I spent this afternoon laying on my bedroom floor, semi-sick, compiling my latest mix tape and text messaging my friend Megan. I’m not 100% sure how her half of this scenario played out, as text messages have that pesky 160 character limit. But the way I envisioned it was with her lying on her living room couch, really sick, listening to a mix tape I recently sent her. (I know she was listening to the tape, and I know her tape player is in her living room… so I’m probably close to right. Megan, care to verify?) I reminded her that mix tapes are one of my love languages.
And though I created this particular tape for myself, that holds true. (After all, I love me! 🙂 )
You should know by now, if you know me at all, that I’m an obsessive list maker. I have lists of the CDs I own, the books I’ve read, children’s names I’ve liked, states I’ve visited, songs to be played at my wedding reception (should I have one of those)… and songs that capture my attitude toward dating. (Okay, I have many more lists than that, but making a list of all my lists is more obsessive than even I dare to be. 😉 ) I’ve been wanting to commit that final list to tape for a while now, though I didn’t intend to blog about it. But Dave’s list of his Valentine’s Day songs was intriguing (though I didn’t recognize most of the tunes), and so I present to you: Songs for My Fragile Heart.
Side A: Songs for the Recovering Bitter
(I know “recovering from bitterness” would have been more grammatically correct, but I wanted it to go with side b, which I named first. I figure if songwriters can get away with using “more easy” instead of “easier” simply to preserve the rhythm of their songs, I too should be afforded creative license.)
Take Me for Longing—Alison Krauss + Union Station
The first verse both explains why I am personally opposed to the concept of a “back up” and reminds me of a rumor I heard back in high school. The story was that a boy I had a tremendous crush on considered asking me out, simply because he was tired of being single and he knew I’d say yes. At the time I lamented his decision not to use me as an ego boost. I was convinced that if he would just lend me his attention for a few weeks, I could make him fall in love with me. I was a naïve and wildly optimistic teenager, but in the years since I’ve gained perspective and a better sense of self worth. I will not be anyone’s second choice, thank you very much. I’d much prefer to be single for always.
Spit On A Stranger—Nickel Creek
Please remember who created this mix and what side A has been titled. 🙂 Besides, my favorite lines from this Pavement cover (“Honey I’m a prize and you’re a catch and we’re a perfect match”) fit perfectly with the attitude of my last comment.
This sentiment has been rattling around in my head all week following this season’s particularly strange finale of The Bachelorette. (I’m becoming somewhat comfortable admitting that I watched this particular bit of ridiculous television all season.)
Jen Schefft received two proposals this finale, and she rejected the second of them on live television. I won’t get into the ins and outs of what went down, but I will say this: I could kind of relate to the girl and that scares me. There was no obvious reason for her to turn down these guys, besides their meeting on a television show. Both guys seemed to expect acceptance to their proposals. Both were shut down.
I am afraid of becoming that girl. (Well, not with reality TV proposals.) I know I’m a picky picky princess. (I think it’s funny!) But am I going to scare off every guy who attempts to gain my affections? My friend Luke theorizes that the “right” guy won’t be deterred by the road blocks I create. I kind of hope he’s right. (I mean, a guy can’t be “the one” if he scares easy, can he? ‘Cause I think of “the one” in terms of “the one I marry,” not as “that elusive singular person in the entire world I could fall in love with.”)
I love love the quirky cheekiness of this song. “It’s not like I wanna get married. I never asked you to kiss me. I just odn’t want you to be sorry you didn’t try.” Besides… I am “young with no clue,” and though you know I “don’t need nobody,” I’m not “sure [I’m] that sure about [you.]”
Table for Two—Caedmon’s Call
Because I’m fairly sure Philip would drive to my house and beat my scrawny self if I left this off another mix tape—and rightfully so. Though it’s rarely singleness that keeps me up all night, this is still the song that convinced me to like Caedmon’s, simply because I can relate.
Strong Enough—Sheryl Crow
We’re back to that theory of Luke’s I mentioned earlier. If I made an application to date me, this would be the fifth question (after what do you live for? Is your height > 5’3? Weight > 95 pounds? Are you willing to dance?) “Are you strong enough to be my man?”
(Answer those correctly and you can move on to name and birth date.)
1. Stop being so mean/bitter/defensive toward men. It’s not (always) their fault. Deal with the real issues.
2. It’s okay to call guy friends to chat. Really.
I have been prayerfully working toward these goals, not for the sake of dating but for the sake of my own health. I don’t care what causes bitterness—it is not okay to cling to it (as much as I sometimes would like to). It even affects my relationship with God. That’s unacceptable.
And y’know, God has really been working on my heart. I made a proclamation last week that shocked those listening: I want a boyfriend.
No, I don’t have anyone in particular in mind. I still don’t know any men in Birmingham (and I’m okay with that, though my next goal should probably be to make some guy friends—and no, not for the sake of dating).
I don’t say this in a discontent, idolizing sort of sense either. I don’t feel like I have to date someone now—I am just open to the possibility, I think. (“No… but there’s the dream of someone else.”)
So, maybe someday it will happen. Or maybe not. I simply don’t want to be an old maid with no one more than her cat for company because I get too busy scaring people away.
Oh, and as for the phone thing—I talked to two guys on the phone the other day! (Well, they both called me… but that’s irrelevant. The point is healthy friendships.)
…coming up next: Songs for the Cautiously Hopeful…