I want to be your favorite hello and your hardest goodbye…

Call me crazy but, I love love love.

I’ve been in love before, and I hope, pray and know I’ll fall in love again. But, when?

Here I am X amount of years after a relationship wondering when and where, not if, I’ll meet my Mr. Right a.k.a. Prince Charming.

You’re probably wondering why I’m even rambling about this on a Monday night at 11 o clock. LOL! Just thinking about my weekend encounter when I tried to TALK to another human being of the opposite sex. 😂 LMAO! But more about that later on in this post…

Okay, so maybe I sound like some young, naive girl who still believes in “fairytales”. But that’s just it–I don’t still believe in fairytales. I just have and always will. Quite frankly, I don’t see what’s wrong with that?

Moving to a new state a few months ago I thought the dating scene might improve, meaning I’d have more selection and variety or, that I would just be more willing and able to give chances to people, without regard to where I meet them (online or in person). I come across men when I’m out at the bars back home and come across men all the time when I’m out in the field working; although the latter isn’t the appropriate time or place to meet eligible bachelor men. Lol. Anyway…

But, while meeting a cute guy at the bar and trying my best not to be awkward, I can’t help but think it’s his loss if he thinks in the end my awkwardness is too weird/a turn off anyway. Hell, maybe he is just interested in a hook-up, which, sure, on one hand doesn’t sound all that bad if I was still in college and in general, younger, but, at 26 I’m just no longer into it. Or maybe I just need to brush on my skills on how to flirt and not be awkward. LOL! HALP!

But look, I am a real adult now. Or you know, am for the most part. 😂 I live in a completely different town and state than where I grew up my whole life. I have a cute little two bedroom apartment that feels like home (to the best of my ability), and, am finally doing what I’ve always wanted to do–be a reporter. Thankfully I’m in love with my job but, I don’t want that to be my whole life.

Like I said above, and I’ve said before: I love love. I am fortunate to have experienced it once before, despite it not working out in the end, because I am a firm believer, and I think probably was before experiencing it myself–it’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all. I don’t know whether it’s based solely on personal experience or from me watching fairytale movies whether they’re Disney or adult rom-coms, but, I definitely do believe love exists and believe I, too, am meant to fall in love again, at least (hopefully) once more.

Before I fell in love for my first time when I was 17 I thought people could only fall in love once. And I think a part of me thought that because I thought my (then) boyfriend and I would get that “happily-ever-after” I had always dreamed of. But when we broke up, and at that (still somewhat young) age, I wasn’t able yet to recognize that everything happens for a reason. Yes, it broke my heart and I was devastated, and didn’t think I would be able to love again or move on at the time–but, as time went on and I got older, I realized not just my life but, any person in general who has had their heart broken, has so much more to gain and learn about themselves and life in general in the “healing” and “moving on” process.

I didn’t see it at first at the time as I truly thought my world and life as I knew it was over but, I am thankful and grateful for having been able to love and experienced my own heartbreak for I would not be the woman I am today–the woman I was meant to be–without having experienced it.

But, flash forward to now–here I am at 26 years old, more than ready to fall in love again. I hope to not experience heartbreak again but should life have it happen that way then I accept it. Plus, I know heartbreak can come in forms beyond just love, and thankfully based on my past experience I can now accept it better should it happen again.

But at my age and my status in life–living and working in a completely new area–where is one to find a nice, single, decent guy?

I’m sure some people reading this think I’m being too picky. And sure, maybe I am. But, I believe so deeply and passionately about love, that I want to date, hell–hopefully marry–someone who feels just the same. Love is much too precious to me to be thrown around so casually. I don’t despise people who throw the word around loosely but, I personally wouldn’t throw it around loosely at my age and in this day. Because like I said, I was able to experience love firsthand myself at once before. And the age I was doesn’t affect my feelings and belief towards it. Some people may shake their head in disbelief that I could feel such a way at 17 but, as someone whose own parents are high school sweethearts and got married when they were that age, I think it’s perfectly fine and acceptable for me to feel and think the way I do.

And while I haven’t yet found that special someone, that doesn’t go to say I haven’t tried. Like I mentioned above, I’ve tried “meeting” people out at the bar–I.e. Us both tips-ily (if that was a real word, lol) flirting or simply talking with one another but, it didn’t extend beyond a casual exchange of numbers and one polite follow up text the next day.

And then of course there’s the whole world of online dating. Where do I begin with that? I am a supporter of online dating and definitely don’t see anything weird, or “abnormal” about it like some others may view it as. But, to be honest, I think my in-person awkwardness translates to the online world, too, lol. Again, some may say I’m being too picky but, I can’t imagine not setting the bar high enough and ending up with a “Barney”. (See: Clueless) I for one value education dearly, and while I understand and accept some people go on to live fantastic, perfectly great lives without a college degree, etc. I want someone who can atleast appreciate the effort of trying. If there’s another thing I learned in life it’s that nothing worth having comes easy. I am thankful to have parents who showed me that hard work will allow you to be successful and provide an opportunity for growth. I am proud of myself, and for both my parents and my entire family, for always being my cheerleaders along the way, pushing my to finish college strong, or any goal for that matter, regardless of how long it took–like to graduate. (I took an extra 5th year but, I finished)

I want to date someone who has that same motivation and determination I did and do, whether or not there’s a group of cheerleaders behind him. But of course, I do hope he does have a great support system, because that’s just as important to me.

You see, I am close with my family. I love my family and truly can’t imagine calling any other group of people my family. I am blessed and fortunate enough to be the youngest of six kids and have several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, etc. And that’s another huge thing for me when looking for Mr. Right, a.k.a. my Prince Charming–they have to value family as much as me. The truth is, if you don’t have family at the end of the day, who else can you lean and rely on?

I could go on and on about the qualities I look for in a guy. Sure, like I said, some people may say I’m too picky or this, this or that, but, at the end of the day I am happy with my life, working my dream job, and experiencing this new town and city. Obviously I would love to find a companion to share in this crazy adventure with me but, until then I’ll enjoy the ride solo.

So until next time…

XO,

Ana

Forgiving you is my gift to you; moving on is my gift to myself…

Seeds of Growth

It’s officially Monday, and I meant to write this yesterday but sleep and work won so here’s my post now. Although, as exhausted as I am I should be sleeping right now, considering I have to be at work in the morning.

But, Sunday marked something important and prominent in my life that I felt the need to address it and talk about it.

What is this certain something, you ask? It’s the fifth year anniversary of my break-up with my high school sweetheart. Like to the DAY, five years ago. You’re probably wondering why I’m mentioning this event as an anniversary, but, for a lack of better words…

It was five years ago on a Sunday that a phone call would change my life in a way I would have never imagined.

At that point in time, being almost 21 and having dated my then boyfriend for three and a half years, I couldn’t fathom that it was happening to me. I knew break ups happened all the time between people but, after having dated what seemed like literally forever to me, I couldn’t believe it was really happening.

Like, having spent three and a half years of my life with someone who wasn’t just my first love, and friend first, but he was my best friend. Someone I was fortunate enough at the time to have a part of my life.

To be honest, it hadn’t even dawned on me that the 13th of March was the day it was official that we broke up except that Facebook’s Time Hop reminded me. Thanks, Time Hop.

But, after realizing it, and having just had a conversation about it with my best friend, it felt appropriate to talk about it on here and how much my life has changed and how I’ve changed personally, for the better, because of this break-up.

I’ll admit, it is a little strange to think that FIVE years have gone by since that fateful phone call. Of course at the time I was sad, and for quite some time after, not even fully understanding or accepting that we were in fact over. I was hurt. I felt I didn’t deserve it; I thought he was my soulmate. But my, what time can do to a person.

In the past five years I’ve worked on being who I am meant to be.

I finished college, earned my Bachelor of Science degree in journalism. I joined a sorority, Delta Phi Epsilon, and served as the public relations chair in fall 2012. I celebrated two milestone birthdays, 21st and 25th; took my first airplane rides by myself (which, to me was a very big deal the first time I did–I was terrified, haha). I worked different jobs, spent more time with my family and friends; grew closer to my friends. I’ve grown up. I’ve changed in ways I never thought would be possible because when the break-up first happened, and like I said, for awhile afterward, I truly thought I would never move on. And then I remember at one point my one brother telling me I have to accept the fact that I may never talk to or see my old boyfriend again. Of course, that wasn’t entirely true as we talked briefly last November but, that didn’t end on the best of terms so we are back to no longer speaking.

But you know what? I’ve accepted it. It’s okay. I am not opposed to being his friend if he comes around to changing his mind but, I don’t hold it against him. Five years later and I am at that point my life where I can look back on the relationship and be happy. I don’t regret it. Some days I used to, but, I now know everything happens for a reason. So, I am thankful for having had the relationship with him. No, it didn’t work out, but every experience in my life, this one included, helped shape me into the woman I am today.

So, in honor of it having been five years, I’ve decided to write a public letter. No, I’m not going to mail this to him, but, I am writing it not only for my own sake of fully letting go of the past and accepting it, but also in hopes of other women seeing it and realizing they too can move on from a break-up, a heartache, and be happy again. 🙂

I will admit, it is a little terrifying to put my thoughts like this out there but, at the end of the day it only matters what I think of my thoughts.

To The Boy Who Broke My Heart:

It’s been awhile since I’ve spoken to you. I’m almost certain I saw you out driving where I was out filming for work the other day but I can’t be 100% positive. It looked like you though, as did the truck look like yours. Of course I thought it was strange, only because what were the chances we’d both be in that area at the same time. That, and I was also wondering why you would be on that side of town anyway.

But, enough about that. I want to say I hold no hard feelings toward you. Sure, I wish we could be civil enough to chat–not on daily basis or anything–and to be friends, but, I guess it just isn’t meant to be that way. And that’s okay.

I will admit that for many months, and well, a few years I held both resentment and sadness about us breaking up. After all, you were my first true love, and the truth is, a small part of me will always hold on to that. I used to say I hated you for breaking up with me, but, looking back now, it’s kind of silly to hate someone because they don’t want to be with you anymore/don’t love you anymore. Why would you want to be with someone who doesn’t love you back? I questioned that for a long time and I now know that us breaking up did us both a favor.

When I think back to our relationship, I think of all the memories–both the good and bad. Mostly the good, as I don’t want to live with resentment over the bad times, and I smile. We had some great times and while there are times to this day I wish I could send you a text or call you up to tell you something funny, I thankfully have other people in my life for that. No, we’re no longer part of each other’s life, but, I wish you well.

During the time we dated you taught me a lot about love. I fell in love with you and you fell in love with me in return. You and I were opposites and yes, at times I wasn’t sure if we would date for as long as we did but, indeed we did. When I dated you I truly felt like the luckiest girl in the world. Like a princess. Not to say our relationship was perfect, because ours wasn’t, and no one’s is, but, the good times we had I am so happy I will forever have those to cherish.

I thank you. I thank you for asking me out. Oh, the way you asked me out–Won’t ever forget that. Too funny. You were more than just my boyfriend and first true love, but also my best friend. And of course, you were my first real heartbreak. But, as the saying goes, time heals all wounds. It took a long time, yes, and at times I thought I would never fully get over you–as pathetic as that sounds but boy, am I one determined and strong woman who was finally able to say “goodbye” to that chapter of my life. For the longest time I thought my life was over because we ended but oh how wrong I was. I realized that our relationship was just a chapter in my life, not the whole thing. It is in fact when my life really began.

Now I know you may never see this, and we very well may never talk again, but I do want you to know I wish you well. I’m grown up now and no longer not wish you well. Because, you know, I had to be young and immature by wishing you the worst. That of course was before growing up to be older and wiser. I no longer wish that. Because another thing I learned is that it takes up too much time and energy to hate someone. I have so many hopes, dreams and desires I intend to achieve in my life that I decided and realized I would no longer dwell on the past and think you’re a total jerk for breaking up with me. Like I said earlier, you did us both a favor. But, looking forward, if I ever have kids some day, or even if I am just talking to friends or my family (nieces and nephews) as they get older, I’ll speak fondly of our relationship. We had fights but, I choose to focus on the good of our relationship and for that, I am thankful.

Thank you for loving me, and allowing me to love you back. Thank you for allowing me to be such a special part of your life for three and a half years. Thank you for being a part of my life during those years and being there for me through both the good times and the bad. I wouldn’t have made it through the bad times as easily without your support.

I hope you too can look back at our relationship and not hold resentment toward me. But, should you, that choice is yours. I won’t hold it against you. I truly wish you well and if our paths happen to cross again, whether as acquaintances or friends or whatever, wonderful. But, if not, that’s fine too. Just know, no matter what, you’ll forever hold a special spot in my heart for having been my first love. And that for that I will be forever grateful. Thank you.

Ana

Until next time…

XO,

Ana