I know what you may be thinking: “How the heck can I find the silver lining when I didn’t win over the guy I wanted to be with?” Though it may not seem clear right away, I can tell you from my own experience that it will make sense one day. Having felt rejected, abandoned, deceived, and unloved, I KNOW firsthand what it feels like to think you are not good enough and that timing is never on your side. Let me share with you my story, which for the first time is being shared publicly, hoping this will instill confidence and faith in the belief that everything happens for reason.
Before I founded my coaching practice, I was still working in national accounts management and doing a lot of business traveling. On top of that, I had just started my MBA program and just added walking to my exercise regimen as I was still struggling to lose excess weight. Playing a balancing act was always the story of my life, so this was normal for me. The only thing missing at this time was having a man in my life. I had always been in a long-term and serious relationship and for the first time I was single and not looking for love. I needed and wanted a break. I just wanted to embrace being single and so began my soul searching. Au contrare monfrare, life threw me a curveball and entered Dean into my world. (Names have been changed to protect the subjects in the story.)
Dean and I met through mutual friends. He was smart, sweet, stylish, very handsome, down-to-earth, and an amazing dancer. Truly a catch, he took my breath away when we first met. There was something about his aura that made you feel like the whole world revolved around you. He had amazing eye contact and was truly engaged when you talked to him. A tender voice, charming personality, and old soul, Dean stole my heart from the moment he accidentally bumped into me and we gazed into each other’s eyes for a couple of seconds as he apologized. It was as cheesy as the Jerry Maguire line, “You had me at hello.”
As I learned more about Dean, I discovered he had just gotten out of a long-term and long-distance relationship just weeks prior. He told me from the get-go that he was not looking for a relationship and that he was doing some soul-searching of his own. I shared the sentiment and related really well to his situation as I had also gotten out of a long-term and long-distance relationship months prior. I saw Dean’s and my similar situations as a sign that we were supposed to be together during our soul-searching for whatever reason. It was a strong feeling I had in me and, over the course of the next couple of months, Dean and I grew closer both emotionally and intimately. We both agreed that though we had feelings for each other, it would be best to not be exclusive for fear of being each other’s rebounds. Though I logically agreed with him, I had a lot of inner turmoil because I was becoming more and more emotionally attached to him. That’s when things started spiraling out of control.
Dean had been upfront with me the whole time that he was not in the state of mind to start a relationship. In fact, I had inspired him to break his behavioral pattern of moving from one relationship to another without finding meaning in his own life. Even though that meant I would potentially not be in that equation, I was proud of him for staying true to his virtue. The quasi-relationship Dean and I had was truly eating away at me because I secretly wanted more. I wanted him to sweep me off my feet and tell me that I was the one for him. I wanted to be the one to win him over. Though the world seemed to stand still when he and I were together in each other’s presence, he just wasn’t willing to take our relationship to the next level. He always assured me that I was a phenomenal woman who would find the love I deserved. However, because he didn’t pursue a relationship with me, I was receiving mixed messages. So, basically, I realized he was trying to tell me, “I’m just not that into you.”
Since he didn’t have it in him to break things off with me and after major reflection on my part, I ended our five-month romance. I felt empowered, extremely liberated, and proud of myself for standing up for the things I believed in and making a choice to not compromise my integrity for any one or any reason. I didn’t blame him for not having feelings for me because I realized that it was a complicated situation. I was just disappointed and hurt that timing seemed to not be on my side when I had met someone so amazing on all levels. People like that didn’t seem to show up often for me.
Extremely broken-hearted and depressed, I chose to move on and aspired to continue my soul search and make sense of that experience. So, for the first time in my life, I decided to seek psychotherapy for my behavioral patterns and also joined a support group that helped women who were molested as children. It seemed timely. During my continued reflection on life, I realized that my behavioral patterns stemmed from my childhood and repeated through my adulthood. I knew that if I didn’t seek professional insight on this topic, that my actions would repeat in the next relationship. So, my decision to seek therapy and support went far beyond my experience with Dean.
As I explored my past and learned a lot about my tendencies to have abusive and codependent relationships, I gained more clarity in my life and became inspired to start truly making shifts in my behavior. The intake counselor asked me the most powerful question that would change my life: “What do you want to do when you grow up?” It was cute. I told her that one day I would like to ultimately be a motivational speaker. She followed up with, “Why not now?” I told her that I had just gotten over my quarter-life crisis and that I didn’t believe anyone my age would have the credibility or experience to be a motivational speaker. She reassured me that as long as I believed that, it would be true. She then suggested that I explore life coaching as a possible avenue to gain experience in my pursuit to be a motivational speaker. I had never heard of life coaching and was positive that even if I explored the profession, I would still have to wait until I was a ripe old age to assume that role. However, the concept intrigued me so much that I immediately conducted extensive research and seriously explored the possibility.
Fast forward five months, I was sitting in a coffee shop by myself working away on my laptop computer and in the corner of my eye I recognized a woman I had worked with at a previous sales job. We chatted briefly and exchanged contact information. Her brand new business card read, “Life Coach.” My mouth dropped open and goosebumps covered my body from head-to-toe. She shared with me that she had started her own practice about a year prior. The catalyst for her was eliminating the behavioral patterns and tendency to have abusive and codependent relationships! I am sure you can imagine my shock and surprise at the odds of that happening. Timing was everything!
Fast forward another three months, after conducting additional research and now having a coaching mentor, I had decided to register for coaching certification training at the most prestigious coaching institute in the world. Strapped for cash as a single mother, who worked and went to school both full time, I struggled with the ability to secure the funds for the training curriculum, transportation, and room and board. What unfolded in the next couple of weeks were astonishing! I located funding for the training program. I found a program located in a nearby major city that was less than a two hour drive away from home. Most shockingly, I discovered that the training would be held at a chain hotel, of which I had accumulated frequent traveler awards through my business travel, and I had just enough points to redeem one full week of hotel lodging for the exact week that the training would occur! Could all of these events seriously be coincidences? I think not! This was crazy to me, but I took it all in and saw this as a very evident sign.
Fast forward three more months, and now roughly one year after breaking up with Dean, I launched my coaching practice and founded Bx Life Coaching. Though I didn’t understand it then, when all was still unfolding, I understand it now with so much clarity why things transpired as they had. I smile when I reflect on this story. I even quietly thank Dean for being a part of that necessary process. He may not know how much his actions had positively impacted my life. The quasi-relationship I had with Dean was the catalyst for me to explore my passion in life and discover my true potential. I didn’t win over the man, but I acquired something much greater beyond anything I could have ever fathomed.
Not winning the man who I thought was “the one” was the best disappointment I could have ever achieved because I ended up possessing the greatest gifts in the world: high integrity, my passion for coaching, an increased level of consciousness, a non-judgmental aptitude, an ability to fearlessly live my life with intent, and most importantly having true self-love. I would never give up this experience for the world.