Right Person, Wrong Time: It’s Not A Joke

Telling a joke is not easy. Now, ruining a joke? THAT is incredibly easy. With a bit of memorization, persistence, a whiff of confidence, and most importantly, proper timing and delivery of the punch line, you can be sure to get a laugh. If you got all that, even the worst jokers can slay ’em.

Same is true of romantic relationships. Timing in relationships plays a huge role. That being said, we all know what happens when you meet someone great. Timing (at least temporarily) goes out the window. We’ve all been hopelessly, brutally, blissfully, gut-wrenchingly in love (or lust). We’ve all experienced the heat, the intoxication, the all-consuming, can’t-get-you-out-of-my-head, all smiles all day, of a new crush. It’s brand new and bursting with chemistry. It can make the best of us dive in head first without giving a second thought. And why wouldn’t we? We’re probably having the best sex (and the most we’ve had) in a long time. We’re enjoying endless cuddles, kisses, compliments, and have someone to keep us warm at night. We stay up late gushing about our feelings and emotions with this amazing new person.


Let’s admit something. Despite insane amounts of chemistry and compatibility, timing IS, undeniably, important. Now, I don’t subscribe to the idea of one soul mate. I believe that that there are a number of people in life with whom we could successfully and happily spend and enjoy our lives. But, whom we ultimately end up with comes down (significantly) to timing. Well, timing and chemistry, but timing is a paramount part of that equation. Timing could mean anything—where you are on your career path, where you live, emotional factors. So, why do we sometimes meet someone great when the timing isn’t great? Heck, maybe it’s a test… to measure our faith and patience, to see if we can stand the test of time, until the time becomes “right.”

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Because let’s admit something else. Sometimes we DO meet someone amazing! And we’re just too scared or hurt or just not ready to put ourselves back out there (though hell, we usually still do it anyway). Sometimes, we’ve been the one on the other end of that short stick. Bottom line? We all know that if we really cared, when the timing is right, we’ll move hell and earth to make things happen. Now, maybe we’ll move hell and earth slowly, but eventually, we will. I mean, time and time again, we’ve all had to face that painful realization. We just can’t blame everything on timing.


To me, to make it work, it’s really two-fold. You have to have chemistry. Period. You also both have to somewhat hit on the same spot at roughly the same time for the magic to erupt. Making it work is a complete and utter crapshoot. Some of it is just dumb luck, some of it is picking the right person, and most of it is both people giving 100 percent and not giving up. In life, we are constantly and endlessly presented with opportunities, new windows to climb through and doors to open. When faced with deciding which one to take, timing is an essential factor. If it’s bad timing? Often you have to endure the process, wait it out, patiently, until you both arrive at the same place. You have to wait for the right moment.

The Way We Were

Wait for a different moment. No amount of forcing something to work, no matter how good the potential seems, will make it work. When you really want it to work, and timing isn’t perfect, you just have to wait. Because I do think, sometimes, even when the timing isn’t ideal, you can meet someone and just know that person is going to and supposed to mean something in your life. That someone crossed your path, at one time, even though maybe not the right time, and came into your life. You just, I don’t know, see something in them, an unexpected little piece of magic, even if the timing is inconvenient. And maybe you don’t even know why, but you know there’s a chance, feel there’s potential, albeit in the future, that you COULD be something great, and that’s just as good. Sometimes, that has to be enough to convince you to wait.


We can wish for the right time, more time, a different time, but the bottom line is this: with bad timing, you often just have to have a little faith and a little patience. It doesn’t mean that two people aren’t meant for each other, but they just have to wait for that right moment. At the end of the day, meeting someone great is rare, like winning the lottery, finding a seat on the subway, or meeting a politician that’s faithful to his wife. I know, in my life, I’ve never been able to just walk away from something that rare, even if the timing isn’t perfect. Heck, maybe that’s the hopeful romantic side of me speaking. But, either way, I recognize something great when I see it, and I hold on, until I get it right. Because here’s the thing. As with delivering jokes, life’s rhythms must be in synch for the punch line to work. And, even if you screw up the joke, you can keep practicing until you get it right.