My best friend in high school was one of those girls who dreamed about getting married. Not being married, just that day of being a princess in the big white dress with a gorgeous man who promises to love you forever.
She did, after graduating early to move closer to her marine fiance. They fought constantly, but married anyway. And not much later, the divorced.
We drifted apart, much because I disagreed with the way she treated the man she had been married to, and also because I realized we just weren’t going in the same direction anymore. We floated around the same circle, though, and had many of the same friends. She was dating very seriously a guy who was good friends with my ex. Problem was, he wasn’t proposing. He still had another year before he finished college, and he wanted to get some things under his belt before committing to care for her forever and ever. She dumped him, though, thinking she could find better, and now.
He and I became friends, and even dated for a while. Nice enough, but totally not for me. I wasn’t surprised at all though, when he told me that she’d called him up and wanted to “talk.” I figured she’d caught word of our one-hot-minute, and didn’t want me to win. So they got back together, she waited it out, and they’re still married today. Maybe they really are a good fit together, or maybe she doesn’t want to be divorced again. Either way, I don’t know either of them well enough to judge and truly wish them the best. Everyone deserves their happiness.
This was never me, though.
Yeah, of course I wanted to find someone I could grow old with, raise a family with, be myself with. I never was one to compromise my standards and morals though, in hopes of increasing my odds of acquiring these things. I won’t say never, though; I was once in a bitterly self-depreciating relationship, more I think because of feelings of worthless in general than in hopes of starting a life and family with this man. When I finally gained the courage and strength to leave, I was most shocked to hear that he had already bought me a ring. What, really? Why?
For quite a while after that, I worked on myself. I came around to the idea that perhaps there wasn’t really anyone out there who could “put up with my crap,” as I was fond of saying. It was a little disheartening at first, but it also helped me learn the value of patience. It’s one thing to say you have patience when waiting for something that is more or less inevitable. But to really accept that something may never come at all, and to go on with your life: this was practically patience transcending.
I dated, surely, and I crushed. And flirted. And kissed. And more. But I found a way to be true to myself regardless of the time that passed by. Though not really much time had, between the time I learned this lesson and meeting someone who is still very special to me. But had I not figured this out, I know he and I would not be as happy as we are today. Perhaps we would never have been.
This is my lesson on never settling.


2 thoughts on “Settle

  1. I remember breaking up with a guy because while he was great for me, and we were great together, something (and it took me years to peg just what) just didn't mesh. People thought I was crazy for dumping him, and my parents were furious. They loved him like a son, and had all but picked out our wedding china. Four months later I met (and became engaged to one month after that) a man who was “all wrong” for me, but we are wonderful together. Better than I dreamed of. Truly. We've been married for six years, and there's not an end in sight.PS Please ignore any typos I tried spellcheck, but it doesn't always work (dyslexia!).

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