I get it, you know. I truly get it. I get what it feels like to have been alone for so long. To constantly, repeatedly, frustratingly being hurt by love—by the absence of it.
I get what it feels like to be surrounded by people who seem lucky in love. I get what it feels like to be jealous, wishing I had that too. I get what it feels like to be searching everywhere. Everywhere. In parties. In reunions. In old acquaintances. In new ones. On plane rides. On weekend road trips to the beach. In the eyes of strangers. In the stories of travelers. In midnight encounters. At the bottom of a beer bottle.
I was always waiting for love to knock on my door. I was always ready to greet it with arms wide open. Pick it up in between my palms and say those words I have been dying to say: “I have been waiting for you. Welcome home.”
But years passed. And people did, too. Some other things disguised as love would come peeking, one foot inside the door, one out.
I get what it feels like to pretend I got a hold on my heart when charming guys with their charming words came passing by. Tongue in cheek, but I didn’t know better then. Because I get it. To constantly, repeatedly, frustratingly being hurt by love—by the absence of it. So you try to hold on what you can.
I’ve been told so many times that love comes when you least expect it, and I always just laugh and dismiss it as I think to myself, “That’s impossible. I am always waiting.”
But then love came.
Love came when I wasn’t looking. Love came when I realized I was so much more than my waiting. When the last charming guy came back into my life, as they usually do, and I realized in my heart that was not what I wanted. When I realized I was worth so much more than just charming, empty words.
Love came when I picked myself up and realized that all those years spent waiting were years when life were also the most magical. The beauty in the waiting; the adventure in the search. It was in the looking back that I saw the people who were there with me through it all. Friends, sisters, mothers. There, fighting, searching with me, waiting for love to show up. And holding my hand when it didn’t.
Love came when I realized that love was right there all along. It wasn’t waiting outside the door—it was folded, tucked between books gathering dust on the shelf. Waiting to be discovered.
And when I did, love arrived for real. And this time I recognized love because now I know what love looks like. Love knocks and comes in. Love doesn’t hesitate. Love doesn’t hover or is unsure. Love stays. And love…feels safe.
This is the year to stop looking for love. This is the year to stop waiting. This is the year to just be because you are right where you are supposed to be. Love is never missed or is late because—love arrives when it is supposed to.
This is the year to stop looking for love.