Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I want devastating love

Note: The first paragraph was written pre-Clark, probably around February.

A few months ago, I jumped onboard with everyone else in the world and became OBSESSED with the show Scandal. It's just scandalous! I love it!!! During the second season, Olivia Pope tells the guy she is dating: "I want painful, difficult, devastating, life-changing, extraordinary love. Don't you want that, too?" The guy then goes on to tell her that love shouldn't be painful or devastating. Then it hit me--I have this completely distorted view of the way I think my relationships should be. I know people say that "we accept the love we think we deserve" and that we can't really "accept love until we love ourselves," but for me neither of those sayings hold true. If you know me, then you know that I am a pretty confident person. I go after the things I want, I take pride in myself and the things I do, and I have learned to love myself a hell of a whole lot. Somewhere in the midst of watching too many Disney princess movies as a young girl I got the idea that perfect love is boring. I wanted to have lots of stories about the emotional-roller-coaster-rides that were my relationships. Is that stupid? Maybe. Am I crazy for it? Just a little. But I know I am not the only one who has chosen devastating over extraordinary.

When I think about it, I can't actually recall a time where I had something "normal" with a guy that wasn't devastatingly painful at some point. Before Clark, I dated this guy while I was still in New York that gave me the most crazy butterflies in my stomach. I would deprive myself of sleep to have late night conversations with him and we would build forts in his car out of umbrellas and sun visors and for a brief moment I felt like I could be my silly self around someone. But like Ponyboy says, "Nothing gold can stay." After a while, almost everything I did, said and wore was wrong. Yet I fiend for his approval, and sat by the phone waiting for him to get over whatever it was this time and apologize. I wasn't happy if he wasn't happy, so I found myself groveling at his feet, begging for his forgiveness for simply being myself. What started off as a Rom Com turned into a Lifetime movie full of emotional abuse and devastation. Even when I hated him, I was okay with it all--it's what I wanted (at the time). As I've gotten older, I've realized that there's a distinct line between extraordinarily devastating love and extraordinary love.; and clearly that line is devastating--a line I no longer want to cross.

Fast forward to a few months later when I moved back to Texas...

Little did I know that extraordinary love was waiting just around the corner for me. Not too long after I had this epiphany (the one mentioned above), I started seeing this guy that I met on a dating website. To be honest, I wasn't looking for anything more than someone to take up my time until I decided what I wanted to do in life (i.e. waiting to see if I was going to be accepted into Teach for America or not). Despite what I wanted, or what I thought I wanted, the universe had something else in mind. Our relationship evolved rather quickly and here we are, happily living together in paradise (AKA Hawaii). Although I'm glad I had such strong feelings for someone, I never want to feel that way again. It was exhaustingly painful, but it made me realize that that's not what anyone should want. The love that I have with Clark is nothing less than extraordinary. We constantly laugh and share everything with each other. We never go to bed upset or angry and can talk through anything. We're silly and playful and adventurous. And even when we spend an entire weekend just sitting on the couch watching episodes of Lost and Gilmore Girls on Netflix, I can't help but feel that this is the man who I'm going to spend my life with. Our love may not be wild and crazy and insanely emotional, but it is far from boring and with that, I am content.

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