My parents divorced when I was just a little kid. So young, I don't have any memories of them as a couple.
My mother eventually remarried - and then divorced again. She gave up on marriage after that, but not love. She has dated and had relationships. My dad, on the other hand, never did. As far as I know, he's never dated. If he has, it was never anyone important enough to meet the family.
When I first got divorced, my greatest fear was that I would never find love again. Not because it wasn't out there. I was afraid I would close myself off; out of fear, or anger, or because I was just plain tired of being hurt.
In the year since Trooper left, I have noticed a few changes. First, I was more closed off. I wasn't letting anyone get close. Once I did, I found that I was more skeptical of love and relationships. I trusted less, and walked away more. I didn't care the way I once did.
Over time, I have noticed something else. I am OK. I am happy, even. I no longer worry about being closed off, or not finding love. I'm not shutting people out; I am more selective about who I let in. I've come to a point where I believe that if I am meant to be with someone, it'll happen - and if I'm not, it won't.
I've learned that I am OK with being on my own. I enjoy being single. I even resent (just a little) when dates interfere with my alone time, or time with friends.
I don't want to share. I don't want to look for a relationship. But it isn't because I'm closed off to the idea. It's because I know what I do want - and I am OK with saying no to anything less.
I'm no different from anyone else. I want to be happy. Like most, I believe that a good relationship is a part of being happy. I'll never shy away from a chance at a good, honest, healthy, happy relationship. I believe in love and romance, and want it in my life.
Yet somehow, during this last year of rejection, bad dates, hilarious moments, and false starts - I learned that it is just as easy (maybe even easier) to be happy on my own. I've been reminded that the best a good relationship can do is add to the happiness you create for yourself.
I no longer have any reason to fear that I won't find love, or happiness, because I know my life is full of both. I no longer fear I won't find someone who makes me happy.
Now, my greatest fear is that I'll find someone who gets in the way of the happiness I've created.