“I had a friend who told me I was trying too hard. She always made fun of me for how many times I swiped left or right. The digs got a little old, to be honest.
She constantly told me to get off the dating sites. She told me to try to meet someone naturally.
For every time I tried to put myself out there, she tried to hold me back. And you all, I AM SO GLAD I never listened to her.
The best moments of my life were born out of me having the courage to type, ‘Hi’ to an unknown soul. Imagine if I allowed someone else’s insecurities to take that away from me.
Some will say those relationships didn’t last forever, so how were they the best moments? Let’s start with forever.
Bear with me as I have a point. It just takes a million words to get there sometimes.
So, forever. We need to change forever to never. Don’t worry, I’m not telling you your spouse is going to leave you. To me, though, forever sounds like such a juvenile ideology.
The idea that we are supposed to pick one person and never outgrow that person, never lose sight of that person, and never let go of that person doesn’t sound like reality to me. It happens all the time.
I’m not saying I don’t believe in marriages that last. I know they happen. But I also don’t believe in living my life in absolutes. That’s my point. Let’s not limit living to absolutes.
So, no, my relationships didn’t last forever, but the impact of said relationships did.
I have zero regrets about my past relationships. Because at that point and time, those relationships were where I wanted to be, and some of them started with a simple hello.
I put myself out there. I didn’t know if said interest would respond. And he didn’t know if I’d respond. I didn’t know if he would like me when we met. And he didn’t know if I would like him when we met.
S–t, I didn’t even know if we’d have enough potential chemistry to get through a phone call. Sometimes, you want to hang up within the first five minutes.
But the ‘not knowing’ is what made it all so beautiful. The chains of ‘absolutes’ were broken.
The vulnerability of being able to put myself out there and not know how good or bad it could go made me stronger.
The fact that some of them gave me INCREDIBLE memories and also broke my heart made me know sadness in a way that makes me appreciate happiness in a way I never knew possible.
The fact I let some of them down, too, makes me realize there is no point in hating someone who doesn’t choose you. We all choose who we want to choose and no one should be shamed for not picking you.
You can’t deny anyone of this because you do it, too. And we need to be humble enough to know no one is anyone’s loss. I learned so much.
However, through my willingness to try, over and over, despite the rejection, despite the men who endlessly said vulgar things to me because they just wanted sex, and despite trying with great intentions with some just to learn you’re water and oil, was worth it all. And ALL of this started with hello.
It started with being fearless and willing to be denied or accepted. And I’d do it all over again.
I never want to be the person who is afraid to try. This is so much deeper than dating, too. You can apply this theory to a multitude of things.
I miss shots in my life. Don’t we all? But I never miss the ones I am not willing to take. And that’s how I sleep at night.
I know I put my heart out there. I know I risked it all. And if it never lasts 50 years, I’ll be just fine. But I’ll never stop trying. Ever.
Remember, sometimes people project their insecurities onto you and that is a person you may need to distance yourself from.
This particular person was always afraid to say how they felt. They could never speak up, and they always ran from risk. They never knew how to put their emotions out there. They only craved safety. They needed to know everything was going to go their way, otherwise, they avoided situations completely or blamed others.
I could never live like that. That is so far from who I am and so far from what life actually is. Don’t ever let anyone tell you to give up on finding love.
Chances are, that person has given up themselves and on themselves. Don’t be that person.
If you have to try until you can’t try anymore, please keep trying. Be it love, life, career, other dreams, etc.
Never let people who limit themselves limit you. Never believe that anything in this life, including love, is supposed to find you.
Yes, it happens that way sometimes, but there are other times when you have to go out and get the life you want, no matter how many trials and errors it takes.
Enjoy the trials and errors. They’re not errors if you’re learning and living. Only to the person who seeks perfection in an imperfect life are they errors.
We know Cinderella doesn’t exist, so why do we live as though she does exist? You got to put that shoe on yourself, mama. And then you got to walk toward what you want, big girl style. And a billion times over.
A simple hello could change your life a billion times over, too.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Felicia Naoum of Parma, Ohio, and originally appeared here. You can follow her journey on Facebook. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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