The real story of Cinderella….

I am a firm believe that fairy tales, romantic movies and books like “Fifty Shades of Grey” are responsible for the unrealistic expectations some women have for relationships and life in general, me included.

My sister said it best when she said she had to stop reading “Fifty Shades of Grey” because she was getting so mad at her boyfriend for not being affectionate enough or thoughtful enough. I mean, what man can live up to Christian Grey?

Maybe it would be helpful if they made sequels to movies like Cinderella, showing Cinderella after her and Prince Charming had children. She would be dressed again in her rag clothing, carrying laundry baskets and breakfast trays up the stairs to her kids and husband. She would spend her days cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, giving baths, she would yell at the Prince for not pulling his weight around the house or helping with the kids and after the kids went to bed she would collapse in a heap on the couch, exhausted. It would portray an adult relationship how it actually is, with fighting and making up. It would show women that a real relationship, no matter how much of a fairy tale falling in love is, matures into something much more complex. You both will have your fair share of doubts and hopefully you will be able to turn to each other during those times. A relationship isn’t looking at each other across the room and falling madly in love, it’s choosing to build a life together and intertwining every aspect of yourself with another person.

I have learned there are more important, REAL, things that I want in a relationship.

I want a man who, when our kid throws up all over the floor and then falls into it, cleans it all up with no complaints. That’s my idea of Prince Charming!

I want inside jokes, to be able to communicate from across the room with a look, I want warm arms to fall into after a long day. Above all I want someone who I have fun with. No relationship is perfect, every relationship has weak spots and problems, in the long run you have to chose the qualities in a relationship that are important to you.

Every person has different things they need from a relationship. You can’t judge whether or not someone’s relationship is good or bad unless you are in it. What you need from your partner might be completely different from what someone else needs. No two relationships are the same. It’s up to you to decide what is right for you.

I say it all the time, you are responsible for your own happiness. Figure out what it is you want and don’t settle for anything less. Even if you have to go through something unbelievably hard to find happiness, I promise you it’s worth it in the end.  At least it was for me. 🙂

Being “in love”….

“Love is a temporary madness, it erupts like volcanos and then subsides.  You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because that is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion, it is not the desire to mate every second of every day, it is not lying awake at night imagining that he is kissing every cranny of your body. No, don’t blush, I am telling you some truths. That is just being “in love”, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.”

Falling in love is one of the most powerful, exciting, and exilerating times two people can have together. It is an amazing feeling to have your every thought consumed by another person. Learning about that person and spending hours and hours talking to each other. Falling in love is hopeful. Falling in love is passionate. But the all consuming feeling of falling in love is not one that lasts. You have to have a strong enough bond to love each other through real life. Because eventually you get comfortable with each other and you stop spending every second trying to impress each other. You see each other at your lowest of lows and it isn’t pretty or romantic. The challenge is to keep some of that romance and passion alive even when things become mundane and routine. It isn’t easy to find romance when you have kids, jobs, mortgage payments…etc.

One of the things I think it most important in my relationship is keeping the romance alive. Our “falling in love stage” was incredible. We fell so hard for each other and I have never felt about anyone the way I feel about Jim. It was an incredible time. It’s those memories I turn to when we have harder times. It reminds me of the things I love about him when they are a little harder to see.

Jim and I went through a lot of hard times, most of which were brought on ourselves, but we survived and are so much stronger because of it. We are both stubborn, pig headed, opinionated and we can have fights that would make your head spin. Sometimes we are not the best at being grateful for the little things we do for each other. We are essentially the same person in that we like our space and we don’t feel the need to talk everything to death. We can both be a little selfish and it can be hard to live with someone who is so much like you. But Jim and I have fun together, we take the time to be romantic. We take the time for us and that is why I think our relationship will last.  You go through your highs and your lows together and hopefully they make you stronger. Our past has made us stronger.

Relationships are so interesting. They are so complex and so different person to person. No one really knows what someone’s marriage or relationship is like unless you are in it. Relationships are forever changing and evolving, like people. I think to make a relationship last you have to take inventory at times of what’s going well and what isn’t. You have to work together to make your relationship better. But most of all you have to want to make your relationship better.

I know a lot of people who are going through hard times in their relationships. Some of those people will survive the hard times and work on the problems. Some of them are past that point and they will go their own ways. Neither path is an easy one. Both involve a lot of soul searching and hard work.

In the end you have to do what makes YOU happy. You are responsible for your own happiness and life is too short to be anything but happy.