I talk like it’s easy to be single.
I tell you all how fantastic it can be. But, I had my moments. My moments while I was waiting and wanting to find love. I kept myself preoccupied and even believed I had found it when in fact, I had not. I loved and learned. Broke hearts and had mine broken. But now it all seems trivial and at the same time absolutely necessary. The natural order of things. A door closes and another one opens.
If you read this blog, you know the best antidote to relationship anxiety is leaving the relationship and the best antidote to wishing you had someone is to stop looking. But it’s all easier said than done. And there’s so much that needs to get done in between. For starters, you must heal and move (completely) on from your last relationship before you can start another one.
I was there for so many years. In the waiting place. But I wasn’t always waiting, no, as you may have gathered, I was a bit more aggressive than that.
During my 20’s, when I went out, I would walk clear to the back of the bar or the club and then to the front again. I am sure onlookers thought I was looking for someone. But I wasn’t. I was looking for him. When I didn’t find him, I would return to my friends and settle in.
I was always looking during my waiting.
Instead of looking, I should have let the idea of him fade away right along with the ice in my cocktails. I know now, there is no point in searching for something that will find you when it needs to find you. After a decade of bar scanning, dozens and dozens of first dates and several failed relationships, I had convinced myself that he wasn’t anywhere near Columbus.
“I have been to every bar in this city at least a dozen times, and I haven’t met him. He’s not here. There’s no way,” my thirty-something self declared to her girlfriends. They all agreed. Columbus, if we were living in the Prohibition, was as dry as a bone. Maybe the bars are too scattered, we theorized. Maybe they are all at home playing video games. Or, maybe, they are all married.
It turns out, he wasn’t in Columbus.
Seth had moved to Texas in 2007. He didn’t come back home until June of 2011 when he and the kids moved back to start over and re-build after his divorce. We met soon after he got home in September. It didn’t take long for us to find each other.
I know how much you want to find someone, or better yet, find him. Like cookies at Christmas or champagne on New Year’s Eve. You just want it already. And you deserve him. So where is he? I can’t tell you. The magazines can’t tell you. The psychics won’t tell you. But I can tell you, he’s probably not in your life already. If he were–you’d know it. Believe me. That’s one thing I can assure you is true.
Odds are, you can’t control when you meet.
Until then, have fun. Date for fun. Love for fun. Enjoy yourself and your children. Keep the serious relationships at bay unless you absolutely know, with zero doubt, that he is it. You owe that to your children. You owe it to yourself. And you owe it to him.
This post is dedicated to my girlfriends, single and spoken for, who are waiting. You know who you are. It seems all of you these days are suddenly finding yourselves lost, waiting or ready. And I wish I could speed time up for you, but I know it will all be better soon enough.