When you're dating or in a serious relationship with someone, it gives you a peek at how life happens for somebody else. That's all relationships are really: adapting to how things unfold for each of you and testing the strengths of your relationship as good, bad and worse end up happening.
When my fiancé, now amazing husband, lost his job, I tried not to panic because internalizing the bad situation really wouldn't get us anywhere.
Again, life happens, and I knew it was my job to put my energy toward the misfortunes happening in his life because we were choosing to share our lives together.
I didn't regret any sacrifice or adjustment I had to make to my life for our life to be tolerable and that's because of several reasons.
1. It was out of our control
Sometimes when bad things happen, it has nothing to do with you until you have to deal with it. Losing a job may happen because of corporate issues or just budget cuts.
I find that if you get worked up about things that are out of your control, you waste all your energy on analyzing the problem instead of assessing it.
He lost his job; it sucked, but it was only onward from there.
The beauty (yes, beauty) in being knocked down when you're in a relationship is that you have some help getting up. Whether that's emotionally or financially, you have some backing and that can be amazingly comforting when the gut-punches of life take their swings.
2. I knew the feeling all too well
When you have been through an experience and witness someone you love or extremely care about go through the same thing, you can't help but to sympathize.
There's something about genuinely saying, “I know how you feel,” and meaning it. When you can relate, it sets an equal playing field for any generous gestures that would usually be hard shunned away by the other person's pride.
3. Was in it to win it
Now this can't apply to everyone because it could take an incident like this to really make you understand whether you really want to be with someone.
When someone is stripped of a necessity, do you still see them the same? Do you see the miraculous glow of good times past their funky fog of life now?
It's questions like these that made me realize that life was just happening, and it wouldn't be rainbows and butterflies all the time, but it sure and the hell would be nice to have someone to weather the storms with.
4. Money really isn't the key to happiness
When you or your SO have had money issues, it's interesting to see the things money can't buy, like moments you have shared. Money will always pay the bills, but together you're cashing in on so much more than anything that could be bought.
To be able to help your SO out of a tough financial situation is rewarding, but if you see it as a chore, you really need to do some soul searching and figure out if the relationship is really for you.
We can't control the little bumps we must go over on this road called life, but we do get to choose who we pick up or drop off on the way.
It's not always going to be a sunny drive with the windows down, but if you have a supportive person riding shotgun, the rain is just another day and you just keep driving toward something better together.
Sometimes the things we have get taken away but "things" are never who we are.