The tequila shot or the cup of coffee: What I want versus what I need

Too much fast food, one too many tequila shots, spending rent money on a pair of designer shoes; we know none of these choices are the right ones, so why are they so desirable? Recently, that question also applies to my love life: Why is someone I know is the equivalent of three extra tequila shots so desirable to me? Like a Big Mac I know that I don’t really need him but there’s something that’s enticing about doing something that’s you know isn’t good for you.

I’ve been lucky enough to have met a few really great guys lately. The kind you want to introduce to your family and picture a future together. Ones that you know will treat you how you deserve to be treated. However, instead of listening to the part of me that values that safety in a relationship, I find myself thinking about that one that I know will eventually hurt me. And, I’m left hoping he’ll call to tell me that he’s on his way over.

When we are together I am smiling and laughing. I’m thinking to myself that he must be feeling the same way and that it’s only a matter of time before he tells me. It’s this whirlwind of emotions that draws me to him. But then he leaves. I’m left feeling used and pathetic as my heart races every time my phone vibrates. I’m left hoping that I’ll see his name on the screen, but his name only ever comes up at Saturday at 2 am. In that moment I’m wiser. I know I should ignore it and let him go because I know what he’s doing. But, the only emotion I can register is excitement because that phone call at 2 am means that I get to see him and feel that happiness all over again.

Recently a very important woman in my life just celebrated her 7th anniversary with her husband, and I asked her if she still gets butterflies when she’s around him. She went on to tell me with a smile on her face that everyday he walks in the door she gets butterflies, and that she falls more in love with him every single day. They are a laid back couple, they don’t give extravagant gifts, they don’t have a dramatic Hollywood blockbuster kind of relationship, but she told me that’s not what true love requires. He tells her he loves her everyday by pouring her a cup of coffee when pouring one for himself, or when he brings home her favorite Thai take out so she doesn’t have to cook. They have a simple but true love, a love that doesn’t hurt. I have convinced myself that love should be crazy and make me feel alive, but I know that that’s just me making excuses so that I don’t have to let the feeling go.

Not knowing if I am wanted or appreciated has made me try that much harder to make him, and those like him fall in love with me. I want to win, I want to get the guy that seems so unattainable, but in doing so I put my heart through so much unnecessary turmoil. As I write this I know I am strong enough to finally say enough is enough. This is that moment of realization, so when Saturday does come around I know I won’t be lying awake waiting for my phone to buzz. 

Falling for the stereotypical ‘bad boy’ has made me feel alive. Maybe, I’m not ready to let the chase go. But maybe one day at the grocery store I’ll run into someone in the frozen food aisle picking up that night’s dinner, and he will be that good guy I need. He’ll be the one who shows me his love in the cups of coffee and the thai food. He’ll appreciate and care for me and then I’ll know why things never worked out with the ‘bad’ ones.