I’m not the same person I was when I was 25. I’m not even the same as I was 15 years ago. And I’m thankful for that.
Every now and then, I meet people who I knew years ago — in college or high school — and I can tell they haven’t changed inside. They’ve coasted through the years getting older — but not getting any wiser, as far as I can tell.
If you’re going to become wiser, it’s typically because you’ve done a lot of work on yourself. For me, therapy with a good psychologist was a catalyst for change. Before that, I’d gone through half a dozen bad therapists, which taught me to appreciate the good one I found. (My experience is that most of them get into it because they’re trying to fix themselves. And that wasn’t helpful for me.)
I’ve realized recently, though, that we rarely seem to learn the lessons we need to learn in time to stop us from stumbling into heartbreak. It seems that only by screwing up in big ways — which we’ll later regret — do we have those epiphanies which give us insight.
I was thinking Sunday afternoon about all the lessons I’ve learned from past relationships — and I realize that I didn’t learn those lessons in time to save myself from heartbreak each time.