I am a romantic in the worst way. When I was younger, my favorite movies always needed a romantic story line. Of course, females grow up hearing about how Prince Charming will gallivant into our lives and save the day. Luckily my parents always reminded me I was the hero of my own story, but unluckily I still bought into the knight in shining armor because at the end of the day, I always fell asleep imagining my perfect partner. The love of my life. Everything would make sense and my life could truly begin when I finally found him or he found me.
Fast forward almost twenty years, and reality never really checked in. Longing still for the moment of clarity and realization I’ve met my soulmate, I did everything I could possibly think of to bring love into my life. I needed it. I wanted it. I was in love with the idea of love.
So I did online dating, I asked friends to match me up, I went into bars and tried desperately to catch the eye of someone. Anyone. I needed to know the heartbreak and loneliness and longing and tears and feelings meant something. Everyone always says love is all you need, so why couldn’t I find it? Why is romantic love the one thing I can search this whole world to find and never seem to get?
The funny thing about wanting something so badly that you will do anything and everything to get it – you trick yourself into thinking you already have it or you trick yourself into thinking you don’t deserve it. I’ve done both. Neither are healthy and neither are true.
It wasn’t until this last heartbreak that I realized something I never considered before. Through all the love poems, long conversations in tears, perfect nights, terrible nights, reinventing myself then losing myself again – why do I put so much energy into something that, to everyone else, is only one part of life? Everyone else can distinguish that having a love life is a part of happiness- social life, romantic life, career, family, hobbies, etc. But this whole time, my love life has controlled everything I do. My mood. My outlook on life. My decisions and choices.
And in realizing this, I slowly realized love isn’t enough in life. Finding a person to share life with is a great bonus, but you are still going to be living that life with or without another person by your side.
Sometimes love isn’t everything. Love isn’t all I need. I need self-confidence. I need financial security. I need curiosity. I need depth and adventure. Love has made me blind, and I want to see things clearly now.