Sincerely Alana

A writer's thoughts

Dating Is Hard...

I don't necessarily agree with that statement, but it was definitely a topic of discussion while on Twitter the other night. Last year, a lot of us joined online dating sites, I talked about my experience after joining with a friend. That was just one experience out of the many others that followed, but what I noticed is that, dating isn't really hard as much as it is just a lot. Here's the things, the getting to know you stage is exhausting. Think about it, you have to text, talk on the phone, or talk face to face about yourself probably more often than you'd like. You have to bring this person up to speed on your life and what makes you who you are. I'm 29, that's a lot of talking and explaining.

In a way you're pitching yourself to these people who don't know you but want to. You have to talk about things you haven't talked about in forever, things you don't really care to talk about again. You have to sit and listen to someone talk about themselves, some things you'll care about, others you'll have no use for. But you sit there, and you listen because you might need this information one day, or what they say might be a deal breaker. So even if what is being said doesn't seem important, you have to listen, because you might need it later.

Who has the time? 

I didn't realize how much I don't want to be anybody's girlfriend until recently. I started dating again recently, and realized that the responsibility of a relationship with another human being might not be what's best for me right now. Why? Because I don't care enough. I've never been the girl who needed to be in a relationship to know that my life is on the right track. I don't want to get married so there really is no rush to find the one. If I wanted to have a baby tomorrow, I could do that with or without a man, so again, there is no rush. Falling in love isn't exactly number one on my list of things to do. I've been in love, and although falling in it is beautiful and amazing, if and when you fall out and make contact with the hard reality that it is in fact over, that shit hurts. I don't have the space for heartbreak right now. 

My aunt constantly talks to me about settling down and living in sin. There is this ridiculous belief that when you are alone, you are lonely. This is false. I have amazing people in my life that I have dinner with and hike with that give my life purpose. I have kids that are amazing, and I have a life that I'm living that takes up a lot of my time. For now, that's enough. Nobody wants to be alone forever. However, everyone isn't in a place where they can accept and appreciate a forever kind of love. I know I'm not. So why would I bring someone into my life and settle down, when I'm just getting the party started? I have some living to do, and forever isn't on the menu for the early part, if any part, of my 2015.
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I Hate August

August was a shitty month. There is just no other way to break it down. It was filled with death, disappointment, racism, hatred, and unforeseen problems. And I for one will not be participating in August next year.

Listen, August swooped her hating ass down and knocked everything on the table onto the floor and dared me to pick it up. It was really the most disturbing month I've ever had the displeasure of being a part of. Let's see if I can name off the things that happened in the exact order of their occurrence.

1. At the beginning of the month, I was on my way home from work and caught a flat. No problem, right? These things happen all the time. Well, the universe decided to show me that things don't always come easy. Not only did it take an hour for someone to come change my tire, but when they were trying to take the tire off, they broke something. But, the spare was put on, and I was off. While diving slower than usual, I was pulled over by the police, "hey, uh, just wanted to make sure you weren't drinking, because you know you were driving slow." I quickly pointed to my spare and explained what was happening. He let me go, and again, I was on my way. THEN when I was just four minutes away from home...wait for it...the spare went flat. Now listen, if there were ever a sign that shit wasn't going to get better, this was it. But I continued to participate in the month anyway instead of hiding under the covers until it was over. Now that's what I should have done.

2. A young man by the name of Michael Brown was shot down while surrendering to a cop, and we have been fighting against blatant racism and unfair treatment everyday since. It's always been there, but there is something about a black person's death that makes all of the racists stand up and say, HERE I AM! Riots broke out, and celebrities like Nelly made an idiotic statement, he actually made a few, but I digress. Then POTUS was all, "this is sad, let's be peaceful and hope for the best." Although this was later, it's relevant to the situation, Iyanla Vanzant went to Ferguson to try and fix the city, and fixed nothing. I gave Oprah the side eye for approving this. You see, you can love someone, but you can't condone everything they do. It's ok to hold your favorite accountable. 

3. My depression showed up and showed out, and I wasn't sure about the future. 

4. My cousin passed away from cancer. I'm glad he's free from the pain, but it doesn't mean I miss him any less. R.I.P. Melvin.

5. I had to step out of character at work, and go head to head with a co-worker. I've never lost it at work before. By the end of that confrontation, I was in my manager's office saying to my boss, "she gets on my nerves, and I'm sick of her shit."

6. And bringing it on home, I was in a car accident with a woman who refuses to take responsibility. I literally had to stop talking to her to stop myself from catching a case. I'm still dealing with this one. It followed me into September y'all.

So you see, August has just been awful, and I'm tired of it. Everyone around me had a bad August, and every time they'd tell me why theirs was so bad, it was like the universe said, "oh really? Well Alana will take your terrible living situation and raise you a car accident!" And then BOOM! I wrote about my bad day  two years ago, and about how Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day was one of my favorite books. In just 31 days, I was able to trump my terrible day AND Alexander's. That's got to be some kind of record.

We're now in September, and I refuse to let it be the hating ass hater August was. So here's to a new month that's going to be better than the last. We gotta pray y'all.
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"There's something awfully sad about an old dream"

My dad thought I was going to be a lawyer. He forgot that in order for this to happen, I would have to actually go to law school, like it, or even want to go. My oldest brother thought I was going to be an actress, and so did I. That is until I realized I was going to have to stand in front of people and audition. I quickly let go of that dream. I did come pretty close when I was contacted by a casting director and asked to audition for something. I was also approached when I was a young teen and offered a chance to be in Seventeen Magazine. I swiftly turned the woman down and power walked in the opposite direction. I could feel my aunt's confused stare burning a hole into the back of my head. 

Writing was just something I did when I was a young girl. There was no real goal to turn it into anything other than exactly what it was. An escape. I remember the book that sparked this need to weave words together and make something beautiful. I was twelve, and my school had a book fair. I walked into the cafeteria with money from my dad that I had to beg for. I'd waited until the last minute to tell him about the fair, something that he detested. Why didn't you say something sooner? He frowned down at me as he dug into his pocket to give me money. I'd lucked up, dad never carried much cash on him. I apologized, and thanked him with a brief wave as I all but ran through the gates to my school. 

It wasn't Judy Bloom, who I love, that sparked this need to write inside of me, but rather a woman by the name of Stefanie Scott. She'd written the books to my favorite show at the time, Moesha. I read one book after the other, and with each book I finished (there were only four) I believed that I could do it too. I rewrote the stories, changing the scenes, turning them into what I needed them to be. They were grammatically incorrect, and made no sense, but they were perfect to me. 

My love of writing followed me into high school where I met a teacher who encouraged me to do this. I started creating new characters, giving them issues that I believed nobody had even thought of before. They had, but that didn't stop me. Somewhere between freshman year and senior year, the dream was lost. I started college and majored in Theater, and then Psychology. It took me two more years, and numerous terribly written novels, articles that no one would see, and countless short stories, before I decided to major in journalism.

I felt like time had run out, like maybe it was too late 

You see, writing and I have a really weird relationship. We get together often, and enjoy each other's time, but sometimes we get tired of each other and need a break. Writing asks me if I'm ready to settle down, and I do, for a minute, but I eventually run. We're never on the same page, but we're aware that we'll always return to each other. Like any great love that shows back up after being away for so long, it's awkward at first, but eventually, we get it together.

So yes, there is something very sad about an old dream, but there is something beautiful about being reunited with the dream you were meant for. We've been apart for a little while now, I think it's time writing and I got reacquainted. 
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Online Dating: Is This All That's Left?

One day while not working, my co-worker and I started talking about dating, and somehow I got her to sign up for OkCupid. Because jumping online to find Mr. Right had to be the answer to all of her problems. I couldn't let her do it alone, not to mention I'd made a promise to start dating again. I'm pretty fearless, a fact that drives my mother crazy. After only one full day of being on the site, I went to my co-worker and said, "this shit is hard!" Keeping up with the messages, and trying to engage men who thought, "hey" was a conversation starter was just too much for me. This was obviously not my thing. But I'm not a quitter, so I decided I was going to stick it out. 

A message sent to my friend
I'd also been meaning to do Speed Dating with friends for the longest but my schedule just wouldn't allow it. So, I went to Google, and I found a site called I mean, if you're going to do online dating, you need to go all the way, right? This was perfect! I was going to get the chance to speed date from the comfort of my couch.This was amazing! Until it wasn't. Speed Date guy #1 decided he wanted my Skype info because we hit it off. He didn't however tell me that he wanted to Skype at 3am. Color me surprised when my ipad started ringing, and when I accidentally answered. I immediately hung up because first, I wasn't Skype ready, and two, shouldn't we actually make plans to do this? Speed Date guy number two and I talked two days in a row. By day two, I was invited to Hawaii, where he currently resides. I continued to ignore the invitation, because come on, we don't know each other. He needed attention that I was unable to give, not to mention, it was a little too early to expect me to go from me to we. The guys that followed weren't any better, and you would think that would have been reason enough to quit this online dating thing all together.

I've never been able to leave well enough alone

There was a guy who sent a message and introduced himself by saying, "they call me *insert name*. What they call you?" followed by a twenty four year old, a man with TWO kids, and bringing it on home, a man who has been in a relationship for FOUR years, and has no plans of ending it anytime soon!

A message that was supposed to sweep me off my feet
Picture it, Long Beach, 2014, I was sitting on my couch reading an ebook, (because old) when a message pops up at the top of the screen. You've got mail! I wouldn't usually check this, but something in my spirit wouldn't let me ignore it. I clicked it and the first thing I see is, "can I tell you something?" I regret this, but I asked anyway, only to then receive that message you see up above. I'd been invited to be someone's side piece. He wanted me to be the Joseline to his Stevie J, and I was shocked!  He asked for a half commitment, which as you can see, I had to ask him to explain. He's bored with his girlfriend and has decided that just from reading my profile that I seem, "exiting." I'm not even special enough to be exciting, just exiting. Whatever that means.

Which brings me to why I'm writing this post. While sifting through pictures of potential guys, my co-worker turned to me and said, "Alana, is this all we're left with? Is this it?" I can remember thinking, God, I hope not. Well, God said, possibly. 

We now live in a world where everything is done online. I mean, I never thought I'd see the day when I could sit on my couch and do Speed Dating and homework all at the same time. I've watched people become best friends just from talking on Twitter. I too have formed special bonds with people through Twitter. But our heads are always down, reading and sending a text message or email, never really engaging in face to face communication. On those days that I am approached by a man who is interested in either dating me or being my "friend" I find it a little annoying that these grown men struggle to have an intelligent conversation. That's not to say that it's all men, but it's enough, and when you've been approached by one too many frogs that refuse to turn into princes, you try to remain hopeful that there is something better. That was me, believing there had to be a better way, and what I learned is that online dating might not be that thing, for me.

I don't want to be that cynical girl, and maybe I, like many others, am being picky, but we have that right. There was an article written recently for women specifically, about why we are single. Like most articles on this topic one of the reasons was that we are too picky. Our standards are too high, yet this is never said about a man. It seems to be ok that a man have a preference that is almost unrealistic, but our expectation, to be treated right, and be with a man who is stable both mentally and financially is constantly criticized. We are often times expected to accept what is given to us because he is a "good man" and one flaw, even if it's one indiscretion, shouldn't be enough to make us walk away.

If all we seem to be left with is the thirty year old living at home with his parents, the guy who wants to settle down just for the sake of settling down, and the cheater, what does that say about the possibility of any of us settling down at all? I'm not saying that meeting someone and falling in love is an impossibility, but the possibility of doing this is dwindling with every man that chooses to lie about his relationship status, or refuses to leave the nest. It's a sad thought, but the acceptance that we may just be forever alone is a harsh reality that I, along with others, are faced with. 

Online dating, is this really all there is?
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Alana Needs A Break

Angie, Alana, Stephen, and Rilee
I went hiking with friends a couple of days ago. It was a plan that started with one person and snowballed into a group activity. We'd been trying to find the right time and day to do this activity, but it just never lined up. One day I decided that we were going to do it and I contacted everyone that I knew wanted to go and the majority of my friends said yes. Nia Long said, "when you keep saying you don't have the time, that is when you won't have the time." I spend most of my time thinking about the time I don't have, this is my flaw. I own this.

Angie enjoying the hike
You can't see it in the photos but our phones were always accessible. However, I was the only one occupied by my phone. While hiking, it is almost impossible to get service, you can try but until you get really close to the top, your phone usually makes no noise. Unless you're me. Nobody got service on this hike but me, and in a way I felt like I was being tested. I failed miserably. I received emails from my writers, PR reps, and even an emergency text message from another co-worker who couldn't make it to the hike. "Alana, ignore it!" "Just tell them you didn't have service!" My friends yelled at me as they continued to hike and I stood a few feet answering texts, and emails that couldn't wait until we finished. Just one more text and I could join my friends in the fun that was being had without me.  

The text messages and emails didn't stop until it was time to head back down the trail. By the time we started bouncing down (some of us running from bugs) the rocky path, all emails were answered and I had solved all of the problems, but what had I gained besides a shift on my day off and more questions I'd have to answer later on in the week? I enjoyed being with my friends, and watching them experience what I'd already experienced more times than I can count, but when I walked into my house, and moved around preparing to shift my day to accommodate others, I had a thought: I really need a break.

Stephen, Rilee, and Angie attempting to jump
I've been working my ass off to make certain things in my life happen so that I could accomplish goals that I set for myself last year. In doing so, I've worked myself into a state of unhappiness. The people around me see the things I do as "cool" and "exciting" I'm just exhausted and I'm not giving myself the chance to enjoy these things. I don't want to look up a year or two from now and wonder where the time went. I want to look back and say, "I remember that! It was a really great time." So, this is me no longer saying I don't have the time, or putting people first, this is just me living, and the next time we go on a hike (which will be very soon) I'm going to leave the phone in the car and just take my digital camera with me. I want to stop and smell the roses. I don't want to depend on someone else telling me how amazing they smell.

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Decision Making: My Struggle As A Professional Writer

I have an article I need to write, an interview I need to prepare for, and a day to start, but I can't do any of that without writing this first. At the end of 2013 I was offered a position as editor for an online magazine that's kinda dope. I jumped at the chance because I mean, who wouldn't? It's the opportunity of a lifetime and has opened some doors for me and has given me confidence to pursue a few things I'd been holding off on. However, as great as things are, there was one thing I never counted on when taking this position. I'm filtering myself.

One of the things I've always loved about Twitter is being able to say what I wanted when I damn well pleased. It's liberating to be able to use profanity, state my opinion, and laugh with old and new friends about the goings on in the world. When I decided that I was going to be a writer, and that this was going to be my career and not just a hobby, I kept thinking that maybe I needed to create a separate Twitter, one for Alana the writer/editor, and one for Alana, the girl who works and rants from time to time. Being the procrastinator that I am, I never got around to it, but that wasn't a problem, until recently.

My job as editor has caused some organizations to follow me, and share things that I tweet. Writers follow me in hopes of connecting, but they don't know who I am because I find myself filtering the things that I say. And it's exhausting as hell. During the Grammys, I held back, a lot. I didn't tweet the way I would have a year ago, I didn't make fun of Stevie Wonder hairline like I did just a couple of years ago, because priorities. The reality is, I have to watch what I say because there is a small chance I might end up interviewing some of the people I talk about and my tweets could come back to bite me in the ass. I don't want to show up to interview someone and have them hit me with, "yeah, I saw that tweet about my hair sliding off my scalp." I actually said that Stevie along with some other funny things. Anyway, could you imagine the horror of having someone throwing your words up in your face? That could make for a very awkward interview.

When I covered an event for the magazine, I was offered the chance to cover the red carpet as well as the event, and interview different celebrities that were there for the occasion. I remember a certain celeb getting angry and deciding that they were going to get off of the red carpet because they were tired of waiting for their chance to talk to the next media outlet. My fingers were itching to tweet the moment, but I couldn't because again, professional. I struggle with that even knowing what I know now. Sometimes I throw caution to the wind and decide to tweet my first thought anyway, or I retweet something that's slightly reckless because I think it's funny. I find it so hard to filter. Anyone who knows me knows that I can not be stifled. I would rather give  up my position as writer/editor than become a person that I don't even recognize. I've got to find a balance, I know this, but I'm afraid I'll always be left asking the question, where do I draw the line between personal and professional?
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"Alana, you're a really good writer." My dad said this to me as I sifted through the numerous emails in all four of my email accounts. I glanced up and said to him, "I'm really not as good as people believe I am." It was a sobering comment that immediately made me feel terrible. My writers block had started lowering my self-esteem. A co-worker recently mentioned that I attend some of the "coolest" events. I smiled, but behind my smile I was thinking, "I attend them, and then grapple for the right words to string together in hopes of submitting an article worth reading.

I've been questioning my skills a lot lately. Writers block has hit me hard and I am still down for the count. I bullshit my way through the things that I have to write and when there are no deadlines, I'm silent. The only time my fingers move is when I'm changing the channel, or tweeting. Honestly, Twitter seems to be where my most of my words land. Not in the article that's due at the end of the week, or the email that needs to be sent out to my writers, but Twitter, the place where procrastinators like myself go to...well...procrastinate.

I would never go so far as to say that I'm a terrible writer. If I were, there is no way I would have made it as far as I have. But I'd be lying if I said that I didn't come down on myself when I see other writers' hands flying across the keyboard, knocking out article after article, while I struggle to finish one. I'm constantly in my head trying to talk myself up in hopes of sparking something, anything, to help me make my deadlines.

My horoscope said that this was my month. That I was going to make great strides in my career, and if I'm being honest with myself, I'm off to a great start. I've landed a big interview that could help push me to the next level, I'm that much closer to publishing my first novel, and I'm a step closer to pitching to two major magazines in hopes of seeing my name in one or both of them this year. But I am still stuck with the question, where have my words gone?
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Courage or Comfort?

"The path to loving and belonging is vulnerability." ~Dr. Brene Brown

It's kind of hard to write a post about vulnerability when you aren't completely sure how to be vulnerable anymore. I use to think that my need to be perfect was me being a perfectionist, I thought it was a great thing to be, a great trait to have. On Sunday, I learned that that is not the case. My need to be a perfectionist was me refusing to be vulnerable. 

During the most recent Life Class, Oprah, along with Dr. Brene Brown tackled the subject of being vulnerable. Dr. Brown says, "if you don't know how to do vulnerability, then vulnerability is doing you." I sat up with my phone in my hand and began taking notes, because quite honestly, she was speaking to me. I've had two moments in time where I was completely vulnerable. One was when I shared my battle with depression, and another is when I decided to tell someone the truth, and my truth was ignored. Funny enough, I was more terrified about talking about depression than I was to tell the truth, and I received completely different responses than I thought I would get on each topic.

I use to be really good at hiding behind my laugh and smile and being silly. I never shared with people when I was angry or sad, or just plain fed up. It was just easier to be happy on the outside and curl up in a corner when I was behind closed doors. The fear of judgement or rejection is what stopped me from being vulnerable. 

   "We share with people who earn the right to hear the story"~Brene Brown

And sometimes we trust the wrong people with our story and we get hurt. It does not mean that we should shut down forever. The one thing Dr. brown said that stuck out to me was, "If you want to be brave and show up in your life, you're going to fail. You're going to stumble, you're going to fall. It's a part of showing up." She follows it up with, "you can choose courage or you can choose comfort. You can't have both." For the longest time I was trying to choose both. 

It is so easy to dress your imperfections up, and make them pretty for all the eyes on you, but it takes courage to be vulnerable, and say, "this is me, no shields, no lies, just me. Accept it, or don't." By doing that, you are putting yourself out there to be judged or disliked, you are being vulnerable. I've worked so hard to not be that person, and now, I'm back in a place where being vulnerable is important to me. I choose courage over comfort. 
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Closure: You May Never Get It

Closure: A feeling of finality or resolution, especially after a traumatic experience.

It's different for everyone. We don't all need it to move on to the next thing or get on with life. Sometimes, it's just as simple as charging it to the game and moving on. That's not the case for everyone, some people need that ending, they need to know why.

Yesterday, like every other day, my people on Twitter had a discussion. This particular discussion surrounded closure and those who need it. There were a few opinions that I agreed with, but more that I disagreed with. One person said, "They need that closure, that "I'm sorry", so that they can feel better about letting that person back into their life." It's not always about that. Sometimes, people want an I'm sorry because they feel like it's what is needed to move forward.

There is a quote by Oprah that I love,  she says, "What we all want is to be seen and heard, and to know that what you say really matters." It is very possible that the person looking for closure just wants the other person to say, "I hear you. I get it." That is the closure for some. It is impossible to get that when the person you're dealing with isn't showing any signs of "getting it".

Getting closure does not mean making the same mistake with the same person. But rather trying to figure out why your actual outcome was different from the one you expected.

The problem with wanting and seeking closure is that it's so easy to lose yourself while seeking it. You become consumed with the "what if" and closure then becomes a need which eventually turns into an obsession. Closure, there is nothing wrong with wanting it, but if you aren't getting it, you have to find a way to let go of the hope that one day you will. Give yourself closure by letting it go.

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Quick Thought: Hurt People

It's been said very often that, "Hurt people hurt people." This means that those who have been hurt once before sometimes lash out at those around them. Up until recently, I had someone like this in my life. They were always pointing a finger at those around them saying what people were doing to them was wrong, but for some reason they could never see the part they played in the cluster fuck that was their life. I always overlooked the tantrums and the anger and made excuses for them by saying, well he has been through a lot or she was hurt by ________. I never thought to say, this is wrong.   I was often times this person's proverbial punching bag because they knew that in the end, Alana would always be there. All of this goes back to my post about the giving tree.

There is a quote by Jane Austen that says angry people are not always wise. The truth of the matter is, angry people can be assholes. And we as their support system and friends are feeding their irrational bullshit.

I do believe that hurt people hurt people. I also believe that bad behavior only gets worse if you placate those who are acting out. So if someone is hurt, and you call yourself their friend, be the kind of friend that calls them out on their bad behavior. Your hurt friend will only continue to hurt people, yourself included, if you rub their back and tell them that it's ok.
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Nobody's Perfect...Not Even Me

It is easier to be honest with someone about their shortcomings than it is to be honest with yourself about your own. This isn't a secret, this isn't news to any of us. We fear holding up a mirror and looking in it because of what might be staring back at us. I believe that when I write, I give the impression that I am holding up a mirror, looking directly into it, and telling you what is wrong with me. I can sometimes be transparent, or at least seem like I am. I've worked hard at this. It was my plan to do this so that people wouldn't try to figure me out. If they started picking me apart, they'd see my flaws. Not the flaws that I push to the front, but the ones that I bury deep down, the ones that would force me to face the facts that I always  seem to turn away from.

Let me tell you a short story that could potentially turn into a long story. I met a guy when I was fifteen. We became friends, nothing special, just friends. Around this time, I was really working on my perfect persona. I didn't use profanity around him, when he told me he liked my voice I made sure to always speak that way, even when I wanted to raise my voice, I didn't. Anyway, he and I grew closer, because I had become what he wanted me to be, I'd become perfect, for him. But that shit became exhausting, and it became really clear that I had to stop working hard to be what I believed he wanted me to be. Long story short, we grew apart once I showed him that I didn't fit into the pretty little box he tried to put me in. We talk twice a year and that's only because I check to make sure he's still alive. I'm disappointed every time he says he's doing well. I don't wish anything bad on him, but it wouldn't hurt if his life was at least a little shitty.

I decided to show him just who I was, which wasn't much different from who I made him believe I was. 

In the end, I held up the mirror and showed him the real me and in doing so got a little glimpse of just who he was. I didn't like what I saw, but I like the lesson that I learned. I'm not perfect, I never will be, and altering who I am to fit the mold of who someone else thinks I should be is crazy. Nobody's perfect, and sometimes the person you're trying so hard to be perfect for, is scarily imperfect. 
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Quick Thought: Love...There Are No Guarantees

One of my favorite movies is All About You. It follows a woman named Niki who is more in love with a man than he is with her. He eventually breaks up with her, and she is forced to take a step back professionally and personally, and move back in with her old roommate who just so happens to be her ex's cousin. She later falls for a guy who turns out to be her ex and roommate's cousin. This is a really complicated storyline now that I think about it. Anyway, as the two grow closer, they have a small conversation that goes like this:

"It's pretty daunting to give your all to someone, who doesn't want it."

"What will it take?"

"For what?"

"To try again."

"Assurance, I mean an escape clause. A one hundred percent money back guarantee if you will. I need to know, that I know, that I know."

"That's no fun. You have to leave room for the surprises."

Do you really? I understand her feeling like she needs assurance more than I understand his statement about leaving room for surprises. Nobody wants the surprise of things ending in their relationship, or saying I love you and being met with silence. Giving your all to someone who doesn't want it, like she said, is daunting, but it's also soul crushing. 

I've been thinking a lot about love lately. I remember what I felt when I was in it, but I also remember the lasting affects when it was over and done. I once wrote about the lessons learned from each relationship that I've been in, and about how I had some of the highest highs and the lowest lows. There was some good and bad in each relationship. I carry both with me even to this day. The fact that I carry them might just be the reason that I am not in a relationship now.

So maybe we should leave room for the surprises in order to try love again, but if you're like me, you don't like surprises. I, like Niki, need to know that I know, that I know.

Unfortunately, in life, there are no guarantees.
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© Sincerely Alana, AllRightsReserved.

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