In this past year I have learned a lot. I have learned a lot about myself and what all I am capable of. However, I learned the most about dating in the 21st Century, and BOY was it a different ball game than I had remembered! We’ve faced several variations of the dating ritual. Some come with arranged marriages for the sake of the family and social standing. Black and white tv taught us that married couples slept in twin beds and children just seemed to magically appear…ha! The days of Doris Day taught us that you could be beautiful, funny, innocent and a total hot mess and Prince Charming would fall in love with us despite the grief that got them there to begin with. Disney showed us that no matter the evil family members or the curses we were forced to face, Prince Charming would come to the rescue even if he knew us or not. Teen romantic comedies gave the awkward misfits hope of being the princess in the end. Glittering vampires showed us the strength of love, and whips and chains led to the most realistic love story that stayed a piece of fiction.
You’re told that you’re beautiful and can accomplish anything because everyone loves you as we grow up from little girls into young women. Then you go to high school and find out….um, not so much. In the beginning there were flowers, door opening, and whooing around every corner. Now your phone is spammed with naked pictures, you see if you’re compatible in bed before you think of starting a relationship, and the internet and apps are the number one decider in your fate. You now take personality tests that people can lie on and you still get stuck with a psychopath. You answer questions to see who matches you best based on common answers. You swipe right or left based on looks promoting the adult version of high school. Awesome. Cause THAT went so well the first time…. Sadly there’s even more out there and yet you’re still doing all the chasing and no one comes to you out of free will or without an agenda up front. In fact, there’s as many ways to get connected as there are people telling you that you should get out there and then some! Sure the anonymousness of the World Wide Web gives us a little more security then having to walk up to a random stranger old school style. But how was modern technology going to make getting through what once again feels like adult high school easier?...
I wanted to be married once, with little ones running around, and living happily ever after. Then life and reality took control and all three were wiped from the slate forever. So what now? Was this all I had to look forward to? Being stuck in the adult version of high school?! PLEASE say it isn’t SO! Then I realized something. No matter how hard I tried I will always be a people pleaser. It’s in bedded in my very being, which is why I have unsuccessfully been able to keep myself without sacrificing in order to make someone else happy. So let’s look at this giant adult playground with some perspective….
Sometimes when we’re ingrained with such old habits, whether good or bad, evolution comes along to force you to change your ways or sink in the ever growing quicksand. Maybe it’s time to play by new rules and end up on top no matter what. Maybe it’s time I stop running around pleasing everyone but myself. Maybe it’s time to stop chasing a dream that wasn’t meant to be mine in the first place. There’s nothing wrong with spoiling children even if you can’t have them yourself. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying your current freedom where you learn to love yourself first making you able to have the fairy tale story that’s so amazing people can’t put it into words. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to enjoy life without playing the statistic game of match making. And maybe it’s dating in the 21st century that forced this hopeless romantic to do what she should have done a long time ago. You can swipe right or left. You can take all the quizzes you want in order to find your best match. Or you can step out of your comfort zone and simply live for yourself for a bit. Which are you willing to try?...