She was the innocent child thrown out to the wolves and learnt to crave his knife to lead the pack instead. Adventure was her snowflake that beckoned her to come out and play. Through the looking glass at the end of the tunnel she stood; taking her breath away was the last thing on his mind. She was never his or her own. She belonged to something far too unknown. She detested recycled stories of boy-meets-girl. Yet, she got entangled in his dream catcher and all she could do was stare. Weak men ran away from her cause they lacked the strength to fix the broken. He was a fixer and knew exactly how many and where the stitches go!
I know you have tried and that you have been hurt. I know that feeling inside you wanting to give it another shot but at the same time, wondering if it is worth it. You start to think he does not care enough about you because if he does, he would have said something by now. He would have put in the effort and made it undeniably obvious that he wanted you despite what happened. You would have received that text or call you have been waiting for as you endlessly check your phone.
In silence, you realize that you want this to work with everything that’s within you. You want to love him and all that you ever ask in return, is for him to take care of your heart. Yet somehow, when you start to love someone so much, they see it in the way you act and the way you look at them. They know. They start to think you will never leave followed by a string of actions that suggest he is taking your love for granted.
At first, you make excuses for his actions because you want to give him the benefit of the doubt. After several occasions, you realize that you have made too much compromises and have been let down way too many times for you to count. You find yourselves stuck between trying harder or letting it all go because you will hurt either way. You struggle all night to decide between following your heart or following your mind.
Then you picked up the phone and dialed his number at 4am because you can’t take it no more. You need to know what he is thinking. You want to know if he is just as restless as you are. And then it happened, he picked it up but there is something different about the way he speaks it was half-hearted. You hung up, tired and broken. You’re thinking to yourself “Is loving someone supposed to be this difficult?”
As the sun rises, you eventually come to a painful realization that he is taking your love for granted. Yet, with your broken heart, you text him for closure. You choose yourself over love because you know you have given it your all. You choose yourself over love because you loved with all of your heart. You choose yourself over love because you know you did everything you could have done to make it work.
Your phone rings. You look down to a preview of regretful messages but they are a little too late. Your heart is broken. You choose yourself over love because you know your golden heart is too precious to be wasted on someone who fails to see it.
Is there ever a point in our lives where we should give up on love? Where we should throw in the towel and just be content with not finding another person to let into our hearts? I don’t think so. I don’t think that we should ever look at life and think that love will never find us. But this is all coming from a hopeless romantic. Hopeless mostly. And being a hopeless romantic in the modern age has taught me a lot of lessons all about love.
1. Prince Charming might ride the bus instead of a white horse.
Does what we drive or what we wear or what we do really matter at the end of the day? Why do we set impossible high standards on what we’re looking for in another person so that it makes it so that when we do find someone, they have to meet a criteria list that literally not many people can? When you find someone who makes you happy, the details really are just the details.
2. Sometimes the person you love doesn’t magically realize they love you too.
Sometimes we fall for people who don’t feel the same way. Does that mean that in some way we’ve failed either physically or personality wise? No. Not at all. I have found that sometimes falling for the wrong person can teach us what we want from the right person.
3. You have to kiss a lot of frogs.
Or maybe you didn’t have too and are just lucky. Sometimes though, it takes a long time till you find the one person you want to settle down and have a house full of puppies with. Just because it’s taking a long time to find the one though doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with you. It just means that they’re taking their sweet ass time to get to you.
4. Nothing good comes without struggle.
Even when you meet the right person, that doesn’t mean you ride off into the sunset and that’s it. You just get to live your life with your love without any sort of issues. Nope. No way. Whoever said love isn’t work is extremely stupid. Love is another full time job on top of your already full time job. Even though it’s work, it’s the most fulfilling job in the world if you find the right partner to do it with.
5. Sparks fade but laughs don’t.
You know that fuzzy feeling in your tummy you get when that new person you’re into texts you? Yeah that fades. It just has too. It deepens into something more than just butterflies. So if you’re the type of person who lives for sparks, I’m sorry to tell you that it’s not real. Find someone you can be incredibly silly with. Find the person who you stay up all night with laughing. That’s the person you should want to end up with. Not the one with instant sparks.
6. Never settle.
My last and probably the most important point. Never settle. For anything or anyone. Resentment isn’t something you want to feel later on in life. You want to look at the person you’ve ended up with and see what you saw in them the first time you met. Fall in love with the person for everything that they are and everything they add to your life. Never let someone make you feel like you can’t do better because if that person is not making you feel your absolute best, I promise you can find better.
Your happily ever after might not have a sunset or royalty but it will match whatever reality you’ve created. From one hopeless romantic to another, falling in love isn’t always sunshine and rainbows but it is worth diving into. No matter what happens at the end of the day, love will always be the best feeling.
Something borrowed from the hopelessly romantic soul – Alexandria Brown
Some may say I am lucky for finding a loving healthy relationship, however, I do not believe in luck.
What I do believe is that everyone deserves to give and receive love—real love that is honest and kind and makes you a better person. What I see or hear too often is that people are not fulfilled and they are choosing comfort or suffering instead of living their best life.
Now I realize that love and relationships are only a piece of the puzzle in order to live a fulfilling life, but these four tips are important to help you on the journey.
1. Stop making excuses.
If someone cares about you, they will make you a priority. Bottom line. This means that they will either answer all calls/emails/texts or get back to you as soon as they can. They will also fit you in their schedule no matter how busy they are.
In fact, they will want to see you so badly that it will just work out and you will be surprised how easy it is in this crazy, busy world to find the time for what’s important. This special someone will also want to do things for you, yes you. And kind, thoughtful things at that. And no, not the materialistic meaningless things. I’m talking small little things that make your heart fill and your mouth crack a little smile.
When these things are happening in relationships, communication and trust will naturally be formed as well and those are must haves when it comes to love.
And the most amazing thing about all of this: when they do this for you, you will do this for them and a loving, real and happy relationship will be created and maintained.
So, stop justifying why someone isn’t doing these things for you because guess what? They should be doing them! Be true. Be love. Don’t settle.
2. Live your own life rather than society’s.
I believe that a major factor in unhappy relationships is the need for people to conform to society’s expectations.
You must let go of what you thought you’d be or who you thought you’d be with. How can someone else tell you how your life should be when it’s your life, not theirs? You must also let go of the standard relationship cycle: oh no, I’m growing up so I must get a career that I don’t enjoy, find someone to date, move in with them, get engaged, buy a house, get a dog, get married, have kids… Because that’s what most of my friends are doing right now and that’s what everyone thinks I should do, right? Wrong.
If you are confident and happy in your life, you should be able to let go of society’s expectations and make room for your own. Times are changing and this is your life so why conform to someone else’s?
3. Know what you want and who you are.
In order to get what you want, you must know what you want. Sounds simple right? But getting to this point is a process. You must experiment and go through many trial and error phases in order to learn what you don’t want before you can see clearly.
You must also let go of what you think you want and know that even those people who seem to always know exactly what they want will end up changing their mind at some point as they evolve. We all think we get it and then we have experiences and grow up and learn what we really want and then it works out. For those of you who are lost, start doing things you enjoy and figure yourself out first and it will come. Patience… Yep it’s a tough one!
4. Do not settle.
One, two and three all tie in to this one as well.
You must be able to be yourself fully and live your life the way you want to live it. If you are with the right person, these things just happen naturally. You can’t change people. Understand that if you stay where you are, there will be long term unhappiness. However, if you leave, these feelings will only be short term. Wouldn’t you rather be unfulfilled for a little while rather than a long while? Choose love over fear.
To sum up: “We accept the love we think we deserve.” ~ Stephen Chbosky
And no matter who told you otherwise or made you feel otherwise, you all deserve the best.
Now go live and love—honestly and fully!
Exactly the way you want to.
There’s a reason why my walls are built so high, and there’s a reason it will take you longer than expected to bring them down. There’s a reason why I’m guarded.
I’m guarded because I’ve been hurt before. We all have. My weakness is that I carry the pain with me as a constant reminder that it could happen again. And while this is such a cautious way to walk through life, while instead I could be wildly sprinting, the wild sprint has made me fall and trip before, and the scrapes and burns were painful. So painful that it takes a while to try and run that fast again. So I walk, and I walk carefully noticing my surroundings because I worry if I were to ever fall that hard again, I might not be able to get back up.
I’m guarded because I’m scared of what you’ll think, but not scared enough to admit it. I fear your disapproval like a little girl fears the monster under her bed, and right now I will just keep quiet to avoid any disturbance. I’m guarded because no one has ever protected me as well as I protect myself. My own armor has been stronger than yours, or his, or hers, and it will continue to be until someone shows me otherwise.
I’m guarded because I’m no stranger to failure, and while it has made me stronger, it has also made me more aware of how all of it can go wrong. I’m guarded because I’ve mistakenly invested my trust in those who took it for granted, and because of their disregard, I no longer hand out trust so easily.
I’m guarded because I see the damage coming before it even happens, and I know that the lucky ones will tell me how unreasonable, pessimistic, and sad this all sounds, but even when you try to tell yourself that this time is different, the reminder seeps back in. Life will bring hurt and pain, and people will disappoint you, but no one has the ability to break down your walls except for you. I’m guarded because I’ve chosen to be that way.
I think when you’re young, you’re hoping that this person will be the right one, the one you’re going to be in love with forever, but sometimes you want that so much you create something that really isn’t there. But I didn’t understand then. That I could hurt somebody so badly he would never recover. That a person can, just by living, damage another human being beyond repair.
That is the way it is with a wound. The wound begins to close in on itself, to protect what is hurting so much. And once it is closed, you no longer see what is underneath, what started the pain. I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.
Life presents us with a lot of hard choices.
What clothing to put on in the morning. Black coffee or with milk. Who to spend the rest of our lives with, and what to do if we want completely different things out of it than they do.
There are pre-designed answers to these questions, of course. High-waisted jeans. Milk is less fattening. Pick the person you want to be with, because love conquers all. We have a specific set of rules we ought to follow as we plough through the tough questions in lives and they all come with pre-determined outcomes.
The outcome of choosing the right pants is getting complimented by the trendy girl in your office. Picking milk means you won’t feel as bloated. Picking the person you love over the life that you want means your sense of self-worth will slowly degrade and deteriorate over years of contentedly slipping into bed beside someone you’re comfortable with.
I want to make it clear that I’m not bashing marriage. Or relationships. Or romance of any kind. I love love. I love it too much. I lose my mind and my heart and my footing over love much more often than I’d like to admit and that’s the only reason I know anything about this in the first place. Love is wonderful and worthwhile and enriching but it should never be a standoff between the person and the life that you want.
Love shouldn’t have to be the biggest compromise of your life. I know that you’ve been told otherwise. You’ve watched movies, read novels, heard adages from relatives and friends who perhaps have very successful relationships – love is constant compromise. You can’t have it all. And perhaps they are right. You can’t have it all. But you should be able to have what matters.
You should be able to be with somebody you love and also live a life that entices, invigorates and inspires you. You should be able to pursue what you want out of this world in every fearless way you want to without running the risk of losing the person you value most. You should be able to have, at the bare minimum, a relationship that allows for growth and exploration on the part of both parties.
What you have when you have a relationship that forces you to whittle or water yourself down is a mismatch of values. You may have found someone you love. Even someone you want to spend your life with. But if the only time you see eye-to-eye is when you’re staring into each other’s, you’re signing yourself up for a lifetime of hard choices.
You can make it work with someone who wants different things than you. It’s been done countless times. If one wants a steady 9-5 and the other wants to endlessly roam the globe, you can find an in-between. One can settle down or the other can speed up or you can find a satiated in-between where both of you are halfway to happy. But is this the life either of you really want? Is this the life you’ll be happy with when you look back at it? Will you be glad that you compromised and put aside your desires for another person?
If the answer is yes, then you’re set. Some compromises are worth it. But if the answer is no, then I encourage you to move on. To cut the cord. To do the hard thing that none of us want to do, and to go pursue the life that you wish you were living.
Here’s the stark truth about the person who is right for you: They want the same lifestyle that you do. How do I know this? Because that is, by definition, what makes them right for you. To be with someone whose eyes light up when yours do, whose heart races when your blood also pounds, who is enticed and inspired by the same forces that drive you forward, is a gift many of us never truly get to experience.
Because we settle. We settle for the person we love over the person who could push us – to be bigger, stronger, greater versions of ourselves. We tell ourselves that love is enough. That it conquers everything. But we forget that love shouldn’t be the thing that conquers our lives – we should be. And we should do it deliberately, triumphantly, by the side of somebody who shares all of our joys and successes.
So how do we meet such a person? That’s simple – we do more of what we love. We give ourselves up to uncertainty, to searching, to pursuing what we want out of life without the certainty of having someone beside us while we do it. We throw ourselves wholeheartedly into the things that we love and we consequently attract the people who love what we love. Who value what we prioritize. Who appreciate all that we are. We throw ourselves into the heart of possibility instead of staying comfortably settled inside of certainty. Because we owe it to ourselves to do so. We owe it to ourselves to live the greatest life that we’re capable of living, even if that means that we have to be alone for a very long time.
At the end of the day, love is wonderful but it isn’t enough to make up for an entire lifetime of compromising your core values. You don’t want to spend forever gazing into somebody’s eyes expecting to find all of the answers you need inside of them. Wait for the person who is gazing outward in the same direction as you are.
It’s going to make all of the difference in the world.