I’ve loved fishing since I was a five year old and my parents bought me my very own Snoopy fishing pole. Some of my favorite childhood memories involve fishing. It didn’t matter if we were at an ocean, the Gulf of Mexico or a river – if there was a body of water nearby which might contain fish, we had our poles out, hoping to catch enough fish for our next fish fry.
Dating is a lot like fishing. How many times have you heard, “There’s plenty of fish in the sea?” There’s even a popular dating website called Plenty of Fish. The more I date, the more I realize how much I should be applying what I learned about fishing to my dating life.
A good day fishing isn’t defined by whether or not you catch anything. There isn’t much in life that’s better than leaning back in a rowboat on a lazy, meandering river, hat pitched forward to cover your eyes, pole in hand, line in the river. The burbling of the river flowing over rocks and a few twittering birds are the only sounds around. You’re ready for a fish, if one chooses to nibble on your line. But if nothing nibbles all day, you’ve still had a nice, relaxing day.
Dating should be like that. A good day isn’t defined by whether or not somebody asks me out, but by how brightly the sun shined, how many times I laughed with my children, how peaceful I felt floating down the river. If we spend our entire time on the river worrying about whether or not we’re going to catch a fish, we completely miss the joy of being there.
Some days, you sit by your pole all day with nary a nibble. Other days, every time you drop a line, you feel that tug that means you’ve got another bite.
Some days you catch more fish than you can count. One day when I was a skinny little teenager barely tall or strong enough to cast my own line, I went fishing with my Grandma and Grandpa Banis and my daddy on the pier at Port Aransas, Texas. Somehow, I ended up in exactly the right spot at exactly the right time, and I pulled in 14 trout. For years, my Grandma Banis told the story of how I screamed, “Wheee!” each time I pulled another fish onto the pier.
One week this year, eight men asked me out on dates. EIGHT! I’m not positive, but I think I probably screamed something like, “Wheee!” each time another fella asked what I was doing that weekend. It was, honestly, exhilarating having that much attention. But in the same way all the fish I pulled in that sunny Texas afternoon weren’t suitable to keep, all the men who asked me out that week weren’t suitable for dating.
Responsible fishermen catch and release. Some fish are perfectly nice fish, but they’re a little too small, or a little too big, or they swim by on a day you already have more fish than you can handle. When that happens, toss them back! Chances are good, there’s someone else standing by with a line who would be perfectly happy with that fish that wasn’t quite right for you.
And remember, girls, we aren’t the only ones fishing. Fellas fish, too!
Question: What are your best dating tips? Please share because I need all the help I can get! 🙂