To Settle or Not To Settle?

Is settling as bad as it sounds? Does it mean we are compromising our ideals and expectations? To me, that’s how it sounds. It sounds nothing like ‘settling down’. Which seems to mean more of a ‘putting down roots’ type of thing. Maybe?  I feel like no one wants to settle, but I think people are doing it  all the time in the name of instant gratification;  it cures loneliness and an insatiable need for companionship. Does that mean that independent people who don’t have that need will never settle because they really don’t need that  constant companionship?

I just don’t know right now. I am fairly independent, complete with a newly purchased townhouse (on my own, no roommates, unless you count my puggle Max), vacations done solo,  and dinners and movies with no requisite date. These things really don’t bother me. Most of the time. There are times (mostly the weekends) where I long for some companionship.  And in those periods of time, I find myself bored and looking in places that have never provided much promise, like dating online. So there I am, settling. Is setting that bad? All of the time? Or is it just looked down upon if you are settling for long term solutions?  So this brings a new question…Short term v. long term settling? Is either “worse”? Do you find yourself doing this? What is that?

Am I guilty of short term settling? It’s highly likely. Which sets me up for losing opportunities for a more worthy partner in the long term…. if I am not looking at the big picture and parlaying my patience in the short term for more rewarding relationships in the long term. Is it because as I get older, I assume the dating pool is more like a wee little pond and there are not, in fact, plenty of fish? Thus, being in a hurry and bored is an unfortunate cocktail for not so satisfying relationships.  I get the idea patience will get me through boredom. Then I won’t have to settle in the long term, much less the short term. Boredom is a bitch!  More time to blog, less time for boredom!!

 

Drop a comment and let me know: Is settling the worst thing ever? Is there a difference between short term and long term settling?

 

Listening to Depeche Mode’s Some Great Reward…specifically Somebody… Depeche Mode can be a little depressing sometimes, but sometimes the perfect sentiment.

 

 

“They take this seriously”?

So I am sitting here incredulous. At the point of investing cash into this matchmaking/dating organization, the company insisted that the men take their search for a meaningful relationship seriously. It seemed logical, as they were putting down some serious cash, as was I. The first week I checked my options and selected a few members; of all the selected members, I got one rejection. Which is totally fine. I am not for everyone. That’s cool. However, I got not so much as a nod or a rejection from the other 8 or so. They were “active” on the site. What’s happening? So I talked to the member advisors at the site who informed me that possibly they were pursuing other relationships, but were not serious with them ,and thus still active. Hmm? So, over the next week or two, I selected another 8-9 in my wee little dating pool (45-55yo). Yes, it is old and I feel old just checking that box.  Again one or two rejections and absolutely nothing from the majority of them. I inquire again and they say, “It’s only a month in. Give it time! It only takes one!! Remember that!”. What??? It only takes one?? No,  I want to say. It does not take just one. It takes many frogs to find a prince. Many, many frogs. Usually toads. At best, frogs.

So then, one afternoon, one of the member advisors calls me asking if I would like to go to a speed dating event up in Denver, free of charge. I said “Why not?”. So I went the next evening; four or five women showed up. Four men showed up. One man and one woman matched upon before the event even began and took off. That left well, almost no one. I was sitting with this guy who seemed nice enough and was miraculously from  my new town (45 minutes south). We talked before the even started and then during out 4-6 minutes. The other two men were totally not for me. The first one actually had some potential and we ended up grabbing drinks and dinner after. We headed into Cherry Creek in my little convertible (top down, nice night) and talked non stop for several hours. It’s hard to tell, but I will be honest: I may have done more of the talking! But we traded numbers. He then proceeded to cancel on me twice. that week; He lost momentum, almost. And I almost lost interest. He then texted when I didn’t expect he was still interested to get together. I agreed because he did seem nice. I couldn’t tell whether he was keeping the date because he felt bad or because he actually wanted to meet up.

So we finally met up and he picked me up. We headed downtown. We backed up into a bat -mobile (a black type of something that possibly resembled a  heavy-duty ATV).  A little damage, not too bad. We headed to the 16th Street Mall and hit the Rialto Cafe. Decent conversation. Decent food. We walked around after, but mostly just to find the car. I needed the exercise. We headed back to my place. We had been talking about our places in Parker, so I gave him a tour. He gave me a kiss, then said “Isn’t that what you wanted?”…. WHAT?  I replied “Don’t do me any favors”. He retorted: “I’m not” and continued. It continued for a while and then he took off; nothing much happened and barely a mention of hanging out again. Which is fine.

The next two days we texted a little, but I initiated each time. Then the day he was taking off the weekend (Thursday), I decided to NOT initiate. At all. Nothing. And received NOTHING. And that was that.

The end. Till the next time! You know, because they take this seriously.

Music I’m thinking of here: Amy Winehouse’s Back To Black.

 

Forever. And a day.

WOW! I had no clue I abandoned my post, literally, for about three months. I am so sorry!

The good news is that I have been so busy with life and fitness with my optimal health plan, that my  short term fitness,  life goals and outcomes have been favorable!

1. EXERCISE: What a great thing to do! I am improving in this department. My healthy living (with a side of weight loss) program discouraged too much exercise when I was going through such a radical calorie reduction. I soon understood why. Now, in transition, I am getting back to the exercising/walking, both outside and on the treadmill. I am excited to get physically fit in shape in time for warm weather fun in the mountains!

2. LOST OVER 25 POUNDS: This was an amazing feat! I gained so much weight in the last 2 years since losing weight in 2016. WHY?! How did  I let that happen? I can tell you exactly what happened. Maybe this has happened to you. I did not transition into a way of healthy living. I did not set myself up for healthy maintenance eating and healthful and wise choices.  I  have now lost weight and looking to lose about 10 more.  Most importantly, I am learning how to live with daily healthy living with a slight bent toward losing a bit more weight. Once I get to my desired weight, I will admit that the healthy living will be a challenge. I want the healthy living and most of the time, its not that hard. But sometimes….. yes, sometimes I am craving nachos and nerds or gummy bears. I am not going to lie. I want to stay in this weight loss mode until I am secure in my healthy choices and know I am not going to yo-yo back to this weight from December.

3. NO MORE DATING ONLINE (doing something else that I will delve into a little later for all your curious people)….yay! I have joined more of a matchmaking thing. I guess we still have to put ourselves out there. This time, it seems different. It involves more work, but the outcome hopefully includes some more quality. With those free online sites, you get what you don’t pay for! You know what I am talking about: Plenty of Fish, Bumble, Tinder…the list goes on.  It’s also dramatically different because instead of getting into the time suck of these dating sites (yes, plural), I can live life and blog more, work more, and exercise more. I can check in on line with this different singles group after selecting certain people.  We’ll see how this goes. I don’t officially start being eligible online till after I finish my profile. Who knows that this singles group will bring!

4. BOUGHT A TOWNOUSE!! Okay, how did this just happen in three months? I wasn’t even looking for a place. The truth is I wasn’t looking at all. I went to an open house one weekend with a friend. I fell in love with the townhouse I saw. I called over my future realtor and talked to a lending officer right then and there. She was at the open house.  The unexpected and rare thing happened: a domino effect of contractual agreements just fell into place.  From the date the offer was accepted and the contract signed, I closed on my townhouse 30 days later. I had no clue  my life would change this much this soon or how much my life would change. I think part of this is because I am moving to the suburbs from the city. It’s going to be a big change; but I think I am ready.

Yes, I have done this all since my last post in December! Things have been crazy and overwhelming, but reassuring that I have been making progress in positive life changes.

I think with these new changes (and being house rich cash poor I am sure), I will be blogging a lot more and sharing my dating experiences once again. And this time, in the middle of suburbia. Dating in suburbia. I see that being one of my future posts.

Stay tuned!

I want a partner, not a pedestal

So why are there so many men looking for princesses and queens on POF… other dating sites, for that matter? You’d  think they would know princesses and queens are for Disney or some far off country.   Or are there really a lot of women here in the US of A that want to be treated like a princess? I really don’t know the answer to that. I can’t imagine wanting to be treated like a princess and it leaves a bad aftertaste in my mouth. Like Tab from the 80’s.

You see, I want a partner, not a pedestal. I want someone to walk side by side with me, someone I can discuss things with across the table at dinner. I am not helpless. I don’t need a proverbial pedestal to know my worth. I want to be able to be respected and treated as  an equal partner. I am not some princess that needs “things”, much less a pedestal for my ego.  What is it with guys today? What do they think we want?

A princess, I guess….

Symbiosis: Are the scales ever balanced?

via Daily Prompt: Symbiosis

Am I too cynical? When is symbiosis beneficial to both parties? I haven’t seen this often enough.  There is always some power play. Maybe we could be symbiotic in some equal-ish transfer of different contributions, money, emotional support, intellect, sex….the list goes on. The transfer can be fluid. I suppose if both people absolutely are equal in their need for the other’s contributions  to the relationship, then the symbiosis is copacetic. All good.

But when is it EVER a perfect balance of power? When we are so invested in the others success? Is it because our success depends too heavily on the others?  I wish I could think about all the lovely ecosystems and symbiosis in nature. That would be so cool here in the world of human behavior in relationships. It’s just now where my head goes.  My head goes to dysfunction in the so-called symbiosis of relationships I have seen (not just my own, mind you).

In human relationships (take your pick), when are the scaled perfectly balanced to create a genuine symbiosis?

 

A new series: Throwback Thursdays

I think that it may be nice to have a regular series to look forward to every week. Throwback Thursdays are going to be exactly what you expect, a walk down memory lane every Thursday. Some humor, some ridiculous insanity, and a little romance… sometimes.

I’ll try to dig up a photo of myself back in the day and post it. If I can find one suitable for print! I would like to start my series looking at all kinds of relationships and reflecting on how they shaped my view on friendships with men and women and dating the guys that come into my life highly irregularly.

I hope to see you all everyday, but I look forward to hearing feedback about Throwback Thursdays!

Have an awesome weekend!

What my marriage taught me: about fear

Fuck Everything And Run. Sure. That’s what comes to mind for many about fear. Unless in the whole flight or fight drama of it all, you can’t do either. You are stuck. You are paralyzed. The fear of the event makes you indefinitely immobile. Incapacitated. Despite your strength, you just can’t move. The idea of doing anything about it scares you to death because you have never been in this exact situation. Well, hardly ever anyway.  This one is different and you just can’t move. No.Matter.What. Until you do. Finally.  That’s what this post is about. Part of the nitty-gritty details will make its way into a longer story, but I am going to start small. Because I’m still a tiny bit in fear. How safe is it  to write about this? I am breaking through fear to just say: What the hell, I am going to take a risk.

When I was finally off on a fun impulsive  3-4 day vacation to the Bahamas, I had absolutely NO clue  the guy I was seeing at the time would propose marriage.  I am not sure he know. Was he even my “boyfriend”? Because I had told him I did want to get married (some day). Because he needed a woman to take care of him. Because he was bored? I will never know. I never got that closure. But that’s okay. That’s not what this is about. This is the second chapter of my relationship with this guy. I should have closed the book and put it on a high shelf after finishing the first chapter. Better yet, I should have donated the book to Goodwill or something for some other desperate 30-something woman to open up, ripe for seduction.  However, maybe I was that desperate woman. Waiting for marriage and someone to want me. I am pretty intelligent. I had a good job. I practically majored in psychology, so HOW DID I GET HERE?

I was pretty sure  a snowballing effect of fear started when I accepted his marriage proposal. In fact, I will go as far as to say the fear started  long before when I never thought I would get married at the late age of 39…. the fear of being unloveable. I guess as I write this, I realize my own fears set the ball rolling and his actions in the Bahamas and forward just compounded  the idea that fear would take on a different species: the fear of being alone again. So no matter what happened, the physical fear seemed real and relatable. But it was no match for the real fear that simply left me in my tracks.

It was easy enough to tell (some of my) friends the physical fear I felt because I knew would get sympathy about being stuck in a bad situation. There was plenty of fear based on my physical environment (never an assault upon me, ever) so that’s what I told my friends. The OTHER fear, that I couldn’t verbalize or put into words yet, I still felt in my core, but I was NOT ready to be honest about. Maybe  there is  that undeniable shame for me,  in the fear of being alone and unloveable. I was  surely not going to admit such things, even if I could verbalize those  feelings or identify those moments of   palpable loneliness. Better to say  he threatened me  in the Bahamas. Better to say he got into rages that ended up with broken items and refrigerators turned inside out. All true, all scary. Unfortunately, when I finally had to leave 1.5 years later, I realized my fear of physical safety was only part of the total fear I carried with me.

My lesson: I had no idea I had this internal fear that followed me everywhere, before AND after my marriage. I was justified in my fear for physical  safety and until I left him (he forced me out despite my weak attempts to seek counseling with him), I had absolutely no clue about the real fear.  My marriage was not in vain. Its been teaching me things all along. I had to hit rock bottom in an emotional abyss in 2010, crying daily, to even realize the fear had nothing to do with him at all. That really sucked. I will be completely honest. That sucked. It would have been so much easier to say his rage and unpredictable moods were enough to be fearful about. They were pretty bad and he would argue that I was never in actual danger, but I was pretty scared. Those stories will come later and the   detailed process of my story will become more evident. I had to move forward. I had to get UNstuck, UNparalyzed, UNhelpless. I moved back to Colorado in 2010 and started up a job. And I got right into therapy, which was really translation for a biweekly cry/drama/trauma session. Whatever.It.Takes. I am still working on becoming unstuck and out of the fear cycle. It’s a long process.

For now, suffice it to say, my fear is my own to deal with. That’s really what my marriage taught me: I think now it can be a matter of Face Everything And Recover. Recover from the lowest point that I have ever sunk, defended as the years of 2009-2010.

Depending on how honest you are with yourself, you may find yourself in the middle of your own long journey!
Readers: What did you learn from your marriage? Whether you are currently married, divorced or widowed, what did the actual process of living with the person you tied the knot with teach YOU?  Please leave your comments and I would love to read and respond!

 

Have a great rest of your weekend!

Music Pairing: Personally, I listened to the Fumbling Towards Ecstasy (Sarah McLachlan) and most songs spoke to me, particularly, Fear (surprise), Possession, and Hold On.

I could have probably listened to Depeche Mode or Nine Inch Nails for that matter (okay maybe NOT Nine Inch Nails this time!)… However, Yaz’s Upstairs at Eric’s could have really worked.