Thanksgiving Is Not Always Happy
With Thanksgiving fast approaching, I recently had the gut-wrenching task of sitting with a girlfriend as she cried her heart out over her current situation. I hear holiday horror stories all the time, but this one is particularly poignant because it involves a dear friend.
She’s positive her family is disgusted with her recent actions, so the thought of sitting down with them for a holiday dinner brings her nothing but anguish.
“There’s nothing in my life I’m proud of,” she wailed, “and I only have myself to blame.”
She sobbed, and I sat quietly listening as she drowned her sorrows in a delightful glass of Cupcake Moscato.
I know it sounds like I am too focused on the vino. But I promise I’m being sympathetic; forgive me for finding the bright side of a very miserable situation.
Anyway, what basically happened is that my girl let a good man go because he couldn’t have children. And, believe me, I’m here to testify he was a GOOD man. Has his MBA from Howard and a great job, and most importantly he loved her, respected her and treated her like a queen.
They had everything in common and were very happy together, but unfortunately, in a very serious car accident in his early 20s, he was rendered sterile.
He explained that he didn’t tell her sooner of his situation because he honestly didn’t think this relationship would end up being so serious. He decided to finally inform her only after he was certain she was the one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with.
Did she take the news well? No. You see, she comes from a very large family and has always wanted children. This news flash was not only a shock but, as far as she was concerned, a deal breaker. So, much to the astonishment of her family and friends, she ended the relationship.
She cried about it for months afterward, and he begged her countless times to take him back. But he was honest in saying he had no interest in raising any child that wasn’t his own. A life with him would be filled with travel, romance, candlelight dinners and sunsets, but no children.
My friend had her mind made up, so she refused all of his pleas until she no longer heard from him.
Then she goes to a club one night and spots a take-your-breath-away heartthrob. He is tall and handsome and has dreamy green eyes and a body like a stallion. She starts a relationship with him the first night they meet, only to later find out he has no education, lives with his mother, can’t keep a job and his usual day consist of pumping iron at the gym and playing video games.
Now she feels like a complete fool.
That good man she let go let brought something to the table. This guy … oh, he just came to eat.
To make matters worse, she recently found out the very good man she let go has found another woman who accepts him just the way he is. They are now engaged and planning a wedding that, from what she described, sounds like a huge extravaganza.
I couldn’t think of one thing to say that could help her pain and sorrow, so I just let her pour her heart out.
But silently I was thinking, why couldn’t you just have accepted this wonderful man the way that he was? Especially when she admitted that she was still desperately in love with him.
To make a long story short, she recently found out she’s having a baby, so she’s getting married to the new guy. It’s going to be a small ceremony at the justice of the peace, all to satisfy her family, who are very disappointed in her.
My friend is filled with regret and wishes she had done things differently, and I can honestly say so do I.
Listen, we all just want to be happy. No one wants to go around in circles. But sometimes the biggest enemy is you. I can’t tell you or anybody what road to take, but I can say this: Don’t get stuck in your expectations. True love is rare and beautiful. It doesn’t just happen because you want it to. Don’t be fooled by imitations or six-pack muscles. If you’re lucky enough to capture it, get out of your own way and thank The Father that it happened. Thinking love will come around again bigger and better is a bet you just might lose.
In love and hope,