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Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Happiness

May 15, 2007

I ordered Chinese food on Friday night and in one of the fortune cookies, my fortune read, “The love of your life will appear in front of you unexpectedly.” Since I wasn’t feeling hopelessly optimistic that night, after spending two hours at the doctor’s office with a sick child, I laughed about it.

Yesterday morning, my coworker that I was supposed to have gone out with on Friday night, asked me what I was looking for in a guy. I sort of started to answer her question when I realized that I was pretty much describing Dale (more on that later), and she told me that she wanted to know because she had a couple of prospects for me.

At lunch, I asked her to elaborate on these prospects, and she told me that one of them was a friend of hers, and as she described him, I did the classic Eunice shoot-down because of one of the things she’d told me. So she moved on to the next one. This one is another one of our coworkers. I’m not supposed to know about it, but I shot that one down too. Partly for the same reason I shot this one down, and partly because her comment about him having security cameras at his house was just plain creepy to me. So I’m two for two at shooting down people I have never even so much as spoken to (well, the tech guy I talked to briefly at our office happy hour last month, but haven’t exchanged more than pleasantries-in-passing since) this week.

But as I was sending Dale another one of my epic e-mails tonight, I realized that I was doing this to them:

At that point in my life, I was scared to death of letting anyone in to
destroy what was left of my already shattered heart so I put my walls up and
then I put walls up around those walls and then an alarm system and a moat and a
firing squad up around that. There was absolutely no way, no how that I was
going to let myself get attached to you or have feelings for you in any way
shape or form. The book was already closed before you ever walked in the door
that night. You could have been the biggest bastard on the planet and I wouldn’t
have even noticed. I felt guilty for a long time for not ever
giving you a chance, and even worse when I realized that you have most of
the best qualities that I look for in a guy (some of which I had given up
hope on ever finding in a living human being).

Which is the same thing I did to him two and a half years ago — deciding my own fate before it had a chance to happen.

So maybe I’m still not ready for the love of my life to appear unexpectedly. Today, we had Chinese for lunch and my fortune cookies — which oddly both had the same message — said “Failure is simply a chance to do better next time.” So maybe the next time I have prospects, I will do better in not shooting them down so fast.

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