I get confused about what kind of dating advice to follow. It seems like everyone has a strong opinion about how to find love or as it may be, how love finds you.
I’m single and lately I’ve been wondering if love is guaranteed for everyone. If so, does it come by way of devoted method (Match, Speed Dating, Singles outings)? By chance, regardless of method? Or is it like my mother says przeznaczenie – destined, marked.
Am I cynic or romantic if I say: chance?
In January when I told my hairdresser that making a rotisserie chicken was on my list of goals for the year, she paused and said, “I knew there was a reason you were single.”
“Because I haven’t roasted a chicken?” I laughed so hard I gave myself a temple headache.
“Yes! Girl, you gotta come over my house. I’ll show you how to do it. Shit. No wonder.”
“You think I’m single because I’ve never roasted a chicken?”
“Yes!! You gotta give a man something to bite into. He needs a drumstick. I’m telling you. You gotta Google that shit. It was on Oprah. It’s called Engagement Chicken or something like that. Seriously. Google, Oprah Engagement Chicken and you’ll find it. Man needs to bite into something.” She gnashed her teeth and mimicked eating a chicken leg.
If only it were that easy: Rotisserie Chicken as enchanter.
I’m sure there are thousands who have been wooed through the stomach, but kitchen magic is not my strong suit. I can cook, just not in a love spell kind of way. Although let the record state, I have cooked with lavender.
People mean to be encouraging. But I find that when someone speaks with certainty on a method, (if one believes love is found through a method) it’s because it worked for them. Therefore it is the way love happens. Not everyone takes this stance. So we’ll just call them “some people.”
Other people have learned from bad experiences and come crawling back from the field with warnings and tales to tell. They give me glimpses that sometimes love is not unlike a medieval world in simplicity and torture. We can also call these people “some people.”
Then there are: single people, serial daters, high school sweethearts, thrice remarried folks, long haulers, players, second chancers, life partners, one time yes’ers, serial monogamists, soul mates, companions, special arrangement people, sell-outs, the Montagues and the Capulets , the happily married, chance encounter miracle receivers, this-is-what-you-do-now-people, I fell out of love with you shruggers, weekend fling types, meant to be types, there’s a reason you’re single caution blinkers, heartbreakers, the heartbrokens, misery marriages, love at first sight prophets, slow cookers, radio holding John Cusacks, The Live to Tells, My parents (married 46 years), and those on the catch and release program. That’s more points of view than a fly has eyes.
Maybe if I compounded all these opinions and insights I could have a 365 degree view on love. Maybe by considering all angles, I can come to know this elusive beast. [Insert Unicorn joke here.] But that’s the thing, to understand its many facets doesn’t mean I can find a way to get it. I can’t will it. That’s too much logic for something that appears at random, in my opinion. Love and marriage can turn out so many different ways. My mother once equated it to Roulette. I didn’t ask her if she meant Russian.
My favorite truisms that are contradictions.
1) You’ll find someone when you’re not looking
2) You need to put yourself out there
Which is it?
1) There are Plenty of Fish in the Sea
2) It’s hard to meet a good guy
1) Guys can be shy, make the first move
2) Guys like the chase, let him make the first move
1) Do the things you love and you will find him
2) Take a plumbing or mechanics class
Also known as:
1) Be Yourself
2) Try something different
3) Live in England
1) Show your interest
2) Feign disinterest
1) Be Open
2) Protect Yourself
1) Don’t settle
2) Nobody’s perfect
1) I knew he was the one. I just knew.
2) It took me a while to know. It takes time to know someone.
1) You have to have a spark.
2) Sometimes the spark comes later.
Also known as: Don’t kid yourself, either way.
I have mulled these truisms over. My truism is this: It’s a mystery what brings two people together. I think it comes down to luck.
Maybe you’ve had this experience too? This advice. These contradictions. So many possibilities! No one certainty? There have been days, when I’m bummed that I’m single, longing for a soul mate who may or may not exist. Self-love is hard won in the face of rejection and don’t I know it. On the flip side, I have felt excited and grateful for the freedoms of being single– traveling the world, experiencing variety and having a chance to grow and live out my dreams where the only compromise or hindrance of reaching a goal is negotiating with myself. Self-love comes into play here too. Seems like that’s one kind of love you can make appear. The other one’s a mystery.