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I feel like I may have written this post before, or under different words.

I enjoy dreaming of Prince Charming a lot. When I thought I met him, or even just a temporary stand-in who fit some mental image of what I thought the guy I wanted should be, I put so much effort and mental energy into it. I spent so much time believing this was the only way to be happy and for my life not to get off track, that we were “meant,” to be and I couldn’t let it get away. And as for the time I spent with the so-called beloved, it ranged between transcendent to okay to what was I thinking?

One of these times, I thought I met the One.

Key word being “thought.”

Whether he is or not obviously remains to be seen but at the moment things aren’t looking too hot.

Then one day when I loosened my grip slightly on that belief, which was in fact making me miserable because circumstances were not conducive to romance with him nor was he particularly acquiescent to it either, and was generally not acting emotionally developed perfect Prince Charming like, I met somebody.

Someone who is not what I thought my Prince Charming would be like in somewhat superficial ways. Someone who doesn’t always act like Prince Charming. Someone who has disappointed me, and who certainly doesn’t meet the expectations of the person I thought would be good for me and make me happy.

But someone who did, and still sometimes does. As circumstances haven’t particularly cooperated with this romantic project either, and he says he’ll call and I play cool and I just angry and sad and wonder if and when we’ll meet again.

He wasn’t the guy I thought I was supposed to be with. But since I left him, I haven’t wanted to be with anybody else. When things with “the One” weren’t going well, all I wanted to do was find some stranger to enjoy a good time with.

But this time it’s been different, for a lot of reasons. Can’t say that stranger impulse isn’t still there at times, but I haven’t followed through on it. My okcupid account has been reactivated, but I haven’t exchanged more than a few messages. Sure this has a lot to do with the fact I’ll be moving soon, Ihope and pray.

But really, the way I feel about this stupid guy, who is a real presence in my life, and who has not always conformed to my expectations but has largely followed through, this is love or something like it.

Or at least it’s fair to say, my love or whatever ou want to call it is much realer than anything I felt for “the One” who I just met in passing for a transcendent o so brief experience, not the guy who was around long enough to be boring.

This guy, I was supposed to just let go of when the time came. This guy wasn’t ever supposed to be anything serious. This guy was supposed to be fundamentally incompatible because he didn’t come from the right place read the right books or practice the right religion.

This is the guy whose sometimes sloppy, less than princely kisses I miss. This is the guy who drives me crazy in a good way and is perfect as he is and I can’t wait to change.

This is the guy who didn’t kiss me after not seeing me for six months.

This is the guy who rubbed my hair when I was sad, encouraged me every time I complained of all my doubts, responded to my emails, called me every once in a while, who came to meet my parents, who did care about me no matter how many times I try to berate myself that he didn’t.

This is the guy who doesn’t really fit the plan at all, who I’m not sure if things would work out with, but who I wish so many times was there just to cuddle me.

Is it love, I don’t know. Will it last, I don’t know. It is the sweet illusion of a lover’s dream or is it really as real as it seemed?

I don’t know.

But what I do know is that Prince Charming, and “the One,” are just menu  items on my fantasy playlist, and despite the fact that at times, he seems to fade into the background,

no matter how passing or transitory,

no matter how playful and unserious,

no matter how irritating and mundane,

this was, and is, something.

And that something is some kind of love.