Rekindling an Old Flame

It’s a bright spring afternoon, and you’re out for a walk with a friend, or maybe a pet. You’ve been flying solo for a while, reminding yourself that you don’t depend on a lover for happiness. You’ve built yourself up and worked on your self-esteem, your career, your school – the things that are important to you.

You round a corner and bump into an old flame, someone from a year or two ago who really had you all twisted up with attraction and tender feelings. He’s still gorgeous, with that great smile and laugh, still looks at you like you’re the most beautiful woman in the world. You can’t quite remember exactly how things ended, but you’ve both matured a little. Maybe running into him is a sign that you should try things again.

Wait!

First, you need to stop and evaluate the circumstances, past, present, and future. That doesn’t mean you can’t take him up on an offer to grab a coffee, but don’t dive in headfirst until you know what you’re getting into.

The Past

You need to consider the reasons you broke up with your old flame. Who initiated the breakup? Was it due to interest in someone else, a lack of time, a separate focus? Maybe you were focused on school and didn’t have time for a relationship to blossom. Or maybe he just wasn’t ready to commit. The reason things ended could severely impact a decision to start again. If one of you wasn’t faithful, you may want to evaluate if aspects of his (or your) personality have changed for the better before risking a fresh heartache.

The Present

You’ve been in a great place and a wonderful frame of mind. Spring is in the air, and you have a bounce in your step. Are you ready to enter into a relationship at all, even with someone you clearly know something about? Maybe it’s just spring fever. Or maybe you’re having a relapse of codependency. On the flip side, it’s possible that you’ve come out of the cocoon and are ready to fly. Make sure you know where you stand and that you aren’t throwing a way a winter’s worth of growth.

The Future

Think carefully. Based on what you’ve learned about yourself and what you know about your old flame, do you see the possibility of a future? Consider how you felt together before, how you’ve changed, how you were affected by the breakup, and what you really want in your life. If things align, and you can really see yourself building a future with the guy, go for it.

Don’t just settle out of desperation, though. Sometimes, we run into old flames to remind us why we’re single and still waiting for Mr. Right. Make sure you view all the angles, and don’t forget to find out what he wants out of life. After all, two people are involved in the decision, and if it’s going to work out, the decision to make the effort needs to be mutual.

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