What I’ve Learned About Love, Waiting, Giving Up and Winning

Most people know, either through my extensive writings on the subject or just by knowing me on a personal level, that I’ve been extreme anti-relationship for a long time. Even back in the days when I wasn’t anti-relationship I was still anti-marriage, for a number of reasons. Since 2018 I had been preparing to be a confirmed and lifelong bachelor.

But it’s funny how the smallest things can completely change our plans.

It’s common knowledge that I have a long experience as a single man and, for whatever reason, I’ve had no real options for a relationship in many years. In fact, I haven’t really talked to a girl on a romantic level since my last date in February 2019. I knew when I walked away after that date romance was not for me and I was tired of wasting my time. But God had a plan in place for me that I wasn’t even aware of until 2 years later.

In early 2019, shortly after that fateful final date, I sent a Facebook friend request to a beautiful girl in Illinois named Mary Jung. As most can ascertain, I’m a huge Chicago White Sox fan and have been for over 30 years. I use social media as a way to network with other White Sox fans, since I live in the depressing backwoods of West Virginia where no one likes baseball and the few who do are die-hard Pittsburgh Pirates fans. (Nothing against the Pirates, I used to follow them in my younger days but I have no interest anymore).

Mary was clearly just as hardcore a White Sox fan as I am. And it was great having such a large group of fans right inside my computer screen or phone or tablet. People I actually had things in common with and I began to realize just how much I hated West Virginia.

Don’t get me wrong, this is a beautiful state. But I don’t fit here, and I don’t think I ever did. The only way I could have ever survived here for an entire lifetime was to just go underground, keep to myself, never bother with anyone and live out my life.

So, back in 2019 I started thinking about relocating when the time comes and where I’d like to go. Illinois was an obvious answer, but a lot of people tried talking me out of it right away. Taxes, drugs, crime and cost of living were high on the list of reasons. I also started looking into Arizona and North Carolina, either of which would be a major upgrade.

As 2019 continued to unfold Mary and I took every chance to flirt with each other but it never seemed to click in either of our minds that there was a clear mutual interest. This was probably due to my mindset of knowing my dating life was over and having absolutely no local options. As 2019 came to an end I was so looking forward to the new decade.

Needless to say, 2020 wasn’t the perfect opening act I had hoped it would be, as COVID ruined pretty much everything. Clearly I wouldn’t be dating in 2020, not just because of social distancing, mask mandates and panic run-amok, but the fact that I literally had no one to ask out even if I did want to make an attempt at proving myself wrong about the future. And that was a bitter pill to swallow as I watched women snatch up guys whose value wasn’t half what mine is but for whatever reason, I wasn’t fashionable. And never have been.

Mary and I continued to openly flirt in 2020, through Facebook comments, but it still never clicked, though a friend had mentioned at one time that he thought Mary liked me and I had told a number of friends how smitten I was with Mary, it just never came together.

As I watched 2021 dawn and realized that every year was going to be similar to 2020 for me (whether there was a lockdown or not I still had no future) I fell into a pretty deep depression in February. There was no light at the end of my tunnel. Other than friends, I hadn’t spoken to a woman in a romantic sense in two full years. Not one woman in two years had shown any interest and there had not been one woman in that time I had any interest in.

Except Mary, who continued to have my eye into 2021. Finally, in April, for just a split second, I decided it was time to take one final chance at having a life and enjoying it. I decided to send Mary a Facebook message and give her my number. Yes, I had always been against long-distance relationships and I had no idea if she would have any actual interest, let alone if she would respond or text me. I sat at my PC and nervously typed out the message and hit send. Figuring it could be days or weeks before she saw it, I went outside.

I sat in the yard, lit up a cigar and put on an episode of CBS Radio Mystery Theater. I then sent a Facebook message to my best friend Cynthia and let her know I had actually taken a chance and messaged Mary. She was thrilled for me but I had to try to temper her reaction because I didn’t know if I would actually get a response or not, not just that day, but at all. As I enjoyed my cigar, my phone went off with a text message. It was Mary.

We texted for hours that day, hours the next day and hours the next day. That, subsequently, turned into hours talking on the phone. I fell madly in love with her. And in time, it hit me that she was absolutely The One. The one I’d waited my whole life for. The one that made all the previous disappointments worth it. I knew what I had to do. I had to start planning to move to Illinois because I’m going to marry that girl.

First things first, I made plans for a short visit, a couple of days in mid-August. From there, I’ll start laying the groundwork to move to Illinois. It is all coming together.

Mary bought me a PS5 and sent me an incredible birthday box, the first time I’d had a proper birthday since probably 2003. I sent Mary a selection of Chicago White Sox memorabilia and collectibles. I’d never gotten to exchange gifts with anyone before in a “surprise” kind of way, where she didn’t know what she was getting and I didn’t know what I was getting. In fact, the last time someone bought me a birthday present, I had to pay for it myself.

Fate has finally smiled upon me after 15-plus years of unhappiness, misery and depression. It was either one extreme or the other, I was in an unhappy relationship with a girl I didn’t like, or I was single and had nothing to look forward to but tumbleweed blowing by. These past three years were horrible, every night spent alone, playing video games or watching TV and thinking I had nothing ahead of me except the same thing.

So, to Mary, I say even though this relationship is in its infancy it’s already everything I ever wanted in my life and never thought I would have. I didn’t think I would ever have a chance to be happy because no one ever wanted to be happy with me before. I look forward to spending the rest of forever with the most beautiful girl in the world, finally putting down roots and making all of the dreams I’ve ever had come true. It was worth the loneliness and unhappiness of the past ten times over. And I finally feel like I belong in the world.

It all finally worked out. Like I was crawling through a desert of absolutely nothing and suddenly, everything I had ever wanted just appeared to me out of nowhere. I thank God every night for giving me the strength to take one last chance before I walked away for good. No other girl could have gotten me to make that move. And now we’re in it for the long haul. It’s funny how things work out, but the important thing is, they DO work out.

Thank you for reading, and God bless.

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