All is a creation including a "meaningful" relationship between two people:
The creation of a relationship can be likened to two people coming together to create a garden. As a couple and as individuals, each in their own right
contribute to the making of this garden. The garden can be intelligently
cultivated or allowed to "run wild." But whether the garden is well
tended or left to neglect - it will produce.
What is grown in the garden is largely pre-determined, and not totally
by chance. The couple will reap what they sow.
The cultivation and maintenance
of the garden is critical, requiring commitment, right knowledge, hard work, and maturity. All gardens have to contend with harmful weed infestation. Weeds
by their very nature quickly grow and rapidly reproduce, unchecked,
they will eventually choke the valuable life out of any garden. Given the harm that weeds can do, continuous vigilance is required
by the couple to prevent them from infesting and overtaking their garden. Often, the seeds of failure are present even in the beginning. Thus, it is imperative, right from the start, that
each equally understands and implements the cultivating
process of discovering, uprooting and discarding anything that would negatively affect their relationship.
If by chance a relationship-garden becomes weed infested, it can be renewed if the couple
commit themselves to pulling out the weeds and replacing them
with good seed. If one member intentionally or unknowingly keeps
sowing weeds the garden will eventually become weed infested and non-life-sustaining.
Should both sow weed seeds the garden will change for the worse that much sooner.
A relationship-garden is always a work-in-progress, made or unmade by the couple. People either grow together, wilt together, or part.
Great care is needed with whom
we choose to create a relationship-garden. For that, in itself, will determine
to a large extent the garden's outcome. Not everyone is a good candidate. Upon meeting a potential life-mate, it is best first to date. Dating is not only about having fun but also about acquiring information. By spending time with the person, you learn about them. Observe, listen, and above all ask the pertinent questions, and not to take anything for granted! Find out if there is a life-fit. If he or she is not, then end the courtship and move on with your life. Reflect and learn from each experience. A bad-ending experince will require you to mourn, grieve, and heal. Take responsibility and ownership for the role you played. Self-damaging yourself, becoming mean-spirited or cynical is not the answer. Take this time to better yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually. Avoid making the same mistake. A life-lesson learned indicates personality growth and maturity. Go into the next relationship with your eyes wide-open.
All relating, whether it be to ourselves, to others, or to life in general is either nurturing or toxic. Those with a toxic mindset will live unfulfilling and diminishing lives. They create unnecessary irrationality, strife, and stress. Stress of any nature is harmful to your health and needs to be addressed. Protect yourself; avoid those that are toxic-minded, by simply removing yourself or asking the other to leave. For they will only drain you of your valuable life-energy and poison your mindset.
Life is short; who we allow into it (or allow to stay) is always our choice. Those with a healthy mindset and armed with the right knowledge make good life choices and decisions. Avoid the many love-traps, those who manipulate, prey, or control by using money, sex, alcohol, drugs, power, anger, withholding, etc. By staying in such a relationship you only compromise your physical and mental health.
Before we seek out someone to create a relationship-garden with, it is best that we first prepare ourselves. If we were to compare a "seed"
to a "thought" and our "mind" to our own
personal "garden," we can by using the aforementioned cultivation
process, make or unmake ourselves. For the most part, thought and character are one and the same. We are thinking beings. And who we are and what we
become is determined to a large extent by the thoughts that we choose
to think and act on. All
conduct, whether good or bad, is the blossom of thought.
Friendship is the foundation of any meaningful relation. As the couple ages, the friendship bond between them deepens. With the friendship with whatever comes, standing the test-of-time. Being a friend is not about enabling or codependency - just the contrary. True love is about encouraging, inspiring, and over-coming.
Healthy relationships are life-enhancing and life-affirming. Each cares about the other's physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. There is intimacy and warmth, pleasure and joy. Each enjoy being with the other. Through "thoughtful-dialogue" issues are dealt with and resolved. Those who work out their difficulties become closer and more loving. Life is always more meaningful when you have someone "special" to share it with. Know that special someone is waiting for you to come into their life.
"Each spring I'd sit on my backyard patio and watch my neighbors, an old old man and woman working in their garden. Good people. They would take much of what they had grown to the local food bank. Unfortunately, two winters ago the old man's beloved wife passed away. Even though his wife was no longer with him, the old man continued each year to work their garden. And as he toiled away I'd often hear him talking and singing to himself. It was as though his wife were still with him. For him, she was. Throughout their marriage he had often held his wife in his arms and told her that he was her soulmate, and wanted to go through all eternity with her. The seasons and the years passed by, one after another, and in time, I too matured and became a gardener."
Timothy E. Stevenson 1995 © CopyrightsWorld™ (revised August/2015)
*The above garden metaphor I took from the book, "As a Man Thinketh" by James Allen. I just put my own spin on it regarding relationships. I highly recommend this character-building book. They now have a version, "As a Woman Thinketh." If you enjoyed the above writing and would like to learn more, please view this poem, "Thought and Relationships."