I was lucky enough to see Sam Smith at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin about a month ago. It came at the perfect time too. I was in my feels about my dating life because of a terrible hangout sesh with a guy I thought had potential. I wasn’t too familiar with Sam Smith at the time, so during the concert I had made it a point really listen to his lyrics and take it all in. It seemed like everyone in there were die hard fans, so whatever the energy of the song was, it was felt throughout the arena. If he sang a club song, the crowd was hyped, if it was a sad song, the crowd sang with every ounce of emo in their bodies. There was one point during “Too Good at Goodbyes” when he said, “Sing this to your ex,” and I completely lost it. There were plenty of times throughout the concert when he made me feel as if I was going through a traumatic heartbreak. I haven’t been heartbroken since 2016, but all those feelings just came flooding back to me as soon as that song started. There is no other song that perfectly sums up my love life. It felt like a Sunday sermon because I was saying, “Preach” in my head after every line.
Recently I was listening to “The Margarita Confessionals” podcast, and author Hannah Orenstein said, “Dating is what you make of it,” and that really helped bring a little surge of refreshment back into my dating life. The morning of the Sam Smith concert, I went on a date with a guy that I’ll call Valley Boy. He told me everything I wanted to hear. I was so sure that he would be different, and I prayed that it was true. We “met” on Bumble, and quickly hit it off. It was with him that I realized that if I wanted something to actually progress from this that I would need to let me guards down. If you’ve ever had a conversation with me, or listened to Late Night Swipes, you’d know that my dating history has been complete shit. I’ve been jaded for far too long.
The next day, I drove home from Austin, listening to Sam Smith, and thinking about what my next move should be with Valley Boy after our disappointing date. “Too Good at Goodbyes” came on, and I really delved back into the lyrics, just as I had done the night before. I thought about how I envied the people that could just give their all to someone they didn’t know. I envied them even more that they could do this over and over again. I know why I’ve become so guarded throughout these years. I know that getting hurt isn’t something that I want again, but has that really helped me?
The day after my drive home from Austin, I decided to delete all my dating apps and focus on myself. A part of my growth needs to be to figure out how to let guys in. I will continue to sabotage any potential relationships if I don’t. I thought what I was doing was protecting myself, but in reality it’s holding me back. Until I can find a perfect balance, dating will take a back seat.
 If you ever get the chance to see him live, please do it!