Ugh. I remember judging women so hard for saying things of this nature. But I’ve gotten to the point where this statement totally applies. I’ve spent the last three or four years in pursuit of or a member of a relationship, a couple, a duo, a “them”.
During that time I was attached to someone’s hip doing everything with them from grocery shopping, to movie outings to helping my “other” pursue their dreams. I never really thought anything of it. And I certainly didn’t consider the price I would pay if the dream I was living as a girlfriend was to suddenly vanish.
I love relationships, because I love the act of loving another human being. But at what cost? The cost of my identity, sanity and well being. I spent such a great deal of time focused on making this other person happy and even more time mourning them when the relationship didn’t work out. Four years! Four years is a lot of freaking time.
The greatest lesson I’ve learned in this post relationship state I find myself in, is that I don’t need to wait around for a guy or a boyfriend to take me out. I don’t need a guy to be my reason to get all dressed up. I can get out of bed every single day put my makeup on and get dressed because I want to look cute for me.
I used to think it was weird when I would hear people say “oh yeah I’ve gone to the movies alone”. My face would scrunch up in a rather judgmental fashion but now I see the benefit of it.
A couple of months back I went on a date with a guy who was really funny but he loved to talk. He talked so much that when he took me out to dinner I would be finished with the first half of my meal before he even took a bite. He even talked during movies. Like who does that? I take movies very seriously. A comment or two here is great but if there’s a super important climatic and tense scene happening in screen do us all a favor and shut it. When you’re going to the movies solo. You don’t have to worry about any of that.
There are times when I say to myself, while looking at a really interesting exhibit at the many museums I have visited while dating myself, “man this is so cool I would love to show Rick*”. I try to remind myself to bask in the company of my own presence and to enjoy the moment for what it is.
It’s a challenging dating yourself though. For one thing, it’s rather expensive since I have to pay for my own dinners, museum entrance fees and lunch but this bares another reward: the art of managing my finances. I scoop out the cheapest things I can find in the city. And let me tell you NYC is ripe with free things just check out these resources I love: here, here and here.
So I encourage everyone who is going through a breakup or in the midst of a single period: date yourself!