Through the Phone’s Blue Light, can there really be Love at First Swipe?

“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope”

Maya Angelou

Okay so who actually believes in Love at first sight? Well, believe it or not, I do. I have actually experienced it. Now how does one describe the indescribable? My first reaction was disbelief, me really? Is this guy really looking at me like this. I remember looking over my shoulder to see if there was a prettier, more attractive girl standing behind me. Afterwards I remember feeling exhilarated and hopeful and as soon as I started feeling hopeful I told myself. Girl get real, quit dreaming, it’s never going to happen so give up hope now before you break your own heart when unrealistic hopes fail. I felt unworthy like that guy would never in a million years be interested in a girl like me, I thought I’m a 6 and he is like an 11. Since, I have taken some major strides in my self-confidence but things didn’t go well with that person, sadly.

Photo by Gift Habesh

Also I have experienced something else more recently. It was like that person glowed and we both were 100% present, and we were both completely ourselves. Our authentic selves. And that takes a measure of self-love to stand in your authenticity because if that other person judges you, it’s not going to change anything in how you conduct yourself when standing in your truth…

Anyways I’m single. And it seems I have been single forever. Yes there are love interests but not anything that has turned into a solid romantic relationship in a while.

We live in an age of loneliness. There are not many people who accept you when you stand in the truth of who you are in that present moment. But, most of us want real connection which is the antidote to loneliness. Sometimes your family doesn’t accept you, or parts of you. And, of course we have our best friends who accept us most of the time, and those are also the loves of our lives really. I’m no saint also, I’m not perfectly loving but it is something I try to do and meditate upon. We have our loved ones, but we also want to be with the one. The kind of intimate relationship in which you experience profound romantic love.

Photo by Ricardo Esquivel

If you’re single like me and don’t want to be, you can just hop online and see whose swiping in your area. A common dating app is Tinder. The sister of Grindr, which is a gay hook up app. There are stories of people meeting loving partners on Tinder. You can even meet your life partner or marriage spouse on Tinder. So yes, you can find lasting love on dating apps. The virtual world is so integrated into our waking lives that the two have basically become one. However people tend to pretend, who they really are irl and also on social media. We’ve all watched the shocking, heart breaking and entertaining stories on Catfish the TV show.

However, those were the dark ages of online dating. We have more accurate online dating apps now, as you don’t have to wait months or years to meet that person. Apps like Tinder find people that match your interest criteria within your geographic radius. Tinder has changed the way we date for sure. There’s a lot of multiple dating, I remember seeing a post on Valentine’s day on Facebook that read “If one boyfriend makes you happy, imagine having three? Think big in 2019.”

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When meeting someone online, they are most likely to be a stranger who doesn’t run in the same social circles as you do even though you live in a similar geographic location. Therefore you can date multiple people at once as your dating life becomes separate from your regular social life. But I can’t solely attribute this phenomenon to being caused by dating apps, rather maybe, people have become more honest about their side baes.

Photo by Angelo Moleele

I have used Tinder but to be honest I’m rather over it. I was using it in hopes of finding a beautiful romantic relationship. At first, I was scared of using it in my hometown, because I thought what if people I knew from my childhood came across my profile? I was afraid I would be judged as being promiscuous. So, it took a while for me to actually start using it.

Once I started swiping, and received matches, the conversation would be exciting at first but after a while it would fizzle out. I would just lose interest and stop replying, yes I’m that girl. How will I ever find a partner if I stay ghosting? But there was just no chemistry through the text. Tinder is also looks based, although you consider the profile in your swiping decisions but in all honestly, you’re very much like hmm I can imagine this person as arm candy, swipe right. But hotness can only get you so far when it comes to love, if it even gets you anywhere at all.

Of the dates I have been on, the first guy had really bad breath and there were no vibes. The other person whom I almost met with on valentine’s day insisted I go with him to church and I was like woah that got too real, too quick. He was cool though and we did get along, we would video chat. But, when we spoke of the church he attends which is Rivers church, I considered it and I was like, is that the church Somizi goes to? And he was no but he has seen Kwesta and Casper Nyovest there. And so being me, I was like what do you think of homosexuality? Long story short, he was like “Those idiots started HIV/Aids”. And I was just like sigh… Thank you, next.

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So, I haven’t had much luck on Tinder in meeting my beloved. As Rumi said, “I crave a love so deep the ocean would be jealous”. In the shallow waters of the world wide web, I’m not sure if that’s really possible. But, as Maya Angelou said, love knows no boundaries. You definitely touch someone’s heart through the phone.

Photo by Bruce Mars
Simi Gumede

A lover of love

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