There are three kinds of people in the world. People who believe in soulmates, people who absolutely do not, and people like me: the uncertain ones, the skeptics. I didn’t always feel this way. I grew up in standard 90’s girl culture of princesses, formal gender roles, and the idea that one day you’ll fall in love with someone and live happily ever after.
Oh, I drank that Koolaid, I drank it right up. But then I grew up and learned I liked wine better. I learned. I learned that you may have a soulmate, and they could be out there, but it doesn’t always mean they are the person you necessarily end up with. I learned that sometimes the people who make your life whole in non-romantic ways can also be your soulmate.
I’ve fallen in love. I’ve fallen in love many times. Sometimes with two different people at the same time (oops). In some periods of time, no one at all. Sometimes I just sat there loving myself because I was all that I had. If you think about it, love comes around a thousand times. You love your mother. You love pizza. You love that dress your best friend wore last week. You loved your kindergarten crush. You loved that person you dated for a while. You loved the person you didn’t date at all.
And as much as I wish it would be, pizza is not my soulmate.
“You are my soulmate,” “We’re soulmates,” and “Just looking for my soulmate” are all exclamations that have been heard, seen, or said throughout the test of time. In television, in real life, in your own head – it’s been a part of romantic society to convince people that there is someone out there made especially for them and only them. But is there? Couldn’t you have a whole bunch of soulmates in your life? Couldn’t you have or have had numerous people in your life that make an impact so deep that it touched your soul, regardless of whether or they stick around?
I could say that I have many soulmates in my life. Anyone from a silly crush I used to have, to a best friend who I can’t go a day without. In my opinion, a soulmate is not necessarily someone you feel romantic love for. It’s not necessarily someone you meet and live happily ever after with. You might meet a group of people, and be friends for decades. It could be a sibling that you trust with every facet of your life. It could be someone that you have met, fell in love with, and then broken up with. Your souls could still be connected through the riptide that is life. It doesn’t matter what happens, they’re still tied into your life somehow, someway. The person you end up with just ties themselves onto you a little tighter than the rest. After all, there is a reason why they stay, isn’t there?
Depending on the situations we get into and the people we meet, you eventually align with another person more than anyone else you’ve ever met. Those are the kind of people we end up with. You don’t end up with someone who you feel some sort of cosmic connection with (always). Of course it’s possible (and I envy the shit out of you). More or less, the person who you end up with is someone who you know you share mutual love and support with. Sometimes that cosmic “soulmate” connection ends up be extensive lust or passion, without any real backbones that actually make a relationship work. I like to think that’s the most fun kind of love to be in, but at the same time it’s the hardest to break off. And sometimes it works out. Sometimes you’re attracted to that connection you have with another person and it grows into something more substantial.
What you should do for yourself now is this: stop searching for a “soulmate.” Start thinking about someone who better aligns with your beliefs and lifestyle. Someone who you could live happily ever after with, but with the knowledge and understanding that not every moment is happy and that you’re both going to have to work at making it work. That’s love. The lasting kind.