I've said it before, and I will say it again: I am happy as a single person. But then someone comes along who has me wondering "maybe?", and all of my hard-won equilibrium is thrown off. It's lovely in the beginning, when life is filled with daydreaming and distraction, but a completely different picture when things come crashing down, as they inevitably seem to do. Suddenly my previously satisfying life as a single person seems so small and incomplete compared to the promised "happily ever after", and it feels like an eternity before I can return to my usual contented state.
When I was deciding whether or not to go to medical school, I distinctly recall telling my Dad that I would happily go through all of the long study days and endless nights on call if I just knew that it would be worth it in the end. And I feel precisely the same way about dating right now - If I knew that the roller coaster of emotions and the self doubt and the awkward dates would lead to someone good in the end, it would be so easy. But as my Dad said years ago, laughing a deep belly laugh that was at once both sympathetic and mocking, "Life just doesn't work that way Solitary".