In my early years I always had to have a boyfriend. I think from Kindergarten through 6 th grade I dated the same boy and when I was at Friendly’s eating my still favorite Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Sundae with Butter Crunch Ice cream I was approached by one of his friends to tell me he no longer wanted to date me….at the time I was just glad he thought we were dating, but I was still heartbroken. So what’s a girl to do? I was instantly looking for his replacement. That seems to be the general theme throughout all my hideous relationships. Don’t get me wrong I loved each and every one of them, but hindsight is 20/20 and I believe now that they were slot fillers. You know like the people who are hired by the Academy Awards to sit in famous people’s chairs during the award shows when they go to the bathroom? As long as they looked nice, had a smile on and could fill the spot they were in. My first “real” boyfriend, my first real everything was a hopeless romantic. He personified what it was to be enveloped in love and poetry and music for the soul. He was doting and affectionate and smart, god was he smart and he thought I was the cat’s meow. Little did he know I was a hot mess. Still am for that matter. I was passionate and frivolous and egotistical and thought I knew it all. I was in that relationship for two years. The most life changing, grueling, emotional teenage years of my life. I was fifteen turning sixteen and had every Meg Ryan movie memorized and replaying in my head at all times. I was looking for Tom Hanks in Sleepless in Seattle; I didn’t want to be in love, I wanted to be in love in a movie. I still do. It of course ended tragically as all good love stories do. There was no happy ending, there was no happily ever after, there was no forever. We were both melodramatic and would have asked for nothing less than a perfect demise to our so-called never-ending love. I was attractive in high school, I was smart and I was about 5’8″ by 6th grade. I actually look very much now as I did then, but between you and me, I think I’m better looking with age. Anyway, it was like I needed a guy as my drug, as my high. I led with my womanly wilds and it worked on horny teenage boys…..it still works. It was also a way to not let anyone in. I can see that now. Disguise who I really was, keep the walls up, don’t let them actually ever know me, keep them guessing. All a lot of work for a teenager. Why do we make relationships so much work? Why do we constantly think if we manipulate and cajole and coax others into thinking we are something that we aren’t it will win them over? What’s wrong with letting something unfold? What’s wrong with us that we let our insecurities get the best of us? Well no more. No more letting fear rule how we operate. Fear has no power over us, it’s the fear that we give our power to in relationships. If we are constantly planning out every move our relationships are supposed to go through we not only miss the actual ability to be present, but we will constantly and consistently be disappointed. I will no longer allow that to happen and neither should you. Let go of your expectations and realize that the path each relationship takes you on is a journey into knowing yourself better, a journey delving into finding yourself, a journey into the unknown….and that’s ok.