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Oh hello, Sunday, old friend. Oh how I’ve craved you so. The ease at which I feel around you. The scent of laundered sheets perceptibly permeating in the air. A cozy, just-washed zip-up sweatshirt draped over me with the wondrous feel of warmth fresh from the dryer. The knowingness that time need not matter. Nowhere to be. Nothing to do. But you. To soak you in and ride you out, only until we meet again next week. Same bat time. Same bat channel.

If only our relationships could be but all a string of Sundays.

Coming and going with a sense of ease. Of non-doing. Of just being. You do you. They do them. And you share the space to do just that. To just be. But in this day in age, the start of new relationships are acted out as if it’s a Thursday/Friday/Saturday night. We go hard. We splurge. We feel if we don’t do something grandiose and notable (try that new hot restaurant, that new pink Himalayan salted concoction known as a $17 cocktail) than we’re not doing it right. That we won’t win over the new object of our affection. That we won’t look like we’re putting in any investment if we just invite them over to ours to chat and make-out and etc etc etc over a bottle of wine, or a pot of tea. Fuck that noise – we’ve witnessed enough dates on The Bachelor to know that non-doing is not the answer. Non-doing isn’t the way you woo. So we lock down dates to meet in bars, and run from one to another, date in and date out, until we run out of money and superficial conversation in a seemingly continuous slumber.

But it’s only when you can take a Sunday approach to dating, that you can really grow as a potential couple. That you really reach that raw richness that intimate relationships are built on. Because you need to know that the two of you work together in silence. You need to know that you are both secure enough do to do you with them by your side.

When you date someone worth dating, it should be simple and easy and come simply and easily. None of this “Oh let’s check out the latest art exhibit that’s also home to an open-bar and has a dj and oh you have to also wear a suit and a dress and heels and get that hair blow TF out and maybe get a mani and a wax while at it. No, no. I mean sure, that’s nice every now and then (if that’s the sort of thing your into) but like whyyyyy oh why in that 5-10 dates point are we still going all out, and going out at all when we should be trying to see if we can be alone together without sensory overload (other people and staff and servers to chat with when there’s a lull in the convo/when a joke falls short/with perfect lighting and candles and music et al.)? This abuse of our senses that comes with going out date after date after date is a detrimental distraction of an unrealistic life – or as whatever the shelf life is of this particular relationship – together.

Because there will be lulls in coversation. And he will talk about something that might not interest you. And the overhead light in his apartment might be too bright and far from sexy. And he will have to see you without makeup on and all done up for him/for the in-public persona you perpetuate by going out and living the proposed courting-period high life.

When you start to get a little serious with someone; when you realize there’s something there and this might be going somewhere, that’s the time you need to date like it’s a Sunday. Can you read your book cuddled up on the cat-hair-ridden couch, with a crochet blanket draped over you, while he’s playing his video games, or clicking next episode on Netflix, without yearning for his attention or affection? Without him taking your wantingness to escape in good plot a(s you flip page after page and read online article after online article) as a sign that you’re not into – or avoiding – him? Can you share well-scripted sentence from your read as you catch yourself giggling out loud, so he too can enjoy a splash of your moment, without him being bothered that you’re distracting him? Because that’s what it is to be a couple. That’s a healthy relationship. And if you answered yes to those questions and actually really enjoy it, then it’s suffice to say you’re on the right page. But if you answered no, then this is exactly why you need to have a Sunday date early on. Because we often learn this about the people we date too far in, when we’re already hella invested and then when we can’t be like that with them, we’ve already put so much time and money into it that we overlook the warning signs with rosy-shaded glasses.

We so often fear the silence and the comfort that comes with getting to a point where we can be ourselves with another, and we push it off by lining up another godforsaken date night, with an even more so godforsaken bar tab. We want it so we can hide behind all the stimulation. We want it so we can brag to our friends (who aren’t as lucky in love) about our apres date night run-down. Cut that noise. Because to grow and establish a healthy connection and bond, Sundays – and acting as if your relationship is one – is where you can truly determine where your real connection lies.

– Jen

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