I already have a Saturday post lined up for you, but I wanted to respond to the weekend writing prompt because this is a topic close to my heart: MY OWN HEART! I think of my heart as that place where I hold not just my feelings and emotions, but also my hopes, dreams, aspirations, ideals and all sorts of precious parts of me. My heart defines me, as your heart defines you.
Now this is not my the fault of my parents, but I think I was perhaps encouraged to leave the nest too early. It was not a lack of love. But my parents, are very highly functioning people, both have had impressive careers. Perhaps they had their own hopes and dreams, aspirations and ideals that they wanted for me.
They nudged me to pursue education and a high flying career. I did what they were encouraging me and ended up working in a law firm and guess what? I HATED IT! Eventually I felt as if I had to get out or I would go crazy. I switched to the first job I could find – I was now doing tax returns. Which may sound boring, but it was a relief for me to have escaped law – is is so far from justice most of the time, it’s sickening.
They also highly approved of my first boyfriend, who was a respectful, polite, handsome young man, with perfect teeth and a great job. His parents were close to my parents. Only, after almost ten years together, I realized I WAS NOT IN LOVE. That’s the simple way of summing it up. Actually it was more serious than that. The two of us had different hopes, dreams, aspirations, ideals and outlooks. We were going in different directions and there was more and more conflict between us. I realized that I could not respect him, nor love him, and that gradually I was becoming sickened by him. Eventually I felt as if I had to end the relationship or I would go crazy. So I did.
What followed was a period during which I sensed some disappointment from my parents. Worse still was the depression that descended on me. It was hard. I had some good friends who kept my head above the water, but for a long time I was heavy hearted, disillusioned. I went through a time when all those hopes, dreams, aspirations and ideals seemed no longer relevant. It was as if my heart was supressed.
I have read some other bloggers who are writing about depression and being broken hearted. It is tough. It can hurt and can sap all your energy for life. For me, it was a stage when I felt my heart was no longer allowed to breathe. I felt as if this world was kinda forcing me down a tunnel of slavitude to things I did not want. I did not feel I could dream or have any ideals. That was a horrible stage to go through. I felt lost, broken. I had no self-confidence. I was becoming gloomier and the thought of years ahead of working in jobs that were monotonous or living alone were draining to me.
Gradually, things picked up, and it seemed to take a long time. My friends were steady constant support, but they could not magic away the depression. They were good company and good listeners though. I could not have asked for more. They did give me some helpful tips that made a small difference and kept me going. I think Simon helped me a lot. As you know, Simon had his own ideas about relationships, which was hard for me. Yet he never discouraged me from dreaming, from having ideals. He allowed me to believe that you can hope and aspire to a life, a purpose and the kind of relationship that satisfies your heart. He kept on telling me that I would find a great guy who wanted what I wanted.
What I did not know back then was that I had already found someone! Ben was already hovering, carefully tempering his behaviour towards me so that I knew he respected that I was with Simon. But Ben was slowly finding his way into my heart.
Where is my heart now? It is beating strong and able to protect those hopes, dreams, aspirations and ideals that make me ME! Ben loves my heart. He also has a heart that I love. I think our hearts are becoming entwined as our hopes and dreams merge.
I no longer see a future based on my own hopes and dreams. My outlook involves what I hope and dream for Ben and myself. I don’t dream of fame, fortune or frivolous things. I dream of a modest life with rewarding work and great friends around us.
I am glad that the depression that exhausted me for some years lifted. I am glad that my heart is liberated and nourished by Benjamin O’Connor, who is someone who has never abandoned his ideals and his dreams. He is very good for my heart. My heart is safe, strong and snug. My hopes, dreams, aspirations and ideals are clearer to me than ever and I keep them close.