The other day, I was talking to a friend about relationships and dating.
“You know, sometimes I just find this whole thing so depressing,” I said. “There is always a catch to the good ones, you never have any attraction or chemistry with the ones who are perfect for you, and then there are those who want you but are no good for you—where are the ones who are just as good for you as you are for them?”
“Taken,” He replied. “Taken by girls who don’t deserve them.”
Have you ever wondered why this appears to be?
Most women, at some point in their lives, have made The List. The List, for those who aren’t familiar with the term, is a list of things a woman wants in a man. Smart, good-looking, hard working, sociable, wealthy, influential, drives a nice car, has shiny teeth—whatever is on it, The List varies from woman to woman, but they all have one, either in their heads or on paper.
A couple months after my 16th birthday, my parents gave me a purple notebook. I still have it today. I entitled it “Chanel’s handbook for life”, and in it, I made lots of lists. I made one on the person I would like to be, my priorities in life (and what they should actually be), the perfect way to balance my time and energy, goals I want to achieve in my lifetime, things I want to do in my lifetime, life lessons I have learned, things I need to change, etc. etc. And then I made The List.
What I find interesting is that, looking back in the notebook, before I made the list of things I would like in the opposite sex, I made a list of things I would like to see in myself. More interestingly, however, is the fact that the two lists are nearly identical.
For the last couple years, when asked what I would like in a husband, my answer has almost always been exactly the same: “Most of what I am, just better”. It wouldn’t be hard. Narcisstic? Maybe. But it’s 100% honest. I am always working to be the best person I can possibly be. In my mind, if he wasn’t, it would pull me down; I need someone to help set the bar higher and higher. I wanted an equal or better in most or all things. That was the nice way of the looking at it. The other way? “I’m a good catch. He better deserve me.”
The bible says that the price of sin is death. It also says that God is love. In the form of a man, he sacrificed his human life for the sins of the world to redeem the human race. Many people don’t get the true significance of the words, “God is love”—but by replacing his human life for the lives of the those he loved, he committed the ultimate act of selfless love as an example for us.
So what does all this have to do with anything, anyway?
It was about two weeks ago in the shower when I came up with a new theory on relationships that completely blew my mind. I’m certainly not the first person to ever come up with this theory, but it was groundbreaking for me personally because it was simply something I had never really considered before.
What if we are meant to be with people who are not perfect for us, but for whom we are perfect for?
Take me as an example. I constantly strive to be the best person I can possibly be and I’ve always want a guy who would be just as good if not better than me at everything… But maybe its God’s will that I take the skills, abilities and strengths I have to balance out another individual, instead of looking for someone who is just like me, with the same strengths I have.
If loving and forgiving comes easy for me, what good would it be if I ended up with someone who also found loving and forgiving easy? Would it not so much more benefit another life—and the world as a whole—if I was matched with someone with whom my loving and forgiving abilities could be put to good use? … And if you think this sounds borderline charity case—how much more rewarding and enriching would it be to be in a relationship where each other’s strengths could be fully appreciated and each other’s weaknesses could be compensated?
If love is selfless, maybe this concept of ‘perfect’ matchmaking really does have everything to do with how well you fit them and not how well they fit you. And with that in mind, think about my previous ideal of wanting someone who was “just like me, but better”… Could that ever be true love?
Something to think about.