I chose a couple of classic titles for my recent trip to Mexico, including East of Eden, but I just couldn’t tame my concentration long enough to get into them. I resorted to a light-hearted bargain-table book called How to Be Single, by Liz Tuccillo, one of the authors of He’s Just Not that Into You. Though poorly written and amateurish, the book was entertaining and I did actually relate to a couple of rather profound ideas, including this quotation towards the end:

We’re so fucked. We are. We’re screwed. We’re this generation of women who are just as lonely as any other, but we’re just unwilling to settle or compromise to get ourselves out of it. So we’re all just waiting for the fucking needle-in-a-haystack guy who we’re going to love, who’s going to happen to love us, who we’re going to meet just at the time when we’re both available and living in the same city… We’re totally fucked.

It’s true… I am unwilling to settle or compromise. Finding love in my forties is way different than finding it in my youth.

I’ve loved four men in my life so far… Football Guy was the first. I was probably only 14 when we started going together, but we talked about getting married, and I think maybe we would have if we hadn’t listened to our parents and “dated around” at 16. That’s when I started seeing my first husband, and I’m not counting him in my list here, because I consider my love for him more of a friendship thing than a passionate thing. Later, I met Blue Eyes, and I loved him, too. But that was a complicated story, and he wasn’t entirely available. I loved Mr. N/A with all my heart; his first love was his addiction, so that didn’t end well. And, most recently, I loved (and still love) the Belgian, and while I still have hopes to see him again one day, I worry that my bitchiness ultimately pushed him away forever.

Forty years… four big loves. I’d rather live alone than settle for anything less than a big love, but maybe I’ve reached my max. Maybe that’s all I get. I’m grateful for each of them and the lessons I learned and the happiness I felt.

So… thinking about the future… visualizing what it is that I want for myself… I know I want a big love – a great big love – a great big, reciprocal love. And I think my two obstacles at the moment are not believing I’ll find it (or it will find me), and my unceasing love for the Belgian (kinda hard to think about loving anyone else). In creating my own dream, I’m influenced by a sense of realism that urges me not to put all my eggs in a Belgian basket and to open my mind to unknown opportunities. Yet, all the while, I’m wondering if I should brush up on my French… if I should jump on a plane… if I should begin writing letters.

I do love to write.

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