Monday, July 4, 2011

Let freedom ring!

"People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone." Audrey Hepburn

I've been dating - a lot. Maybe too much. The truth is, when I meet someone new, I don't want to discount him. I want to let that new person into my life, and find out what I can learn from him, what he can add to my world. I believe everyone comes into our life for a reason, and I don't want to throw away the chance to find out what that might be.

Plus, I am short on grocery money, so free meals are a plus. [I'm only half kidding.]

So, I keep dating. Some I meet, and write about; others I don't. Some are just guys I spend some time chatting with online. Some never make it off the dating site where I met them, or email if I met them elsewhere.

It's frustrating, it's disheartening and it's scary. Not too long ago, a friend asked me how I do it without getting discouraged. The truth is - I do get discouraged; I get angry; I get sad; I cry. It hurts to keep at something without improvement. It makes you feel inadequate - like there must be something wrong with you. It makes you feel like you're being punished - because otherwise, it would work for you the way it works for others. It makes you feel like you must be a bitch, or too picky, or too snobby - that you're passing up good people for stupid reasons.

But if you really think about it, you'll find that dating is as much a process of you finding you as it is you finding someone else. You find what you really want and need - and what is unacceptable. You find your middle ground; things you don't really want, but can overlook for the right person.

While you're at it, you build the life you want - on your own, without relying on anyone else. You're free to build a life independent of commitment or obligation to someone else's happiness. It doesn't mean you're alone - it means you're free to find the people you want in your life, because you're finding the strength not to need anyone.

Independence isn't about shutting people out; it's about finding your own strength and happiness - and then finding the right people to match up. It doesn't take strength to quit - it takes strength to keep going, keep searching for that one, extra-special-right person who will take your happiness and send it over the top.

I'll keep searching. And let my freedom ring in the process.

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