While reading this post, keep in mind that I haven’t dated in almost 2-1/2 years. My reasons for not dating are twofold: (1) no one has asked and (2) even if someone did ask, I wasn’t ready. Still healing, still reflecting, still beating myself up over past mistakes. I can confidently say that I’m no longer beating myself up, I’m no longer reflecting and I’m much closer to being completely healed. I’m a work in progress.
One thing I can say is dating certainly has changed over the last 10 years. At least my view of it has. I remember when I would have one date with a guy and from that moment on he was my man. What in the world was that about? I have found that the sense of urgency to create labels has pretty much disappeared. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I’m older and my priorities have changed. I’m not anxious to be booed up. I’ve been married so there is no rush to head back down the aisle. There is no ticking biological clock. I have the luxury of just enjoying the pleasure of someone else’s company.
To be honest, I did not enter this situation feeling that way. I was nervous and didn’t know what to expect. I did feel pressure to “date with a purpose”. Isn’t that what you girls call it? Marriage-minded dating. Nothing casual. That sounds like a good plan for someone who is marriage-minded but I haven’t yet determined if that is in my future and I’ve discovered that there is absolutely no pressure to make a determination one way or the other. I know who I am and I love who I am just the way I am. As long as I stay focused and don’t compromise my morals, I think I’m good with just hanging out every now and then.
When I returned home from vacation on Friday I unpacked, did some laundry, paid bills, answered emails and had a meal with the kids. After about three hours I called him to let him know that I had made it back. We spoke on the phone for about an hour and made plans to see each other on Saturday. It had been more than a week since I’d seen him or spoken to him and I did miss him. On Saturday I had a bunch of errands to run, one of which was buying an outfit for the date. That evening he picked me up after church and we were off to see Spider Man. I was nervous and I have no idea why. My heart was pounding 100 beats per minute and I couldn’t relax. My mind kept fast-forwarding to the end of the evening … is he gonna try to kiss me? He didn’t on the first date. (Sidenote: When you haven’t been kissed in a really long time, you tend to obsess.)
The movie is over and we’re talking about it on the way back to my house. It was okay. The company was better than the actual movie. We get to my house and I give him a hug at the front door and he went home.
I’ll say it again, dating certainly has changed over the past 10 years. I can’t remember the last time I actually met and went out with someone who wasn’t pawing at me by the end of the night. So, I guess decent men actually still do exist. He may not be “mine” and that’s okay. Knowing that they are still out there is encouraging.