So the Bachelorette finale was last night. I don’t actually watch the show, but I get the premise and think I watched it for a minute like 15 seasons ago, when I still kinda thought, “YASSS you can SO FALL for someone in like 5 minutes and make a life out of that!” So, she falls madly in love with several dudes, chooses one, they cry and put a ring on it… and ride off into the sunset. So much like real, actual life!
Then, there’s the flip side: an article I read yesterday about a 41-year-old single mom who is choosing to just not even put herself out there cause she has kids, a divorce… le baggage. She said something about being super sure that no one will want all of her the way she is, so she’ll just sit this one out, thanks. Til they go to college. In like 10 years.
As I read it, I wanted to shout “No, Sister, no you do NOT get to sit this one out!” I mean, if you are happy with the sitting out, cool. You do you, Boo. But I got the sense that just beneath her words was a sense of loss. Of longing. And why should she have to?
I might be too optimistic, but I really do think that in all likelihood there’s a partner out there who would be WAY into that woman- just as she is. The problem is that we don’t all fit into the little mold of an online profile; we’re more than 140 characters, but we have been so duped by shows like Bachelorette, Dating Naked, Marriage at First Sight, and on and on… that we think “My jacked up heart can’t POSSIBLY fit the mold. They’ll all swipe left. If he/she doesn’t love me within 5 minutes of reading my story, of hearing my soundbite, then we’re not meant to be.”
Meant to be? Is that really even a thing? Or have we read one (several) too many fairy tales?
10 years is a lot of missed opportunities. So many missed dates. So many missed chances to just have a great make-out sesh with a hot new partner. So many missed chances to figure out who YOU are out there in the dating/love/sex world. I’ve always believed that in the process of moving closer to your truth… you find people along the way who just fit. They fit who you’re becoming; who you are today and want to be tomorrow. Maybe you’ll find that partner. And if not, you’ll have so much fun along the way.
For my part, I refuse to sit this one out. I am currently dating someone who, on paper, we are like NOT a match. He would have swiped left and I (maybe) would not have given him a rose before the credits rolled… except we didn’t. We knew we were attracted to each other, so we tried. We showed up. And then we showed up the next time. And the time after…
I think that’s what I am learning- about relationships being a choice. That you can CHOOSE to show up for another human. Even if they don’t fit all of your checkboxes or you theirs, if you like someone, you work it out. Matters of the heart are always awful and terrifying– but that’s the thing isn’t it? You can’t know the light without the dark. You can’t understand the great soaring heights of tumbling into someone without having experienced a great crash.
And maybe you’ll crash again– but you’ll crash for having soared. ❤