Hump Day Crush: New Year Romantics

For those not in a relationship (or in one that’s not quite fulfilling), the holidays can be a time when that very special depression rolls in and causes all sorts of havoc.

Even those like myself who are generally pretty content being single get twinges of the “What if”s and “Why not me?”s. Those of us who are also hopeless Romantics at heart have some extra special “fun” going on as our heads and hearts fight it out.

Some holidays are worse than others.

Thanksgiving is usually no big deal. Valentine’s Day inspires more spite than angst. Christmas brings with it a 50/50 split.

Then there’s New Year’s Eve.

New Year’s Eve brings with it a very specific kind of evil. It has been hyped for years as that Big Turning Point, a time where just a few minutes can set the tone for the entire year to come. And we won’t even talk about the introspection and review of the past year that we’re almost forced into doing.

All of those things can trigger intense Romantic cravings and set up all sorts of crush cascades.

For me, I’m not sure which are worse for those cravings: the years I spent New Year’s Eve alone with the TV or the ones I spent with friends (including, invariably, someone I was crushing on at the time).

We’ve been inundated with images of that Big New Year’s Eve Kiss that is supposed to happen at midnight. So often preceded by a walk along somewhere picturesque or, alternately, completely random and out of the blue. How that leads to the long night of talking (or, in the oh-so-romantic Cinderella-esque versions, the vanishing of that elusive other).

I’ve never had anything even vaguely like that happen (and I’d wager that most other people out there haven’t, either). Even when I was in a relationship, that New Year’s Eve moment never quite clicked. Sad to say, I really don’t remember much from the New Year’s that occurred when I was actually dating someone. (Rest assured, that’s more a reflection on me than it is on them.)

But what I do remember–and painfully so–are the years I spent longing for that moment. I remember how, one year after the festivities of the evening died down and the Twilight Zone marathon was running on the TV a bunch of us were dozing on the couch. Before long, I was the only one still awake. Inches away from me was one of my long time crushes. “If only she’d roll this way,” I though, “she would be in my arms.”

That thought persisted for a while. Today, it sings just as loud as it did then. She never did roll toward me, no matter how hard I willed it to be so.

Therein lies the difference between a crush (or the Romantic illusions we’re bathed in) and a real relationship.

The real relationship was what brought us out that night, it’s what allowed us to comfortably fall asleep on that couch together. It’s what kept me from actively doing anything that would jeopardize it. The real relationship is always the most important part.

That’s not to say that the Romance and the Crush don’t have their place. If it weren’t for that chance of Romance, would most of us get as excited–as high on anticipation and hope–as we do around New Year’s Eve?

And if it weren’t for the Crush… ah, if it weren’t for the Crush how would we know what those Romantic leanings could make us do. Even if it is only in our minds as Rod Serling takes us on strange adventures.

So, tell me, what’s your most memorable New Year’s Eve Romantic success or disaster?

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