At any age, at any point in the history of the world, the process of seeking out your forever partner has been both absolutely exciting and horrifying. Add in social media, dating apps and a deadly pandemic and you’ve pretty much been presented with the love life of most of us in 2022.
The thing about dating, and all the activities that come with it, is that you really have to allow a person to see you. Not just the made-up perfect version of yourself that’s carefully curated on your Bumble profile – that’s what will land you the date-, but the real you. The grumpy, rude, difficult, stubborn you. The you that is full of contradictions and cares a little too much about the colour of their nails. That’s the end goal, isn’t it? To wake up on Sunday morning and nurse your hangover with warm cuddles from your person and hot coffee.
On most first dates the restless urge to jump right to the point of deep comfort can be overwhelming. No one wants to nervously sit across the table while engaging in small talk wondering am I going to see this person naked later? But you gotta do it. You got to get through the good dates and the bad ones. The ones where you’re the last two people in the restaurant so wrapped up in conversation or the ones where you know that the next hour of your life is going to feel longer than any hour you’ve ever experienced and the forced dialogue leaving you drained of any will to carry on.
Those bad dates can take you out of the dating game for a while, immediately deleting all the apps as soon you get home and swearing off men (or women). The number of nights I have returned home and decided that I am content with being with just me and that a relationship isn’t worth the hardship. I can spend my life with my friends and my pets, focusing on my career and indulging myself in every whim of my single woman life.
But then there’s that nagging feeling. The I want to love and be loved yearning desire that somehow manages to supersede whatever bad experience that came before. The feeling when you meet up with your friends who just are newly engaged and the love between them is palpable. The I want that feeling. The feeling of something’s missing, I have a great job, good friends, loads of hobbies and a wonderful social life. Life is so close to being whole, but it just isn’t.
I by no means believe that a relationship completes you, I’m not even a person that necessarily believes in the institution of marriage and monogamy. I do believe in having a partner that compliments you and is willing to go through this insane life together. Someone who is whole on their own and ready to receive you, wholly. Someone who doesn’t just tolerate the ugly sides of you, but treats it with the softness it so desperately needs.
Long story short, this is our new series. We’re going to be collecting stories about dating, the good, the bad, the sexy, the embarrassing, the sad, the wtf, and everything in-between. The process of seeking love is unrelenting but as long as we can laugh together, we’ll be alright.