There is a 90s movie starring Ethan Hunt and Jude Law. I remember watching it with my high school friend Teresa once. The plot explores the ramifications of genetic engineering in humans. Two brothers are born, the older one with no modifications, and the younger genetically modified to be the optimal height build, health, etc.
As the two brothers grow up, the younger brother always physically bests the older brother, except in one instance. Every time they swim in the ocean the older brother, Ethan Hunt, can always swim the furthest before turning back.
Ethan Hunt leaves home and gets a new identity, but he runs into his brother later on, and at the end of the movie, he and his brother are swimming in the ocean again, and again Ethan beats him. His brother asks, why, when Ethan is physically inferior, does he always win when they swim.
Ethan's answer was something along the lines of "Because I never hold any energy back for the swim back." For him, it was an all or nothing. He put everything into it.
I'm at that kind of point in my life as far as getting married. I feel like the longer I hold out and hope to get married, hope to have kids, the more likely I am to lose, to face disappointment and pain. But in giving that up, I am Ethan, swimming out in the middle of the ocean with no reserve of energy left, alone and cold.
I have older friends who have already reached this point. Older, really cool friends. Pretty ones who have done a lot with their lives. I feel like I am going to be one of them. I feel like somehow I was genetically inferior from the start and that the only way I can win is by leaving my hopes behind me. If I hold back, if I feel, if I leave room for being loved or sharing my love with someone, then I am destined to drown.
I can only win by accepting that, at least for now, maybe even for this life, that is not going to be for me.