I guess it would have been more appropriate for this one to be #14 but oh well.
So it’s February, obviously everyone and their dog is posting valentine’s day related posts. I will too… because I’ve never done it before and “my story” is appropriate when talking about love/dating/relationships/romance/etc.
For people who’ve known me for ages, the things associated with me are Paris, babies, and being guy-obsessed. This isn’t really cool… But now, I can say with confidence that I’ve changed, at least a little. That list isn’t true anymore – but I won’t deny that it was.
I remember the summer between grade five and grade six, I was walking around my neighborhood with my mom and I told her very seriously that I would be starting grade six soon, at a new school and I might get a boyfriend. She said I could.
Since then, I’m pretty sure I had a crush on almost every guy in my grade (or older) for at least a little bit.
Anyway, I’m sure you can imagine what a silly little girls would be thinking but I was pretty serious… I was already thinking about getting married.
Needless to say I’ve never had a boyfriend – I’ve never even kissed a guy or [willingly] held hands with one.
This might sound weird, but now, I’m actually thankful for that.
This is the point in life when I realize how silly I was when I was young and how amazing God is for putting up with all my crazy but still loving and protecting me.
If you’re unhappy being single and you think all you need to be complete is a boyfriend – you’re not ready to have one.
That’s actually really important and if I’ve ever said anything I wish every little girl would take to heart, it’s that. (Well I say a lot of good stuff, but that’s a big one!)
But seriously, I can’t imagine what kind of person I’d be now if I had started dating back then…
I see some of my friends sometimes and I feel bad for them because they’ve gone through so much pain. People say that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, but I don’t think that’s true. First of all, if I cut off your arm, you won’t die (in this scenario you’re given excellent medical treatment right away) but you’re not stronger. Let’s say it was your right, well eventually your left arm will probably get stronger and you might have to get stronger mentally to overcome this defect.
But what about your overall physical self? Weaker.
Our relationship? Probably done forever.
Your trust in others? Your self-esteem? How others see and treat you?
All these things change.
Similarly, if someone plays with your emotions and takes a piece of your heart with them when they break it, you’re not going to be stronger after that. At least not everybody is. And that’s the sad truth I’ve seen too many times while observing people around me.
Too often I see people, mostly girls, but not exclusively, who are broken beyond the capabilities of “time healing their wounds” and some people actually get so much worse after an emotional trauma like investing your heart into something that didn’t last.
When you can’t be happy being single, you won’t truly be happy in a relationship either.
There are thousands of analogies out there. But the fact of the matter is, when someone feels incomplete, they try to find something to fill in whatever holes they think they have. Often this means that a significant other will become the source of happiness. A person could easily fall into the trap of investing too much of themself into the relationship and then to have that relationship fail… That could seriously damage someone.
I’ve actually had people tell me they envy me because I’ve never been hurt like that. All I can do is hug them and let them know that I still love them and will do anything I can to help them.
I could go on about this forever but I think it’s obvious where I am going.
What I really wanted to get to though is myself, not because I think I’m more important than this topic, but because I am an example and I want to share part of my story to encourage someone else.
As I mentioned, I used to be completely obsessed with males, to the point where if I didn’t “like like” a guy, I felt like something was wrong. If I wasn’t imagining having a boyfriend, I felt sick. Most of the time, I liked two or three people at once. (I guess I wanted to keep my options open for when they would obviously ask me out.)
Now, I’m not.
Don’t get me wrong, I still love men and I’m still very interested in dating and getting married. But that’s not as important to me anymore. Those are things I’d like, not things I think I need.
I know that I don’t need to be in a romantic relationship. I know that I’m complete and happy being single too. If I die tomorrow, I won’t regret being single or being a virgin (even to kissing or just going out on a date).
Why? Because God loves me way more than any man ever could. (And He’s way better at it.)
I’ve finally fully realized how incredible that is.
People love conditionally. The girls who got (and still get) attention, are the ones who have incredible [conventional] outward beauty or the ones who do certain things. Everyone knows what I mean. People pay attention to other people who are physically attractive or provide something…
It’s like you have to maintain a certain look or continue to be really good at something to keep that attention.
But not with God.
He loves me, and each and every one of you, so much, that as humans, we can’t understand it.
It actually makes no sense.
He probably shouldn’t love me as much as He does because I suck compared to a lot of other people. I screw up, I fail… but that doesn’t matter because God’s perfect love is unconditional.
I am complete in Him.
I am beautiful in Him. (Even if the world doesn’t always think so.)
I can be happy even though I’m single.
That;s why, this valentine’s day, I’m not going to be mopey and miserable because I don’t have a date. I’m going to be just as joyful as I usually am and I am going to smile just as much.
That’s what I hope for all of you lovely readers (few though you may be) too.
So what’s my point?
My point is that you need to be comfortable with yourself, you need to feel whole even when you’re single. Yeah, sometimes you might feel lonely but are you still joyful? Joy isn’t just an emotion like being happy or sad, it’s a state you can choose to live in – even when horrible things happen and you feel miserable.
If you’re joyful being single, that’s the first step.
You also need to be kind of thinking about marriage because that’s what dating is for.
People try to challenge me and ask me if I’ll marry the first guy I date.
“Ideally yes, but that’s not the point.” I tell them. “I will not invest my time, energy, life, [money] into a relationship that I know will end. If I know, before we start dating that I could never marry them, why would I bother?”
So no, I won’t just up and marry the first guy I date, but the first guy I date will be marriage-material.
All of this to say, valentine’s day, is just another day. It’s nice to have a day to focus on love and to make special gestures, but what’s stopping you from buying chocolate for your significant other in April? Do flowers not exist in August? Or in November?
So please, enjoy your valentine’s day whether you’re in a romantic relationship or not.
Please don’t be discouraged or sad if you’re single this year.
And please, ask me questions. I would love to answer people who don’t understand what the heck I’m trying to communicate. I might not know everything about everything, but I will certainly explain myself more fully if necessary.
Anyway, this turned out to be a post way longer than I expected so I guess I’ll leave it there.
P.S. I will be going away next year for exchange! More details as I learn them 🙂