“You should’ve told me!”

This summer, I started dating a really nice boy.   He was cute and kind and held doors open for me.   He texted often, even when he was at work, and he called me the morning I left for Haiti to tell me that he was praying for my trip and that he would miss me.  He told me I was beautiful – not pretty or hot; beautiful.  There was an old-school charm about him that I hadn’t seen evidenced in other guys I had dated.  We didn’t go on extravagant dates, because mostly we just enjoyed being together and extravagance would have gotten in the way of the laughing and talking and holding hands.  He wasn’t aggressive or pushy, and he really respected me.  He made an effort to get to know my friends, and they in turn liked him.  He made me smile.

Without a doubt, it was the most fun I’ve ever had dating.


Summer over and with a now autumn chill in the air, the BFF and I sat in her living room last night with the windows open.  We stayed up late, and talked the kind of honest talk that only best friends can have.  It was the kind of talking that required Bibles to be opened and hard questions to be asked, that was affirming and challenging, and that for all of our best friend-ness invited even more realness.

I live for conversations like this.  I live for conversations that are sanctifying.


“You should’ve told me!”

We were talking about the nice boy I dated this summer, about how I’m feeling now that the summer is over and the texts from him have all but stopped now that he’s facing a heavy crisis of his own.  She was talking particularly of the crisis, but I realize now that there’s so much beyond that I should’ve told her.

I wasn’t keeping things from her this summer; I just wasn’t talking.

It’s a repeating pattern for me, especially as it relates to dating, this not talking.  And I don’t talk because at nearly 29 years old, I still fear being “that girl.”  You know the one I’m talking about, the one who falls hopelessly for her current beau and then who falls apart when the relationship does.  The one whose world focus becomes the guy she’s seeing, and who can’t seem to talk about anything else.   The one who thinks only about dating, and who takes to planning a wedding on Pinterest before she’s in a relationship.

“That girl” is trouble, for sure.  But in trying to not be “that girl,” I became another type of girl entirely.

The one who stopped being honest.  And maybe that’s worse.


Honestly, I miss that nice boy from this summer, even though we only dated for a few months.  I like that he called me beautiful, and I like that his hand was always warm when mine was always cold.  I hate that we couldn’t find a way to weather our crises together.  And I still hope we can find a way to make it work.

But honestly, if we never find a way to make it work, if I never get another text, I’m glad for what I’ve been taught. I’m glad that he reminded me that dating should be fun, and that it shouldn’t be extravagant.   I’m more glad, though, that I have had to face some of my fears, that I’ve been challenged to be more honest in my best friendship, that through the dating and the not dating I have been sanctified.

No “should’ve beens” about it.  I have been sanctified.

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