The Balancing Act

I’m not new to experiencing the effects of hormones on the body. After all, I went through 8+ years of infertility treatments. There can be very high highs and very low lows. The problem is, my mind doesn’t differentiate between good effects and bad effects in response to this fluctuation. The power these can have over my rational thought is what gets me into trouble most of the time. This is something I’m experiencing now, so I’m trying to become more aware of what’s happening so I can control how I react to delicate situations. The most delicate of these, especially right now, is my dating life.

The hormones that take over when I meet someone are what gets me into trouble every time. I’ve been reading a lot about the different chemicals that are released and their effect on the mind and body. Some of these include dopamine, adrenaline, oxytocin, and testosterone. Based on what I’ve read, I’m wondering if this is why, when I get to a certain point in the dating process, I screw things up. Are my hormones at extreme levels? Could that be how some people are able to successfully be in a relationship? Could it be that their hormones are better balanced than mine are at this point? Maybe. In the meantime, I’m going to continue to do research on how to combat this immediate reaction to the influx of emotions before it gets the better of me. I need to, or I’m doomed, and I don’t want to mess things up this time. This could be pretty amazing!

DAMMIT! There go my hormones again!!! I need an emotional cold shower or something!!

 

Posted in Dating, Infertility, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Boxing Ring

I’m feeling like a boxer right now. That’s the only way I can describe my dating life. I started off almost two years ago with the ding of the first bell following my divorce.

Round 1

I take hit after hit while trying to duck and weave to avoid the next impending blow. Every once in a while I land a good upper cut or left hook (yes, I’m a lefty). After being completely spent, I hear the bell ring. FINALLY, I can go to my corner for a rest. A round of unsuccessful dating has completed.

Round 2

I’m slowly learning to read my opponent (the dating pool). I’m able to evade a hit or two since there seems to be a pattern. Just when I’m feeling confident, my opponent throws in a fake right followed by a left. I did NOT see that one coming. My head is spinning as I don’t know what just hit me. I feel my knees go weak, and just as I’m about to give up for good I hear the bell.

Round 3

My legs are wobbly, yet I somehow gather the strength to stand. I decide to change my strategy, so this time I come out punching. I don’t give my opponent time to react. I’m taking charge. Things are looking up as the round is finally going my way. I can see round after round of this and am so pumped that it’s finally working. Just then my target begins dodging my advancing shots. It’s obvious this round isn’t going anywhere. DING DING!…whatever!

Round 4

As I step up to the sound of the bell, my strategy is to just look busy for this round. I don’t want to actually throw any punches, but rather just keep moving. This works for a while and then time’s up, so I head to my corner.

Round…oh, enter whatever number you want…I think I’m approaching infinity at this point

I basically took a break the last round and gained a little strength. I’m feeling my confidence coming back, so I decide to throw my hat in the ring yet again. Maybe it’s a false sense of hope this time, but even Rocky had his moments. This time my plan is to take this round with caution. Yes, I’m cautiously hopeful. I’m sure it’s going to leave me bruised and beaten, and I’m afraid I’m going to get hurt, but it beats sitting in the corner.

Posted in Dating, Divorce, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lost in Translation

Every so often I meet someone online with whom I have a great connection. There’s witty banter, sweet “just because” texts, obvious intelligence, and even his voice has that manly tone I just love. Right after my divorce, this would get me all flustered because I figured I’d finally met THE one. I’d get so excited to finally meet him in person. The time would come for us to come face to face and then…

BOOM! No attraction! Shit!

What’s even worse is when you meet in person and they are obviously attracted but you aren’t. How do you not lead them on? How do you let them down easily without hurting them too badly? I know for many people this is cut and dry. No attraction…done! It’s as if it was a business deal.

Anyone who says dating is easy is completely delusional. It’s frustrating. It’s heartbreaking. It’s a constant learning process of trying to figure out what you like and don’t like and what you will and won’t settle for in a relationship. You spend so much time getting to know someone via text or actually speaking on the phone (aka – going “old school”), and then you find out that doesn’t translate to the 3D version of dating.

I imagine sometimes that dating is like being fitted for a suit. You see one you think looks nice, and you think, “Sure! It’ll fit!” You soon realize that there’s a lot of tailoring that needs to be done and you wonder if you are really up for that many alterations to get it just right. The truth is, the right “suit” shouldn’t need alterations. Instead, we should realize that one size doesn’t fit all. It takes time to figure out what your style is, but once you do, the challenge is to find one that closely resembles the style you already prefer.

Posted in Dating, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Four Score

Four years ago today I was sitting on my couch contemplating the events of the day. I had acquired a new-to-me car who I have since named Gandalf. I was sporting an amazing new pair of silver pumps that I had purchased that morning. Both of these things were overshadowed by the one thing I no longer had as of that morning…a husband.

Today marks the four-year anniversary of my divorce. To most people it was just another day, but for me, it’s a day of reflection. I never entered into marriage thinking it would turn out this way. Do I miss him? No. I can honestly say I don’t. I’m in a pretty good place right now. Do I have everything figured out in my life? Hell no! Am I happier four years later? Absolutely!!

I’m proud to say I still have both the new-to-me car from that day four years ago as well as the amazing silver pumps. I’m sure someday September 6th will pass by and I won’t even register the significance of the date, but for now, I see this date as the anniversary of a new beginning. I see it as the first official date I started living for myself and no one else. Looking back, it’s amazing to see how far I’ve come. It’s nice to know that I CAN support myself and live comfortably. I’m continuing to learn to put myself first. I’ve made peace with my past, especially with not having kids. I know I’ve mourned that over the years, but now if it happens, fine. If it doesn’t, I just want to be happy.

Happiness as an end goal has made things much simpler. Now when I walk around with a smile on my face it is genuine. It’s not hiding the pain I’ve bottled up. That in itself is very freeing. Would I like to have someone to share my life with right now? Sure, but I don’t want to just settle for anyone. I’m in no hurry. I’m learning to stand up for myself and ask for what I want. All these things definitely make my life much happier, and that’s what it’s all about.

To my readers: I’m not sure what it was that I wrote that caused our paths to cross, but whatever the reason, I’m very grateful to have your company as my story continues.

Posted in Divorce, Infertility, Marriage, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Non-Existent Puddle Jumper

Every once in a while I hear a phrase or quote that really strikes a chord usually because of some recent event in my life. The most recent quote I keep referring back to is, “There comes a time in your life when you have to stop crossing oceans for people who wouldn’t jump puddles for you.” Too many times I have gone out of my way for someone only to be forgotten when it really mattered. This could apply to a friendship or romantic connection. I’ve decided that this lesson is one I’m going to put into action.

Dating sucks. I’ll be honest. I hate it. I don’t understand why it seems easy for some and virtually impossible for me. When I like someone, really like them, I will put my all into making things fun and positive. So many times I’ve found that despite my efforts, they are never reciprocated. I end up hurt and alone time and time again. Here’s the deal…NO MORE! If someone isn’t going to make me more of a priority then screw them. I’m done. More times than not I end up feeling like a doormat. Time to pull the rug out from under them and stand up for myself more.

I have the same issues with friends. It seems that plans don’t happen with friend unless I initiate them. Furthermore, even when I do, I end up getting cancelled on nine times out of ten. This has really taken its toll on me. I’ve been feeling ignored and non-essential in a lot of aspects of my life. I already spend a ridiculous time alone. While some alone time is nice, it would be great to have a group of friends to go out with from time to time. I do have a lot of friends, but again, I’m rarely invited places and always seem to have to do the party planning. Well, again, here’s the deal…NO MORE! Is it too much to ask for someone to make ME a priority?

So that’s my new way of thinking. I’m going to grow stronger from this decision and show people that my time is valuable, that my company is valuable, and pray that eventually my inner stock will go up. It’s going to be an adjustment and will require I step out of my comfort zone a bit. The way I see it, the bottom line is I can’t expect anyone else to jump puddles, let alone cross oceans for me if I’m not willing to do it for myself.

Posted in Dating, Loneliness, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Do Normal People Date?

I’ve been lost in my thoughts most of the day, and, for me, this can be a bad thing. I’m not good at dating and I don’t know what is normal and what’s not anymore. I’m so grateful I’m at least dating a level-headed man who is very patient with me. What I’m slowly figuring out is that I truly DO NOT know how to date. I don’t understand timelines and most of the time am scared because I’m completely out of my comfort zone. I’m terrified that my misunderstanding on how things are supposed to go is going to get me in trouble and I’ll find myself single yet again. This feeling haunts me most of the time.

When I read articles online about topics such as, “Signs you know he’s really into you,” or “Keys to a successful relationship,” it reinforces my belief that HotStuff and I are doing great. We communicate, make time for each other, and encourage each other better than any relationship I’ve been in ever. Regardless of these things, my brain still tries to get the better of me. It can be paralyzing worrying about what will happen and will I mess this up again.

The truth is, I don’t have much experience dating. I went on two silly dates in high school. I barely dated in college before I got married at 21 years old. I was married for over 16 years and then thrown to the wolves. Since then, I’ve found that dating just doesn’t make sense. One guy wants to move quickly while another goes at a turtle pace. One guy will text me morning, noon, and night while another makes me feel like one text a day is annoying. One guy will still want to date other people after a month while another wants to be exclusive right off the bat. One guy constantly compliments me while another guy finds those words difficult to say. It’s no wonder I still have a full head of hair.

I mentioned how I was feeling to HotStuff last night and that I’m scared a lot because things seem to be going well with us. I don’t know what I’m doing and find it difficult to slow down my engines. He told me that being scared is normal and that if I wasn’t scared he’d be worried. It’s when you’re no longer scared that many people stop caring. He then said something that made me tear up…in a very good way. He told me that he’s been thinking that I might be the best thing to happen to him in ten years. I sure hope I stay worthy of that for some time.

My dear friend told me something on Friday that made a lot of sense. I told her I just wanted to get over being scared. She said that maybe it wasn’t something to get over but rather to work through. She’s right. It may be late in the evening, but it’s time for me to go to work. I need to sit back and relax. I need to focus on some personal goals. I need to start practicing meditation. I need to learn to clear my mind and ease my thoughts. I need to try something different so that this relationship turns out differently. He is definitely worth putting in overtime for, so here I go.

Posted in Dating, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Stuff about Hot Stuff

A lot has happened over the last two months in regards to my personal life. The man I previously referred to as “Gameboy” has come to be a much bigger part of my life than I’d originally expected. We’ve now been seeing each other for about two months. For the most part, things are going very smoothly and we get along amazingly well. Our communication is incredible and we have a ton in common. Just last Friday, he met two of my closest friends when we all met for dinner. He had us all laughing and my friends both gave him their stamp of approval. He was even super sweet and paid for all our dinners. He enjoys holding hands in public and always seems to be genuinely happy to see me. My list could go on and on about what I like about him, but tonight I’m struggling with something that I know will get better since we talked about it tonight. Right now I just need to get it out of my head, have a good cry, and rest well knowing I have an amazing man in my life who I can talk to about anything.

First of all, I don’t really like the name Gameboy as he’s much more than that. Instead, I’ll be referring to him for now on as Hot Stuff, as that’s the name he gave himself via text when he then referred to me as ZoombaCutie. He meant Zumba since I still teach occasionally, but it was close enough.

Hot Stuff definitely enjoys his time to himself. That’s a good thing in my opinion, as I feel we all need that. He has lots of friends who he also enjoys spending time with and I’ve met some of them already. FYI…LOVE THEM!! Here are some things you have to understand about him. He is not much of a texter and never has been. He also isn’t the romantic type, so I’ve never received flowers or a cute note, but I’m used to being the romantic in a relationship. He isn’t very good at receiving compliments, but he and I are working on that part and it’s already getting better. I’m very proud of him for that. On the flip side, he isn’t good about giving compliments either. I’ll touch on a few of these, but it is the non-texting and lack of compliments that had been bothering me, so tonight we talked about it over dinner.

I joked with him about a month ago that I rarely hear from him during the day and most of the time it’s me texting him first. To explain why I have issue with this is that it makes me wonder if he even thinks about me when we’re not together. Tonight he assured me that he does think about me quite often and even talks to his friends about me. Just knowing that makes a world of difference, but it took me actually asking him about it for him to realize that he had no idea I’d even been wondering. To him, he feels that we text quite a bit during the day. I had to explain to him that we don’t actually. I might hear one or two things from him during the day…meaning I text him, he texts me, I text him, he texts me and that’s it.  All day. That’s all. That is a total combined of four texts. I texted more with my mechanic about my car than he and I do and we’re dating. Again, most of our texting conversations only happen because I initiate them, so this is something that I just felt I needed to bring to his attention as I just wonder how he feels about me. I said that to him one night and his response, which was very sweet, was, “Well you have to know I like you a lot.” I told him that I did now and that sometimes I just need to hear it out loud. I don’t read minds and don’t expect him to read mine…nor would I want him to. He’d get lost in my mess of a brain anyway.

As far as the lack of compliments, that is what was bothering me the most. Now before you think I’m just needing my ego stroked, I can assure you it has nothing to do with that. I’m a fairly confident woman and do my best to look nice whenever Hot Stuff and I are together. What bothers me is how he will say how beautiful other women are (mostly celebrities) yet has never even called me pretty. Even tonight, while we were at dinner, I caught him several times checking out a young woman outside the window near our table who was wearing a short dress. When I mentioned to him after I glanced at her that he seemed distracted he said that he kept seeing something out of the corner of his eye and she was putting on a show for him…I guess she was bending over or something while she was outside talking on her phone. He then blew it off that he felt she was closer to being a teenager than a woman, but he was looking nonetheless. I know he’s a man and I know they look, but it was at least four or five times he looked at her and it was bothering me. He then saw how much it bothered me and asked me, “That really bothers you, doesn’t it?” I told him it did. I told him it might not bother me so much if he complimented me once in a while. I hate that it makes me look insecure and I know he’d never do anything and really doesn’t mean anything by it, but we’re barely two month into our relationship and it would be nice to hear him call me pretty or beautiful or (as he’s referred to other women) gorgeous. I don’t make comments about other men in front of him, not that it would probably bother him, but to me it’s just a matter of being respectful. I’ve called him handsome and sexy yet never get those compliments back. I really think it just took me saying something to him for him to understand what I was thinking. He very sweetly talked with me about it all and we finished our dinner and left to go see a movie. As we were walking up to the movie theater, he said to me that he thinks I’m incredible. That was very nice hear and I think as he said it he realized he doesn’t compliment me very often.

We held hands and enjoyed the movie together and then he drove me home. When he dropped me off he was trying to figure out when we’d be able to get together this week as I’m going out of town on Friday morning. I finally opened the door to leave and as I stood there he said, “Text me a lot tomorrow,” with a big grin on his face. He gets it…I can tell. Of course my response to him was, “Or you could text me.”

This relationship has incredible potential, and we’re already making plans for a trip together later this year that would include a stay at a bed and breakfast. I like him a lot and am very excited with how things are developing. I just know what I want and what I deserve, but I also know that mind reading isn’t a skill people have when they’re only two months into a relationship. Thank goodness our verbal communication is stellar…well that and he’s a very patient and understanding man.

Posted in Dating, Starting Anew | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment