There are moments when I remember both of us laughing, dancing, and I wonder if you’re thinking of me. Do you ask yourself what could’ve been?
Throughout our lives we will all go through situations of joy and heartbreak. Those instances are sure to change our path, or at least leave a huge dent. But in the long run, it’s the moments of complete ambiguity that will leave us wondering what might have happened if they hadn’t moved away, if we would’ve been brave enough to tell them how we felt, or if we hadn’t made the mistake to let them go.
While it’s true that each step in our path leads us to become who we’re supposed to be, there are times when it's inevitable to look back and wonder if the person invading our dreams was the one we were supposed to be with.
We compare our current partners to them
Whenever we start or end a relationship, we find ourselves unavoidably comparing our partner to the one who is no longer in our lives.
We think about their whereabouts
On days when we’re longing for the good days gone by, we think about this lost love. We daydream of where they are, who they’re with, and if they’re thinking about us too.
We idealize them
We never seem to remember anything negative about them. It’s all rainbows, unicorns, and running through fields towards their arms. They stop being memories and turn into our idea of the perfect partner.
We want to find them
Romantic comedies are all about these wild-goose chases and cross-country road trips in search of the one true love that never was. Rarely does this ever consider that both we and our beloved have probably changed and are not the same people who fell in love.
We long for our past self
The nostalgia is not just about them, but who we were back then. Maybe we were more open to love, too naïve to know better, or too young to think about anything but how we felt. But finding them won’t fix us. We should find and come to terms with ourselves first.
We think we’d be happier with them
Again, this is more about us than our ex. If instead of wishing someone would step in and make everything better, we take steps to find happiness, we might actually start making changes and working towards reaching our goals.
We live in the past
Everything looks nicer when seen through the filter of nostalgia. We forget the tears and the moments of desperation, thinking only of the good old days.
There are no rules in love. What works for one person does not necessarily work for another. While your cousin, co-worker, neighbor, or friend might tell you about how their grandparents, distant relatives, or someone on the five o’clock news rekindled the love with their long lost beau after years and years of separation, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should go out and find your great white buffalo.
If we trust fate and our instincts, we’ll find that things happen for a reason. Perhaps the reason it didn’t work out back then was so you could become who you are now. Maybe you were not ready to jump in. Or what if getting together would have created resentment in the long run for one of you?
Instead of looking back, take a deeper gaze at your present. Are you happy? Have you achieved what you always wanted? Are you close to reaching it? What do you want for your future?
Love has a way of finding us when we least expect it. But if we’re closed off because we’re waiting for someone or something, we might never notice what’s right in front of us.