They say it’s just around the corner. But I’ve walked around the block so many times, and turned so many corners, I can’t even begin to imagine that there’s a corner left that I haven’t looked around. Even the corners that led to dark alleys that I didn’t think I wanted to go down, I went round them anyway. Just in case. But it wasn’t there. And the corners that I thought led to dead ends? I checked them too. I’ve turned corners, thinking that they led to white sand beaches and the sea, and found nothing but forbidding tower blocks. Corners I thought ended in rainbows and pots of gold, that turned out to be smoke and mirrors. It wasn’t there.
They say it happens when you’re not looking for it. But I fear I stopped looking a long time ago. I stopped looking when I thought I’d found it. But then, apparently I hadn’t found it. Or at least it hadn’t found me. And then I stopped looking entirely. I pretended to be looking, but actually I wasn’t. Because when you think you’ve found something, but it turns out to be something else, you kind of lose your faith in your ability to know what is something, and what is nothing. But eventually, you start looking again. And you find it. Or at least a convincing facsimile of it. For a while. And then it’s gone.
They say “you just know”. But I didn’t “just know”. Because how can you ever? I don’t “know” I’ve put the right clothes on each morning, let alone whether I’ve made the right decision about anything more fundamental. Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t think you “just know”, I think you “just hope”. And sometimes, however much you wish it were otherwise, that’s just not enough. You can hope and wish and will something all you like, but really, it needs both of you to hope and wish and will, because however much you want it, you can’t ever want it enough for both of you.
They say that it only takes one, that it’s a numbers game. But I’m brilliant at maths, and somehow that doesn’t seem to be working out so well for me. Maybe because I’m too hung up on probability. In years gone by I remember being constantly astounded, genuinely astounded, that the theory of attraction could sustain for so long, that somehow, in this sea of numbers, we’d found each other. Until the division. On paper, I excel at complex equations, differentiating between prime numbers and odd ones. But somewhere, somehow, something’s not adding up. And it’s exhausting. It feels like homework when it should be fun.
They say you shouldn’t give up.
But they’re not the ones
around every corner,
for the one,
that you’ll “just know” is the one.
(Yeah, as you might have guessed, that second date wasn’t exactly all I hoped it would be. Perfect on paper. I tried, I really tried, but it just wasn’t there.)