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How to take control of your love life

... And Banish Your Gorillas for Good

OK I lied. Well not really lied. More like circumvented the glaring truth that taunted me mercilessly. Lying sounds so calculating and full of bad intent. 
... And Banish Your Gorillas for Good

As Anais Nin would say, "I simply chose to see things not as they are, but as I am." Or as I wanted it to be. The man I'd been falling head over heels in love with for over a year was wrong for me. I knew it, he even knew it. My idealist heart purred sweet nothings in my ear — "but, he knows just how to make me laugh," "he's got a fabulous job" and "he's so delicious in bed..."

Truth be told, he was never going to fully commit to me. In the course of one year, he needed a "break to clear his head and figure out what he really wanted" at least six heart-wrenching times. I didn't need a break. That should have been my first clue, right?

We all do it at some point and to varying degrees. Don't deny it. But the obvious in my case was an 800-pound gorilla that camped out in the back of my mind. Some days I completely forgot about the gorilla. Those were the days I saw all of the things I wanted to see in him. And felt all of the things I wanted to feel, real or imagined.

But as fiercely as I tried to ignore the obvious, the big hairy 800-pound gorilla grew and grew and eventually the inevitable happened. The gorilla crushed me. All at once and completely without remorse, the handsome guy that made my heart skip a beat every time I saw him was gone. For real gone. He moved to another state with barely a goodbye and a pat on the butt like I was an old college buddy. And I was left crushed, which necessitated more wine and random dates than is generally thought acceptable.

Learning from my mistakes

So what's the lesson here? I'd love to offer you a bite-sized nugget of melt-in-my-mouth wisdom that's oh-so-Pinterestable. But really, there's only one thing to do. It's not sexy, but it works. Stop lying to yourself and face your gorilla. Big gorilla, small gorilla, it doesn't really matter. It's just ugly and smelly and it's taking up valuable space in your head.

Did I take my own advice? Yes, eventually. After the wine and the dates I don't care to remember -- OK there were a few standouts… -- Mr. Gorilla came back with a vengeance. He told me he'd been lost without me and he knew I was the Juliet to his Romeo. I told him he was the MySpace to my Facebook and I was so over it. I stopped seeing things as I so desperately wanted them to be and I faced the truth. The best part is, I was free and having more fun than I ever did with Mr. Gorilla.

So now it's your turn. Just look at your beautiful, smart self in the mirror and say, "you can do this, it's time." Us girls get awfully caught up in the rose-colored what-ifs and maybes. We wait for the elusive to materialize just as we dreamed it would be. We compromise and hope for change in ourselves and in others. But life is lived in the small, daily moments. Don't wait anymore. You deserve to be the real you, enjoying life with people that really love you and doing the things that really matter to you.

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