I'm thankful that I have no super painful pasts with any of my boyfriends. I'm happy to say I'm friends with them all to this day (on Facebook at least!). My first real boyfriend after Benjamin was probably my only really serious relationship other then B. We were only officially together 6 months although we had been hanging out and working towards being together for several months before that. We got serious fast and I had every intention on marrying him when I turned 18 and as far as I knew from him he had the same plan. I was 16 and he was 19 when we started dating. He bought me a "promise" ring which basically is being engaged to be engaged.....Halloween Eve of 2003 he broke up with me at a high school football game. Lol! It seems funny now, it felt like the end of the world then. To this day I really don't know why he broke up with me - I heard that he had kinda gotten interested in a girl at a new job he had started. His mom didn't like me and I think she bribed him into breaking up with me (he needed a new car and he got one right after he broke up with me, she bought it.) and I think part of it was he felt so much pressure to "grow up" and be a man because he was supposed to get married in a year and a half.
After that I had a brief "re-bound" relationship with a young guy I met through some mutual friends. He was super sweet, very kind to me and spoiled me with great dates and lots of gifts but even though I liked him I knew I wasn't in love and didn't want to "play" him so I broke it off after less then two months of dating. I broke up with him like 2 days after Valentine's Day - I remember hearing through the grapevine that his mom had some not so kind words to say about me because of that! But he had/has a wonderful family and I think very highly of them all. He's happily married to a really sweet girl and they just had a little baby boy and I couldn't be happier for them all.
I moved to AL after I graduated high school in 2004. I met a guy through my church's college group. He was cute, funny and outgoing. I needed a friend. We dated...on and off, on and off. He was really struggling with what he was supposed to do in life. He had been in some relationships in the past that had complicated things a bit for him. I didn't understand that at the time because my relationship history was brief and pretty uncomplicated. We dated then he broke up with me because he didn't feel like he needed a relationship at the time then 2 weeks later he called me and wanted me back (couldn't resist my charm I guess! Haha!) and we dated again for a bit but he wasn't settled and I wanted a serious relationship and he didn't so he broke up with me again. I was hurt but had seen it coming and was more prepared then I realized. I cared for him but again, I don't think I was truly in love.
And that brings me to my point(s). First - are there things you wish you could ask your exes? Things that maybe for you are still unresolved after all these years? Or maybe things are resolved but you're just curious. You wonder why they made the decisions they did or how they felt when you left, etc. Not because it would change anything but just because maybe like me you're nosey like that! Lol! Like I said, I have no regrets, I know I ended up with the best of the best (lucky for me!) but I do wonder sometimes why things took the turns they did. And I do wonder, not because I wish that had happened instead but you have to think what if they hadn't left or what if you had made yourself stay in spite of yourself....where would you be now? Where would they be? You see who they are now and what they've done in life and you wonder if they would be different if they were with you or if they would have chosen different paths in life. Who would you be instead of who you are today?!
Second - it saddens me to realize how many people have such a twisted version of love. They view all the hurt and disappointments and failures in their lives as "love" and they hate it and despise "love". It saddens me to think they may never know what it is to feel completely, utterly in love with someone and trust that they are loved and respected in return. And that they have that persons undying love. True love. I know that I was loved by all of my boyfriends, they were respectful to me, they cared for me but we weren't in love. And more then anything I would say to all three of the guys I dated that I am thankful to them for not ruining love for me. For not making me hate it or not want it or not believe it existed. In their own ways each of those guys taught me a new dimension of what love is. They didn't twist it or scar me or make me feel worthless. In the end we both knew that we weren't the best for each other and we moved on. Doesn't mean the initial growing apart didn't hurt, it did but they were shallow wounds that healed quickly.
But more then anything I am thankful to my husband, my truest love, who has taught me without any doubts what love is. Love is faithful and strong, it is unwavering even in the face of arguments and fights, it is tender and caring, it is protective and lifting, it is truthful and open even if it hurts for the time, and it is beautiful, it is warm, it is all consuming. I am so grateful that I feel like I've experienced what it is to be truly in love, deeply in love. It doesn't mean love doesn't have rough spots or down times but it's always there and it will always rise back up!