Things I’ve Learned from Dating

What three years of dating has brought to my life: After being in a relationship from 17–29 (including marriage), entering the world of dating was terrifying, exhilarating, and a huge life lesson. There are going to be a lot of “I” statements here, so please bear with me. I have met people that I’ve thought were the love of my life. I have been heartbroken by said people. I have been told that I’m everything they could ever want. I have been ghosted by people who just never text back. I have met families. I have introduced friends. I have shared more details than I should have. I have gone to hell and back with one person. I have failed at letting people down in the right way. I have learned that everyone deserves the truth in the gentlest form sometimes. I have slept with people that I have regretted. I have learned that no one else is counting my “number.” I have also learned that it’s okay to sleep with someone that isn’t going to be your husband. I’ve accepted that some people are only a moment or a season, not the whole picture. I’ve learned that it’s okay not to cut someone out of your life when they can’t be exactly who you want them to be. I have learned that I need to put my all in, even if it means getting hurt, or I’ll never get someone else’s all out. I have learned that someone that calls instead of texts probably has their intentions in the right place. I’ve also learned that’s not always the case. I’ve been told that I have a strong personality. I’ve also been told that’s not something that some people look for in a partner. (Fuck that guy, btw.). I have learned that I don’t want someone that wants me to be less than who I am. I’ve learned to rely on my gut. I know when something is wrong and need to believe in that conviction. I’ve learned that I might be too tall for someone, too this, too that. I’ve also learned that there are some basic truths that I cannot change about myself and nor should I want to. I know that I need someone that is okay with who I am. I also know that I need someone that I don’t want to change. No one is perfect, myself more than included. We all just need to find the imperfect person that we can be imperfect with.