the five love lessons.

I did everything right this time.

I was patient.  Which for me, is huge.  I waited to bring him around my friends & family.  I set my standards, I didn't waiver.  I made sure he met all of my expectations & that he remained consistent.  & consistent he was.

He was a gentleman.  He was sweet.  He had goals.  He matched my motivation.  He wasn't a complete jackass like some of the idiots I've came in contact with as of late.  I was genuinely happy, because it seemed as if I finally had gotten it right.

I was wrong.

Horribly wrong.

At this point, I'm not hurt anymore, I'm disappointed.  & not at him, but myself. For the first couple of weeks, I was in a state of shock, & really just going through the motions of life.  But now?  It's hit me--I am back at square one & I don't know how I got to this point.

To be quite frank, as of late, my love life has been trash.  High school & college, I always picked the good guy.  Cheating, arguing, & fighting was so foreign to me.  Looking back, I can see how naive I was.  I was young, yes, but I truly had no idea how unhealthy a relationship could get.  Fast forward to the last couple of years & something has been off.  I have dealt with just about every single toxic relationship you can think of.

I stopped updating this blog about three years ago, because I had gotten into a relationship with my high school sweetheart.  When it ended, I took it extremely hard.  Although looking back, the break up was all of my fault, I just couldn't accept that it was done.  I made the mistake of building my entirely life around him & once it ended, I just couldn't take it. I fell into a very bad depression.

A terrible depression.

I mean, I lost 15 pounds in a matter of a week.  I didn't leave my bed for four days.  I had random crying spells, I called out from work, I didn't eat.  I did some things that I'll take to my grave. That break up was definitely not one of my proudest moments.

Love lesson number one?  Never, ever need a man.

I jumped into another long term relationship shortly after that.  & while he was a great man, I just wasn't ready.  & I honestly think he wasn't ready either.  We met in such a nontraditional way, we just weren't ready.  But we kept holding on until shit hit the fan.  Do I think he could've been the right one at the wrong time? To this day, I don't know.

I do know that we lasted a lot longer then we should have.  We shouldn't have continued to push the relationship simply for the sake of love.  We became toxic, quickly.  & maybe if we would've thrown in the towel early on, we could've saved it at a later time.

Weirdly enough, we've managed to build a friendship just recently, but I think we both know we could never go back to where we used to be.

Love lesson number two? Learn when it's time to let go.

& three? Take time to heal, before you try to move on.

From then, it's been a couple of "flings".  I hate to call it that, but honestly, I don't have a better word for it.  I've dated several men who I had no business giving my time or energy to.  Men who didn't even come close to my standards.  Men who I saw potential in, but didn't even give a fuck to see the potential in themselves.  It was such a waste, because I gained nothing from them.  They all left me jaded & disheartened.  Even now I look back like, B what in the entire fuck were you thinking?

Love lesson number four?  A person's potential really ain't shit.  Majority of the time it's not their potential you're seeing, it's a reflection of the partner you honestly wish you had.

This dating game is tough.  It ain't for the fainthearted.  However, I lost myself trying to find a man.  I was out here searching & settling, for no damn reason.  Simply because I wanted someone to bring around my friends & family.  & I'm not even sure how I got to point.

God has a way of making you hearing him.  Repeatedly I've been told, you need to be alone.  & every time I fought it.  I went against it over & over, & I honestly don't know why.  But every time it left me flat on my ass.

& that's when I found myself not even stressing about men or relationships.  Where I once craved a significant other, I now crave learning more about me & how far I can go.  I have never felt this way before, where I have absolutely no desire to find a relationship or even be in one for that matter.  I'm so happy with myself, my amazing friends, traveling, & being a single, childless, twenty three year old woman.

The moments where I laugh so hard until my face hurts trumps being in a relationship for me.

The inside jokes & memories I create with my girls trumps being with 'the bae' for me.

The nights I spend twerking until I sweat my hair out trumps laying in bed, watching movies with a 'him' for me.

My late night talks with God trumps spending three hours on the phone with a boyfriend for me.

Finding out more about Brittani Simone Gaines will forever trump finding out about any other person on this earth for me.

My priorities have shifted.  I no longer need a significant other & at this point in my life, I don't want one either.  I truly know what it means to feel complete, to wake up in the morning & just be content.  There's a peace in knowing that no matter what you don't need anyone, especially when it comes to a romantic relationship.

I wrote this three years ago.  What happened?  How did I get so far off track that now when I read those words, it sounds completely foreign to me?  I used to be so strong, so independent.  & now I feel weak, like I lost my backbone. I don't even know this woman I've become.  What the fuck happened?

I'm tired of being disappointed.  I'm tired of being back at square one.  & it's hard for me to write this, because I've became the very person I despise.  The person who feels like they need a relationship to feel validated.  The person who jumps from relationship to relationship.  The person who doesn't have an identity outside of the person they're dating.  & I don't know where everything got fucked up.  I don't know how I became this woman & I hate it.  What the fuck happened?

When I say I'm done with dating, it's not because I'm bitter.  I'm not ready for a relationship. I don't even know who the fuck I am anymore.  How could I possibly try to build something with someone when I have nothing to give my damn self?

I have to get back to that woman who wrote those words above.

I need to.

& I will. I'm promising myself I will.

Love lesson number five--Love yourself before you love anyone else.