Does Your Future Lie in Your Past?

I was at work reviewing a report with my supervisor when a coworker stopped by to say good morning. She had some news to share with us.

“I just wanted to tell you all that I got married over the weekend,” she said.

“Wait, what?” I replied, though not exactly the right response.

Immediately I looked at her ring finger and lo and behold there was a silver wedding band. My supervisor and I looked at each other in shock because she had never announced an engagement to our office.

“He was someone from my past,” she explained, “We reunited a few months ago, and then we decided to get married.”

In between our countless WOW’s, we congratulated her and she went on her way. Still shocked, my supervisor said to me, “Geez, can I think of someone from my past?”

We both seemed to stare off into the paneled ceiling and ponder about the exes we’ve left behind, or at least tried to. Could it be that our soul mates are somewhere in our memories?

I believe that sometimes in love, second chances can be deserved. After all, unconditional love is like perfection on earth and we are quite flawed beings. Expecting us to handle relationships flawlessly would almost be equivalent to expecting a three-year-old to guard the Mona Lisa. We are bound to make a mistake or two; it’s inevitable.

I’m sure that for many of you, a certain someone is crossing your mind. They may have been a high school sweetheart, a summer fling, or perhaps a friend-turned-lover. Despite its ending, the bitterness of the breakup did not ruin the sweetness of your time together. This causes us to think of rom-com like scenarios where you both reunite on a crowded street or maybe on the train. Throw in a few plot twists, some laughs, and then the two of you live happily ever after.

Unfortunately for some, a reunion with a past love does not always turn out like the movies. We tend to get amnesia when it comes to why things never lasted with an ex. Rather than remember them for who they were, we remember them as who we wanted them to be.

In Demetria Lucas’ book “A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life” she describes two types of men- type A and type B. Type A is like Aiden, for those who watch the countless Sex and the City reruns. He is sweet, kind, dependable, and the man your father would approve of. On the other hand, there is the type B like Mr. Big.

“B? There’s just something about a B. You can’t ever really put your finger on why. He doesn’t do half of what A does, but you will do twice as much for him. He’s not really reliable. He’s definitely inconsistent and usually not entirely honest. He might not be conventionally attractive, but he’s hypnotized you into believing he is the finest man you will ever encounter. He is, however, drama.”

– Lucas, Demetria. A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life. N.p.: Atria, 2011. Print.

I have observed that usually the man or woman we consider as “the one who got away” is that type B. They were exciting, a thrill, and there was never dull moment with them. That amnesia really kicks in as we give that person chance, after chance, after chance…

After reading Lucas’ book, I’ve often wondered if over time a type B could become a type A.

There is so much that can happen when two people in love take time to grow apart. I think back on my past and have come to understand that I would not have matured into who I am today without walking away from a relationship, which I thought would last a couple of forevers. I believe that some journeys in life are meant to be taken alone, but if it brings two people back together then the relationship can become much stronger. You can share your experiences and the lessons you’ve learned. But also, you come to understand that your relationship can persevere.

In one of my favorite songs by Wale, “The Breakup Song,” he details the whirlwind that is well, a breakup.

“Gotta get better with time; relationships should never rewind. Better leave it all behind, guess this means you could never be mine.”

I can understand why some feel it is best to leave the past where it belongs. To reunite with an old flame would be a setback for them, and I would encourage them to follow what makes sense.

“Life is a movie we both say cut. But most time darling the sequel sucks.”

Or does it? Do you believe your future can be found in your past?

—Tara Pook