When I was a kid, my father acquired a boat. It had a big hole in the hull, didn't have a working motor, and the inside was a mess. It needed new seats, new interior. My father, who could fix just about anything, said he would get the boat running again.
So, he patched the hole because he could work with fiberglass. Then, he found an outboard and tinkered with that until he got it to run. Years this project took, and everyone thought that this boat would see a return to it's glory days from the obvious progress being made. Everyone was excited.
For whatever reasons, Dad stopped working on it, and the boat never saw water again. I guess sometimes you get so tired of trying to fix something, you simply give up.
My life is a lot like that boat.
I've had a long string of relationships that didn't work out. In the beginning, I was easily a pushover, and my feelings got hurt quite a bit because I allowed it to happen. Somewhere along the way, I decided to stop being the victim...and yet I still get hurt.
A wise man once said that love isn't something we slip and fall into, but it is a choice we make, conscious or not. At some point in everyone's life, you actually decide it is okay to have feelings for someone. That's it's okay to let your guard down. That it's okay to exhale.
Why do I insist on loving people who don't reciprocate my feelings? Why do I cultivate those strong feelings when deep down I know I'm going to be hurt in the end? Why do I allow myself to become so jaded by these experiences even though I've known what the outcome was going to be?
I know why. I've known the answer all along. It's much easier to fall for someone that is unavailable to you (physically, emotionally, etc), because to love from afar, means you don't actually have to work at a relationship. Relationships are hard, but it's easy to stand on the sidelines and fantacize about things, make excuses. In fact, the idea of being married scares the hell out of me. Having children sounds like some terrifying gamble. Sad thing is, I thought I may have finally met someone I'd was willing to take that chance with.
But no more.
That boat has sailed.