Okay…I admit that I have no firsthand knowledge of giving birth. But I do know that most women who have given birth say that once they experience the joy of raising their children, they forget the extreme pain of their birth. That is exactly how I feel about dating and finding love.
I thought of this yesterday as I was looking at my life with my husband through the lens of the events of the last couple weeks.
Two weeks ago Larry and I took a vacation. We went on a road trip to Las Vegas and it was pure joy. My darling man drove both ways, gladly tolerating my fidgeting and napping. He was kind and understanding when I screwed up our plans by calendaring in the wrong date for our show. He schlepped all the bags, romanced me, shared significant conversation, and kept me laughing.
Then…there was last week. I had a medical procedure; nothing serious, but not fun and a little scary. My 81-year-old father, who has been ill, took yet another turn for the worse, forcing me to face that I could no longer dwell in denial about his mortality. My sweet cat had a horrific seizure: one of the worst things I’ve ever witnessed in my life.
Through it all Larry was there. He took care of me, allowed me my feelings, held me as I cried, encouraged me to leave the house to share time with good friends, and kept me laughing.
These two weeks – a great one and an awful one – accentuated how sweet and fulfilling it is for me to have found such a good man and grown-up relationship.
So here’s why I think dating and your search for love is just like childbirth: now that I’m experiencing the joy of having meaningful love in my life…now that I have the comfort of knowing I have a life partner with whom I can share trust and devotion in good times and in bad…the pain of dating is all but forgotten. I don’t feel the anger for the guys who never called, who only wanted 25 year old blonds with long legs, or who lied and misrepresented. The disappointment of my 100+ first dates, the lonely times, the hopelessness…all gone.
The effort to learn and grow so I could finally find a good man…all worth it. Because all of that is what led me here.
And here is exactly where I want to be.
Great article Bobbi, keep posting ones like these! As someone who didn’t grow up with a good model of a quality, loving relationship (quite the opposite actually, as my dad even goes so far as to tease my mom’s anxiety over her breast cancer), I often wonder if all the pain is really worth it, especially since I’ve never actually experienced a truly loving relationship with someone. If all you’ve ever experienced is pain it’s tough to see things from another perspective, but articles like this help a lot! Good seeing you Friday night BTW.