Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Do you have any idea how hard it is to write the Happy Ending to your own book? Kit may very well be the last chapter in this project which also makes him the first chapter in the rest of my life. He is simultaneously the Happily Ever After AND the Once Upon a Time to my fairy tale and right now, I hardly know which end is up. How can I summarize our dates without cheapening them? How can I put into words everything we are already feeling for each other without making it seem cliche and like the plot of every single chick flick you've ever seen? How can I do justice to the first few flutters of love in my tummy without sounding like a giddy schoolgirl?
Quite simply, I can't.
The good part of this is that you know I can't make any of it up. Just like all the other terrible, horrible, no good, very bad dates I went on last year - the reason my readers have been so incredibly loyal is because you all know I am never less than 100% honest with you. The truth of the matter is that this project was a jumping off point for me because I've been told my whole life to "write what you know" which just made non-fiction the easy road for me. Maybe you're thinking that memoir writing is a cop-out because I don't really have to do any research or think too hard. I just have to write what I know, as it happens to me. You would be half right. Writing about real experiences is in many ways, much easier than writing fiction because I don't have to create characters, an environment, dialogue, a whole world for the readers to experience through my words. I only have to relate to you my life as it is, with some observational humor on the side, and maybe a few biting comments for good measure.
On the other hand, sharing my life with all of you is often harder than making one up because it's me, the real me, all the time. Good, bad, sarcastic, hurt, heartfelt, emotionally raw, open and vulnerable, it's me and my life that you're reading about, not some fictional character in a made up scenario. Combine this with my propensity to take every comment deeply personally and you've got a recipe for exceptional success or exceptional disaster.
Am I being overly optimistic about my relationship with Kit? I hope not. So far, he's turned out to be exactly the man I was hoping he'd be, the man I've been waiting my entire life to meet and love. So far, he's supported and adored me in ways I couldn't possibly have imagined. So far, this real happy ending is better than any fiction I could possibly create because in my wildest dreams, I still wouldn't be able to conjure up a man with as many wonderful qualities as he has. Kit isn't perfect and I don't want misrepresent him as such. He's just a man and as a man, he is indisputably flawed. It's those flaws however, that endear him to me most, and his imperfections are some of the aspects I love most about him. He knows that I'm not perfect either, nor does he expect me to be. We're very real with each other, putting all our cards on the table. We've both said "this is me, as I am, take it or leave it" and we both choose "take it." He never ceases to amaze me with his kindness, thoughtfulness, generosity, and care. Simply put, I am happier than I've ever been or ever thought I could be.
I hope that you'll remember a few months back when I was going through a pretty rough patch. I wrote about how exhausting it was dating 92 losers last year and while I don't expect anyone to pity me for going through that, many of you expressed the same exact sentiments I was feeling. You could relate to the excitement of meeting someone new, the nervousness of getting to know them, the frustration of not knowing where you stood, and the disappointment when it didn't work out. We have all experienced the high's and low's of dating at some point (some more than others) and I feel so incredibly blessed to be able to share this journey with all of you. So many of you have shared your stories with me, telling me that you know *just* what I was dealing with. Maybe you'd been there before, or maybe I paved the way for you, or maybe you didn't have anyone else to talk to about it and this blog helped in some small way. Maybe I was able to make you laugh instead of cry and if that's all I accomplished here, I am proud. THANK YOU for letting me know what role I've played in your life and in your dating experience. THANK YOU for telling me that I gave you the confidence to talk to someone new or approach someone you really liked. THANK YOU for writing in with your stories of dates gone horribly wrong, and for unexpected connections turned into great relationships. THANK YOU for being happily married and saying that I made you appreciate your spouse even more, since you were grateful to be long out of the single scene. THANK YOU for all the encouragement every time I got my heart broken or screwed over or landed in a ridiculously uncomfortable situation I had to wiggle my way out of. Knowing that you were all rooting for me the whole time made this process so much easier and the end reward so much sweeter.
Before you freak out, no, I'm sure that this will not be my last blog post. I'm not walking away from you. I just wanted to extend a sincere expression of gratitude to let you know that if I hadn't had you all to lean on and this blog to come back to day after day, I might not have made it here. I might not have kept going. I might not have found this amazing love and then where would I be? Stuck dating Spidey Watch or Short Stack or Mama's Boy and that would be just plain miserable. Probably highly amusing, but overall miserable. My wish for you is that you keep going and don't give up on yourself. Don't give up on love. Don't give up on the possibilities that are out there if you're open to them. Rip out the pages in the old book of you and write a new chapter. Create the happy ending you want to live. And then please, pretty please, tell me about it.