives thinking that perhaps that one another were the one that got away, forever tainted by the loss of this love.


A year and 3 months on, my views are beginning to change. Don’t get me wronghe will always be my first love and he will always hold a small piece of my heart. I would be lying to myself if I completely disregarded that. But if you were to ask me today if I thought it was possible for me to love again – I’d say, ‘damn straight it is!’

For me, opening up to idea of dating again was a slow process. It began with me not wanting to think, look or talk to another guy. I felt as though doing so would be a betrayal to him. My mourning period and grieving overshadowed any notion of entertaining other men.

I then went to Europe, two months following the break up, (initially still in this mindset). The long European Summer nights got the better of me however, and I left that trip with a few stolen kisses from a couple of suitors. #noregrets


Upon my return to Melbourne – bung knee and all – I found myself retreating to my previous mindset. The thought of dating again honestly made me feel sick. The last thing I wanted to think about was him with another woman, and me with another man.

I think this was because I still had a lot of healing to do. Sure, my trip was a great learning experience in the interim, but it was also a distraction. I now had to learn the meaning of self-care and self-love in order to move forward.


Flash forward a few weeks, my dislocated knee on the mend, I went out one night with the girls. There I met one of their friends, not intending for anything to happen, but one thing lead to another and we began seeing each other for the few months that followed. Unfortunately, as many of you reading this would know, timing has a big part to play in the outcome of any relationship. I still wasn’t 100% ready to allow myself to be completely open to the idea of being with him officially, in terms of ‘girlfriend’ and ‘boyfriend’ labelling. Sure, I liked him a lot, and I know he liked me too – but he wasn’t ready to wait for me – and I wasn’t ready to be ready any time soon. It was difficult, but we decided to remain friends.

Flash forward again a couple months – I had been doing lots of work on myself – and was really learning to be okay on my own. A night out with friends again caused me to meet It’s all in a hug guy annnnnd the rest, as the saying goes, is history.


I don’t know what the future holds here, but my spidey senses are tingling and let’s just say, the reservations I held previously have completely diminished. I can now safely say that for the first time since my break up, that I know what it feels like to have that potential of being able to love someone again – just as much as my first love, if not more.


Now if you’re reading this, hug guy – don’t freak out – this isn’t my public declaration of love for you. This is me noticing a change in my personal mindset – of once being closed off to loving again, to now realizing that there is a definite possibility for me to love again. You might have a small part to play in this. Thanks dude 👍🏼

It’s not every day you meet your opposite sex equivalent – but as he and I have come to realise, we have A LOT in common. A little too much! Down to the bank account organization! What the hell? In fact – we constantly freak ourselves out over how many of our beliefs, values and mindsets are alike. Its freaky shit – but I like it.


My first and I had a lot in common as well. I know they say that opposites attract but for me personally, commonality works best in my relationships as I find having common interests and values minimizes a lot of stress and unnecessary arguments. My first and I did disagree on a couple of major topics, however you tend to turn a blind eye for the ones you love. As time goes on though, sometimes you grow apart, and these differences become even more apparent. Sometimes you start off on the same path and then the routes change – whether you choose to go down the same path together or not is up to a range of factors.


Now I’m starting to realise that despite having a lot in common with my first – perhaps I have even more in common with those who are currently in my life. It’s not just about having a lot in common, it’s about having the right things in common – and this is the difference in my interactions within my relationships that I am starting to be more aware of and acknowledge as important.

My thoughts lead me to believe that if I was able to love the wrong person so much – imagine the amount of love I will be able to give to the right person. The potential to love again definitely exists, but it takes a while to get through the fog and gain a clearer perspective of this possibility.


Whatever happens in my future it’s comforting to know that just because one loving process may end, it doesn’t mean love ends for good. I have come to realise that we all have a range of soul mates that come into our lives to teach us valuable lessons, and to help our souls evolve. This is what opens us up to the opportunity of multiple loves – a concept I never quite understood until now.


It’s true that it is better to have loved and lost, because had I had not loved at all, I would have never come to this conclusion. Being in love once taught me how to love again, as did being loved. Love is a beautiful thing, and our lifetime spent on this earth is short. Building walls to avoid hurt and heartbreak only hinders your chances of experiencing new and better loving relationships. This is a risk I’m not willing to take because I love, love and all the good that comes with it.


My advice to those of you thinking you’ll never find love again… Start with yourself. Love yourself, and half the battle is already accomplished. Take the time to grieve your past relationships and when you’re ready, get back out there. Carpe diem!

Love, light, and a little more love,

X Cat

Can you learn to love again?