Managing Ex-Pectations

There are all sorts of platitudes aimed at strengthening the resolve of an ex – “girl…it’s his loss”, “you deserve better’, “you know you’re not going to be single for long” and one of my personal favorites, “girl please…that fool gonna come running back soon (sucks teeth)’. Then, when the (public) tears stop falling and everyone thinks you’re over him/her, they start sending you the quotes: “oh, you’re dating my ex? I thought the ‘five second’ rule only applied to food”, or, Heaven forbid they even think you’re thinking about getting back together, “girl, you’ve chewed that gum already”! Or maybe even this one, ‘when your past calls let it go to voice-mail; it has nothing new to say”.

But the truth is, from break-down to break-up and finally being able to keep down break-fast, how many of us really do tell the truth about how we feel? How many are brave enough to risk the possible ridicule of our friends by admitting that “no, I don’t want to ‘do better’; he/she was exactly what I deserved”.

There is a thing that happens and dare I say a not-so-good thing, that immediately cloaks us when in the throes of heartache; and it immediately goes to work erasing all that we knew of ourselves. Seemingly immediately after the door closes or the phone call ends this thing comes and sits next to us, disguised as ‘friend’ or ‘counselor’ and goes to work. It begins by attacking our central nervous system; in fact, quite like our relationships, it goes right to the heart of the matter.

Let’s address this, shall we? Break-ups are tough. They are painful, scary, heart-breaking, but at times, absolutely necessary. But the truth is, at other times, they are the dumbest decision that one person can make; forever altering the reality and security of the other. So, what I would like to highlight in part is this – when your heart hurts, when you get bruised, when it seems as if your world has been tilted by the very very fat man who, instead of staying firmly in the middle, has in fact gone to the end, thus unbalancing everything, simply tell the truth. Never let anyone, never let anyone silence the truth of your being.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not advocating walking around telling strangers your damn life story; nor am I saying that you won’t look a bit (and look how cool I am for knowing this phrase) “cray cray” if you walk around town crying and wailing (and I have done that); but what I am saying is that too often we are asked to live behind others’ curtain of secrecy, forced to get better quickly so that they don’t have to look at or deal with our pain. If that is your reality, maybe keep the ex and change your friends? Ha-ha, just kidding; maybe 😉

Love doesn’t hurt. People hurt. If you’ve loved and lost but the mistake was yours; fix it. If the mistake was theirs, be open to their attempt to fix it; even if no longer open to them. All I’m saying is there is no need to walk around with the pain if love still exists. It is not necessary to pretend to be over something if you’re not. It is absolutely okay to take your time, process the truth in your heart, take care of yourself, love him/her – out loud or privately, move through the muck until you get to the other side. Take your time. Speak it out. Cry it out. Pray it out. Yell it out. Love it out. But under no circumstances should you lie it out!

I don’t know about you, but I hate the word “ex”; I think it’s lonely and needs some ‘help’. So for me, I prop it up: #excitement, #exactly, #expectations, #exemplary, #example, #examine, #exciting, #excusable, #extraordinary, #exhilarating.


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