Love Letters from Ana: You can’t always get what you want

Doesn’t it always seem that at times you can never get your first choice? Whether it be Wawa running out of your favorite late-night mashed potatoes after a boozy night or that corporate internship that can define your future slipping away for a remedial summer job—and then there’s the crush who ends up liking someone else.

It’s never easy to get rejected. But sometimes, rejection isn’t as cut and dry as running out of mashed potatoes or an “I’m sorry, but we’ve exhausted all spots…” in such and such job. Often times, in love, you end up having to remove yourself from a situation in an effort to safeguard your heart.

It’s the same story you’ll hear time and time again, the “he’s just not that into me” plot line. The love “infini-gon” where one person likes one person and that person likes another person who likes another person. It’s a whole slew of unsatisfied people. None seem to mutually like each other, or at least not enough.

In the college version of this saga, the uninterested party may hook up with the interested party, but just not fully devote to them, leaving the interested party hopeful.

So, why can we never have our first choice? How come it’s so difficult to get two people to click?

The fact of the matter is these questions don’t really have solution. While I can go on and on about how humans intrinsically enjoy the chase, which I do believe to be true, it would be an over-simplified response.

I think that love—and I use the term “love” loosely—is completely random. I think that sometimes things workout and sometimes they don’t—I think it’s difficult to love and it’s difficult, in turn, to be loved.

It’s very hard to give up on any first choice we may have, but sometimes that guy who gives your butterflies and leaves you speechless, isn’t the right person for you.

Maybe butterflies are not the best things, because they’re not so much a symbol of love or any form of compatibility but rather, uncomfortability. And someone who leaves you speechless, well, you probably cannot be your best self around them. Sometimes our first choice, much like college counselors would drone on about college rejection, “Isn’t really the right fit.”

I’ll use a food example: if a restaurant runs out of the filet mignon you’re craving, how would you ever try the bronzino? (Yes, I go to some more sophisticated places besides Wawa). How would you ever try anything new? How would you ever know what’s really the right fit if you’re too fixated on your “first option?”

It’s hard to cope with losing your first choice when it comes to love. Often we inflate people in order to match our expectations of them. While we are doing this we may be missing someone who could be a good fit. It’s hard to know when to give up on a dream—on a first choice—but sometimes letting go of this ideal version of what really is just an imperfect human. Then, we find ourselves freer and more open to love than we were before.

 

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