Valentine's Day recently passed, and while my fellow single friends may not agree with me, it was something I looked forward to.

There's something about seeing my closest friends and family in love with their respective partners that makes my heart flutter with elation. However, rather than seeing it as a holiday for lovers and potential interests, I tend to treat Valentine's Day as a day of appreciation for my loved ones. It's not unusual for my friends and family to be showered with baked treats, little origami hearts, and stuffed animals.

That being said, as a longstanding veteran member of the "third-wheeling" club, I do get jealous from time to time and wish I could be in a relationship of my own. And I can if I really wanted to. The wounds from my previous relationship have finally healed, and I'm not entirely opposed to the idea of dating again or getting into another relationship, whether it be serious or casual.

But I don't want to.

Frankly, I'm too busy figuring out my own life and working on my own mental health to be focused on anyone else. I constantly feel as if I'm juggling everything around me, and it could all fall apart at any moment. I am burning myself out, and I don't need to drag someone down with me, or to crash even harder when it all fails. From my previous experiences, I've learned relationships were a two-way street, and if one person isn't able to put in the time and effort of being in one, then the relationship will collapse - it's only a matter of time until it does.

"It's not you, it's me."

So to the boys I've been deliberately avoiding after rejecting them, or to the boys I've been seemingly flirting with, or to the boys I end up being in the "talking" stage without a second thought - I'm sorry. I'm not near ready for a relationship, or I may just see you as a friend or a brother. If I don't even have time to "Netflix and chill" with myself, I can barely even make room for another person. I want to be at a point where I am mentally and physically healthy enough to balance and maintain a relationship, and if it means putting my foot down and being firm on my stance, then I will.

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