The Prize of Simplicity

After an awful day, when my whipped crème melted too quickly off the fully-fat, fully-half-and-half, hot chocolate I treated myself to. After Nemo and his mom were separated in the deep blue sea. After I had sex for the first time. After I received the phone call offering me my very first job. After I was romanced in some simple, non-monumental way by the city. After I couldn’t, for the life of me, find the single piece of paper I needed with an insignificant note and couldn’t live without.

I cried.

I’ve always been a crier and I’ve never had an issue making my heart visible for the entire world (and web) to see. I cry when I’m thankful, when I’m happy, when I’m nervous, when I’m upset, when I’m depressed, when I’m furious, when I’m peaceful, and probably sometimes when I’m just bored.

And when I’ve cried for the first time with a man I’m seeing or interested in, it is always one of those incredibly sweet and meaningful moments where I allow myself to be vulnerable. I’m not sure why this indicates a new level of seriousness in relationships, considering just by the nature of who I am, he’d eventually see me cry at some point. Maybe just by walking through the park when the breeze hits me the right way, to be completely honest.

Nevertheless, I’ve often measured the validity of a relationship based on how emotional I am toward or around the dude in question. If I couldn’t stand the thought of losing him, if imagining him never calling me again gave me anxiety, if I cried while we made love or if things he wrote to me brought tears to my eyes – then I knew he was special. I knew he was different. I knew we, whatever we were or never came to be, was destined in some way.

However -if I didn’t cry, if we didn’t have dramatics and break-ups and make-ups, if the sex wasn’t so passionate I wanted to get lost in it – then I didn’t see the value in the relationship. I mean, if it wasn’t difficult, didn’t that mean it was lacking?

A relationship isn’t supposed to be easy, right? It’s supposed to be one of those things you work hard at, you earn, you fight for, and then when you win this person, you realize the ups and the downs were worth it.

The older I get, things like lust and connection are not becoming less important – I have concluded I will always need to have a man who has fire – but they are not my utmost priority in a partner. It isn’t that I don’t want to be a beautiful mess around someone, but after so many messy relationships and endings, I’d rather be with someone who isn’t all that complicated. Sure, I’ll always have my own intricacies and obviously, be a crier, but when I long for love, I realize I’m yearning for simplicity.

Perhaps hot and cold, yes’s and no’s, in a relationship and out of it, running away to be chased after, and pushing each other to the limits makes for an interesting course of events – but just because something is dramatic, it doesn’t mean it’s passionate.

It’s not a lie that a relationship, no matter how easily you get along, will require work and dedication to make it last the long haul, but if it is more confusing than it is comfortable, then what’s the point? I’d rather be single than spend hours trying to decipher the meaning between text message lines and always wonder if the man I love will leave, as he has dozens of times before.

When I eventually decide to hand in my single gal title for a girlfriend one, I will be at a point where I’m confident in myself and not looking to validate myself through a relationship or by the amount of tears I’ve poured over someone.  It will be when I stop equating happiness by how much pain I can endure.

It will be when I stop seeing a relationship and love as a project, but rather as a prize.

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