I always feel so very cliché when I write about love or “love” or romance. Why would I know what it is or means anyway? There is no one true definition I’m sure. I’ve always thought it was a special moment when you encountered someone who made you feel differently than the other hundreds of people you’ve encountered, even if it wasn’t love. Is that feeling called infatuation? Infatuation is known as “foolish love.” What a shame that it’s foolish. We all must be fools then because everyone has experienced this. But I feel like I experience this more often than the average person. I’ve heard many times that I’m always “in love” with someone, and I cannot disagree with them. I don’t want to undo this characteristic of mine, but I do wonder what it’s like to hardly ever be in love with anyone. I wonder if it’s better or worse. I’m sure both have their distinct frustrations. However, we all know the words of Lord Tennyson, “Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” He may be right because I’ve lost mostly and yet I think the current version of me is the best so far. Everyone made me a better me. Have I always been this hopeless romantic type? Yes ma’am.
In 6th grade I had a crush on a boy (yes a boy) and I left him those disgusting candy-heart-chalk-things in his locker along with a note for Valentines Day. I don’t think he appreciated my gifts and I remember feeling weird about the situation. Needless to say that was the last romantic gesture I ever did for a boy and found out I rather be doing them for girls. Since then, all of the gestures I do for the girls I like like have kept steady and meaningful. My favorite thing to do when I feel myself falling for a lady is listen to every word she says. Her inflections. Watch her expressions. When I feel like I’ve learned enough about her I plan . I create, I write, I draw, I play, I buy sometimes… Whatever combination feels right, I put it together and I present it to her. Because that’s just who I am. I do this to show her my efforts to know her. There doesn’t have to be a label on our relationship for me to do these things because that’s who I am. When I am fearless I do what feels right in the moment.
Am I a hopeless romantic because despite my efforts and gestures, none of them have resulted in a significant other? That would be selfish to expect a relationship just because they accepted my gestures with glowing eyes and fluttering hearts. I should be left without hope because I keep doing the same romantic gestures and nothing has changed. I should be a hopeless lesbian because for some ridiculous reason I still believe the person who will respond to my gestures won’t come from the Internet but rather a coffee shop or park (I’m not knocking people who’ve found their partners on the Internet…That’ll probably be me eventually). Is it a sign of weakness to be a hopeless romantic? Is it a weakness because we need to realize that our feelings of love were created by the movies and nothing more? I know my friends might tell me I should stop being a hopeless romantic to prevent myself from being hurt. That’s probably a great strategy but I’m terrible at stopping myself from expressing my love.
To me, my gestures and hopes parallel the photographs of the sun setting I took in Santorini. Even as the light dims, the beauty of the sunset does not lessen. From every angle I am chasing something that looks so far away but feels quite close to me. Eventually the light disappears. I know this scene will appear 1000 times over in Santorini for countless people even if I’m not there to see it. Luckily for me I remember it and tomorrow at sunset the light will disappear again. And the next day. And the next. You see… the light always comes back.
Month after month, your friends and acquaintances repeat to you “Be patient… there’s someone out there for everyone.” But is there really? Truly, in the depths of my hopeless romantic soul, I do believe this. But then reality slaps me back into this atmosphere, eyes wide open, and I can’t help but to observe it’s happening for everyone but the lone lesbian. Or at least seemingly everyone (because obviously it’s not all of my friends… yet). It just seems so easy for them to glide in and out of relationships and hookups. Where do I sign up?
How do you even date in the lesbian world?! If you’re currently in an environment where there are no quality lesbian bars to choose from (or none at all), you’re pretty much stuck in a rut. When you go out with your straight friends, you go to straight bars/clubs. They’re kind of the most depressing places on earth because you have to get drunk enough to: 1) dance with whatever gross guy approaches you with no rhythm. 2) ignore the fact that all your friends are making out with someone and there you are swirling your drink(s). 3) build up enough bravado to approach the women you find attractive (and most likely get graciously denied). I think the Tumblr post above states it best: “Dating in the gay world is like finding a job. You either do it on the internet or get referred.” Well I must be doing something incorrectly because I have yet to be referred or found Internet gold in the dating or job world! Not that I’m in a hurry or anything but I wouldn’t mind having a little distraction. Also, having people repeatedly ask me if there are any girls in my life is getting tiresome. I know being a lesbian automatically put me in the category of “get ready to never date anyone” because only ~3-6% of the American population identify as something other than heterosexual, but I didn’t think it would be this difficult. Again, I know my environment at the moment can account for some of the difficulties I’m facing. Although I think I’m thankful that I’m not caught up in a lesbian scene because based on personal accounts posted on various websites, it can get messy and everyone seems to have been recycled. I mean, you know “The Chart” (Another L Word reference… DO YOU SEE HOW MONUMENTAL THAT SHOW WAS TO LESBIANS EVERYWHERE?! CAN WE BRING IT BACK PLEASE? OR SOMETHING LIKE IT?! IN AMERICA?!).
P.S. all my pictures all clickable to the original source of the photo.
So how do we handle this situation? Luckily we find ourselves in an era where hundreds of digital dating tools are at our fingertips. We have dating websites like OkCupid and whatever the name of that site Facebook constantly advertises on my page (Sapphos, I think?). We also have iPhone apps like Tinder and Grindr. I’ve briefly browsed OkCupid a few times and each time I’m either underwhelmed with the suggestions or creeped out by the approach of many of its users. Maybe one day I’ll return and give it another shot. As for Tinder, I’ve heard it’s kind of fun and creepy to use but they do have a “girls only” option! Now you may be thinking to yourselves ahh tech dating… yeah right. Believe me, I still think that way in a sense. My mind (or heart) still believes that I’ll find a version of love during some random encounter like in the movies. However, it’s 2013! Why not make use of all your resources? If none of those suggestions specifically created for dating work for you, maybe you’ll get lucky and find some random on Tumblr or in the comments section of a lesbian website. You just never know…
Sometimes when I’m left alone with my thoughts I often wonder if I were straight, would I have a boyfriend right now? We’ll never know… I have a handful of guy friends who I think came into my life because we are soul mates. I think they are truly the greatest and kindest souls on the planet and yet somehow every single one of them are single. When we talk about dating and our chronic singledom, they always tell me that I’m much more interesting and intriguing than the straight girls they’ve met (I mean I probably am, haha). In response I always tell them that they’re much easier to deal with than the lesbian/bisexual/bicurious girls I’ve ever met. It’s a hilarious cycle of conversation. Maybe I’d feel better if I had a really close lesbian friend who was also single and could share my sentiments. Until I get that friend or have Fate place a stunning lady in my path, I think I’ll make an honest effort in concentrating on improving myself and reaching my goals.