I've been struggling with an internal debate over the past few days. No, not whether or not I should attempt the Soprano solo in choir. It's more complicated than that. To sum the dilemma up in as few words as possible, is it better to trust your instincts (INCLUDING prejudices, unfairnesses, craziness) or give a situation/person time to play out (time in which you could get hurt)? That wasn't very few words. Oh well. I never claimed brevity among my MANY many virtues.
The thing is, there's this guy. Let's call him Mark. Mark and I met about two years ago, and we went out a couple of times. I wasn't feeling it. He was a little too quiet for me, didn't seem to have a great sense of humor, and just seemed... well, frankly, OFF. Just odd. Like something was not right. Plus, he seemed to want to dive right into the TREACHEROUS, deadly land of hand-holding and such (gasp! The horror!). So. After two "dates" (are they really dates if there's a huge group of friends involved and you never spend any time talking to the person?) we just never talked again.
Time has passed. Things change, people change. I changed. I had an interesting encounter the next fall which changed my perspective on guys, relationships, and what I want from them. And as time passes I'm growing ever more aware of this gaping hole in my life, this need for affection and positive male attention. So when someone suggested I get in touch with Mark, I considered it. And suddenly I find myself thinking... hey! This isn't such a bad idea! All those cons seem like pros- if he doesn't want to talk, great! I just found myself a new listener! If he wants to stride straight into romantic, physical stuff, perfect. (I'm talking kissing at most here, people, calm thyselves) And if he's a little weird, has some problems, well! I can STOP trying (fruitlessly) to change my best friends and try (fruitlessly) to change him!
So now I'm meeting up with this guy I basically know nothing about, on the hopes that my first impressions were wrong and he's secretly Mr. Wonderful. Or at least, you know. Mr. Bearable. But of course now my doubt chimes in... What if he's just as bad of an idea as the LAST guy I gave a second chance? (Ex boyfriend. Thought getting together to see a movie meant we were engaged. Ended badly all around.) What if he's not interested in me anymore and I end up spending two hours hearing about another girl? What if he's a crazed cyberstalker who wants to rape and murder me? (Did I hear someone say "overactive imagination"?)
The thing is that when I didn't really care, it didn't matter how it turned out. Now that I've started thinking how amazing it would be to be in a relationship, it's going to bother me more when it doesn't work out that way. Here I will insert some depressing quotes about hope.
"In reality, hope is the worst of all evils, because it prolongs man's torments." ~Friedrich Nietzsche
"I hope for nothing. I fear nothing. I am free." ~Nikos Kazantzakis
"He that lives upon hope will die fasting." ~Benjamin Franklin
"Hope — it is the quintessential human delusion, simultaneously the source of your greatest strength and your greatest weakness." ~The Architect (The Matrix Reloaded)
"Hope is the real killer. Hope is harmful. Hope enables us to sit still in the sinking raft instead of doing something about our situation. Forget hope. " ~Gringo Stars
To plagiarize and deface a line from "The Shawshank Redemption", fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can make you stupid enough not to realize it.
I suppose this all comes back to the same question of me singing that solo in choir I mentioned at the beginning- is the probability of failure worth the risk? And the answer, quite simply, is no. No, it isn't. Not for me. I'd much rather stand in the back row and sway along with everyone else, rather than risking sounding awful and earning mockery for a shot at attention. So I'm not doing the solo. Objectively, that should mean I tell Mark "have a nice life!", not meet up with him this weekend. Logically, it makes sense... risk being murdered by a possible crazy person for the chance that he's a nice guy vs. stay peacefully in my room, studying.
Somehow I don't feel any less confused.....