Today I cried. And cried hard I did.
It was my third day at work, the third day at a new job at the local grocery store that I was really enjoying. The reason why I enjoyed it, or at least one of the major reasons, was because of my coworker and sort-of boss the head cashier. Her name was -withheld-. From her long hair reaching all the way down to her lower back to her surprisingly athletic figure, I had a massive crush on her since the first day I met her. That was about a week before I got hired, when I was still undergoing the interviewing, training, and all of that boring stuff. I still blush like a school boy, where my face turns as red as a tomato, and that happened when I first met her. It happened hard.
I was infatuated, like an innocent schoolboy all over again. From that happy, giddy feeling in the pit of my stomach to the constant daydreaming, she was all that was on my mind. She was a little bit older than me, I surmise about 24 to 26 years old. But I have always liked older women. I even told all of my friends and family about her, and when working would make an extra effort to work especially hard in her presence. Anything to get noticed.
Finally today, at the end of my third day at work, like Christ approaching the Cross, I bravely approached -name withheld- and asked her out. Her response? She said something about being busy with school and work, the latter being true since her hours are brutal, but still nonetheless,
She rejected me,
In as kind a manner as possible, but it was still rejection. And the pain was all the same.
So I walked out of that grocery store with my head hung low, embarrassed as the laughingstock of the entire market. Utterly humiliated, and dreading my return since I have to work alongside -name withheld- and she probably thinks that I am a loser now.
And then I was extra humiliated because I had to loiter aimlessly around the parking lot for 10 minutes until my father picked me up like a schoolboy all over again, because we only have one working car at the moment. If -name withheld- did not already just view me as an awkward child with a crush on her, she certainly must view me as such now. Today was not my day.
We all know that familiar sting of rejection, the complete destruction of infatuation. When your hopes and dreams are completely crushed, and bitter reality sets in once again.
But I learned something from this whole experience.
In fact, I learned something from rejection itself. From the very first time I ever approached a girl in college after weeks of preparation to this whole fiasco now, I learned something invaluable.
You have a choice.
You can either wallow in self pity and despair,
...or you can hold your head up high and move on from it.
You cannot let it break your pride.
Yes it hurts. It hurts horribly. You wonder what you did wrong, or what is wrong with yourself that rejection is not the exception but the norm. The slow-burning sting of unending rejection inevitably takes a toll, but that is why you ignore it.
You ignore it because you have to ignore it.
You straighten that tie, slap a fake smile across your face, and move on.
You move on because if you don't, this is your fate,
GAG is full of these types, the bitter loser neckbeards angry at the world, those whose pain has transformed them into something petty, pathetic, and hopeless. Someone who only wants pity but never solutions, single well into their 30s haunted by what could have been.
The only and I mean only reason why this has not become my fate is because I realized not too long ago that rejection is better than wondering what could have been. If you take the Pascal's Wager approach, you will see that there are more advantages to approaching someone than cowering out.
Sure rejection hurts. But if you never ask, the answer will always be No.
At least if you do ask, there is the chance that it could be Yes. And if it is not, then you are at least afforded the satisfaction of knowing that you tried. And that constant trying can be beneficial. I have learned that the more you approach people, the easier it becomes over time. Two years ago I never would have been able to approach -name withheld-. Or if I did, it would have taken weeks of preparation. But today I did it easily, and I will do it again to the next girl that comes along.
And that was only possible because in the spirit of the stubborn pull-yourself-up-by-your-own-bootstraps approach I inherited from my father, I refuse to allow myself to become a neckbeard.
I will not be like the average guy on GAG.
I am barely a step above them just because I finally forced myself to start approaching women.
And I am happy because of it. The sting of rejection aside, I will never give up.