I have been that girl for as long as I can remember. I have had a boyfriend since 6th grade. That’s over ten years of dating. Obviously not the same boyfriend throughout the years but I’ve never been truly single. The longest time I’ve spent single is 3 months and in those 3 months, time was spent pining over the one I had “lost.”
Throughout the years I have judged people on their inability to be alone. I thought if I were ever single I would fucking flourish. When you have a significant other, you can picture yourself without them and actually dong quite well. In fact at some point you think there would be nothing holding you back from doing everything you want to do when you want to do it.
That could be true.
But for someone like me? Someone who had actually never been alone, it was a strip of my identity. After me and my last boyfriend of 4 years broke up, I had no one else “lined up” like I had all throughout high school. Let’s be real here. When a couple breaks up and starts dating someone else right away, there was something going on way before that. No, not physical cheating necessarily, but something. That had always been true for me, but this last relationship was different.
My last boyfriend was perfect (can’t wait to talk about how false this statement is in my next post). He was so patient, intelligent, and talented. I wanted to be like him. I admired him so much that I couldn’t help but bring him up in almost every conversation. So when we broke up, I had trouble keeping his name out of my mouth. If you know me, which you don’t, you know that I am a very talkative person. I always have something to say. I found myself unable to relate to topics that had nothing to do with me. For example, if they wanted to talk about engineering, I used to be able to bring up his name and his experiences because it was his major. Without him, I thought, I have nothing to contribute to conversations about math or computers or whatever else he was so damn good at.
I started to believe everything that made my life so interesting and special was him. He was so relatable to everything around me. I was like his hype-womxn. If I met someone new I knew I had to introduce him even if he wasn’t there. I felt honored to know him and wanted everyone to know how great he was and how lucky I was.
I know you’re probably thinking, Wow, how absurd! But it’s not. Admiration is love. I was obsessed with him for all the right reasons. Not because he was so handsome, but because his actual persona is so welcoming and lovable. What is absurd about this whole thing is that he didn’t do the same for me, but like I said that’s a story for a later date.
Now, if you think I don’t know anything about love or I’m still that girl, that’s on you. The point of this post is to show you where I was and where I am now. And I understand now: he did not highlight what makes me so special, he did not give me anything special to hold on to or to let go of. I am special because I am me. In relationships, we forget that we are individuals already. It was especially hard for me to believe that because it felt like I hadn’t been an individual since the 6th grade, but that’s not true. What makes us special does not put us above anyone else, what makes us special is ours only and cannot be compared because it is that unique. You cannot lose what makes you special, it is you.
So go ahead, date someone new, pine over me and/or forget about me. Your perspective on who I am to you does not change who I am to me. I am special without trying because I am me.