When people used to ask me what I wanted more than anything else in life, I would always say, “I just want someone to love me the way I love them.” Yet every single time I enter a romantic relationship, I find myself sacrificing my desires and my happiness as I desperately try to keep my lovers satisfied in and out of bed.
I spent years chasing after countless men and women, each time thinking I had found the one who would finally fill the empty parts of my soul. Yet every time I started to believe I’d finally found love, I’d start to feel something else instead.
Now here I am, all alone again, picking up the pieces of my heart after yet another failed attempt at love. And as much as I want to discover true love in my lifetime, right now I just want happiness instead.
I want happiness that starts the minute the alarm sounds off each morning. I want to wake up and feel excited about the day ahead. I want to enjoy every minute of my morning, from that first cup of coffee to the way the sun feels on my face.
I don’t want to look at someone next to me in bed and think about the fight we had the night before or how I need to shave my legs. I don’t want to hear the complaints about how I hog the bed or snore while I sip my coffee. I don’t want to wonder if I’m getting a good morning text or if I’ll crumble when I don’t.
I want to curl up on the couch and binge old episodes of Friends or Grey’s Anatomy after a long day of work. I want to cook up something basic or order my favorite comfort foods without asking anyone else if that’s okay. I want to go to bed early or stay up late — whatever makes me happy.
I don’t want to fight over the remote or hear complaints about how my choice shows “seriously lack a plot.” I don’t want to spend an hour slaving away over something in the kitchen only for it to taste “just okay” to an ungrateful partner. I don’t want to wonder when my lover is coming home or spend all night waiting for the phone call that never comes.
Most of all, I want to look in the mirror and not care what I see. I want to feel comfortable in my body no matter where I am. I want to wear the clothing that makes me feel the most authentic so I can embrace my entire being.
I don’t want to worry about impressing potential lovers or keeping up appearances. I don’t want to scrutinize my hair or my curves every time I catch my significant other talking to someone else. I don’t want to give up pieces of myself to fit into the box of what an ideal girlfriend looks like.
I don’t think that I need to love myself before I can love someone else, but I do think that relying on someone else for all of my happiness has caused me to pick terrible partners in the past. So this time, I’m changing the narrative in the story of my life.
Trust me, I want to feel the comfort of a warm embrace and spend my nights laughing with someone by my side, but that’s just not realistic in this moment. I absolutely want love someday, but right now I want happiness so much more.