I was almost done writing a different blog post for tonight.
I was almost done.
Let me tell you, it’s powerful. It touches on women’s issues. It was written from my heart.
But the couple at the table in front of me started arguing.
I have been single for a while now and forgot the part of being with someone you love like crazy who can also drive you like, crazy. I am also generally not an argumentative person, particularly in public, so this kind of suckered me in.
Slightly raised voices, leaning in to get the point through gritted teeth, and side glances at me as I was in closest proximity to them.
I was very much seated in an audience position.
Don’t judge me. I still kept trying to finish my post. Tried to get into the feeling I had only a few moments before she raised her voice, and he raised up his hands in response….
But I couldn’t.
I felt like I was a peering cautiously into an exhibit at the relationship zoo.
More raised voices, her running off to the bathroom, and more side glances. She comes back in tears, and proceeds to ignore him as they look at their menus. Attempt to deflate the tension in the air with a softer, lower tone. Hair flips then silence.
Maybe I can stop chatting online and get back to this heartfelt meaningful pos-
Uh oh. Suddenly with clearly frustrated body language he leaned across the table and did the thing.
And I knew exactly what he was going to tell her, more or less.
You love to eat with-I have never really think about this, but food, meals, the way I cook and explore…it would be only fitting to be with someone who carries at least some of my interests in this area!
Who helps you evolve, and wants you to.
Who loves your heart as much as your backside-looks change, we are more than our beautiful bodies, and you want to be with someone who is just as attracted, if not more, to your heart.
That enjoys your silenceas much as your words….no awkwardness in the quiet. I was actually thinking I would like to be with someone who also appreciates it.
That motivates you just by thinking about them.
Who is ready to be vulnerable with you! For those of us who date men-listen up. A sensitive man who shows you his heart on all sides is showing you he trusts you. Appreciate that. In the world we live in right now.
We need these men to more boldly step forward.
I don’t spend much time looking around for advice about being single because it all tends to be the same, and in my 30s it’s unfortunate that for the most part, advice is based off of trying to help me reach some end point of ultimate happiness. I very much appreciated this video, and just had to share.
To the ones who are happily single-you can continue to be truly happy and still desire to connect with someone! And, to the ones who are not-from personal experience, you won’t be able to genuinely connect with someone, until you can truly be happy.
I have a student at my work who is a little negative Nancy. She never seems entirely happy from moment to moment, nor easily satisfied. For example, one day we were coloring during free time, and she mentioned wanting to have her old teacher back. I asked what did she like about her that made her want be back in her class? She replied “Well she let me draw and color during free time.”
A few days ago it ended up being just us two girls and a handful of boys in program. For first period they all wanted to play basketball. Normally I play with them (grandma shots and all), but of course, my negative Nancy was unhappy that we all wanted to do something physically active…during physical activity time. She slumped onto a bench nearby and crossed her arms. I decided to see if I could help shift her mood.
“Have you ever played M.A.S.H.?”
I took out some paper from my work binder and gave her first turn. She chose potential jobs, number of children, pets, and “types” of future husbands. When it was time to count off she declared that picking a type of husband was the hardest part.
I might have to agree with her on that one.
When we finished the first round she was appalled at the job she landed. “Whyyyy did I get THAT job?!” Imitating her signature whiny tone I answered.
“Becaaaause, you CHOSE that job!”
Then, it was my turn.
Now this is where it got kind of cool. My girl initially picked some pretty mediocre shit. She had never played the game, and was understandably unfamiliar with how to fully engage it. So as my turns went on, and I had named a horse as one of my pets, “a wild warrior” as a potential husband, and one of my jobs getting paid to travel it started to sink in for her.
There were no limits.
What were her dreams like at this age?
We played back and forth for the entire period. By the time we got to her last turn she was clapping in delight, as she landed an “artistic guy,” a pet dragon, zero kids, and a job as an artist. When I asked if she thought these things could come true she shrugged, but then mentioned with a slight smile, “But it’s what I WANT.”
Later that night I thought about our time together and how my turns went. The initial ones were more in the area of magical outcomes, more silly to reflect the lightness of the game to my Nancy, but also with a hint of truth to which I would not share with even the closest of friends. Sometimes children keep the best secrets. One turn midway I realized was what I thought I wanted, and the very last turn ended up being most of things I currently, really wanted.
When the date is “funny” it means at one point I was doing my uncomfortable laugh, and/or at one point confused by who my date was.
Generally, as a human.
I grab my keys posthaste as we walk to my car, and give the polite pat on the back hug as I say thank you. I immediately want to call a friend so that I can transmute the oddness of my experience with comedy. Over the years I have had a handful of first dates that when shared with friends inspired the type of laughter that always made me feel like a stand up comedian. And still does.
What is my point? Well, my point is this…laughter really is the best medicine in the case of first dates. Before to calm nerves, during to connect, and after to decompress. Whether through continued laughter from the date (phew! it went well.), or a fresh new set of laughs to share with a good friend by way of simple story telling.
Single friend over 30, it can easily feel daunting at times. I understand. I empathize. I live it. But I also try not to see it this way. Why think things are daunting when this can end up becoming a belief that things are hopeless? My Beautiful, Hopeful, and Uniquely Spirited single person-feeling hopeless can turn into harsher types of negative thinking. If you are to attract positive you need to be positive and happy about dating. And you (and I) don’t need anyone or anything in our lives to create these feelings.
That is our job.
So I say why not be a little humorous about it? Bad date? Oh well. It was one date and you knew at one point during it this person was not someone you wanted to invest anymore time with. So you make the best of it, you take your leftover food home, maybe crack open a beer, curl up on the couch, and call a friend. As you share and reflect on the date, placing yourself outside of it you now realize the funny parts. The odd or confusing parts. The parts that made you have a better understanding of not only the type of person you are looking for, but the type of person you are at the core. Nothing about the date can change that, and that is the beauty in it all. You just had this one date that didn’t make you really excited, happy, or yes, laugh.
But one day you will lock eyes with someone and you will feel it as the conversation flows. Where the laughs happen during the date, after the date, via text, the phone calls, and everywhere else; for so much longer Thereafter.
I mostly feed my soul with this blog, but for today, this post is not for me.
This is for the friend. The friend who wrote me that she is hurting because she feels like she does not know who she is anymore. She says the world took that away from her. She does not like herself when she looks in the mirror. She does not love herself.
“What do you think Maggie?” she asked me.
“What do you say about yourself?”
Instantaneously I am compelled to answer that
I am grateful.
Then I add….
I really like myself. Actually, I love myself. I am keenly aware of the things that make up who I am that I would not change, because then I would be changing the make up of who I am.
Sometimes though…this can be rather annoying…and I think it becomes this way when you REALLY start to like yourself. Love yourself. When you don’t really like or love you-these things can simply hurt. Sometimes…
It seems the world wants you to be anything but the realrawfreewildnonconforming Iamsohappyinmyownpersonalitybubblepleasedonotfreakinpopit-YOU.
So I try to be anything but.
What people that do not have their own best interests at heart, expect me to be.
Yes friends, I had a dream relationship with Khal Drogo. He bought me a sweet red leather jacket, and ice cream. He picked me up from my dorm every day to see how I was doing. At night we would sit barefoot on the grass under the stars, and talk for “hours.” He adored me. I woke up pretty amused! And of course, kind of bummed, but grateful for our day in the sun. Or should I say moon.
Another feeling I experienced when I woke up though, was a twinge of discomfort. I had forgotten what it felt like to hold someone’s affection this way, and to have someone be completely enamored with me. I can only describe it as discomfort because it has been quite a few years in my reality that I have experienced this type of attention from someone. It felt nice in the dream, albeit it only that. You all know how real they can feel.
It is in my nature to be affectionate, loving, and expressive to those who already do, or begin to take up space in my heart. I am aware this is not common of most to outwardly express it with such ease, even if they feel it. Rather than search for reciprocity I consider it my gift, and part of the way I help light up this crazy world. I am guessing the discomfort stemmed from the loss of recognizing how good it fucking feels to be shown love in this way. Excuse the french, but come on…doesn’t it feel fucking fantastic??
Anyway, I shared this dream on Facebook with some of my friends, and as usual, I have my one greatest cheerleader, who is always there to remind me, that I deserve what I dream. Another slight moment of familiar discomfort returns with her comment, but then I override it with what my true nature knows. YES. You are right my friend. You are right.
Although I might have to tweek the dream a tad, seeing that I am not in college anymore, and Jason Momoa might not have the time to see me every day. What with his travels and all…
The truth of the matter Is
I am not longing for a relationship. I am hungry for a connection. I am not waiting for “Mr. Right.” I am continuously working on myself to always feelright. But not for anyone else. Just me. I figure, if I am going to treat someone awesome, I need to feel awesome.
And as I’ve shifted my perceptions on what singleness means to me, I experience a different opportunity. Because I do not have the day to day romantic connection with anyone at this time, I open myself to what it feels like to heartily fall in love in other ways. When I first moved to Texas I met a girl in a meetup group who I instantly connected with. I fell in love with her spirit and beauty within weeks of getting to know her! She lights up my life. I am in love with the first savory bite of a really spicy jalapeño popper. I am in love with my California friends more than ever because I am often reminded they are irreplaceable. I am in love with my bedroom window, and the way the sun hits it later in the afternoon.
I fall completely in love with my Nephew and Niece every single time they call me “Curly Titi.”
Would it be nice to meet a cute guy who could talk books and pull me in for heated kisses while we’re taking a walk? Hell to the Yes. I rest in the knowing this is my future somewhere. So there is no need to wait for something that has already arrived. It’s just not my time, or I guess, it’s just not ours.
So to my 30+ single friends…You’ve asked, and I am answering…
Don’t Wait. Just Be.
P.s. Disclaimer…I do believe those in romantic partnerships still fall in love in other ways, but my perspective can only represent my current situation =)
I pulled up the text messages with clearly mundane, disinterested replies. I gave a huge throaty sigh, And as if a mother or great friend were scolding I heard myself say:
“Maggie of course you like him, he’s an asshole.”
So I am doing the Internet/Smartphone uhh…”dating” thing.
Actually don’t really like it, and don’t believe I’m going to meet “the one” this way, but figure I could use the practice, and some of the experiences I’ve had have been these wonderfully weird stories to share. Which IS one of the fun things about dating in my 30s compared to my 20s.
In a good way, I care less.
20s: Does HE like ME?
30s: Do I like HIM?
20s: He hasn’t called even though I texted him hello, what did I do? Maybe I should text one more time. I’ll add a cute unnaturally-posed selfie so he’ll be reminded of how pretty I am.
30s: Wait, that guy I saw last week hasn’t called. Oh well.
Where’s the beer I ordered?
Ya’ll wanna go home soon? I can’t wait to take off my bra.
(There’s always a but)…
I have noticed one habit I still haven’t completely shaken off that really needs to get squashed once and for all. And I am glad this has come to my attention NOW…while I…practice…”dating”…
I still go for assholes.
Oh yea, I used to date assholes. Chase assholes. Fall in love with them.
Spent the last year or so addressing this pattern, but hadn’t really dated to put into practice what I’d learned. Then recently I started to notice who I was paying more attention to.
The guys that didn’t have any descriptions on their profiles. The guys that looked like my asshole exes. The guys that didn’t want to actually meet me they just wanted to text a lot. Red flags. Everywhere.
And then I thought about the few exes I couldn’t say were jerks. I met them through friends. They were weird like me. They were dorky in some way like me. They were kind.
My ability to simply sit with the feeling without having any particular person or situation in mind is something I’ve only recently really sank into.
Yet I still love that teenage heart leap when someone you find extra interesting catches your attention. I wouldn’t really call myself a hopeless romantic… but rather a hopeful sapiosexual.
Meaty conversation, certainty in the uncertain, and a genuine interest in the world around us is what gets my heart pumping.
However, now I mean this with any type of relationship.
Romance, friendships, and work life…whomever, and wherever.
What it really ended up coming down to is the understanding that my energy in this life is precious. I don’t write this with any sense of exclusivity, but more so with a deeper sense of how this operates in my daily life. We experience the mundane and “normal” enough in our day to day. I understand every moment of my existence will not be filled with the type of love-feeling I am describing here,
I also understand that between the larger solid rocks, in that metaphorical jar of what goes in on my life, and with who…the tiny grains of sand fillers are what make it exactly that…fulfilling. So as I move forward making adjustments to my own energy, that includes adjusting interactions that align more with who I am.
(Refer back to the sapiosexual comment)
Because I heart to love,
I will never settle for less than the heart swells and butterflies.