From a very young age we’re all programmed to believe that one of life’s important journeys is searching for “the one.” That somewhere out there exists the perfect match for you, a soul mate, the missing jigsaw piece to your otherwise perfect life. That when we meet this person we’ll ‘just know’, there will be ‘a sign’ and that all of the crap and the pain you have gone through, all of those moments you spent crying on the bathroom floor, feeling as if you were literally breaking inside, were worth it. That they all led you to this one person who would be your everything, your fairytale ending, your forever.
But it’s a lie.
He doesn’t exist, at least not in one man. No. Instead, you’ll find pieces of him scattered in the souls and hearts of those who beat next to yours.
And I think it’s important to remember, it’s important to stop focusing on what a person lacks, what they could do better in, where they could make more effort. It’s important to stop chasing after this unrealistic prince charming, to stop placing expectations on a person because no one will ever measure up to an idea someone else has created of them. No one person can be everything and it’s unfair to hold them against this checklist of desirable qualities and then toss them aside when you realize they don’t get to tick every box.
It’s unfair to compare them to your friend’s partners, or the masculine (but not vain), hilarious (but not immature), sweet (but not creepy), sensitive (but not overly-emotional), gorgeous (but not desired by every woman,) intelligent (but not condescending), quirky (but not too weird) guy in all the rom- coms. It’s unfair to think that there’s someone else out there will be all of these things and love you in all of the ways you love them, in exactly the right way you want to be loved.
Because it’s crap.
It’s setting yourself up for heartbreak, for a lifetime of chasing after this idea you have created based upon Disney films, Nicholas Sparks novels and a media generation of McDreamy’s and Chuck Bass’s. It is a lonely way to live, to always be waiting for the next person. To give up on a relationship because this person doesn’t always bring you coffee in the mornings before work or give you his jacket when it’s freezing out. Or stand in a rain storm with you recounting all of the reasons he loves you.
We need to celebrate all of the unique, magical, butterfly-inducing qualities a person does possess and forget about the rest. We need to stop focusing on this idea of “the one” and needing every person who warms our hearts to be marriage-material.
It’s okay to have a “right now” kind of love, its okay that you can’t imagine the house you’ll share or what your children would look like, it’s okay if you fall in love with a person who is not everything you dreamt you’d have.
Because this person is yours.
This person is imperfect, flawed, infuriating at times and tends to hog the blankets but he loves you. No, he may not say it every day, he may not write you sonnets or devote songs to you or grow a beard and build a house for you. But he’ll be there, he’ll show up. He knows that look on your face when you’ve had a terrible day and need a bubble bath and a foot rub. He keeps your favourite breakfast foods at his house for when you stay and would do anything just to see you smile.
No, he may not be “the one,” but he’s here and he loves you.
And that’s enough.