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I’m sure that if you’re single, you will agree that you’re sick of hearing “When you find the one, you will just know.  You won’t question it anymore, you will just stop asking yourself if this is who you are supposed to be with.” I’m not going to lie, I was one of the single people out there who thought that this saying might be B.S.!  Yet even I was skeptical that I would ever meet anyone online. It seemed like it was an endless pool of sharks and I was just a starfish sinking to the bottomless sea of the unknown.  Just a mysterious, endless, lonely ocean of nothing.

I read a long time ago that in Christian symbolism, the starfish represents the Virgin Mary (Stella Maris which means Star of the Sea), who creates safe travel over troubled waters and is also seen as an emblem of salvation during trying times. The star as well as the starfish are seen as celestial symbols and as such, they represent infinite divine love. In addition to love, the starfish also holds characteristics such as guidance, vigilance, inspiration, brilliance and intuition. If a starfish is injured and its tentacles are removed, they grow back making them immortal.  They have fascinated me since the first time my mother gave me one as a pet for my birthday.

At first, during my search for love I was oblivious like anyone else.   I would see an attractive picture and email back and forth with men that were obviously nothing like me and had nothing in common with me.  I was being shallow. I usually went for someone who was emotionally unavailable or someone who lived far away, or who was mysterious, or showed signs of being taken. I was avoiding commitment and I didn’t even know I was doing it. I was making mistakes and learning the hard way.  Each day that went by I lost more and more hope.  Did I even deserve to have someone special in my life?  I was in seven weddings and watched my girlfriends go on honeymoons, have babies, and buy houses.  Meanwhile, I was going to bed alone night after night, and each day my job (I was a matchmaker) was to tell people how to be patient and that love does exist.

One thing my job did teach me during this journey was a lot about research and statistics on singles and online dating. So I started to learn trends and what drove people to choose one person over another users profile. I learned online lingo, how to choose the best profile pictures, and how to make an appealing first impression by video. I read and watched thousands of profiles, looked at probably a million people that sounded exactly the same.  But how could everyone be the same?!  I was becoming an expert on online dating profiles and platforms. I even sat on panels and had shows about the topics. Then I went on a hundred bad dates. I really started using what I learned and my dates actually started to get better and started lasting past two or three dates.  But I was still alone and not feeling the ultimate connection.  I was getting no sort of real commitment.

The truth is, no matter what expert data you have and learn or analytics on dating trends and skills its still up to timing, fate, luck, and the universe. So long story short I actually found him and I just knew like people said I would! He is the most amazing, kindhearted man I have ever met.  He is just like me and we could have fun throwing rocks, or talking for hours.  We have a lot in common and I feel like he was made just for me.  Like I created him in my mind or something.  Sometimes I wonder if he’s even human. Well here is what I did:

1. Pray – I’m not super religious but on those lonely nights when I was lying in bed with tears in my eyes I would pray that God would help me or lead me in the right direction to find someone who had a heart like mine.

2.Clean out the closet – I got rid of my past just a couple days before I met him.  I said my final goodbyes to people who had wasted my time or had been unemotionally available. I wanted a game free environment for anyone coming in.

3. Stop going on dates/research – I used to go on a date if someone asked me and they looked decent or had an interesting job.  But now before I went on any date I took it more serious.  I would review their profiles then text as many important vital questions. I did my research.  I would check out their LinkedIn, Facebook, and any online presence, have video chats, etc. Its amazing what you can learn about a person when they are not putting on a facade to lure you in to go on a date with them.

4. I did the picking and choosing – Usually a man would approach me online, ask me out and that’s how the courtship began. But this time I refused to talk to anyone that emailed me or sent me a wink.  I wanted the men that were not interested and I wanted to find out why.  So I was now the one sending the first emails and my decision was based on how they responded back.  What I found during my investigation was the most unusual finding.  I found my guy on the first try using my new approach. I didn’t know it would happen that fast but it did and I’m ecstatic.  I found ten things I liked about him and listed them kind of like I would list on a PowerPoint for investors and sent it to him. Here is what I like about you, here is what I want, here is what I offer, do you want to meet? At first he wanted to meet for a drink like any other date but then he texted me back and said he would rather play miniature golf.  I knew this was going to be different.

5.Vulnerable/Honesty – I went into this wholeheartedly.  Yes I was hurt in the past, but I had nothing to lose.  I was already alone. I was honest with him like I would be with any of my best friends or family members. I was very vulnerable.  I always go for the unavailable guys.  He was different.  He was showing that he was available.  I gave him my trust. I remember one of our first few dates he told me to get dressed up and I had no clue where we were going but I let him surprise me.  I didn’t have to know everything.  I didn’t have to know all the answers or where we were going as long as it was together.  This was new to me.

I wasn’t alone anymore, I found another starfish in the sea to float through the great big ocean. Maybe it’s not about what you think is supposed to happen but it’s about taking what’s missing in your heart more serious.  After you do this then you will let timing, fate, karma, and serendipity come into play. Don’t ever give up hope.  There is absolutely someone for everyone.

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