Dolley was a freshman, like me...
Five great questions of life: Life * Love * Learning * Labor * Leadership
Dating Dolley - Desperation is Blind
By Evan Nehring
Most people would assume that I have not had romantic relationships with many first ladies of the United States. That assumption would be nearly correct. In truth, I’ve dated none. I’ve opted, however, to use names of famous first ladies in place of the actual names of the ladies I’ve dated. Fair enough?
Dolley, Abigail, Michelle, Jacqueline, Laura, Martha, Nancy, Mary: those are my gals! Road trip romance began in Minneapolis.
It’s very different when you get to college, the dating thing, that is. At least for me, the whole thing switched from “Who can I have fun with?” to “Who can I be with for the rest of my life?” The fun thing is always there, but the routine appearance of upperclassmen with new diamond rings tends to get people thinking about the future.
Dolley was a freshman, like me. I saw her at a school picnic at Minnehaha Falls my first semester. There’s something very alive about college freshmen all sweatshirted up at the park on a cool fall afternoon. Then there were walks in Elliot Park.
Walks are amazing things. They can be totally nonthreatening and casual. They can also take on a life of their own and dramatically change complexion as conversations progress. I liked Dolley, but I was far from head over heels. She, on the other hand, was way gone. She came home to Canada with me one break. She called my parents, “Mom and Dad.”
When I broke up with her, she wanted to know why. That’s a tough one. I don’t think break ups exactly need a why. Sometimes it’s the idea of keeping on dating that needs a why. I couldn’t come up with much.
Desperation is BlindI never understood how unrequited love felt until years later when the tables were turned. When my heart was broken in a later relationship, I remembered Dolley. The thought crossed my mind that maybe all I really needed was someone to need me as desperately as Dolley had.
But desperation is blind. Desperation settles for good enough. Desperation is born of self-doubt, not self-confidence, and certainly not trust in God. I had a lot to learn about life and about God, but desperate I was not.
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