If You Lose “Me” You’ll Lose “We” – Don’t Forget to Feed the Lion

by Melody Jean

Don't Forget to Feed The Lion Contemporary SeekerWhen embarking on a new relationship, one that I’m truly excited about, I get caught up in the whirlwind, as we all do. It’s an ecstasy, a high. It’s unlike any we will experience in another way.

I’m fortunate in that I’ve had many beneficial and significant relationships over the course of my life. As the saying goes “It’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all.”

Yet, everywhere we turn it seems that intimate relationships are falling to the waste side. Roughly half of all adults in the US are single, whether they’ve been married before, or not. We unite, only to have it end.

How it Unfolds – My Real-World Example

It isn’t until months or years down the road when it happens. I start to feel unsettled.

Until my last few relationships I was never able to put my finger on it. I’ve examined this entity in great detail and believe that perhaps what I’ve uncovered may be applicable to many. In fact, it may be a key factor in the demise of relationships in general.

Now aware of this ailment, I believe that I really might have a good chance of finding a long-lasting, successful relationship. Therefore, none of this is in vein.

—> Looking the Wrong Way

At one point or another, everyone experiences that which I speak to here. An uneasy feeling that manifests inside despite all that surrounds us. Yet we’re not conscious of where it originates.

We feel incredibly unsettled and attribute it to our externals. Particularly those in closest proximity. We look to our tangible assets – significant others, family, friends, our bodies, houses, jobs. Anything, really, to explain why we don’t feel right inside. Many times we go so far as to say we’re unhappy, but we’re not sure of the reason.

When the unease becomes so strong often we feel the answer is to run from the person who is closest. Since we don’t feel “right” surely it’s because they’re wrong or the relationship is wrong. Of course, it is. Isn’t it? It can’t be me.

Yet, maybe it’s because we’re looking the wrong way.

—> Fixing What’s Not Broken

In the past I didn’t run. I stayed despite the unease. In the interim the feeling would become stronger. In order to eliminate it, I’d look for something to fix.

I’d often focus my attention on fixing something that wasn’t even broken – my relationship. Have you ever tried to fix something that wasn’t broken? Well it doesn’t work out too well <wink, wink> but that’s a post for another day. In short, it brings about an end to the relationship.

On the flip-side of what I normally did, which I later became guilty of, as well, is to run. Run as far and as fast as we can. We leave the other in the dust of the wind.

Either way, whether we try to fix it to death, or decide to run, we at least ensure it ends. This brings comfort because on a subconscious level we believe that if it ends, the unease will go away for good. Are we mistaken?

—> It’s Still There

Eventually we find a new partner only to find that the euphoria is short lived. Once again, the uneasiness creeps back in. That feeling that we thought went away when we disentangled the other from our lives.

Yet, alas, we find that’s not the case. We actually just managed to push it down, out of sight for a while.

The mind has a funny way of playing tricks on us. It’s a masquerade at times. This happens because we lack the awareness or understanding of how to determine what’s really transpiring. Why we have this “feeling” inside.

I’ve found that neither he nor we is the problem. The ailment is inside of me. It’s a hunger. In creating “we” I feel as if I lose a part of “me,”  to some degree. With this, I become unsettled.

I elaborate more on this point later in the post, but here I’ll interject with an ex-boyfriend’s observation of yours truly, me.

—> An Ex-Boyfriend Sheds Some Light

I spoke with an Ex about this recently. He actually gave me more credit than I thought that I deserved.

He said that I never lost myself when with him because if I did, he wouldn’t still be attracted to me. While I may have felt as if I was not being me, he claimed that I never went to an extreme or strayed too far from the real me.

It was comforting to know that he didn’t see it the way that I did. Apparently I masked it well.

Yet, I know that even if I hadn’t yet lost a part of me, I was heading in that direction. I felt it again. A fraction of me was melting away. I felt stifled, stopped.

It wasn’t until we broke up that I saw it clearly. I was again unsettled and seeking to fix something that was already whole. For some reason I couldn’t uncover the real cause for the pit in my stomach.

It frightened me because I wondered if we hadn’t broken-up, and I hadn’t woken-up, that I may have lost that part of myself for good this time.

The Hunger Within

I’ve always been a seeker. It’s innate. I love learning and soaking up the riches of this majestic world. I never realized how deep this need, or hunger was – to keep growing, learning and doing. That is until I was able to get past the superficiality of my younger years and the need for instant gratification. It was then that I first became aware.

I’m told that true learning and knowledge comes in bits and pieces, so we need patience. It can’t happen all at once or we’ll be overwhelmed, according to Idries Shah one of the greatest Sufi writers of all time. It also can’t happen when we’re all-consumed with desire and the abundance of the materialism in the apparent world.

—> My Self Diagnosis

Through introspection I was able to diagnose myself. It seems that when this unease creeps-up it’s because I’m neglecting this part of me. I’m not being true to me, for whatever reason. Whether it’s for the relationship or because of the relationship.

I know this now because upon reflection I realized something significant. Ironically I’ve accomplished all of my greatest achievements while I was technically “single.”

This blog is an example. It manifested after I parted with my most recent ex-boyfriend. I don’t think that I would have begun this were we still together. And if I did, it wouldn’t have been for many years down the road, until the unease became so great that I would have been forced to figure it out.

—> The Remedy

The remedy is simple really. It’s to keep a balance. That is, I need to continue to evolve and enhance my world, yet do so with someone in my life. You see, I never want to be complacent. With complacency comes unease. Well at least for me anyway.

When creating an “us” we tend to fall into a routine with the other. It becomes monotonous in a way. With that it’s all too easy to forgo “me.”

—> The Medicine – Don’t Forget to Feed the Lion

Now that I’m finally conscious of this element that resides deep within me – a hunger that needs to be fed by higher knowledge, I need to do just this. I have to feed the lion, so to speak. The way to do this is by continuing to search and seek. Even when part of a “we.”

I need to embrace my hunger. I can’t stop placing myself in situations where I’ll be afforded the opportunity to learn, grow and attain higher knowledge. Regardless of a relationship. That’s not fair to me and it’s not fair to him.

Perhaps mystical poet, Rumi, said it best “Indeed hunger is the king of medicines: listen, take hunger to heart, don’t regard it with such contempt. Everything unsweet is made sweet by hunger: without hunger even delicacies have no savor.”

—> Something in Between

I wrote the poem below a while back when I was really struggling with this entity. It helped me to see this more clearly.

I’ll never be done growing and for whatever reason, in the past, I could only do so on my own. I didn’t know how to balance a “me” with “us.”

So for better or worse, I vow to never forget to feed my lion when in a relationship. It won’t be easy, and it will take effort. Yet, I truly believe that this is the way to attain a long lasting “we” and still continue to enhance “me.”

“Something in Between”

Essential oil

Missing factor

Simply so complex

 

I’ve finally deciphered

the constant patterns

from checkered to paisley

 

I now know why

we unfolded

the way that we did

 

Years slipping through my hands

I was merely mistaken

The missing ingredient

was always me for the taking

 

Alone I blossomed

Together I perished

 

Now I speak only for gray

Esoteric shades

with many dimensions

 

I leave behind neither me or us

melding together black and white

Me and us

 

Hidden talents

will escape my hands

manifesting my reality

 

Finally in a shade of gray

I’ll find me with us

Never again forsaking me

 

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Alaysia

This gives me something to really contemplate in my own life. I use to be quite the marathon runner. Thank you so much for being so open. Your blogs have become a delightful habit for me.

Reply

Melody Jean

Thanks Alaysia. I’m glad that you were able to take something away from the post. I think we all forget to feed our lion, hence becoming complacent and uneasy. As you suggested, at the very least, it’s something to take a minute to examine. As for running … go get ’em, no time like the present! Right?! 🙂 Thanks again for your thoughtful note!

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