I am slowly learning that I am allowed to get excited over someone texting me back or complimenting me or asking me out on a date. Butterflies are allowed to swarm through my stomach. My cheeks are allowed to blush. My lips are allowed to break into a grin. I don’t have to push those emotions away. I don’t have to be scared of what I feel.
I don’t have to act like a cynic who wants nothing to with relationships. I don’t have to protect myself by claiming that I am better off alone, that I don’t want anybody new in my life. I don’t have to push others away by raising my guard. I don’t have to ruin a nice moment, a moment I should cherish, by telling myself that this person is eventually going to disappoint me, that it is all going to end in disaster, that I shouldn’t get my hopes up.
Those thoughts — the ones I used to think were a form of protection — are only hurting me. They are making me think the worst of everyone. They are convincing me that the universe is out to hurt me. They are the reason why I am still alone. The reason why I never give anyone a real chance. The reason why I am so discontent.
I am slowly learning that love is something to welcome, not something to run from the second I sense it heading toward me. I am slowly learning that, even though it could cause me pain, it won’t be any more painful than what I have been putting myself through by closing myself off.
I am slowly learning that love is worth the risk. That if I want a chance at a traditional happily ever after with my forever person, then I am going to have to do some uncomfortable things. I am going to have to take a leap. I am going to have to close my eyes and listen to my heart for a change.
I am slowly learning that it takes much more strength to hand your heart over to another person than to lock it away inside of your ribcage. I am slowly learning that trusting someone, committing to someone, tearing your chest open and letting the blood spill onto someone, is the bravest thing that you could ever do.
I am slowly learning that there is no reason for me to assume that someone is going to break me into pieces. Yes, it has happened in the past, but that does not mean that I am unworthy of a relationship. I am worthy. I am valuable. I am someone who deserves to find another soul who matches mine. Another soul who understands me in a way that no one has before.
I am slowly learning that I am ready to change the way that I used to think. I am ready to give out chances. I am ready to accept the love that I deserve.