“Uva uvam vivendo varia fit” is a Latin phrase that loosely translated means “A grape is changed by living with other grapes.” With the help of Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lonesome_Dove) and one of my more physiological friends, I believe its safe to further break down the motto to: “We are changed by the lives around us.”
With this is mind, I want to relate a conversation I had with my cousin. After losing someone she loved, her and her child started a new life as a duo. She went back to school, graduated, and began a solid new career. After three years, she has decided that she is ready to start dating again.
As is life, it takes a few tries, but she may have found someone compatible to both her and her young child. Meanwhile, there were previous men whom she may have dated, may have just been friends with, or may have never touched with a 10-foot pole.
One of those 10-foot-polers will not let up. She has expressed her frustration with his relentless hope, was even worried that the way she has let him down easy could actually be interpreted as encouragement. Like she’s playing hard to get or something. She is also worried that the only way to make it clear is to be downright mean.
She is not a mean person, and I don’t believe that other people’s actions should make her change who she is. Why should his problem create a conflict in her life? I told her how I felt, and she agreed, adding that there is no way of totally avoiding him since they will have mutual birthday parties and other social gatherings through their kids. I guess being honest to him is all she can do. After that, he has to figure it out himself.
We have to be selective of who we let into our lives. If someone is destructive, keep them at a distance (let’s say 10 feet). We are changed by the lives around us, but we can usually choose who is in our inner circle, and who will either ripen us ~or rot us~ the most.