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.

 

 

Kiss that frog

So, I’ve kissed a lot of frogs. Some toads, some poisonous frogs, and even some cleverly disguised toads appearing to be cute appealing frogs. But no Prince Charming in sight. And now I am wondering if that is my fault. If I am in more control of that than I once thought.  Is it my expectations or anxieties that direct my successes and failures? I am beginning to think that could be true.

I have little bits of anxieties, likely triggered by insecurities. I think we all have them, but I think that sooner I take control of them, the more successful I will be at not self-sabotaging worthwhile opportunities for viable relationships. I don’t know if control is the right word, but perhaps anxiety management. The anxiety I have seems to only manifest where relationships are concerned. I don’t seem to have as much anxiety in other areas of my life. I’m working to figure that one out, but for now, I want to manage the relationship anxiety. One way I KNOW it manifests is with my insecurities and I end up texting too much, talking too much about shit that shouldn’t be brought up in the name of “honesty”. And then oh crap, there goes a perfectly good relationship! Damn! The insecurities are either obvious or not so obvious. I think many of us struggle with the whole “Am I lovable?”, “Am I worth waiting for?”, “Am I funny enough? Interesting enough? Funny enough?”……And it goes on and on. We can either give up or remain hopeful that perhaps we are all of these things if we just believe in ourselves a little bit m more. Way easier said than done, I know. Of all people, I certainly get this. So what do we do to control or manage this anxiety? I think we just have to get a handle on these insecurities. Personally, I am having a fortunate period of NO drama in my life. Not much going on in the way of crisis. So if you don’t mind, I will probably keep you updated on my self-discovery of these insecurities cropping up in the relationship area of my life. If I can possibly identify them, thereby reducing my anxieties or better managing them, perhaps it could help someone else. AND that is why I need to write more.

Then, of course, there are the expectations. How do I manage expectations? And do I need to rearrange or lessen my expectations? This is such a hard question. I mean if I don’t think I am asking much, but maybe I am.

Let’s see:

  • Intelligent
  • Gainfully employed
  • Funny
  • Taller than I am if possible (not a hard rule, but must be my height)
  • Kind to people and animals
  • and lastly, physically attractive to me

That’s it! Ha!

When people tell me to manage my expectations, I hear: “Settle Alyssa, you’re not going to find all that in one guy. Your dating pool is too small to expect much more”. I can’t help it. So what do I do? Settle in the looks department, in the intelligence department?  Or I don’t settle, but I relax in the intensity department. I am a bit intense. I know it’s scared a few people off. But is the intensity caused by insecurity? Is it a form of anxiety? I think it could be. I am working on that as well. I think the management of  expectations is a tough nut to crack. I need to work on this and I think it may take some time.

If anyone has experience in the management of anxiety/insecurities or expectations, please, please, please drop a comment! I think we could all learn a thing or two.  In the meantime, I will update my blog with progress on the anxiety and expectations arena.

This is my first post in a while, but I have re-established my passion for writing/blogging and you’ll hear much more from me!

 

LISTENING TO: Peter Gabriel’s Kiss that Frog. Of course!

Over the hump…

Here I am again, over the hump! I am so excited to be back here in blogging world because I am here to stay. I had a tough professional exam to get through and getting settled post-move. But here I am, ready to write and share!

So when I bought my new townhouse, I suspected it would take me a few months to get settled. I was right. I have been in my home for about a month and a half and still need to hang my artwork and fix my closets and a bathroom toilet. I couldn’t be happier here though. It’s really peaceful : I  have green beautiful grass , a recreation center and park,  and various paths  to walk Max  It was a huge decision to buy and I am so relieved I made the right choice, for me & Max.

Now that the exam and the bulk of the move are out of the way, I can direct my focus and attention right here, where I belong. I have had so many inspirations and situations that I have wanted to write about and just couldn’t get this laptop open. My attention kept me with my studies and I really hope I passed that exam!!

A few inspirations that will find their way to my blog:

  1. My weight loss: I have lost 32 pounds so far and I am working on more! It hasn’t been easy and I have a few blog posts in mind to share the journey.
  2. Relationships and the matchmaking thing: what a disaster! I believe I just threw away a chunk of money on a dating /match making organization. I got one date out of a speed dating event, but I doubt that’s going anywhere. Posts are coming your way about this also!
  3. Loneliness vs being alone-there is a difference, yes? I say yes also. I say yes to the palpable loneliness that has us wishing we had plans on a Saturday night. I also say yes to the joy of being alone sometimes. The loneliness is there, whether I am by myself on Saturday night at 6:30pm in bed or in a setting with friends or other couple(s) being sans Significant Other.  More to come.

 

See you really soon. I mean it!

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!

Paris, Part 1: Before Paris

So this will be a short little series about my experience getting to Paris, enjoying Paris, and saying good-bye to Paris.

I was so excited to get there. I had been anticipating this trip for a year. I was a little nervous, but like I said, mostly ecstatic! I had a long layover at SFO, so I hid out at one of the airline clubs and just chilled out with my music and my Paris tour books. Finally, it was time to board to Paris.

It wasn’t too long before I was settled in and watching a movie.  We got our meal fairly quickly and I tried to sleep after my first movie. I tried to read my Nook (The Late Show by Michael Connelly) and assorted magazines. I was too excited to really focus on anything for more than 30 minutes. So, while we were headed toward the East coast, I went up toward the galley and saw a woman with an oxygen mask on. Someone was on the phone. I didn’t think much about it for whatever reason. I went back to my seat and started a movie. Within an hour, we were headed over Eastern Canada when they made the announcement. We are making an emergency medical landing. HELL NO! This isn’t happening….I felt my heart sink. LIke really sink.. I felt nauseated. I prepared myself for all things Paris, but not emergency landings and re-positioning my trip plans. This can’t be happening. But yet,  it is. They announce we are landing in Newark, New Jersey. The perfect place to start my Paris vacation. NOT. No offense for those in New Jersey, but I was planning on Paris, people! They told us they would be making plans for us for the night, but we were NOT going anywhere till 7PM the next night. Which means I have one less day in Paris.

It was a chaotic hot mess in New Jersey. We (about 150-200 of us) stood in several lines to try to figure out what was going on. Until I stood in that line with everyone, I felt alone and stranded. I know that’s selfish. And when I started talking to these people. People just like me, totally inconvenienced and panicked and in a generally pissed mood. Then something happened. To me, anyway.  We were all in the same boat. We all needed to be in Paris Saturday morning. I learned some people needed to be there by a certain time Saturday even more than I did; they had tours and cruises and their vacation was on a very exacting schedule.  As selfish as it was, it made me feel better that I was not alone.  We all started talking with each other. Trying to figure out what was happening at the front of the lines. We were promised a new flight, hotel passes, and food vouchers.  We started talking about life and what got us headed to Paris in the first place.  It was amazing. Everyone was getting along together, instead of being divisive and rushing for the customer service desk.  Granted, we are all adults, but funny things can happen in crisis.  I finally got to the customer service agent. He apparently was only giving out the hotel vouchers (score for Crowne Plaza) and food vouchers ($30….what???). The lady at the front wrote down our flight number, but couldn’t confirm our seat assignments. Damn…this can’t be good. But I took the flight number and thankfully I had my baggage (there was a reason I paid for the priority boarding), heading for the shuttle with a few other people I had gotten to know during the course of the crazy chaos.  During the stay on the line, I realized I should start contacting my Paris connections, my landlady and a family friend.  By the time I got to the hotel, it was about 3AM.  I called my landlady (poor woman, who just was recovering from her birthday celebration the previous night) at 9AM Paris time.

So I finally went to sleep for about 4-5 hours at the very most. I wanted to get to the airport  and take care of business.  Then I talked to a friend who urged me to call the airline directly from my hotel room. YES!!! I got my flight confirmed with a seat assignment and my boarding pass was ready to go before I even left my hotel that morning. I went down to breakfast at the hotel and saw a fellow traveler, originally from Haiti, who was returning to his Paris, his home of several years. I shared my good fortune with the seat assignments and he called himself. I went upstairs and got ready, then headed down to the lobby to catch the shuttle. Even though I got my seat assignment, I thought it would just be wise to be at the airport. My fellow travelers were on the same page. A group of us were in the lobby by 10AM; I saw a woman I had spoken with the night before and shared the phone number and advice with her. She called as well and got her boarding pass online.  It felt so good to be positive about this whole crappy experience.  I was so happy I could share the phone number and more people could feel secure with confirmed seat assignments. I ended up spending a bit of time with one of the women in that group.

Once I boarded, I took my seat and recognized the young French woman next to me from the night before. We chatted a bit before she went to sleep for the majority of the flight (lucky her!) …. I felt calm and knew the next  7 hours would pass quickly compared to the last 16 hours or so.  They did, indeed, pass and I was soon in Paris.  Once I landed, I was in the customs line with one couple I remembered, but otherwise never saw anyone else again. I never saw the nice Haitian man or the woman I spent four hours with in the airport or the couple I talked to in line for three hours in Newark.  While it was a chaotic time and we weren’t sure exactly how to navigate the  system, we all did just fine and landed in Paris safely.

I arrived in Paris!! I got through customs. I found the taxi stands, had my taxi driver talk to my landlady, and made my way to Rue de Grenelle in the 7th district in Paris, my home for seven,  I mean six days.

 

Off track…featuring gummy bears and lemon drop martinis

Why am I posting exercise and fitness rants when I am supposed to be writing about dating, relationships and communication between males and females as well as female friends?  That was the focus, right? Well, I have found that the relationship I have with myself is pretty damn important. If I can’t be happy with the way I look or feel, how can I exude confidence? I can’t. If I can’t, how can I expect others to be confident in me and experience an attract to someone they want to get to know (male or female)? I can’t do that either. I am going go to be successful in the adventures of relationships with guys and my female friends when I am successful in the relationship I have with myself. Carrie Bradshaw (Sex and the City character) said this pretty exactly in the last episode of Sex and the City Season six, part two.

Enter fitness and exercise.  And diet (seemingly my albatross). When I have the tools in my tool chest, I have no excuses. Especially when I have used the tools with success in the last year. I have no one to blame but myself when I am to happy with the way things are going. I love the fitness part. I hate the healthy eating part.  Except, I love the way I feel and look when I am successful with healthy eating patterns and habits. I hate the way I feel after eating at  McDonalds. Why is it so hard? It makes total sense that I should be fully on board with the “eating right” thing. But I am not. So far from it. This weekend I have consumed the following in no particular order:

  • gummy bears
  • hot wings and sweet potato fries
  • two IPAs
  • movie popcorn
  • lemon drop martini
  • red wine
  • omelet with bacon and cheese (don’t forget the potatoes and bread with that please)
  • and some other stuff I can’t get remember.

So why is this so hard this year? If I could break through that, I think I could get to the crux of the problem. Just Saturday, I was reminded of my fat content when my personal trainer said “today, we are doing measurements”. Uh? What? I thought the fat caliper measurement was all that we needed to determine how out of shape I was. Clearly, not so much.

I have done the diet, the eating right, the changing of the paradigm. What happened over this last holiday season that got me so far off track? I am going to work on answerig that one, right after I grab a rice cake.  Seriously, they are not so bad when you  put some white cheddar cheese on top. Just kidding….Not.

 

Apologies….

I realize that I did not post a Throwback Thursdays post this week. It is something I am considering to be an experiment. I am not sure how popular it is. I would l love to take a poll. So for all of my readers, please leave a comment if my Throwback Thursdays are worth keeping. The posts are usually some type of retelling of an escapade of dating gone terribly awry. Throwback Thursday 5: AA and the homeless guy is a recent example. So the a look. Let me know. I usually post about two to three times a week, Thursday being one of them. If this is something you look forward to reading, please leave me a comment. That would be awesome!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and stay tuned!