I recently began dating a man I knew from the get-go was someday going to be, quite literally, somebody that I used to know. Yet, despite my awareness of the situation, I continued seeing this Man of the Moment — who I'll call Max — and spoiler alert, I enjoyed every second of it.
Sure, it is totally understandable for single gals to have one-night flings or casual short-term hookups, but what about the man you continue to see on a more long-term basis, even though you know he is most certainly not the man you'll be exchanging “I do's" with?
As a month and a half of dating Max came to a close, I began to do some major self-reflecting. Even though I knew he was not going to be “The One” I'm with forever, let alone just a longterm relationship that eventually ends, I continued seeing him almost daily.
While some might argue that spending so much time with someone you know will someday be ancient history is a major waste of time — one that can potentially keep you from meeting someone else — I firmly disagree with this outdated way of thinking conjured to make us feel guilty or that not-as-serious relationships don't matter.
Learning how to stop 'the search' for a moment and just enjoy life is a lesson worth learning.
Spending time with Max was fun. It was light, carefree and, if anything, it was a another lesson in dating. He was a mere 25, and I knew that as quickly as this romance began, it would surely end. But it dawned on me: What was so wrong with that?
Why do endings have to be painted with such incredibly negative strokes? Why do romantic encounters coming to their natural conclusions have to necessarily be a bad thing? Why can't we replace the, “It didn't work out” with, “It worked out temporarily, and it was great."
To all of those who think it's settling to spend time with someone who lacks “potential," I say enjoying yourself is in no way settling. It's called life, and it's worth living with as minimal boundaries as possible.
It was a cognitive choice to spend so much time with someone I enjoyed being with in that very moment without putting unneeded boundaries, pressures and expectations on both myself and him.
Life is worth living with as minimal boundaries as possible.
People tend to forget to look on the bright side of dating, too caught up in swiping left and tediously overthinking text messages. But if for whatever reason, you do chose to spend time with someone, enjoy it.
Get to know as many people as you want, on as deep of levels as you want, for as long as you want, without forcing unnecessary titles and labels that we're all under the illusion we must have. Things don't need to get physical for a connection to count.
To know that you can connect with many different people and enjoy the company of all different sorts of folks, even if they aren't “spouse potential," is tremendously releasing. Learning how to stop “the search” for a moment and just enjoy the moment is a lesson worth learning while we're young.
For while we are on this blind search for true love, we can really miss out on the people who are in our lives right now, even if they are only there temporarily.
So, to all the those in Mr. or Mrs. Right Now situations, it's truly all good. Don't put too much pressure on yourself to figure out “where it's going” because the now is the most enjoyable part of the whole journey.
Don't pressure yourself to figure out “where it's going." Enjoy the moments you have while you have them.
Resist getting too caught up in useless, wasted energy and tiresome obsessing. Have fun, relax and know that, one day, Mr. Right Now will, in fact, be replaced by a Mr. Forever.
But until then, the present is the best tense there is.