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I’ve never been a good person about taking chances. Well, I take that back… I take chances and when I get hurt, I freak out and decide to never take that chance again. Not the best coping mechanism (but there are worse ones out there!)… However, it’s the one that makes me the most comfortable.

I went to lecture this morning with my parents (I call my church “lecture” because it honestly reminds me of the religious studies courses I took during my college years) and part of the evaluation for the week was opening your heart to new experiences that are brought to you by the divine. This really made me sit up and pay attention because that’s a huge issue of mine. Like I said before, I don’t mind opening up and loving someone, but when I end up hurt, I get frustrated and I want to drop that relationship and never have a similar one again. Not to mention I’m ashamed of myself for going down that road to begin with.

This idea of opening up is relevant mostly to the relationship aspect of my life. I’ve always been “that girl”, you know, the one with self respect and morals. Over the years, I’ve noticed a definite preference for stupid slutty girls. Why have someone with self esteem and a moderate amount of intelligence when you can screw the easy girl over yonder who can’t even explain the concept of a two party government system? After a while, it pisses you off to hear your male friends bitching about how their slutty girlfriend cheated on them (as you sit there folding their laundry because you (the dutiful friend) came running over because you don’t want to see them upset). And then they say they want a decent girl, one that won’t cheat on them, one that will respect them and build a life with them, and then BAM! they are off and running after the next bimbo in yoga pants. It’s frustrating. Guys call it “friendzoning” and cry about it on Reddit, but I just call it poor decision making because that’s what it is. Or masochism… whichever you prefer.

Now to be clear, it’s not just my male friends I’m ranting about, it’s all men in general and I’m using my friends as an example. I’ve noticed a strong trend in this behavior and I seriously do not understand it. At the point of frustration, I figure, “what’s the damn point? These men are stupid as hell and don’t realize what’s right in front of them.”  And maybe it’s better off that way, because if they don’t notice right away that I’m someone very different from the social norm, do I really even want to waste my time on them? But anyway, if you are a male and you practice this garbage, you suck.

I’m a few months out of a serious relationship that ended in me cancelling  a wedding against my will. Granted, the fact that I’ve been able to maintain a positive (albeit distant) relationship with my ex is quite a blessing (and the hardest thing I’ve ever had to forgive and move past in my life). But after that… after seeing my engagement ring and wedding band going back over the counter to be returned… I’m done. I’m just really, really done. I’ve had to completely rebuild my life from the ground up, and that in itself is traumatic. Not to mention the sheer emotions you have to go through… it’s absolutely exhausting. So why the hell would I want to do that again, especially when I have absolutely no hope for the male gender?  Exactly.

Now this experience was not all negative, in fact it  has led me to rediscover myself and everything I want out of life. I see beauty again and I feel constantly joyful and grateful to the divine for being my crutch through all of this. I have a genuine need to give back to the community and be an exception to the social norm of “Well, women in their 20’s are stupid and immature and overall just terrible”. If you’ve been following my blog, you know that I have a list of things I’m working on because I want to organize this rebuilding process… I’m happy to announce that I will be tackling #14 next: Do something unexpected. To aid myself in the closure process, I’ve decided to take the money my parents gave me for my wedding to travel the world. I leave for Spain on January 12th on what I hope to be the first of many adventures.

If I can get out of my comfort zone and go to another country, if I can rebuild my life after being left, if I can forgive the person that brought me to my knees and broke me, I can do anything. I can open up my heart to new people, and I can think about relationships again. What I cannot do is date men like the ones I was ranting about earlier. I deserve better. So no my much beloved male friends, I’m not making you soup when you are sick, and I’m not going to listen to you complain about your slutty girlfriends, and I’m not going to get mad at you anymore when you continually make the wrong choices and then cry to me.

As for myself, next time I will do better in my dating choices because I’m going to stop looking for “the one” and trust the divine to work its magic. And I’m no longer going to accept less than what I give. I demand a strong, confident, honorable and stable man as a partner. If I’m meant to get married and settle down so to speak, it will be. If not, I’ll focus on my family, my career, and my aspirations… and I’ll adopt two children when I turn 30. From now on, I’m living my life for me and what I want, but I’ll do it with joy, love, and an open and honest heart. As my pastor said this morning, “When you close your heart to God and to love for fear of getting hurt, you close your heart to all the joy that it could have brought you. Will you still live a good life? Absolutely. You can be very, very happy. But you’ll miss out on some of the greatest things we are here to learn and to experience.”

I’m not going to miss out on that.