When thinking of valuable lessons that I have learned when it comes to love, using the term "romantic" would not typically be included. It was really the eye-opening, gut-wrenching, ego-piercing experiences that challenged me to the core of my heart that taught me the greatest lessons when it comes to true love.
I've had a unique life so far where every experience along the way—some trying and wounding, some outright failures, and finally successes—has taught me something about people and relationships, about what love is, and what love is not.
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It's the awakening of one's spirit to your own behavior which, until a certain point the ego has thought of as just fine, is no longer acceptable on any level in the relationship. Then you can finally begin to make the necessary changes in yourself in order to be a better partner. When you decide you want to become a better person, you actually have already started on that road, and you should realize how valuable the experience with the other soul has been.
Through the rough moments in the relationship and the willingness to accept faults in yourself and your partner each of you is already changing for the better. You will finally realize how kind, healthy, and real you want to be. There is now no room for games or selfishness, only experience of life and the journey that's to come. This is when true honor, friendship, and respect really develop.
Maybe it was the experience of my husband leaving Post-it notes unexpectedly in random places around the house, with words expressing the different reasons he loved me following a big, ridiculous fight, that made me remember true love can be difficult at times, but will always bring out the best in a person and will always offer rewards, no matter how small. Or maybe it's the times he's driving me crazy, or I him, that we both stop and truly realize we are each other's best friends no matter what.
That instant of knowing and recognition in itself is, I guess, the most romantic experience that has taught me lessons when it comes to love.
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