As a forewarning to this post, I just wanted to let you know that this may get a bit deep. I’m like Shrek, I have layers. These should be slowly getting more lighthearted but I guess I just need to get a lot of stuff off of my chest that I’ve only really talked about either a.) half-drunk to someone who murmurs sympathetic noises (because I have truly good friends that are willing to do things like listening to me grumble half-drunk or half-asleep) or b.) alone aloud in my car. Yes, I talk in my car aloud. Why process silently when you don’t have to? Anyway, thanks to those who are still reading. The humor and more fun things like grilled peach salads will be coming shortly. Anywho:
I believe that humans love unconditionally constantly throughout their lives and only look back and say, “I never loved him/her,” because they don’t love him/her now, and it’s hard for us to not live in the now. So, at this point in time in my life at the tender, ripe, near child-like age of 23, I could say that I’ve loved more than a handful of men. As a kid, we called them “crushes” and giggled and maybe wrote stupid notes to them pretending to be someone else named Justine because we were too scared to talk to them ourselves (not that I have ever done that…outside of 7th grade). Once we hit that age wherein the girls have actual underwire bra straps to snap and the boys can’t wear gym shorts unless they have something to cover stray boners, things get slightly more complicated. Feelings get more complicated.
When I was in elementary and middle school, I liked so many random boys. Colin Mauro, Zachary Fedorkas, Jared Rebescher…the list goes on. But I had no idea why I liked them. I wanted them to like me but I didn’t know why. Since then, I’ve fallen for countless other guys. What was the difference between then and now? I mean, the feelings are more complicated and I understand them more and what causes them. I understand what happens when it’s no longer there. But the actual ‘feelings’ of infatuation, has that changed since I was 9? Even when I was in 8th grade and liked Bart from St. Johns (oh, let’s not get me too started on the topic of Catholic school and military guys), I knew I liked him and was attracted to him physically, but what other than that?
I say all of this because I realized the other day that the “I just like him and that’s that,” mindset is still so prevalent in today’s society. In me, especially. While I have countless friends in serious, committed relationships, I have not found myself in one since my long-term boyfriend and I broke up almost two years ago. I wish I could say I didn’t know why, but I do. Ever since, I’ve sought out relations with men that are, well, not bad, but bad for me. I’m infatuated with people I know will make me miserable. If I’m really honest with myself, I always have been. Have you ever had that person that you, at least at some point in time, would’ve dropped everything for and done anything you could for them? Maybe you were lucky and that ended after, say, high school but for me, it’s lasted since I was sixteen.
Where the title of this post comes from is my sad reality: I would drop anything for a man that I care about and that terrifies me so I refuse to commit to anyone. I seek out bad, toxic, volatile situations so that I don’t have to. I’m embarrassed by this, but it’s important for me to admit it anyway, but back in January I pledged everything to a man who was probably the most manipulative person I’ve ever met, and I meant it. He told me he couldn’t be with me because of reasons that were, at the time logical, and I told him that I would follow him. I would follow him across the country, I would drop everything and go. And I meant it. And I have never, in my life, felt submissive enough to give up my own dreams for someone. Especially someone that refused to commit to me, for reasons that I know now involve other women and general inability to tell the whole truth about anything. That alone terrifies me now, so much, that I will run as fast as I can away from any plausible romantic potential. I was willing, and for a while did, lose myself entirely in someone who I meant nothing to. The fact that I could be so blind, so accepting, absolutely makes me want to bang my head off of a wall. And while this was the first time I’d ever committed so fully, I have aimlessly let myself be led along by other men before. So how can an independent woman like myself be so…pathetically co-dependent?
The answer is that I don’t have one. After the situation in January, I’ve really spent a lot of time getting to know myself more. And not in the cliche “oh I’m such a well-rounded person go me,” way but, as my friend Tara put it, “finding my passions again”. I sink easily into the people I’m with, it’s why I’m good at flowing from one group into then next, but while it makes for an easy social life, it makes for a really shallow personal life. In the past months, I’ve learned that I love routines. I love numbers and order and organization. And these are things that, if my parents read this are probably thinking, “AHAHAHA OKAY ALYSSA,” so that should show you how weird that is for me. I have the same sense of humor as my dad, something I never knew. I hate most of the teen books I grew up reading because the woman gives in and changes for the man. I actually agree with Ms. Achey and her dislike of Grease. WHAT. Yes, anyone here who went to high school with me knows who that is, and feel free to laugh as hard or be as disgusted as you like. These things are little but I’m feeling a lot more independent than I was. Oh, I also constantly end sentences with prepositions and hate it.
So how did I end up this way? How did I turn into someone who is so terrified of finding someone because I would be too committed to them? Too infatuated? And what if that goes away, like it has in the past with my relationships? How did I become so freaking neurotic?
I’ve tried casual sex, I’ve tried celibacy, I’ve tried waiting for someone to be ready, I’ve tried breaking up relationships (and regretted that, a lot), and I’ve tried hoping. I think I’ve finally reached a point in time in my life where I’m going to try not trying. When I say I want a committed relationship, I’m lonely. When I say I don’t want to be in a relationship for a while, I’m feeling like crap. The reality is, I don’t care about my relationship status right now. I was in relationships consistently from 14 through 21 and then in and out of volatile shit-storms until semi-recently. I need to be alone. I want to be alone. I finally feel comfortable being alone. And happy. Because I hate sharing the bed.
If you’re still here, thanks for reading. So much. This has been something eating at me that I refused to really put out into the open. For those who have known me for years, you’ve seen me struggle with trying to grow up and fight through immature relationships. For those who just met me or don’t know me at all, my love life has (obviously) been a complete mess. I’m aware of it, most of the free world is probably aware of it thanks to a lot of screaming battles, and I’m sick of it.
Wishing to have someone there is not a reason to look for someone, wanting someone to text when you’re bored is not a reason to commit, wanting to plan your perfect Pinterest wedding is not a reason to sign up for online dating. We as humans seek out companionship. Monogamy wasn’t always popular. Pheromones were not designed to make you fall in love, but make you seek out a sexual mate. He will never show up at my front door (or your front door), with smoldering eyes and a heartfelt confession of love.
And if any of you gentlemen are reading thinking, “What in the hell…?” You do not understand women. At all.
Well, I could rant longer about how I’m doomed to a life of training for marathons and wishing I finished the stories I began but I need sleep and you’re probably wanting a cigarette/donut/beer/good long cry/imgur.
And I’ll end with a photo that I laughed at for about five minutes.