The Dance and the Do-Si-Do

Do you remember your first love? I know I do. With spring fever in the air these days, I have been reminiscing . . .

I had the best first boyfriend a girl could have back in high school. He was smart, kind, and cute – a geek, an artist and a jock! Creative, brainy and attractive, we had some great times together. We dated for most of our junior and senior years of high school. He saw me through some rough times including my sister’s cancer diagnosis during my senior year.

It was a beautiful thing while it lasted… and heartbreaking when it ended.

That relationship served a major purpose in my life. The thing is, as with most major love-life events, when you are in the thick of them it’s hard to see them clearly. It didn’t take long after we broke up for me to find the man of my dreams at college. He was a senior when I was a freshman, and my heart just about stopped every time I saw him. My tongue tied up in knots, my face got red – the whole romantic whirlwind. Eventually I started to flirt with him, but either he didn’t get it or wasn’t interested. I never saw him with other girls on campus as he hung out mainly with a group of guys who were smart, hysterically funny, and a bit out of synch from the normal crowds.

So I chased him until he caught me. Almost a year after his graduation, after sending him a letter (this was the OLDEN days before e-mail!) he called and asked me out. He was living an hour away, but drove to the campus to pick me up to take me to a Neil Young concert for our first date. 

Alone together, I discovered he was just as wonderful as I had imagined. Our relationship was effortless, even with the ups and downs of living in separate cities. Until this last year, I would have said that was the best time of my life. I felt loved, accepted for who I was, and carefree. Life was good for those two and a half years. 

We became engaged around the time I was to graduate college. He was my forever man… or so I thought.

By the spring of my first year in the business world, exhausted from tax season and three months away from our wedding, something no longer felt right. We were out of synch on almost everything. The humor that had lightened and enriched our relationship disappeared, seemingly overnight. Just at the time when we should have been at our happiest anticipating our upcoming marriage, I felt like we were a million miles apart. Another man at work suddenly appeared very attractive to me and I thought, “Wow! Something can’t be right if I am thinking about someone else when I am getting married in a few months” so we postponed the wedding, never to reschedule it again. At the time, it was the most difficult choice I had ever made. The pain, embarrassment, and confusion were excruciating.

It has been twenty-eight years since that spring in 1986 when I knew deep inside that something was wrong. And although I still may not know all the forces that came to play into my decision, it makes sense now in ways it never could have back then.

Years after we parted company, I finally realized the truth. Neither one of us were ready for marriage, both of us having deep childhood issues we needed to address before we could bring real maturity into our relationship. But at the time, all I knew was this feeling in my gut - that nauseous feeling that wouldn't go away that something was wrong. That was a pivotal moment, listening to my body, even though there was no logical reason behind what it was telling me.

At the time we called things off, I had no idea whatsoever what might have been going on. I only knew in my gut that our relationship wasn’t right. 

Lately, I have found myself seeing my abortion and subsequent miscarriage in the same light. Both losses were traumatic. There is no question about that. At the time, I had no choice but to listen to my gut (when it came to the abortion) and ride the wave of grief as to both losses. In the thick of the all the emotional turmoil, it was impossible to see the bigger picture.

But with hindsight being 20/20, I can now see that both experiences were for my highest good. These experiences led me back to my own beginnings and where I needed to find healing, wholeness, and love. Thanks to my unborn children and the self-reflection their presence has inspired in me, I have been able to uncover my true nature and the things that truly matter beyond all the traditions and rules I was raised with as a child. It has been a rollercoaster ride, but I am finally awake, alive and free! There is no place else I would rather be. 

I wonder about all these past relationships – human and not yet embodied. Perhaps the dance and the do-si-do are all a part of our growth process. We need to practice and learn our lessons before the right “one” comes along, whether it is a partner or a child. Perhaps all these experiences which we are so apt to label as “bad” are really just part of the process.

What has been the dance of souls through your life and what have you learned? Can you imagine that your unborn children want to help you with that dance? What would they be telling you, reminding you? Will you continue to bury the secret or let the gift of the lesson they are bringing to you out into the light to be transmuted? It’s up to you. What will you choose?


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