Onwards and Upwards

f0a5be0ee4bb08ce41affef2eeed9045I’ve been thinking lately.  And feeling. My Wise Woman and Heart have been very active. Not in sync of course – let’s not get crazy! But they haven’t been battling like they once did, it’s been more of a civil negotiation. Together trying to sort out a situation for the past couple of months. And each took their turn at driving my bus. Kind of a cool thing actually.

Several months ago, I unexpectedly found myself faced with the decision to give someone another chance. I was assured things had changed (a laughable concept,I know). I gave a cautious Maybe.  But time went on and my walls started to come down and Heart opened itself up to the possibility. Yes, to hope. And as I’ve said before, hope is a Heart thing.  I decided to finally say yes to a relationship.  Turns out once I was standing in front of him (let’s call him the King of the Grand Gesture), he backed off emotionally. And thus the weeks went by.

Being true to my no-regrets nature, I kept trying. I knew I had to give it a real chance. For my own peace of mind. And I did.   I also made it very clear what I needed from him and expressed I wasn’t getting it.  But it still didn’t happen.  I truly believe that he’s not a bad guy. Something was just stopping him from jumping in. Fear I think.  And honestly, that’s okay. I get that. And it’s just the way he is. I accept that. But it’s not what I need in a relationship. So I called it quits on the relationship.  Was there another grand gesture? Yes of course. Did Heart want to say yes? Of course. But Wise Woman stepped up – completely aware of the pattern of this situation – held Heart’s hand, and said no. It was too late. I’m worthy of effort.  And honestly, for me, there comes a point where accepting the pattern is on me. And it’s my choice to continue to accept it or not. As difficult as that is.

And yet, today, I feel calm. This type of situation isn’t the disaster it once was. It doesn’t send me spiraling like it may have in the past.   Despite my heart being bruised, I feel empowered by my ability to see a situation for what it is, know which part of me is taking the lead and act on that.  I’m not saying I won’t slip or that I’m super woman – and if I do slip, that’s okay. I’m not going to beat myself up about it.  Because I’m doing my best. And throughout it all, I think I still act with kindness and honesty. With others and with myself.  And I’m really proud of that.

So I look forward and I see possibilities. A friend asked me recently what I am open to these days. My response? Anything.  In theory anyway.  But I haven’t been able to say that in a very long time.

And that, my friends, is what I call progress.

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A Stumble

3923bf7fc1056717def54cad656a0bcaI jumped. And it didn’t work out. Things ended with my tattooed boy. It was only five weeks together but we really liked each other.  And still do. It didn’t end because of that – it was more because of lifestyle differences, uncertainty of how we fit into each other’s lives and perhaps we were at different stages and ultimately looking for different things. In the end, it was a mutual decision. It’s probably best it ended now before we got in any deeper.

The five weeks were really lovely. I felt excited and happy. He is a good guy. And I jumped. A big deal for me and I did it. I don’t regret it. Not for a second. In fact, I’m glad for it. And we ended things well; with compassion, honesty and affection.  We may even be able to be friends. And so my harem of good guy friends keeps growing.

Yeah I’m sad. It’s unfortunate that my leap of faith didn’t pan out. But it wasn’t fruitless. Yet again, I’ve learned things about myself. I’m still brave and I can push myself out of my comfort zone. I’m open to trying something different and I may be one step closer to learning what I want and need in a relationship.  I thought that moving into more exclusive dating would be easier somehow but it’s not. Not just from my end of things but from theirs. At this stage, I think I’m going to need a man who is strong and confident in himself, who is patient and who can ride out my crazy while I still figure all this out and continue my healing.

I was also told by yet another man that I have a lot of rules. I’m thinking about this. It would appear that I draw a lot of lines in the sand with men – regarding the time I make for them, the role my friends play in my life, keeping my daughter separate and yeah, sex.  I don’t make a lot of room for someone.  I put them in a box, don’t integrate them into my life at all and I “manage” it all very closely. But I know why that is. It’s all about protection.  And I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing – at first. But eventually I will have to make the space, or at least let them know there is the potential for that. Once they have proven themselves to me. Harsh but that’s how I feel right now.  It’s something to look at though.

I have also come to realize that I still put all my shit out on the table right from the start. I like to manage expectations (there’s that “manage” word again). Kind of like – here it is buddy, now you know what you are getting yourself into, I’m scared and I don’t trust easily, if you can handle that, bring it. I always want to people to be straight with me and I need to know where I stand. And I offer up the same. But  I can see how that seems intense, intimidating and perhaps seen as more limits.  I won’t compromise honesty but perhaps I can present it differently.  A guy friend told me recently that I was all chainsaw and no scalpel. This may be true.

I know I have prickles.  They are there for a reason.  But I also have wonderful qualities and a lot to offer. I’m worth getting past the prickles. And they may eventually dull down.  So these are all the things I’ve learned and thought about during this experience. But most of all, I know I can take a chance, have feelings for someone, be weird and wonderful at the same time, and my fear is less than it used to be.  Those are all very good things.

I do miss him already but that’s okay. I feel unsure and uncertain of where to go from here.  But it’s early days yet. I’ll be okay.  I stumbled but I haven’t fallen down…

Just Keep Swimming

When thinking of a name for my dating blog, how could I resist thinking of Dorie’s advice to little Nemo – just keep swimming….just keep swimming… I’ve told this very same thing to myself many times over the last nine months.

So here I am.  Ready to date?  In all honesty, probably not.  I’m definitely not ready for a relationship.  But I do feel ready most days to put myself out there, take some risks and have some fun.  At least I hope to have some fun.  It’s all part of my healing from my horrible breakup (from a BIG lying piece of crap scumbag – and that’s all I will say about that. My breakup is a whole other blog!)

After a little while of flirting with the idea of online dating, I jumped into Plenty of Fish (and thus another link to the swimming reference).  I know there are other sites out there and I’ve also been told that Plenty of Fish (POF) is where guys troll for sex.  I guess we will find out if that’s true (yikes!)

Overall, I’m intrigued with online dating and I’m also terrified.  I’m not sure how to be and of the etiquette but I imagine I will figure out how to navigate it.  So it’s been 4 days since I signed up and here’s my status:

  • 8 guys want to “meet me” (this is where they see my profile and click a button that says that they may be interested in meeting me)
  • 5 guys have tagged me as a favourite (I’m not sure about this one. I think it means they can see when I post in the forums or when I’m online? Sounds a bit stalker-ish to me)
  • I have been emailed and emailed people back 43 times

This is isn’t a competition, I’m just laying it out Bridget Jones style.  I have no idea if this is a lot or not.  But what I’m getting at is that I have chatted casually over POF email with 4 guys already.  Some better than others but I’ll get into that later.  Shit, that makes me laugh. I’m not sure why.  Probably because this is so foreign to me.

So anyway,  here I go….jumping into the deep end (of casual dating only!)….and I keep on swimming….

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