Tag Archives: dating

15 years

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The other day, the little house I bought when I was a single 29-year-old popped into my mind. It wasn’t anything extravagant;  a little 3-bedroom ranch, in an ok part of town. But it was mine. Where it was didn’t  seem too important. I never expected to be in it all that long. “The long drive to work will be ok,” I thought to myself,  “I don’t need to go out so much anyway. I will  be fine for a few years.” Just seemed like the thing to do.  I ended up being there for 15 years.

A lot happened during those 15 years in that little house; tons of miles on my car, new job, lots of dates, marriage, baby showers for friends, weddings. There were Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings, going away parties, new friendships, and then separation, divorce and losing my dad … Yes .. A lot happened. Made me think about my recent townhouse purchase. This time, if I stay for 15 years, I will be 63.  63 … I have repeated that number in my head now for a few days. Does not sound possible.

Those 15 years in my little house felt so short, yet a lifetime seemed to happen there. Staying here in my townhouse isn’t mandatory, but if I do, what will these walls witness?  Will I be happy here? Things are so very different now.  Twelve years ago, a life with someone and having a family was a possibility; that, or at least part of that, has slipped away.  What else and who else will slip away? Who might enter my life?  Will the years fly by so quickly again?  Will I spend them alone? These are things I never put much thought into in the past, but time has become more insistent; it’s telling me it waits for no one or anything.

I have no real plan on how to proceed with my future.  I’m not sure if that’s good or bad.  Plans can go terribly wrong and leave you disappointed or worse yet, heartbroken.  No plan, and I may drift aimlessly about or become a hermit and binge watch Netflix.  Neither sounds appealing. So for now, I’m going to plan to at least not let either happen.  I may need some company on this journey so please leave any comments or thoughts you have on dealing with the inevitable process of aging.

***Note – this little 63 moment I had freaked me out so much, I spent an hour in a half on the phone with a financial advisor. I must at least have a plan to support my cats ….

Don’t woo me with words and leave me hanging

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Today’s dating world is miles apart from the dating days of my youth. And I say that with a smirk.  I never dated until I was in college. Maybe I missed out on the basics 101 of dating?  Still though, it was a time before cell phones, Facebook, texting and online dating.  People met through friends, at school or out somewhere; a conversation ensued and numbers were exchanged.  A date was arranged and the guy would pick up the girl and out they would go for drinks or dinner or a movie.  Time was spent together along with long chats on the phone. Oh how things have changed.  Now, your fate depends on a left or right swipe and a short paragraph that’s supposed to grab someone’s attention. Introductions are made through text or emails. To think about how many texts I’ve received over the past five years is mind boggling.  Conversations have been diminished  to short little texts with an emoji that’s supposed to express the mood of the words… which aren’t even words anymore… BFF, BRB, LOL, WRUD…. And sexting. Really???  I’ve never felt less sexy.  And for someone to push that in my face when they don’t even know me, well… it’s a bit degrading.  How are you supposed to get to know someone that way?  You can’t.  Relationships aren’t built on emojis and dirty one-liners from pornos. Does anyone have basic conversation skills anymore?  Men and women have enough communication problems without this mess.

I could fill pages ranting on texting in the dating arena and dating in general. I admit, I rely heavily on texting concerning my friends.  But in dating, no.. It should not be the main mode of communication when trying to get to know someone. When that becomes the case,  I’ve learned to pay attention to actions. “Actions speak louder than words.” It’s a saying we’ve all heard but pay little attention.  Words are easy.  Made even easier by the impersonal text, which is also very one-dimensional.  With text, you have no references: was there a joking smile with a comment or a wink of an eye?  Was their tone of voice serious?  Did the person look away or make eye contact?  There’s no touch of a hand for reassurance.  It’s not a good vehicle to share and express emotions and feelings. We read into them what we want.   I was seeing someone who knew exactly what to say to me.  He flattered me with  sweet little texts every morning and throughout the day and I fell for it.   Who doesn’t want to hear they are beautiful?  Isn’t it wonderful to read that someone’s thinking of you and wants to see you?  It was short-lived bliss.  When confronted with the question  “when will I see you?” and all he had were excuses, the gig was up.  The sweet sentiment of his words were lost on his actions.

Begging someone to be apart of our lives shouldn’t be a part of the dating equation.  If it is, then it’s not meant to be.  We shouldn’t be left wondering what that I ♥ U!! truly means or if  WRUD really means they are interested and want to see us.  Our actions reveal our true intentions.  If feelings are mutual, finding time to talk and be together is something you just do. It’s really that simple.

 

 

 

The Gown

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Two weeks ago, I began the process of cleaning out; pulling things out from closets and under beds in preparation for packing and moving. Several things were hiding I haven’t thought about in a while.  Out of sight, out of mind.

My wedding portrait was one of those items under the bed. It was a Christmas gift from my mother in 2010.  Three months later, I was separated.  The portrait was never hung.  So it here was in front of me again.  And again, as I did 2 ½ years ago, wondered what in the hell to do with it. I posted on FB for feedback (I needed non-biased opinions).  I got 27 comments on that post. But one friends’ comment really resonated with me.  She suggested I keep it, but give it to my mom saying, “There’s old and negative energy attached to it.  Having it in your space is holding on to bad “juju.”…Keeping that around may be hampering efforts to move forward in your life, particularly in your love life…” Do I believe in bad mojo or “juju” as she said?  I’m not sure, but I do know my dating luck has been horrible.  I started really thinking about this.

This lead to more purging. I dug out my wedding gown (stock photo above), which has been stashed in the back of a closet for 10 years.  Again, what to do with it?  I have no daughter or nieces that would ever want it and they are very hard to sell.  Yet, it’s the most expensive item of clothing I’ll ever own and I paid for it myself. One friend suggested we have a paint ball fight in it. HA… I’m not angry anymore and the gown didn’t cause the demise of my marriage. I thought it deserved better than being dumped at a thrift store.  I started researching places to donate wedding gowns.

This past Friday, I came across some charities accepting old wedding dresses to make “angel gowns.” Angel gowns are outfits for still-born babies or babies that never make it home from the hospital.  They may either be a burial gown or a keepsake for the family.  A friend lost a baby just last year; together, we found a place to donate my dress.   I wanted to keep it as local as possible and found a seamstress in Raleigh accepting gowns to make the angel dresses.   That night, I also decided to take the portrait to my mom’s, along with the wedding photo albums.  I felt a huge load off of my heart almost immediately.

I woke up Saturday morning ready to do more purging. I found a box for the wedding dress.  I packed it and taped it up.  Without much warning, the tears started flowing.  I probably cried for a good 10 minutes.  And I didn’t even know why.

I wasn’t like most little girls. I never dreamed of my wedding day or wearing a wedding dress.  I didn’t take hours upon hours shopping for it and I didn’t cry when I bought it (that well-known scene from Say Yes to the Dress where the bride is so overcome that she’s found THE dress).  And I knew it had nothing to do with the marriage.  I was done with that the minute I kicked him out the door.  So why all this emotion??  I pondered that the rest of the day and into Sunday.

I believe the stress of packing and moving, on top of the recent (and past) bad dating experiences, lead to a slap-in-the-face realization and strong possibility I may never wear another wedding gown or find that special someone.  Letting go of this gown was letting go of something I may never have again.  Very hard to swallow, even for someone who never really thought of having one to begin with. It was truly an exhausting day.

I feel better today. I dropped the portrait and albums off at moms and the gown is in the mail.  I said my farewell.  Maybe my prince will come; maybe he’s fallen into quick sand.  It really doesn’t matter.  None of that possible bad “juju” will be entering my new home.

The seamstress said she would send a picture of the angel gowns when they are complete. Maybe this was the gown’s true calling and it was just waiting for me to let it go.

Hot Mess

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Forgive me bloggers for I have sinned, it has been 2 1/2 months since I have posted. Its been a hectic couple of months. Quick synopsis for those not on my FB page.

My forray back into the dating world was short-lived. Holiday boy ended the Thursday before Valentines Day (my doing), right after which, in mid February, I found myself with a very sick cat. Two vet visits, one ear surgery, a cone on a not happy kitty for two weeks and $850 later, brings us to March….

I decided to give the dating app one more try. The lineup:  a guy who might be related… far down the line but still…. not into that, some very “interesting” chats with a pilot who thought it very important to keep reminding me he has the labido of an 18 yr old …which I did not care to know,  some back and forth chats with a very nice man who ended up saying he was just now planning a divorce after being separated for 2 years and wasn’t quite sure if he was ready to date (Hello? you’re on a dating website?) and another guy that owns a pizza place (like I need that around) that literally begged me to go on a second date with him to only end up essentially standing me up.  My face started breaking out.  Umm, yes now I remember why I stopped dating…

In the mean time, traffic has been nutzo to and from work and rent is skyrocketing, so I decided to stop the dating craziness and dive into the house hunting craziness instead. I looked at 3 properties, all of which ended up with multiple offers, over asking price. Definitely a Sellers Market, and a very tight one. I soon discovered, for the area I was wanting, my budget was definitely a beer one in a champagne area. Being my stubborn self, I plunged forward and by April 1, I had found a place. It went on the market one day, and I had it by noon the next, with a closing date set for April 29…less than 30 days.

A note: one major hitch in all of this is my apartment lease, which isn’t up until end of August.  This means I continue to pay until someone else does. My fate is in the hands of the leasing gods … May they please be kind to me.

Three days later, my car started to act funny.  Well of course!  I took it in for service and end up being there for 3 hours.  Found out my maintenance contract ends next month!  Yipee! and I need two new front tires.  “These definitely won’t pass inspection in July,” I’m told.

Let the games begin.

That brings us up to date.

It has been a whirl wind of sorting, packing, inspections, appraisals and basic hemorrhaging of the bank account ever since. Lots of stress and purging of things, literally and emotionally, which I will follow-up on… 2 weeks til moving day.

My Chakras are Out-Of-Whack

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So I’ve been on this pursuit of finding internal happiness. I’ve tried tackling this restless, unsettled moodiness in several different ways this year. First, I decided to put a halt on dating. My train of thought being if this online dating stuff was stressing me out so much, maybe if I remove the source of stress, I would feel better. That has worked to a point. It is nice not worrying about if you’re going to hear from someone, what their intentions are, do we want the same things, how many other people are they seeing etc. I no longer feel the need to constantly check my messages and the feeling of being disposable is gone. On the other hand, I do miss the companionship, because when you are with the right person, it warms you up inside. Humans are social creatures and we seek companionship. I have wonderful friends, but that’s clearly not the same kind of feeling. I miss the warmth and intimacy shared with a special person.

Another one of my tactics was to travel more. That’s always been my biggest dream – travel, travel, travel. And I did do that this year. In April, I took a wonderfully relaxing trip to the Dominican Republic with a college friend. We used to go places all the time, but lives change and we hadn’t been on a trip together in a very long time. It was fun to reconnect and experience a new place together. Croatia was next in August. Another friend and I had talked about taking a BIG trip since the beginning of the year. We finally settled on one and booked it in June. For the next 2 ½ months, that’s where my mind was. I was so excited. I guess you could say I was just living for the future. It was a fantastic trip. It has left me wanting more travel… So, since our return, I’ve struggled with holding on to that excited, happy feeling. I obviously can’t travel all of the time… unless someone wants to give me job doing so???? Anyone, anyone..Bueller???

Ah, so here I am. Seems I’ve come to a fork in the road. I am looking for more challenges at work, which I think would help me focus there. I do much better when I’m challenged. Too much free time leads to too much thinking and leads to very long days. Dating again?? Still debating on that one… it’s quite obvious I avoid dating to avoid dealing with rejection and hurt, but you can only avoid things for so long… or maybe I could just become the crazy cat lady with 15 cats. But I really don’t want that. But I have the distinct feeling I need something more.

I have now become that person who lurks in the self-help section of the bookstore and Googles articles on finding happiness… hence my last post on hygge. (My brother is now rolling his eyes…) After some reading, I started thinking maybe I’m looking for inner peace? Yoga crossed my mind. I came across a yoga website, which lead me to taking a Chakra Test  http://www.chakrahealing.com . I don’t even know what ”chakra” is, but apparently mine are not in a good state. They are all either closed or weak.

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What the hell is chakra? Well, there are seven actually. I can’t interpret any better, so here’s the definition given on http://www.chopra.com:

The Sanskrit word Chakra literally translates to wheel or disk. In yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda, this term refers to wheels of energy throughout the body. There are seven main chakras, which align the spine, starting from the base of the spine through to the crown of the head. To visualize a chakra in the body, imagine a swirling wheel of energy where matter and consciousness meet. This invisible energy, called Prana, is vital life force, which keeps us vibrant, healthy, and alive.

Jeez..I need to learn an entire new language. Going on this theory, I feel so blah because my “energy does not flow.” According to the online test, five of my chakra’s are closed and the other two are weak. No wonder I’m a mess! What’s really enlightening are what the signs, or shall I say symptoms, are. Why? Because they so resonate with how I’ve been feeling.

A short summary from my test results on my closed chakra’s:

  •  If your Foot Chakra is CLOSED you feel ungrounded and confused about your life path and the direction you want to move forward on. You feel blocked and question your choices and lack confidence in your decisions.

Exactly… I feel so restless and ungrounded..ugh

  • If your Personal Power Chakra is CLOSED you tend to struggle with self-esteem issues, and feelings of unworthiness. You tend to question yourself when faced with important decisions like whether to move to another city, change your career, get married to your partner or to have children.

I never thought I had self-esteem issues, but maybe I do, especially when it comes to relationships.

  • If your Heart Chakra is CLOSED, you tend to sabotage your relationships with distrust, anger, and a sense that you’ll lose your independence if you rely too much on others. You may struggle with commitment, experience frequent fights or misunderstandings with your loved ones, and always keep yourself “on guard” in case you get hurt by someone.

OH BOY.. I’ve definitely done this is the past, which is the reason I avoid dating all together. And I do strongly relish my independence.

  • If your Intuitive Chakra is CLOSED, you have the tendency to feel helpless or lost when faced with decisions and judgment calls. You are indecisive, uncommitted and unconfident of the decisions you end up making, because you have a history of making the wrong ones.

Not in total agreement with this. Yes, I’ll admit I’ve made some bad choices in the past (haven’t we all?), but I don’t necessarily feel helpless. I like to think I’m proactive – which is the reason I’m reading all this stuff.

  • If your Crown Chakra CLOSED you tend to feel little or no connection to a higher power, and always feel alone. You feel unworthy of spiritual help, and perhaps even angry that your higher power has abandoned you. You often suffer from migraines and tension headaches.

And as I said, I do miss companionship so maybe I do feel somewhat alone. And yes, I have a headache right now.

How do I open my chakras? Well, for the rock-bottom price of $199 for the digital version and $249 for the physical version, I can learn how. LOL There’s always a price to pay. I’m sure this all has some true meaning and can help, but this is a lot to take in. Do I need to spend $200 to find balance? I think I may approach this in a more practical way. Maybe I will look for some yoga classes. I have taken some and I do feel better after them. I once went to a hot yoga candle light deep stretch. That was WONDERFUL. If I can relax, maybe my brain will settle down. If my brain settles down, then maybe I can start making some headway on where I want to be. If anyone has any thoughts on chakras or getting started in yoga and meditation, PLEASE let me know!

Namaste (not really sure what that means either.)

Lost Mojo.. please return

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I’m tired…

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dreaming of summer

Of blowing my nose, itchy, scratchy eyes, freezing in my office no matter what time of year, being cold in the morning and hot in the afternoon….. I’m just tired and unmotivated. Not sure if it’s the winter blues starting to set in or not. I know it’s not even winter yet, but I hate saying good-bye to summer. I am not a cold weather person at all. I don’t ski, snowboard or ice skate, in fact, I hate being cold and wet, period. Ok, one nice snow is pretty, but after a day or two of it, it’s just messy.

Not really a big holiday person either. Don’t roll your eyes all you holiday revelers out there. I can take Thanksgiving. I enjoy eating , cooking and seeing family. There’s really no pressure involved. But Christmas… the only part of Christmas I truly enjoy is candle light service at church on Christmas Eve. Mom and I are the only ones that attend now. I miss my dad terribly, especially presentover the holidays. I don’t like to shop, although I do enjoy wrapping presents. A glass of wine and a bunch of wrapping paper and ribbon and I’m set for the evening. Creative outlet? Maybe I could work a deal: wrap other peoples’ gifts as my gift to them? I used to enjoy decorating , but now that’s just more to do xmas treein an already busy time, especially when I’m the only one that will see it… and I’m the only one to put it all away when it’s all said and done. Yes, I will still put up a tree. I’m not that much of a Scrooge. The stress of holiday parties and having a date for said parties is tiring too. And New Year’s Eve…. With all the hype and pressure to have plans and a date, it’s so easy to get depressed and be let down. There is a reason the holiday season is one of the highest for suicide…

 

Halloween is more my speed. I’ve always loved Halloween. It’s challenging and exciting to come up with a creative costume. A few of my favorites below:

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Can we say “old bride’s maid dress”…

wk halloween 2008 holloween  hillbilly rasta

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4 weeks of work!

 

 

 

 

Once, I put about 4 weeks into designing a costume. I don’t buy ready-made. That’s no fun. Again, maybe it’s the creative outlet I  enjoy, and just being able to act a like kid. No real high expectations; it’s just about having fun. I’m one of the few at my office to dress up every year. The guys expect me to now. They come down the hall just to find me. This year though, I have no motivation to do it; no Halloween party to attend. I’m truly starting to think something is wrong with me. I just don’t get excited about things any more.

I need to find my mojo. It is definitely lost somewhere. Am I having mid-life crises? How do I get out of this funk? I thought maybe I should try dating again, but I just cringe when I open an online dating site. Just can’t do it yet.

I think I know what I need to do… plan another trip. Traveling seems to be the only thing that truly excites me these days. I need to get something on the calendar… or at the very least, start researching a place to go. Can’t do too much until after the first of the year, which means I have to get through the holidays…ugh.. Please everyone, bear with me these next few months.

Messages from Switzerland

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There comes a time when you realize maybe you don’t want to do everything on your own. You’re riding along on life’s adventures seemingly missing nothing; happy to be free and make your own choices. Then something happens…. And you realize, maybe you do need more that your furry cats.

Friday night, as I was curled up on the couch with one of the cats and a giant glass of wine, Facebook Messenger flashed at me. I glanced at the name and thought to myself, “who the hell is that?” It was not a name I recognized right off… Elia. I looked again and it clicked. It was a guy from the gadventures.com forum. When I was planning my Croatia trip, I went on the forum to see who else might be doing the same trip. He replied, but after a few messages, realized he was with the group arriving the day we left. Ok.. Have a good trip! That was that.

But here was this message, 3 months later… “Hi Mary, How was your Croatia trip?” Harmless enough, so I replied. We chit chatted a bit about our trips.

He commented, “Unfortunately, we weren’t on the same trip.” His trip was a YOLO trip, a trip gadventures.com caps at age 39 I think, so I knew he was young. I told him I was too old for his trip.

His reply, “No ur such a good-looking woman. U Look like 24 :).”
Now, I remembered him being from Switzerland, and looking at the clock, realized it was around 3:30 am there. Was I being drunk messaged from Switzerland???

I asked about the time and yes, he had just gotten in from a fun evening of billiards and bowling, so I’m assuming he’d had a few. Ok, a little flattery from someone isn’t a bad thing I guess. Conversation didn’t go much longer than that. So that was interesting.

Saturday rolls around, it’s rainy and I have no plans other than laundry, vacuuming, cat brushing… I thought I would be funny and shoot him a message asking if he got his sleep…. Not expecting a reply. Well, I started a conversation that went the entire day. He was messaging me while I worked on my blog at the coffee shop (later he asked if I blogged about our conversation… )

During the course of this, I discover he is all of 21 years old. YIKES!!!!! I was thinking he was at least 26…not that that’s any better. He was interesting to chat with, very polite and funny, travels a lot… he actually looks like Chandler Bing – I’m not kidding in the least about that. But 21????? Lord. I asked if he realized I was old enough to be his mother. Yes, but he didn’t care because we really didn’t know each other and we are on different continents and he enjoys talking to older, mature women…..Hmmm… Is that European thing?

Now let me say right now… I AM NOT A COUGAR!!! I would never go out with anyone in their twenties, they have to at least be 35 (I kid, let’s make it 38..). But I have to confess, it’s been fun chatting with him. He’s very sweet and he really knows what to say to a girl (mature woman) and what not to say. It felt good.

100103WomenDatingYoungerMenIs it wrong to be friends with someone of the opposite sex who is much younger? I have girlfriends that are much younger than me and that’s not a problem. I think talking with people from different places and different ages keeps things interesting. Besides, at this point in my life, if I want to go out with other singles… most of them will be younger… that’s just reality. Why is it so weird when the female is the older person? I like to think of myself as young at heart. Maybe, because I don’t have children, I am more open-minded about these types of situations? I don’t know.

Just having someone express an interest lifted my spirits on a yucky, rainy day. It also irritates me though… where was a guy like this when I was 21? Ugh.. So, thank you Elia, you have made me think. Maybe I am missing something. I’ve been so preoccupied with being a happy, “I don’t need a man”, single woman, that your cheeky charm caught me way off guard. I am happy and it’s been a good year with new adventures, but it’s been a long time since I’ve had someone say nice things to me, make me laugh and feel desirable. Yes, it’s a little creepy if I think about the age (I’m pretending he’s older) I haven’t completely lost my mind, but it makes me question if this is my sign that it’s time to enter the dating world again? Maybe so.

Online Dating? Some reminders not to ….

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Hard to believe it’s already September. Feels like it was just last week I was sleeping off a hangover from New Year’s Eve. Turned out to be a very busy summer, which is a good thing. I started the New Year with really no plans other than, no dating… I’ve been thinking about that a little bit lately.

It’s been extremely nice not being stressed out about dating; wondering if some guy will call me back or not. Ick… But, I suppose I’ll need to get back out there at some point. Maybe… The online thing comes up now and then, but all I have to do is remind myself what was out there. I’ll recap some of last years dating candidates for those who missed out.

imageThis one came across my page. I refer to him as “The Thinker”. What exactly he’s thinking about sitting naked on the side of his tub is beyond me. And why he thought this photo would be great on his dating profile.. well… I probably do not want to know.

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This handsome guy decided to show his “quirky” side I suppose. Honestly, I don’t know what’s up with this. Between the hair, the ear thingy’s and.. is that a big pimple on the end of his nose? A friend of mine who works at the hospital said, “Oh, looks like he’s in a doctor’s office waiting room…” Yep, steering clear of that one…

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This one is showing all of his good habits… smoking, lack of personal grooming, and looks like he’s standing outside a tattoo parlor. Just not my style.. sorry.

Some had no picture, but instead tried to woo me with their romantic messages:image image

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Looks like I have a choice of Yoda speak and Joey speak, someone that’s angry about something? and a sappy poet…

I’m saving the best two for last though.

 

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This guy started a lot of talk on Facebook about what exactly is tattooed across his forehead. It looks like 5150… which a friend said was Police code for “mentally unstable”. At least he’s being honest upfront??? Certainly crazy enough to put a tattoo on his face. Here’s the kicker. Several months later, my nephews wife said she saw a picture of him on a friends page. Happens to be the brother of someone she went to high school with. YIKES

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And the crowd favorite.. Mr. Urban Cowboy who’s ” comfortable in my jeans, boots and cowboy hat. I ride a steel horse.” Well, all righty then. The peek-a-boo chest was just too much.

So there’s a brief synopsis of my online dating world last summer. Why do I have the photos? I had to comb through Facebook to find them. I was keeping my Facebook friends entertained with my unfortunate dating prospects. Don’t get me wrong, there are some nice looking guys out there, but things never worked out. Here’s the thing about on-line dating, I think some guys find it hard to commit to someone because there’s always more options sitting in their inbox. Ugh.. Anyway, my friends wanted me to continue just to see what may pop up. I’m not quite ready to face all of that again.

Unexpected Lessons

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After a few beers Friday night in Charleston, I thought to myself, “I’m here with 3 people I didn’t know last year, watching a band from my past (Hootie and the Blowfish – always a great time), and having a blast.” I felt good (no, I wasn’t drunk…). It was a satisfied feeling.  I thought about that feeling as I took a break last night from packing for my awesome trip to CROATIA in 4 DAYS (just a little excited)!

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This time last year, I would never have dreamed I would be preparing for a trip to Croatia.  I was in the throes of the dating world; well, trying to date anyway. It was just one crappy situation after another. When I made the decision to take a dating hiatus as part of my New Year’s Resolution, it was out of sheer irritation, annoyance and frustration…with the guys and me.  There was never the thought of “I should take some time to ‘find myself’.”  I was just done.  But life has a way of teaching you lessons you don’t expect.

My stress level decreased tremendously once I stopped the online dating circus. I didn’t realize how much it did stress me until I was done with it. Then I just relaxed and started thinking about things that truly make me happy.  I started taking action: Instead of browsing for men, I started browsing for exciting trips; in the spring it was the Dominican Republic.  I focused on making new friends, trying new classes at the gym – barre is a KILLER – starting this blog, and just getting out and about; essentially, taking care of myself, mentally and physically. I stopped focusing on finding someone and turned my sights on doing things and for the first time in a very long time, I feel comfortable in my own skin.  And I’ve had tons of fun without all of the drama!  That makes me happy… and when you are happy, people want to be around you. Funny how that works.

I cherish the friends I’ve had for years and am so fortune they are still in my life.  It has been a lifesaver reconnecting with old friends, but lives change. I thought it would be very hard to make new friends. And it does get harder as we get older, but I’ve managed to make some terrific new friends who are in the same place in their lives. I have new adventure buddies! None of which I would have met if I had continued with life as is – miserable.  There have been so many changes in my life over the past 5 years: separation and divorce,  losing my father, selling my home and a multitude of bad dating situations.  Regardless though, life doesn’t end with divorce or when you lose someone and it certainly doesn’t end in your 40’s! I think my true life is just beginning.

Will I enter the dating world again? I’m sure I will. Let’s be honest, it can be very entertaining (especially for blogging…) and it is human nature to seek companionship. However, there is a big difference in being alone vs. being lonely. I’m not lonely and I haven’t missed dating. My life feels satisfying now. I value my independence.  When I decide to date again, I will have a new perspective, a new set of rules and high expectations for myself and the other person. I won’t let that world drive me to near craziness again.

 

6 month Update: New Years’ Resolutions

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I typically don’t make resolutions… Much less put them in writing. I did this year and posted it for all to see.

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I’ve failed miserably at half of No. 1. I’ve tried multiple times to get myself back into running. In 2010, after getting separated, my friend encouraged me to join a run group.  Now it was a great decision as far as giving me something to focus on (I signed up for a half marathon… not sure what I was thinking) and I met some wonderful friends.  I was hoping the running bug would bite me and I would be one of those that just HAD to run. Well, it didn’t. It was work for me. I did complete my race and took a break.  Trying to get back into it has proved futile.  Hurt myself several times; had to wear a lovely boot twice – in the middle of summer.  So, long story short, I’ve discovered I’m more of a gym rat. I get bored with the same ol’ things; I like trying new classes. Hmmmm, maybe it’s some of that ADD. So – running no, working out, yes and stretching. I’ve even taken up a barre class!

No. 2… I have done STELLAR at this one! How? I decided to take a dating hiatus this year. No online crap, no singles group. And I have to say my stress level has been greatly reduced. (I may have to take it back up for content though. My friends loved hearing those stories.) I do not miss it! I suppose if I where to ever meet the “right one” I would, but at the moment, I’m enjoying being free.

Oh No. 3…. I don’t know if I’ll ever be successful at this one. I have two alarms, one across the room. I don’t hit the snooze on that one; instead, I just sleep through it. I don’t sleep well through the night .. But at 6:00 a.m., I’m out.. Naturally.

No. 4. Well, I think I’ve done ok. I think we can all do better on this one. Definitely gets harder to make new friends as we get older. I have found some others of like-mind and situation and we have fun.  Hold on to the good ones you have.

No. 5.  I learned my lesson the hard way on this one New Year’s Eve, hence the resolution.  I have been successful despite hanging with my brother and sister-in-law.

Now there is another one … One that I’ve always had, I’ve just never called it a resolution but more of an ongoing quest: TO TRAVEL.  I am keeping my promise on this. I am preparing for my biggest travel adventure yet. Three weeks ….