Dear me at 18:
The wind is in your hair. The sun is on your face. You’ve just shared a first kiss with a great new guy you’re seeing. You’re on a boat touring the Toronto Harbour and it’s a beautiful day. A beautiful date. Possibly the best date you’ve ever had.
Except for the fact that you don’t like the guy.
You’re trying really really hard to like him. You want to like him so badly. He’s cute. He’s funny. He’s sweet. He’s stylish. He’s got a cool job. He just graduated from art school. He lives in a super cool duplex in Little Italy. He is your recipe for romance, all rolled into one dude.
But the sad fact is that there is absolutely no chemistry between you.
You’re standing with your chest against the rails on this touring ship, staring into the water, wondering how the heck you could be so bored. Why there aren’t any butterflies in your stomach. Why you felt absolutely nothing when he kissed you.
This is the thing about romance: It’s all about a spark.
A spark. An indescribable something that makes your stomach turn upside down. That makes your breath shallow and your heartbeat race. That makes you need that person, need to be with them, near them, talking to them, talking about them. Thinking about them. All. The. Time.
It’s difficult to explain and totally impossible to predict where or when or how it happens. There’s no recipe for love. There’s no equation. You can have all the variables present and it still might not add up. It has a mind of its own and the one thing you can know for certain is that you are not in charge.
And, let’s be honest here: You hate not being in charge.
When you want something, you want it RIGHT NOW. And right now, you want to fall in love. And you’re getting incredibly frustrated that it’s not happening.
Half the excitement of falling in love is in the surprise of it all. The not knowing. The anticipation. The highs and lows. Without all those scary things, falling in love would just be… kind of boring. Kind of like the date you’re on right now. The date with the dude you thought would be your perfect match. Turns out, despite all your predictions, orchestrations, and equations, love is one thing that will never go according to your plan.
But hear me when I say this: I promise you, you will fall in love.
On the night that you meet your husband, you will return home to bed and be unable to sleep a wink. You, lover of all things slumber, near-narcoleptic, I-can-sleep-through-a-train-wreck you, will stay up all night tossing and turning because there is a pounding so loud in your chest that nothing can silence it. The butterflies in your stomach will beat their wings so violently that you will almost feel sick. It will be so overwhelming that you will wonder if you’ve officially lost your marbles (and you may very well have).
Here is the hard part: You’re just going to have to be patient. People say all the time that “love comes when you least expect it”. The tighter your grip on your dream romance, the further away it will drift. The fact is that in order for your life to go according to plan, you’re going to need to release control and have faith that you will be taken where you need to go.
Right now, this very moment, your future husband is out there. He’s walking around, living his life, waiting to meet you. You are on a crash collision course toward him. Don’t dig in your heels and attempt to rewrite the path that has already been laid out for you. Believe me, it’s a perfect plan, even though it might not look exactly as you want it to right now.
So do yourself a favour and relax a bit. Maybe have another beer to get yourself through this date. Be open and honest with the dude and you might have a chance to forge a friendship with a really great guy. Your soulmate is out there. It’s just not him.
And the next time you feel the need to manufacture some butterflies, resist the temptation. Believe me, they’ll be coming as soon as they’re ready. And there won’t be anything you can do to stop them.