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I'm not looking to just get married, I'm looking to fall in love

Jessica Downey

Coffee addict. The serial single girl. Jessica will give you the what’s what on single life and dating in Chicago.

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Some recent events in my life have left me to feel like I should feel like the single girl that is wandering around life aimlessly with no priorities (I could elaborate more on that and I probably will eventually, but trust me that's a whole other blog). I've been reading Andrea Syrtash's book He's Just Not Your Type quite a bit and there is one quote from Andrea that really sticks out to me - it almost seems like a "theme" for my life:

Getting married is not my challenge. Staying married - happily married - is my goal. That is what I want.

If you know me well, it's likely you know there was once a man that wanted to marry me. I use the terms want and marry pretty loosely there as it started fast and ended heartbreakingly fast (I hope his twins are doing well). You also probably know that I have been utterly and hopelessly in love before. That too did not really go so well because in the end I really just wasn't the type of girl he was looking for (I hope he and his 4'2 90 pound girlfriend are super happy). Coincidentally that is one of the reasons I am so against only dating certain types of guys.

In other words, could I have a boyfriend right now? Yes. Could I be married right now? Sure. Would I be completely in love and totally happy? Not so much. I just feel like calling someone my boyfriend (and also getting engaged and married) is a pretty big thing. And I want to be damn sure the guy is worth it. Though before anyone explodes on me let me add that I feel the exact same way about being someone's girlfriend, it's a huge thing.

I was born and raised in pretty small towns where most people my age are married and have kids by now. Hell, in my family alone there are five kids running around and my brother and sister are not that much older than I am. In other words, to some people, I am far too old to be "unmarried" and childless (we've established my niece has totally given up on the idea).

I am what I like to consider the "black sheep" and I totally don't mean that as a way to be negative towards myself. It's just I am super rebellious (with a splash of adventurous and a whole lot of sass). I want to experience life and defy what is so-called normal. Ever since I was little I have always wanted to do things my own way and in my own time, regardless of how much other people push me to do things their way (just ask my mom). Some people take these things an entirely different way and assume I am some type of girl that I am not (read that as I am genuinely caring and would make an awesome girlfriend). Frankly, I have never found a guy that is absolutely okay with the idea of me just being me.

I am getting a little side tracked here, though it is important stuff to know. The fact of the matter is that the procession of my life goals have never been go to college, graduate, get married and have a baby. Then somewhere in between marriage and babies find a career as well. My goals have more been go to college, graduate, and be happy in life. Happiness, for me, is something that encompasses finding a career and falling in love which in turn involves that marriage and babies stuff (though I am still undecided about the baby part).

Don't get me wrong, it's not that I don't want to get married; it's not that at all. Trust me I have enough guys call me commitment phobic and run the other way to know that sometimes that's how my goals are perceived. It's more that I don't want to just get married, I want to fall in love.

To me, when you focus too much on marriage as a goal there is just too much of a chance that you will settle. I mean if you meet a guy that wants to marry you then that fulfills your goal and problem solved, right? It just seems a little too easy to get wrapped up in the idea of wanting to be married and, consequently, the guy that wants to marry you. And sure, the desire to be married might sustain the marriage but it might not be a happy one and you might not truly be in love. Though this might work for some people, this doesn't work for me. That is not the kind of relationship I am looking for.

Now, I know that just because you are in love that it does not guarantee you a successful marriage. Trust me, I am a very (almost annoyingly) realistic person. I realize that sometimes people fall out of love. Likewise, I also realize that love is not all rainbows and butterflies. Sometimes the person you love annoys you to the point that stabbing their eyeballs out kind of seems like a fun thing to do. Sometimes you don't want to share your bed with them or your closet. And you kind of wonder why you didn't consider getting two separate houses to live in just so you could get a little escape.

That is all why love, real absolute unconditional love, is what I am after. I just genuinely feel that at the end of the day that's the kind of love that gets you past the desire to choke your significant other.

I am definitely not here to ridicule anyone and how they live their life. All I am saying is that my desire to fall in love far outweighs my desire to just get married. And I feel like the desire to fall in love is what will help sustain a happy marriage for me. That's how I want things to be and this is my plan of attack for my life.










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DanishBeauty said:

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This hits a little close to home for me. Let's say, I'm what you're fearing in life...following the "wonderful-life" dream vs. living your own life on your terms.

It's scary I'm turning 30 this year and if you would look at me from the outside, it looks like have everything that I could want. Not exactly....

The main question I have to ask myself is, do I continue to let my life lead me...or do I lead my own life? I think the answer is the latter.

Good luck and keep you're head up high, you are doing the right thing!

Jessica Downey said:


Thank you so much for this comment! While I definitely think it's easy to get wrapped up in the idea of what you should be doing and let life lead you, I think ultimately you have to lead your own life. There is just a point where I realized that I am the one that has to live with my choices no one else, so why am I worrying about what everyone else thinks (though it's not always easy). Good luck to you as well!

singleinmy30s said:

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I too am a "black sheep" of my small town, where almost all of my childhood friends are now wives and mothers (more than a few of multiple kids) by now. It's not that I don't think maybe I want that for myself some day, it's just I want it to be with the right one for me. Like you, I could have already been the wrong one. I could have kids already...and not been prepared for that.

Marriage isn't so much the end goal, right now, as much as finding and feeding a strong and lasting love that keeps nourishing me and that I can keep feeding with the fullness of my heart and with the true authenticity of me.

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