Dedicated to Softball Girls with Big Hearts & Big Dreams
Oct 17, 2018
Every person on this planet shares one thing in common; the need to feel wanted. Everyone has a need for relationship. We were made to make connections with each other. I am a health teacher for middle school students. Some people think that’s crazy, but I absolutely love it. During my time as a teacher, I see many middle school students desperate for attention and romantic relationships. Some seek that attention in ways that are not so modest.
I would be remiss if I did not say that these provocative ways of attracting attention from the opposite sex bugs me. This is a topic that not enough people talk about for fear of bringing up a topic that is taboo. I say, all the more reason to address this with our youth. These young girls are worth more than they present themselves and have a value that is beyond what they might see. My job is to help prevent young girls (and boys too) from making choices they might regret and prevent them from heading down the wrong path from unhealthy relationships they get into at a young age.
When I was sophomore in high school my best friend had a boyfriend from a different school. He had a “cute friend” that my friend wanted to introduce me to. He was a tall, cute and a successful football player going away to college the next year on a football scholarship. That might be appealing to any young girl. We hung out a few times, but I quickly realized in my naivety that he was in it for interests other than caring about me. He was more in it for physical benefits that might be a possibility. After a couple times hanging out, knowing that those “physical benefits” were clearly not an option with me, we parted ways. I often think back to that time and wonder if I had not been so strong in my values, would I have done something I regretted? Would I have been in a relationship that would have caused me hurt and set me back from the things I’ve accomplished in my life? Possibly.
When you are in a relationship, you risk giving an emotional side of yourself to someone else. When I was a young girl, I decided that one day I would like to get married. I would want that person to be someone who treated others with respect. I would want that person to be trustworthy, respectful and value who I am as a person. I realized that the actions that I have in my relationships as a young person will ABSOLUTELY impact my relationship with my future husband. Just like any other goal in your life that you might have, every choice that you make can push closer or further away from a goal. In order to establish trust and respect, I know my actions now will help or hurt my later goals.
I was so blessed to have parents that never focused on our worth in regards to romantic relationships. We were never told we had to be married to be happy and were never insinuated that we were “worth more” if we had a significant other. Other parents might argue that “kids will be kids” and you should have fun and do things that other young kids do in order to enjoy your youth, but I would throw caution on that argument. When you are in an intimate relationship, you put a lot at stake. Your emotions become tied to that person. Decisions become focused around that individual because you care about him and don’t want to hurt him. I absolutely believe that you can still fully experience life while being in a relationship, but I do think it is something that needs to be protected and guarded so that you reserve that space for someone who truly deserves it. When you grow yourself individually, you are able to make better life choices.
After my experience my sophomore year, I lost trust in the motives of people in regards to relationships. I made the decision that I would wait until at least after high school to date anyone. I had huge goals to play Division 1 softball and I didn’t need to have those goals crushed by anyone. Besides, how many people meet their spouse in high school anyways? So I completely focused on myself. I gained confidence, passion and direction in my dreams.
Around junior year I started working part time at a local coffee shop called Tim Horton’s. (Shout out to all of my northeast US or Canadian followers!!) Upon working there I met a lot of really nice people. One of them was this boy who began to crush on me. I was simply not interested and kept brushing him away. I didn’t mean to be rude, but I didn’t want to stop my goals or have them impacted by someone else. I was on a mission to have the best end of my high school career that I possibly could.
Our group of friends at work hung out from time to time where this boy continued to pursue me and eventually became a friend of mine. I was still very firm in my stance of no boys until after high school. Senior year came along. That boy and I became good friends. I still did not put him above my goals, but began to grow trust in him. I knew I was going to school in Virginia the next year for college, which was a long 10 hour drive from Buffalo, but he still kept pursuing. I literally made him wait until June 8th to start dating, which was my last day of high school. That time allowed for us to grow in trust and see the integrity. That time allowed us to get to know each other on a deeper level. Guess what? Not only did that guy stick around to wait to date me, but we continued to have an unwavering relationship through my time away during college. That guy is now my husband.
Those who truly have your best interest at heart will wait for you. They will begin to love you for who you are and care about you for the right reasons. They will want you to grow and reach your goals individually and trust that you can go out with your girlfriends and not flirt with other guys. Will there be times you might make a mistake in judgement? Absolutely. Learn from it. Are there no guys waiting for you right now or for the past few years? Don’t be discouraged. The right guy will come. Trust the process. Learn that patience is something that takes time. Not everyone’s journey looks the same. There is beauty in your story. It’s tough to see the big picture in your time of life, but know that it’s okay to be single. Embrace this chapter. This is your time to focus on yourself and attack your goals head on. Remember, you are absolutely way more worthy than you give yourself credit for. Treat yourself with the utmost respect and others will too. It starts with you.