Sometimes, I dwindle in and out of the notion that I want something real and substantial for my next romantic escapade. Admittedly, there are moments when I forget that I am a hopeless romantic, heart-on-my-sleeve, relationship-type of gal. It happens when I start losing hope that I’ll ever find a soulmate… I look around me, and all I see are people of my age who only want something casual. That seems to be the popular theme that has surfaced lately around my life in my college years. I’ve noticed that people use these years to date around and avoid commitments and anything serious, and it’s totally understandable. We experiment in college. These are our years to grow and find out who we really are and what we actually want for ourselves, so I get that people aren’t keen on settling down the moment they meet someone who sparks their interest. I have been a part of that dating culture and it’s nice because it’s light on the heart and doesn’t cause too much emotional pain, but I can say that every single experience has ended with me thinking, “Okay, I want something real now.”
But it’s not that easy. Actually, it isn’t easy at all to find a nice guy that catches your attention, who wants something real as well. In my eyes, it seems almost impossible, which leads me to conclude that my close friends who have nice boyfriends have been singularly handpicked to be the chosen ones by some love voodoo. Just kidding, but it does make me wonder– when will it be my turn… Moreover, will it EVER be my turn?
Doubts circulate in my head like gray clouds before a storm and I’m quickly trying to cover myself from the downpour which is my negative thoughts. When I start being pessimistic, there’s no kicking that monster for a day or two– it just swallows my happiness, enveloping me in a sea of seemingly endless dramatic despair. I start feeling really lonely, and it scares me. And then I start thinking of a quote that my friend, Sarah, sent me recently:
Until you get comfortable with being alone, you’ll never know if you’re choosing someone out of love or loneliness.
So I start dissecting my feelings and I dig deep to peer into my rawest state. Here is the truth: I have been on my own for a while. Although I spent a great deal of time with my teammates, I never had as much time alone as I did during my year in Oakland. I learned to be by myself, which was something foreign to me. I was apprehensive about coming back to Southern California because last summer was the summer that I could not be alone and my world felt too big for little ol’ me and I needed solace and comfort all the time. So naturally, returning meant being afraid of regression. I didn’t want to feel that creeping feeling of not knowing what to do with myself without another human being sitting across from me. But this was not the case– what I thought was going to be a summer filled with abundant adventures and outings and innumerable reunions with overfilling schedules that I lose track of what day of the week it is, has been a very solitary summer. I feel like I’ve spent 75% of my stay here being utterly on my own, and to my surprise, I’ve felt nothing more but relief and peace. This is absolutely shocking for me, but in the best way possible, because I’m happy and comfortable being alone.
But what does trouble me is the thought that I will always be alone. That I’ll never find somebody to share my life with, travel with, seek crazy adventures with. I feel like the Lord has granted me a life full of so many blessings that it’d feel almost wasteful if I didn’t find a companion to share these gifts of fruitful knowledge and life with in a special, intimate way. And that’s what I crave for– a partner that has his eyes humbly open to celebrate life every single day the same way that I strive to. It’s so simple, yet feels almost impossible…
(I just want to take this moment to pause in my stream of consciousness and briefly mention something that my manager at Pieology told me. He said that he and his daughter’s mother did not work out because he felt lonely being with her. And that terrifies me because I know exactly what he means for I have gone through it myself… It is one of the worst feelings to be in a relationship with somebody who is so independent and into his own life that they make you feel like you aren’t a part of theirs. I do think that is worse than being single and alone.)
And then there are nights like these that give me hope. Just as I was laying in bed, unable to sleep because of these very thoughts, my good friend, Allie, shared wedding videos (a guilty pleasure of ours) with me from YouTube. And oh boy. The tears just gushed out so shamelessly that Niagara Falls would have been jealous. Allie was quite apt to say that it’s almost painful to watch how beautiful they are. These wedding videos typically recount the stories of how the couple met, and I think the sweetest part is the way their faces light up when they talk about the first time they laid eyes on each other as if it was just yesterday, and you know that the love had been there and will continue to be. That’s what gives me hope. I’m sure at one point, those newlyweds felt the same heavy, negative emotions that I’ve been feeling regarding loneliness and solitude… and then suddenly, they meet one person, and their lives change forever, and the next thing you know they’re caking each other’s faces with white frosting. I look forward to the moment when I’ll meet a nice boy who has been looking his whole life for a nice girl and to the first time that our eyes lock. I look forward to revisiting that memory and we’ll both say, “I just knew….”