I wanted a relationship more than anything … So I took a dating hiatus.
And it’s been the best decision I could have ever made.
Let’s back track a bit.
I was out of control last year. I had more “situationships” in 2020 than I ever had in my entire (almost) 32 years of life. And it was a BLAST. I loved every second of it. Truly.
I learned so much about myself. I got to know incredible people. I had great sex (sorry, mom). And maybe I’m crazy for saying this, but I actually think dating is … I don’t know … Fun? My best friend always questions my judgement because to this day, I’ve never had a bad first date. And I think it’s cause I genuinely just like getting to know people. I’m curious by nature. I like hearing everyone’s story. I like peeling back the layers. And it probably helps that I can talk to a wall.
Fast-forward to the end of the year. I went to Mexico over Christmas. It’s usually where I go when I need to heal a broken heart. I had just come out of a very hot and heavy fling that escalated quickly and fizzled way faster than I wanted it to. And so I jumped on a flight and spent a few days in Tulum frolicking around the beach, posting thirst traps in my teeny tiny thong bikini. No shame. I workout hard and my ass looked great.
I met a boy there. He was sweet. We drank mojitos on Christmas Eve and he taught me how to ride a bike (something I’ve never been good at). A couple days later we met up again. We played frisbee in the ocean, drank margaritas on the sand, shared a joint under a canopy, and then made out on the beach as the sun was setting. It was so romantic. I needed that.
As I made my way back to Denver a few days before New Year’s Eve, I couldn’t help but feel sad. I remember calling my mom and saying to her “I just wish I had someone to come home to.” I had spent the past 12 months so focused on love. I connected with so many people. I caught the kind of feelings that restored my hope in relationships. I felt ready to be with someone … And it just wasn’t happening for me.
Do you guys know that horrible feeling when you’re so tired and just about to fall asleep but then your thoughts suddenly refocus on the worst thing possible for you and then you’re up all night doing breathing exercises trying to relax your nervous system and nothing works?
That was me the night before New Year’s Eve. I realized I was going to be 32 in April and the thought of being single and 32 sent me into a legit state of panic. I laid in bed all night with my thoughts swirling and questioned every decision I ever made when it came to love. Why do I keep pushing so many good dudes away? Remember, Arthi: Stable and consistent does not mean boring. Why do I keep chasing all the dudes who want nothing to do with me? Remember, Arthi: Run away, not towards, emotionally unavailable men. Are my expectations too high? I def should have given the guy who only drank white wine a chance. We probably would have been married by now. What if I never have kids? Wait, do I even want kids? What if I never meet someone who I really like that really likes me back? Am I too much to handle? Is my personality too big? Do I need to settle more? Absolutely fucking not.
The next day, New Year’s Eve, I beelined straight for the mountains (the other place I go when I need to heal and figure my shit out). As I ran and ran and ran … I realized the only thing left to do was run straight into my fear fire. I was so afraid of being single when I turn 32 that I decided in that moment simply to be single when I turn 32. It was genius.
Here’s the thing … Of course I still want love. I’m human. I love, love more than anyone and have so much of it to give. I still want to find a partner who I’m obsessed with (in a healthy way), who’s equally obsessed with me back (again, in a healthy way). I want to be there for someone and share my whole world with them (cause my world is pretty dope). But I needed a break from the wanting. I needed to take the pressure off. I was dedicating so much of my energy and mental capacity to relationships and I kind of wondered what it would be like to reinvest that energy back into me.
Thus my dating hiatus was born.
When we realllllly want something, whether that’s a relationship or a baby or a promotion or a successful business or whatever else it might be, I think we sometimes lose sight of all the other components of our life that are just as important, that are just as fulfilling, and that make us uniquely us. I forgot how much joy I got from writing … From reading … From learning … From friendships … And I’ve loved getting to know myself again.
It’s been about two months since I stripped myself off the market and my life has never felt more meaningful. I’ll get back out there soon (and Denver better be ready cause I’m gonna tear it up), but for now, I’m enjoying just being me. Alone. Single. Unhinged. Unattached. And as vibrant as I’ve ever been.
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