2 Dates 2 Days 2 Duds

I can definitely feel a bit of woe-is-me at the moment. I just want to date someone for chrissakes and I swear there are literally no available, worthwhile men at the moment. My friends are experiencing the same frustrations so I know it’s not just me.

When I’m frustrated like this I don’t make good choices.

I’m sure it was a bit of aggravation around Marshall’s communication that led me to deciding to meet John for a date. We had been chatting back and forth by text for about a week – very randomly and nothing intense, and had already set up a date, when I realized I hadn’t spoken to him on the phone. We agreed to a quick chat the night before our planned.

His initial text cadence was healthy and engaged and not over the top. But when I got on the phone with him, it felt like another person entirely. I chalked it up to nerves at first, but the conversation never improved. We went from seemingly having things in common to a relatively glaringly obvious mismatch. I knew from the phone conversation I shouldn’t have planned to meet him. I was actually annoyed with his phone conversation for reasons I can’t quite articulate – but that was the feeling I was left with which certainly isn’t a good sign.

And, I was already unsure about his looks. I try to be democratic in my dating choices, I really do, but I clearly have a formula for my physical preferences that is deep seated and hard for me to overcome. Tony overcame them, that’s for sure. But no one before or since has been able to jump that hurdle in my head.

We met the next night and, while he was exactly the physical let down I expected, the night started off well-enough. Until 10 minutes later when we didn’t have much to talk about. I have dozens of funny stories and good experiences to share and I do so easily, but only when I feel like the conversation merits that kind of engagement. He didn’t ask questions, he seemed oblivious to how to engage me (or any woman) and came off kind of dumb (maybe dopey is a better word because I know he’s smart and well educated with a good job). He couldn’t explain his job to me. He talked about his kids as if they were gods (this makes me nuts when parents are so in love with their kids that they are seemingly perfect) so finally I asked why he got divorced.

His reply “I have no idea.” Ok, that’s a first. No idea why you got divorced? After 3/4 years? Then he said she “cheated” on him. That would be “cheating” while they were separated under one roof and she already said she wanted a divorce. He really couldn’t pinpoint the demise of the marriage. I found it baffling. But then a light clicked on, he’s oblivious. He doesn’t see anything really except through some weird rose color glasses. Just gets through life one day to the next with no particular path or ambition. Everyone should be happy and there should be no conflict with anything. Once I realized just how oblivious he was, I asked if he had been dating. He then explained two relationships where he dated a woman for several months and then they just ghosted him. Had no clue why. Wow. Repeat behavior and he still can’t figure himself out.

We had been drinking – he drank more than me believe it or not – so the night passed with my inquisition 😂 into his life because I was fascinated. Same behaviors with family and friends. Relationships dissolved and he had no clue why. Just went along with life.

We kissed goodnight and it was horrible. He asked me out again and I nodded but couldn’t bring myself to say much, even though I knew we were not going out again. The next day he text politely and said a entirely ridiculous thing about fashion – looking back I didn’t respond very kindly (I was direct and to the point which can come across aggressive or mean in a text, I get it) and then I haven’t heard from him since. That’s fine. He wouldn’t understand why anyway! 😂

The next day I had matched with Jon and he gave me his number quickly because he was at soccer with his son. We had a quick back and forth exchange and then he sent me a video of a program he hosted. He looked super handsome, had an amazing voice, and was obviously really, really smart. Maybe an hour of back and forth text and he asked me out for that evening. I figured why not, lasts nights date was a bust and maybe this handsome guy would make up for it. At least he didn’t seem oblivious to the world.

Welp, I was wrong. Jon was equally as oblivious to the world as the first John. I couldn’t even believe I found two in a 24 hour span.

He was handsome and well dressed when he arrived. We started conversation pretty easily and found unusual topics for a first date (sustainable environments and criminal negligence). We made it through the first drink unscathed, until something dawned on me about his job. I asked him more detailed questions and uncovered that he had been a city cop for 20 years until retirement, and only more recently had become a professor (the video he sent me). Without any doubt, he was suppressing the city cop in him – I know it’s biased, but no joke, they are all seemingly cut from the same mold. He was putting on a little performance for me with his professor side because he felt I was an intelligent business woman. Was this super obvious – no, but the cues we’re there and I started picking up on them one by one.

Then I noticed other similarities to the first John. I asked this Jon about his marriage and he also stated he had NO CLUE why his wife wanted a divorce. By the time she told him she physically served him with papers. He spent a good twenty minutes talking about how this all went down and how he thought about it while I ordered my second glass of wine. Listening to him speak was like watching paint dry.

What happened to the interesting man he stared out to be?

He couldn’t hold up the performance. He is as dull as the day is long. He has no idea just how dull he is. Another oblivious man. I can’t believe I found two back to back.

This was the first date in a long time that I actually HAD to drink just to get though. I tried multiple times to end conversation and leave and he wasn’t picking up in any cues.

By the time we did leave I was pretty buzzed but not enough to ask him back to my place. Didn’t even matter because he invited himself – which I said a flat out NO! to. He wouldn’t stop talking to me by the car so I finally leaned in for a kiss goodnight and holy hell was it awful. His tongue was like an iron rod jammed into my mouth with zero flexibility or motion. It was the strangest kiss I’ve had in a long time. I couldn’t stop kissing him fast enough to get away from the poker tongue! 😂

I told my close girlfriend the next morning what happened and sent her the video he had shared with me. Turns out her sister had gone out with him the week before and felt exactly the same! When he text that morning he mentioned he would like to be waking me up in his “special way” and I quickly wrote I didn’t think we were a match.

With both men I recognize my lack of sticking to my “list” of requirements – at least my initial ones (that have never been wrong). I need to remind myself that, when we have the first phone call, if he’s not easily funny and I’m not laughing then he’s not going to be any better in person. Also, if the conversation isn’t organic (meaning you don’t have to pull out info, questions come from both sides easily, you are reciprocally engaged) then that also won’t be any better in person. Without fail, those two rules of mine have NEVER been wrong. The dates suck when the men don’t engage and are not funny. The dates are great when they do. This is exactly how Tony got around my physical attributes – he had me laughing so hard and was so engaged that I knew I had to meet him, and he kept it coming.

Just to add some insult to injury, a third man I was speaking to via text only also told me he had NO IDEA why his wife wanted a divorce. I went back and looked more closely at his photos, and while he was super handsome, he also looked intimidatingly serious. I dove into his background a bit more and found out he was also in law enforcement for many years. It felt like deja vu! I politely and quickly told him we were not a match.

I know I’m cycling too fast and need a break, but while I’m out of work dating is a great time filler and distraction. I just wish there was one decent guy out there for me.

Goodbye Marshall

This post is going to take more time to write than its worth.

But, the thought of Marshall woke me in the middle of the night and I had to have a stern taking to myself.

I didn’t answer Marshall’s phone call Thursday. Nor did he leave a message. Didn’t hear a word from him at all. And it was bugging me – figure that one out – I don’t care about him at all, had no desire for anything more or less from him, but it bugged me he just ghosted me like that.

So I text him Tuesday and a quick recap of the text went something like this:

M: Hi Marshall

Him: Hi Madeline

M: How are you?

Him: I’m well. Working and making bulletproof meatloaf. How are you?

M: Bulletproof meatloaf? What needs to be bulletproof about a meatloaf? Or do you mean you leave out the bread (that just makes it a big meatball! 😂)

M: My friend was here all weekend and we went to 13th hour haunted house and had so much fun screaming and running!! The actors loved us!! 😂🙃

Him: Yes essentially a healthy meatball. Glad you had fun.

M: Is something wrong? You didn’t exactly open up conversation in that last text and I haven’t heard from you in a while.

Him: Tried calling you Thursday, didn’t hear back.

M: You left a message?

Him: No

M: I missed that but don’t know why you wouldn’t call or text again.

And that’s it. No reply. Nothing.

So why does it bother me? It shouldn’t because I already knew I didn’t care. In our last conversation prior to this I was sort of getting sick of trying to understand his perspective on lifestyle coaching and getting zero engagement.

For instance, he wants to coach people on the importance of sleep. Since I had done quite a bit of research for myself earlier this year, I felt I could discuss this topic with him and open dialogue. He started with “I get a solid 8 hours of deep sleep every evening as tracked by my special watch.” I asked if that was possible because in my research NO humans need or get more than 2-3 hours of deep sleep per evening because you need more REM sleep. He flat out disagreed, told me his research and his watch supported it and basically shut down my information. In frustration I went back to do more research and came up with the exact same info after digging further. He told me I wasn’t looking into the right resources. When I asked him which resources he only indicated research from his coaches. He is like talking to a wall. So as much as I wanted to learn more, his inability to flex (which he claims is his greatest strength) was astounding.

I’m convinced this is a man who isn’t capable of deep relationship. He doesn’t have ANY. He has just started a relationship with his 17 year old daughter in the past year. When I ask who his friends are and who he confides in and speaks to, he can only refer to his coaching buddies.

I guess I’m am entirely confused about what self-actualization is because it feels to me like self-absorption.

Anyway, this post is about me, not Marshall.

Why did the idea of him not replying to me wake me up? I hate when people say one thing and behave differently so this normally eats at me – but I didn’t like him enough to let it disturb my sleep. So that’s when the stern talking to cane into play. I told my brain to shut down, I do not care about Marshall, I do not care that he is the only man in my life at present, he wasn’t going to fill any real voids for me and I wasn’t going to allow my brain to throw a wrench in that I “needed” to hold on to the little I had with him.

Nope. Not holding on, brain, so let it the fuck go. There will be better for me. Period.

Once I properly chastised myself I fell immediately into a sound sleep, woke up and deleted Marshall.

I am still surprised that, even though I have come so far that my brain wants to go back to its bad habits. I don’t need a man like Marshall in my life JUST to have a man in my life, they are a dime a dozen. I want the right man and he was nothing more than a placeholder. Placeholders shouldn’t wake me at night or even require thought.

Like I said, that took longer to write than it was worth. But it’s good for me to continue to remind myself I am worthy. Marshall, on his best day, didn’t deserve me.

Thank you, next.

Tonight’s date is with John. I already know this isn’t going to go well after we had our first phone conversation last night. I’m sitting here typing this berating myself for being a coward not to cancel the date after I spoke to him.

The Candy Man

Since Marshall wasn’t really right for me, I have been peeking in and out of the dating apps.  I connected with a man who, on paper, seemed like a pretty good match.  Handsome, tall, well-educated, good job, looking for a LTR.

Jim is a nice man with plenty to say.  Easy to connect with on text and looking forward to a phone call.  We chatted by text a couple days and then had one call before he was off to China for a week for work.  He was super easy to talk to and had an interesting background, but there were two things I couldn’t quite put my finger on.  One was the nasal pitch in his voice seemed to come and go depending on how excited he was when he was talking.  I know this probably sounds rude, but I’m not saying it to him so here goes – when he got excited about something and started laughing and speaking, his voice rose in pitch and became almost whiney and was a real turn off.  He also found himself quite funny and I couldn’t even follow his stories enough to get the punch line to laugh, I kept thinking I was missing something!  The second thing was how he spoke about himself in passing and that he referred to himself as bad, goofy, and some others that I can’t recall – but words I wouldn’t really want to use to describe a man (or even myself) .  He was also very focused on physique and more than once said how handsome, youthful and fit he was.  Don’t bang your own drum, dude,  Its so not attractive.

I guess that was more than 2 things I noticed were not quite right.

He kept in touch via text while in China, which was nice,  A daily short check in, nothing much.  We had another phone conversation when he returned from his business trip to set up a date.  The seance phone call cemented the feelings I had gotten in the first, he wasn’t right for me.

I already knew before the date I wasn’t going to like him enough, but I wanted to be hopeful.  He was super nice.

But, on the second phone call he also explained he was married twice.  2 older daughters on this coast and 2 younger daughters on the other coast.  I know life takes some pretty strange turns, but an absent parent to 2 small girls, one who is autistic, strikes me the wrong way.  I’ve really gotten judgey lately.

I arrived to the bar, my standard first date bar, and he had secured a seat for us.  The waiter came quickly to offer drinks and we started chatting.  He was handsome, but (keeping with the judgey theme here) not my kind of man.  Since I had committed to the date, I was going to be pleasant and hope for the best.

Jim is easy to talk to, there’s plenty on his mind.  He asked me so many questions that I spent some time story telling.  He has ADD so he often had me repeat and backtrack.  He commented after a while that I wasn’t asking him any questions (see, in my mind, that means the person isn’t really all that interested in you when they are not asking questions – I don’t ask because I don’t need to find out more because I’m not that interested….I think everyone does this)  I did ask him some more questions about his children and he tried to tell me several stories that he started with “this is a funny story” but honestly, it wasn’t.  He just wasn’t funny and his storytelling ability wasn’t all that strong.

Then he teased me about a few things.  Teasing is ok, even funny sometimes.  But when it’s done over and over, repeating the same tease, it becomes unfunny pretty damn fast.

On my profiles I indicated I am 47 when I am actually 52.  I do this for search purposes and every profile also clearly states my correct age within the profile.  Its common dating app behavior.  Since he missed the fact that I was 52 in the profile and had to go back to check, he quickly made a joke (in one of our phone calls) about my lying on the dating sites to get younger men.  I did try to explain why I did it, but he didn’t want to hear it – he thought it was hysterical that I lied.  And that became his “go-to” joke of the evening.  I believe he probably commented on age about 10 times before I finally told him I didn’t find it funny.  It didn’t bother me, I wasn’t upset, it just wasn’t funny.  At one point when he did it again and I rolled my eyes, he jumped up to come over to hug me and say he was sorry if his teasing upset me.  I explained to hime, again, I wasn’t upset, I am not worried about my age, I simply just didn’t find the humor in it, yet he kept joking ad nauseam. He didn’t see my point of view and insisted I was really upset that he was teasing me.  I really just wanted to get out of there at this point.

Jim works for a large candy distributor and had brought me a massive bag filled with goodies from his work, he was really kind, but he was (exactly as he had described) goofy.  Goofy is not a trait I like.  You can be goofy with your kids, you can be goofy with your mates, but when you are on a date – please don’t be goofy.  I don’t think he can help it, he is actually a goofy kind of guy in a doh-doh-doh kind of way.

The date went fine, we shared some food.  He did another (what he thought was kind) thing and let me order an app he knew Ioved but he wouldn’t eat, and didn’t say so.  When the food came, of course I only ate half and the rest went to waste.  It wasn’t until a bit later whenI realized it was being wasted that I asked him if he didn’t like Tuna Tartare and he admitted he didn’t but was trying to be polite.  I only thought it was wasteful – had he told me he didn’t eat it, I would have eaten the entire app myself and only tasted the others, allowing him more food for the choices he liked.  Or, just not shared. Either would have been fine had he spoken up.  It wasn’t a bad thing, I just thought it was a bit strange not to speak up.

He mentioned multiple times how his new apartment really needed a woman touch.  He complimented me much too much, particularly on my shape (muscles and slimness).  He was a bit googly-eyed over me, which would be welcome when I like someone! :\  He talked to much about his own age (57) and how youthful and fit he was.  Honestly, he did look younger than his age, but not as young as he thought – he did not look like a man in his 40s.

Jim really didn’t do anything wrong, he was just too goofy for me overall and his whiney voice grated on me by the end of the evening.  I had to drive him round to his car parked in a further lot so we kissed goodnight….it was not a good kiss, so it further cemented the “definitely not for me in my head.

I thanked him in person and by text later that evening.  He text 2 days later that he was thinking of me, or at least I think thats what the text was because he used an acronym I never say “TAU” (thinking about you?).  I didn’t reply as I was out with my friend, but I also still haven’t replied.  I should be kind and not ghost because I know how it sucks.  If he writes again, I will be honest, but if he doesn’t, I will let it go.

I feel like dating is becoming more of a drag than not lately.

 

More Marshall

Marshall did come back after our first date and subsequent first date sex.

I know that I am enjoying time with Marshall because there is no one else and I find him harmless.  And, I mean harmless to ME.  Marshall just isn’t the kind of guy I can fall for.

I believe I mentioned in the first post that he didn’t ask very many, if any, questions.  He feels like he is exactly where he is supposed to be in life and things that are meant to  be will manifest themselves, he doesn’t need to pursue them as long as he stays on the path he is on.  He doesn’t feel as though his life is missing anything, including a partner.

He can be equal parts interesting and frustrating to speak to.  Interesting because he’s got so much training in his coaching fields and I am curious about that.  But he is actually unable to share much because he will often say his meetings and courses just manifest themselves into something special thats hard to describe.  He can’t actually explain what they talk about, what they accomplish during courses, and how it gets applied.  If  I were ask him to give me some pointers or direction, he tells me that coaches are good listeners and not there to offer advice.  When we speak about something that he “knows about” there is no debate or discussion because he has already done his research and made up his mind about (whatever the topic is) and doesn’t see the point in debate as he knows he is correct.    I find it nearly impossible to have an actual engaging conversation with him, or perhaps better described as a reciprocal conversation, because he doesn’t actually interact in that way – now I am finding HIM hard to describe! lol.

Marshalls communication cadence is a killer for me in any relationship that I am interested in pursuing further.  He will write and call at random, say random things, and then not appear again until a day later.  When I questioned him about this, and also explained that it was difficult style for me because I am a words of affirmation person, he reinforced it was “my issue” because that was his style.  He isn’t tied to his phone and doesn’t let that guide him during a day.  He texts if he is thinking of me, but it doesn’t mean he needs to engage in further conversation with me.  He calls when he wants to hear my voice, but doesn’t leave a message asking to call back, or even send a follow up text to say he called.

I tried to flirt with him a little by text and ask if he liked it.  He replied of course he liked it and it was very welcome.  But after a few sexy text with no engagement, I stopped.  Non-reciprocated flirting is not fun.

He stopped by my home twice for a quick visit and some general making out and we discussed where we would have sex.  My boys are almost always home and my house would take some planning.  He said he had no issue having sex at his home, with his older daughter upstairs.  We planned the next date out, with an unspoken arrangement to go back to his home afterwards.  One night he was over we got a bit hot and heavy and I was pleasantly surprise he was able to make me cum, quite hard, with his fingers alone.  I don’t recall the last time a man did that.  I was left breathless.

So, I had pretty squarely put Marshall into the “right now” camp and was content with my decision.  Decent enough sex, fun enough dates, and a nice enough man until another comes along thats more engaging than he is.

The next date was fun, I stick to two glasses of wine which is enough for me to loosen up but not be drunk.  During the date I told him I had quite a bit of surgery and was conscious of the scars on my belly during sex.  He acknowledged it, but didn’t say anything.  I’ve already realized Marshall is never going to “give me” what I need – the words, but I am still struck by his lack of engagement on whats clearly an important topic to me.  Other than the first date, he has never commented on my looks, what he likes about me, what he likes from me, or what he finds engaging between us.  That’s because, for him, everything is as it should be and it doesn’t need discussion.  This is starting to irk me, but I am trying to understand his perspective and ways because I am curious (enough) about him.

When we went back to his house, my brain went into judgement mode, which is a bit unusual.  The house is so tiny, but ill kept.  Crammed with furniture that doesn’t belong in a small home, poorly organized.  It didn’t feel clean to me because there are gadgets everywhere – air purifiers, water purifiers, a little indoor garden etc.  He has a dog which is allowed everywhere in the home, and I personally don’t like this.  Even Mike’s apartment, which he had only lived in for a few months, felt clean, organized and well kept.  This house felt like a shell with lots of stuff crammed inside.  This wasn’t a great feeling for me.

The sex that night was good, not great.  Sort of like the first time.  He tried to make me cum, but my body wasn’t having any of it.  I really didn’t know what he liked and didn’t like other than his cock staying hard.  His body odor disturbs me a bit.  Because he is all-natural everything and wants to eliminate all toxins where he can, he doesn’t use deodorant with aluminum.  But when he sweats, the deodorant he is using just isn’t doing the job and I am super sensitive to smell.  He is also fully ketogenic – so he sort of tastes mildly like broccoli.

The night wasn’t bad, but since we walked in his home, I was off….my brain was whirring in too many directions.

A day or two later I happened to be at a grocery store near his home and he happened to text.  He asked me to stop by, so I did.  we took the dog for a walk and chatted about random nonsense.   He always holds my and which is sweet, and stopped for multiple kisses.  I wonder if he thinks showing the attention is enough?  I don’t even know.

Thats was last Monday.  I didn’t hear from him on Tuesday or Wednesday, nor did I text.  Thursday night he finally called me, but I didn’t answer because I was going out on another date.  He didn’t leave a message.  I’m writing this post on Sunday night and I still haven’t heard from him.

I’ve thought about him, and I’ve thought about texting him to say hello.  Some little things with me have happened that I know he would be interested to chat about.  But, I feel like “why”…why should I bother to reach out to him when he doesn’t seem to even try to communicate in a way that works better for me.  In a very passive way he has made it clear this is how he does things, and he doesn’t see the need to change.

He said one very telling thing to me the last time we were together – that he has only ever been in love once with the first girl he dated.  He’s never had his heart broken by a woman and he loved his wife, but wasn’t necessary in-love with his wife.  He just thought getting married was the thing to do then.    He hasn’t even felt the beginning stages of love in the past 20 years.  Don’t you think that’s a bit odd?  Don’t we all get those butterflies at some point when we meet someone great?

I think he only gets that feeling with his life coaching things, he talks about his coaches and his practice like a lover and gets a glow on his face and a far away look in his eyes.  Maybe he doesn’t actually know how to love a partner because he’s so self-absorbed.  Someone said in the comments that addicts tend to become addicted to something else once they stopped drinking and I can see how addicted he is to getting to his next level of self.  He talks about the theory of aging backwards and living well not your hundreds – when he asked if I am interested in that I clearly stated “No.”  I mean it, I don’t want to outlive my children, family and friends even if I am in the best health in the world.  I am also just fine with a little bit of negative ions, aluminum in my deodorant and carbs.  I now he doesn’t think his life is hard work, but it is for anyone around him – he just doesn’t care.

I have said to him I think it would be quite difficult for anyone to be in relationship with him unless they were in a similar space of growth.  He disagreed with me, because he sees me as open-minded and in a hyper-growth stage of life.  I don’t think he even sees himself anymore, he’s chasing some sort of feeling, some place of perfect self-actualization.  I read that people who are seeking this state, or have attained it, tend to prefer to be detached, like their privacy, and are independent of their social environment as they are so hyper-focused on self-growth.  I don’t even think I want to be with a person like that – I want them to be focused on me AT THE SAME TIME they are working on making themselves a better human!

I admit I am interested and curious about all of this self-actualization and the coaching, but being around Marshall oftentimes just feels weird, like we are not sharing the experience but we are both in the same place at the same time having the experience together – does that even make sense?

Anyway, I find it curious he hasn’t called me or text me in a while, so that may or may not be the end of Marshall.

 

 

Big Sister

I’m struggling being a big sister to an adult woman. Since I was adopted, and raised apart from my half sister, our relationship is non-traditional. We are closer than ever as she approaches her wedding day in 2 months, but this closeness also brings frustration learning about one another.

We have the built in family connection. She’s my sister and I adore her. I prioritize her in my life. I realized after my breakdown last year how much she adores me back and I was taking her love for me for granted. I have tried to be much closer to her this past year. My timing may suck since she’s about to be married, but you work with what you have.

The wedding, of course, is anxiety fueled and she’s an emotional creature – maybe even more so than I am. We are quite similar in our ability to be so direct it often comes out unkind and we’ve definitely been having our share of crossed wires.

Lately I just feel like ALL the wires are crossing and we can’t have any communication without a misunderstanding.

I have to admit sometimes I find it all too much. I am still struggling to find myself and I know the people around me are frustrated that I am still depressed so I’ve mostly stopped talking about it with them. I call if I feel I hit a bottom and need support, but otherwise I’m back to remaining silent about my own feelings. In particular, I don’t want to cloud my sisters special time. I already have terrible shame that I chose to go to Mexico for the surgery the day she got engaged. Even though the subsequent terrors were not of my doing, they impacted her in a significant way as she tried to support me…during what should have been the happiest time in her life. I will never forgive myself for that and the shame and guilt I feel is overpowering.

But every time I try to do what I believe would please get, I seem to get it wrong. Maybe it’s because I don’t actually know her well enough. Maybe it’s because I see her through a different lens. Maybe I’m trying too hard. Maybe I just don’t know how to have an adult female relationship that’s as close as ours is. I don’t know.

I do know it’s bumpy and I want to fix it, but that can’t come until we can have a serious conversation/ maybe early next year. I just don’t want to add any anxiety. But, I fear it’s all I seem to be doing lately.

Planning her bachelorette has been horrible. What I wanted to be a classy and fun weekend isn’t the experience her friends, or her, were expecting. They would have been happy with a pizza and beer weekend – and getting a bit sloppy drunk. I shouldn’t have taken the responsibility on my shoulders when I don’t know her friends well enough. I should have asked more questions and spent less money. But I planned what I believed she would love, and it turns out it’s all too much. For her, for them, for me. I’m just over it all.

Without getting into the entire story, I just wanted the long weekend to pass with her being happy and no one else complaining. I wanted it over before it even started. I am too old to be doing this for the first time. What started out as excitement and anticipation has turned into a bit of dread.

I also found it highly unusual that every friend of hers was invited with a plus one and I wasn’t, when I asked to bring one before the invites were sent.  I replied with a +1 even though I didn’t actually have someone to bring.  Her mother doesn’t think I should have the distraction because I will be “working.”  Working until the party, then mostly alone as the ones I love are in the spotlight and its not “my” family exactly.   I do want to bring a date, but I don’t have someone who can easily fit in, so I am going to let them know, but I don’t actually liked being told I shouldn’t have a date.  They seem to be worried I would be distracted with a date – who wouldn’t show up until the party in any case.  I am already going to be distracted with 3 teen boys trying to get dressed in Tuxedos when I am not there to help them.

I just want her happy and I seem to be failing at giving her this happiness. Now I just feel like I will also fail her the day of her wedding as the Maid of Honor. It’s overwhelming me and making me want to pull away and get away from being in such a close relationship. It makes me realize I’m not very good at relationships like this, and makes me think it’s why I attract men who aren’t ready for relationships. I don’t know if that’s true or not, I don’t think I put negative energy into the universe but lately I feel so judged.

Judged that I went to Mexico. Judged that I’m now too skinny. Judged that I like fancy things. Judged that I speak my mind and it doesn’t always come out so nicely. Just always judged and found lacking. I don’t know when I’ve felt this defeated (consciously felt at least) for such a long stretch of time.

The only single place I feel at ease, confident and comfortable is within my Peloton community.

Granted, much of that community is social media and not “real” relationship, and maybe that’s why I feel safe. I do have real life Peloton friends as well and I feel like their entire approach to life is just different than what I’ve experienced ever before. It’s a community of support. A community of accountability. There are challenges we all get to meet together. We work together towards a common goal. It makes me want to help others who are just starting out with changes in their lifestyle.

Some days I seriously consider becoming some type of coach. I think I have a lot to offer if I could find the right niche. (I believe even Morava picked up n this in a comment!)

And, if the saying is true that you attract what you put out there, then it’s super interesting the man I’m currently seeing is in all sorts of transcendence. Maybe a bit too much for me, but I’m sure I could have a lot to learn from him.

I’m unsure how to manage my sister. I’m turning inward which is also making her upset because I’m withdrawn but I don’t know what else to do.

I read a few of her text and her Mom’s text to a friend of mine and she felt the same way -that somehow I was being penalized, or perhaps “managed” is a better word.  “we’ve got to make sure Maddy doesn’t jump off the deep end again” or “we don’t want any drama at the wedding.”  I may be wrong, but my instincts with these types of things are not usually off.

The wedding is now 3.5 weeks away and what was very exciting for me to be a part of feels like a drag now.  I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, yet I feel like something is wrong at every turn.  I am truly happy for her and I am touched to the core she asked me to be the MOH, but I am starting to feel like I was put in this position so I can be managed, rather than because I was her first choice.  It just sucks, feeling this way before the wedding when it should be such an exciting time for both of us.

Another Chapter Finishes

I learned last week that my contract will end in my current role. I wasn’t surprised, but I was hopeful.

I suspect they did try to bring me in, but I’m overqualified and they are laying off, not hiring. I believe I made a decent impression and showed them what I can bring to the table what they do not have within the team.

In any case, my last day is next week

That also means the money dries up. I don’t want to panic, but I’m pretty anxiety ridden about not having an income. I can manage for a month or two, but beyond that I have to start to withdraw from my long term savings which makes me feel sick to my stomach.

I’m sick of running as fast I can in life and I feel like there’s no rest. It always feels like an uphill battle. I didn’t think I would burn out the way I did last year but it’s had such a profound affect on me that I can no longer think and behave the same. I don’t want to work like that anymore, I want to live and breathe. But. Money.

Same as anyone else.

I’ve been looking for a job for a solid 6 months and there has been absolutely nothing out there. Even lower levels or different industries. I can’t even get an interview. My friends who lost their jobs in ’16 along with me are in the same boat, but they are all married and have 2 incomes. I know they feel pressure but it’s a different kind.

My x has stepped up a bit more than usual. I think I’ve learned a lesson on how to interact with him so that it doesn’t cause me massive anxiety. He will push me to a breaking point and I just can’t waiver with my initial decisions. I notice when I stay the course, and really refuse to budge that he backs down and makes his own decisions, which have actually included contributing to some finances for the kids.

I’m very worried and stressed. Add a relatively newish relationship with my adult sister and my nerves are not doing well. I find myself wanting to retreat from everyone again and hide. I’m beginning to think I’m really just not a social creature. I don’t think this is a new feeling for me, I just don’t think I’ve identified it before and tuned into it. I’ve always said I don’t really like people, but more and more lately, I don’t really like anyone. My frustration with people rises quickly and maybe it’s because of my anxiety, but maybe it’s because I just don’t like social interaction. I don’t really know but I think it’s something I need to pay better attention to.

Speaking of which, I have my sisters bachelorette party Which I worked really hard to plan and now feel like I’ve been penalized for over-planning. I wanted to surprise her and make is super special and it seems she would have been happier being stupid drunk for 2 days with no planning.

Lately, I feel like I can’t catch a break.

Yesterday

I’ve been thinking of Tony on repeat for the past 48 hours.

My son and I watched a movie called “Yesterday” based on Beatles music. The movie is super cute and well worth the watch. I hadn’t heard of it before and it’s about a worldwide blip which erases The Beatles from existence (along with cigarettes and Coke among other things!). A young man takes all their songs and reintroduces them to the world, having to recall all the lyrics and music makes the movie so much fun along the way and it’s entirely singable. Very quirky and unexpected.

All I could think of was “I knew a person who could have been the lead in that movie”. Tony has been in my mind since I’ve seen it. He would take such joy in this movie and it’s silly and sweet journey. I couldn’t help but think of him all during the movie (besides the fact he sang many of these songs over out time together) and in the following hours.

Plus, my son and I have been listening to the Beatles on repeat for 2 days as well.

It’s sort of killing me inside.

So what can I do about that? When something resonates so strongly it becomes a physical thing again. I know what joy he would get watching this movie. I would love to share it with him.

Nothing. I can do nothing.

What did I do?

I posted on IG, and now I know he’s watching. I posted that the movie was fabulous, you should go watch it and “I used to know someone who could be the lead in this movie because he knew every song by heart.” I posted what I was thinking and feeling.

Is it poking the bear again? Maybe. I am not trying to solicit contact. That was the best way I could get this overwhelming feeling out into the universe without reaching out to him directly.

So there’s that. 🙄

The First Surprise

Ever since A week ago Sunday I’ve been pretty mellow. Whatever was eating at me, which probably included some PMS, has passed. I am overall less anxious.

I am bummed about Mike. Yep, I still think about it. Is it obsessing? I dunno. Maybe. I am starting to believe it’s just the way I process stuff. Maybe I can’t change that, maybe I can. I still really don’t know. I only know I can control the behavior. I made a last attempt, despite my better senses, and invited him to a party this Saturday. He replied immediately, said he was interested, and then said he had to see what his kiddo was doing. It took him 4/5 days to get back and decline. I suppose at least he’s polite? Ugh.

I also suppose that’s the equivalent of sticking a needle in my eye for a man I’ve only gone out with twice. I shouldn’t have done it. He’s past his expiration and I need to stop.

But it does eat at me. I just wish I knew why with these guys. What is it that I can’t seem to make it past the start? I don’t think it’s sex, I just don’t agree that’s the deal breaker for seeing someone or not again. I believe he met someone else around the same time as me and she’s a better choice for him. Or whatever. Who cares. I need to stop thinking about it.

Tom continues to check in mostly daily. A good morning almost every single morning and then a random evening check in. I will reply like I reply to any friend. But the minute I sense he wants to get sexy I just stop. Sure, I would love to go out with him and give him a sexual spin per se, but I’m not interested in the phone sex with him. He can’t seem to find time to see me and I never ask. If he says something like “I wish I could kiss you right now” I usually say “me too!” And it drops.

At one point over the past weekend, when I was drinking, he sent a text to ask if I was having fun. I replied that I was drunk by that point. He replied with “nice” and then sent a video of his daughter taking a riding lesson. I was seriously like WTF? I write back “Very nice. But if I’m telling you I’m drunk, the last thing on my mind is watching a video of your daughter.” I truly didn’t think he would write again after that little dig. But he did and laughed it off.

That’s the end of the better selection of men the last month. I am bored, frustrated and tired of looking for Mr. Right.

I was scrolling again but matches are non-existent these days. I was surprised to see my first match, an oldie but goodie: Rob.

I reached out to say hello and ask how his kids were. He replied and said “we should get a drink!” So I called his bluff and said “let’s go as friends!” He agreed. A few days later I asked when he wanted to get the drink? I was surprised he made a plan!

We met a week ago Thursday at a local bar and had a fun time. Since I didn’t have any investment in him this time around, I was able to keep the conversation humming along. If I had still felt like he had potential, I may have been frustrated he didn’t ask a lot of questions. He remembered more than I thought. When we left we have an amazing makeout session in the Parking lot. I could feel how excited he was. He felt different than last year, much more confident.

We parted amicably and I sent a follow up text later: how about we are FWB, it could be fun. He replied with an absolute yessssss and 10 exclamation points. Said a few more positive things out thinking it could be a great things and I said goodnight. He said he will ask me out again. That was a week ago. It hasn’t crossed my mind. But it was a nice surprise.

I think I can do it now, FWB. But only with certain men that have no long term potential for me.

I’m still frustrated about Mike and bummed no one can just be honest about what happens.

I know all of this sounds like I’m only focused on dating but it’s not even close. It’s just that I need to write about dating as it’s the most frustrating thing that I can’t handle alone.

Haunted Hay Ride

So I went on my very first activity date! In fact, it’s probably the only activity date I’ve ever been on, come to think of it! I really need to step up my dating game.

It’s been an interesting couple weeks since I realized I don’t have to overthink every man as a “potential” or not. I can enjoy a man just for company. I have a feeling it’s actually good practice for me. Something clearly isn’t going right if I can’t find a man who wants to go on more than 2-3 dates with me.

I met Marshall the usual way, on Bumble and we had a nice online conversation and switched to text. Text turned to phone. I wouldn’t say it was the easiest conversation, it required a bit of effort to keep a flow, but he was kind, sweet and interested. Divorced for many years with an older daughter, a great job, house and dog, well educated and articulate. No immediate red flags.

When I showed my friend his photo they made faces and said “beefcake” or “meathead”. Neither has a good connotation. He’s quite built up in his photos and I get what they see, but his personality is contradictory to his physique, so I wanted to meet him.

He had something I would equate to a boys shyness, which was very appealing. I felt like he liked me and was a bit fascinated he liked me so quickly. It was cute. The conversation never, not even once, wandered into sexual territory. I found him interesting with a diverse background. We hit upon how people change in their lives after trauma. Obviously that would be an instant connection for me and I wanted to learn more. We agreed it was better to tell those stories in person.

Recently, his daughter moved from Brazil back to his home, and he was a sole caretaker of a young adult. He was keeping her busy with whatever he could – and one of those things was horror movies and haunted houses. When he was telling me about them I also got excited because I love them so much and not everyone is a fan of horror. I mentioned to him that would be a fabulous first date and he ran with it! He booked us a scary hay ride for the following weekend!

I was a bit leery that could go all sorts of wrong since it would be a first date, but then I figured I could manage through no matter what. If he enjoyed these things the way I did it would be fun regardless if we were attracted to one another or not. I was looking forward to it.

Marshall wasn’t a constant communicator, but he always made sure I knew he was interested in hearing from me and speaking to me. I couldn’t predict when I might hear from him, but I knew I would. He would indicate that when we didn’t speak that he missed having a chat that day – not in the saccharine way I usually fall for, but more straightforward like “I enjoy our conversations and miss when we don’t connect”. A bit different than the full-on I normally go for, but all good all the same.

Friday night arrived and it was a pleasant surprise for me not to feel like I should get “dressed” for the date. I kept my makeup low key and wore sweatpants and a hoodie with a denim jacket – we were going to a cornfield after all. I’m starting to believe there is something overtly sexy about me which I actually don’t realize and don’t seem to have control over (because I truly don’t fully understand it). I’ve heard the comment so frequently that’s there’s just “something in my look” that I can no longer discount it. No female friends ever hint at anything like this, I don’t look in the mirror and see it (unless I am trying to be sexy, that’s entirely different to me than this thing men keep talking about). My tone of flirting in text, my voice on the phone, my eyes in a photo…I’m not being obnoxious when I say I don’t get it – I think I look like an attractive woman, but don’t feel anything about me reads overtly sexy. This is why I realized I was a bit relieved to be in sneakers for this date.

One of the first things he said when he saw me was “you look great, you’re hair is so sexy.”😂🙄. I can’t win. Lol.

Anyway, I digress. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw him – he was absolutely more slim in person than his photos a no gym rat muscle man was evident. I knew those muscles were there, but he didn’t have that appearance of spending way too much time on the gym to earn the title “meat head “. He was handsome in a non-traditional way and had an easy smile. I knew the night would be fine.

And the night was fine, perfect. There were so many great moments. We really had fun and got a lot of silly scares in massive cornfields! I loved it.

Without recounting every step here were some highlights:

I noticed in the car the conversation was stilted. He wanted me to speak, but when I was quiet too long, he would start up. He’s in sales so I’m a little fascinated how reserved he is overall. He mentioned he prefers to listen than speak.

I realized he wasn’t asking questions. He would answer anything I asked, but I didn’t feel he was as interested in finding out more about me. Conversely, he held my hand the entire car ride and kissed me the moment we stood outside the car. His love languages (he took the quiz when I told him about it!) are physical touch and quality time.

He treated me like a girlfriend. Held my hand the entire time. Pulled me close. Wanted to hold me (we stood in line for several haunted attractions at the farm). Kissed me frequently and deeply. I love this kind of behavior and I fall into it quite easily but since this was unlike sitting in a bar and drinking and overtly flirting, this genuinely felt more intimate. He didn’t let go of me the entire evening, which I adored, but still found super intimate for a first date

While on the hayride he held me while I gazed up at the stars. Despite being around a bunch of people, it was very romantic. He couldn’t take his eyes off of me or his hands from holding me to him.

Our night was excellent. But, not especially easy or fluid in my opinion. We laughed, but not so much because he made me laugh as much as creepy people jumping out of the woods and scaring the shit out of me!

He told me during the evening he didn’t drink and he ate Keto. I know it’s silly but both of those things disappoint me. He is also an “enlightened” type – a Tony Robbins protege who is building his own life-coaching skills. He is always in “presence” and feels his life is exactly where it should be. He doesn’t view not having a partner or being in love as “missing something”. My spidey-sense began to kick in, something wasn’t what it should be. I don’t think I’m ready for transcendence.

We decide to have a drink after the activity. It was at the bar that I heard his story. The short version was that he is an alcoholic, recovering now for about 6 years or so – well that threw me for a loop. The first man I ever dated before divorce was an alcoholic. Frank couldn’t maintain recovery. Marshall was different, he was not only recovered but had moved into a very different plane of life.

Healthy and clean living where fitness is a priority. Mediation every day. No microwave, organic food, sleep monitoring, etc etc. Transcendent. Evolved. Operating on a different plane.

Not. For. Me.

Why do I find someone who has turns their life around so fantastically a bit, well, irritating?

I’m not sure, exactly.

I like my wine. I like to complain. I don’t want to always find the peace in every situation. I don’t think I want to work so hard to change everything to achieve “presence” and “enlightenment”.

And then he says, I’ve done more than most. Yea, so maybe. I find much joy these days in coaching others, but I am inconsistent and can’t really hold myself accountable. I have made a major change in my life, but not to a point where I’m so zen and want to take a 2 week course with a guru in India to talk about my enlightenment.

Don’t get me wrong, he didn’t push his agenda AT ALL. Not even once. I asked a lot of questions. I was curious, engaged and interested. He’s got an amazing story.

And he knew I had one too – but he didn’t ask.

So I found that to be – well, false.

He didn’t ask me questions. I don’t think it’s because he’s not interested, I actually believe because he feels it should come organically – if the story is meant to be told it will be told, but not because he asks me tell it.

It may have been around this time I mentioned that my love language might be an issue for him since I know I’m all about “words of affirmation”. Him sitting waiting for me to tell my stories wasn’t going to happen as organically as he thought – I need to feel someone is interested and engaged and can share and provide feedback. I don’t get that from him. I also need him to engage first more frequently.

Which is interesting…

Because, when you go through AA successfully, you then become a sponsor. He has been a very good sponsor to many, which made me think, could he really be in relationship with someone who didn’t experience the disease? He didn’t have any truly successful relationships in the past several years – nice girls and all for a few months, but no one growing in the same track as him. But he was successful as a mentor and sponsor, which means he has the support skills … so back to my theory he may only understand how to do that for like-minded individuals.

I knew I wouldn’t be either. I didn’t want to be. It didn’t mean I didn’t like him or the time we spent together. I think he’s a good man. He’s a fabulous kisser! But I’m sure he’s not for me.

Once I arrived at my decision, which was getting there all night mind you, his story just sealed the deal for me…I figured I could have sex with him! 😂

I asked him home.

We was slow and gentle. Never going beyond what I allowed. I’ve been so horny lately that it was truly hard for me to go slow. This may have been the first time since Tony that I wasn’t tipsy or drunk. All faculties were firing when my pants came down and his mouth was upon me. And…oh my, he is hands down some of the best oral sex I’ve ever received. I came so fast and so hard that even I was surprised. Another fabulous surprise was the size of his cock! He debunked the small hand myth (he hands are small, his feet were not!?). His cock was perfect and we had pretty good sex for the first time. Not especially exciting, but just fine.

After he left, I sent the requisite thank you and he replied. I heard from him the next morning and then radio silence for the entire rest of the day.

I don’t know what to think. He’s a very smart man, I think he would have sensed we were “off” for one another.

Would I see him again? Yes, absolutely. Why not?

But who knows.

Does it matter? Not especially. He comes back, great. If not, that’s ok too. I was grateful for a fun evening and good sex. Even more grateful for his excellent oral skills!

Hello, Tony

I don’t know how long it’s been, since I’ve had any contact with Tony – months and months. A long time for me at least.

I was on Peloton about two weeks ago and I looked him up and he happened to be on a ride. I gave him a “virtual high five” and exited the app. Cracked myself up knowing that would probably aggravate him.

Sometime later he changed his screen name. I thought to myself “wow, he really hates me”. Maybe he does. I fucked with his life and his family. In his mind, I’m the one who did the damage to his family. I just laughs that he would go to the trouble to change his screen name. Obviously I saw it changed! 😂

I’m not giving myself a hall pass, what I did was wrong. Even if I don’t feel any shame or remorse over it, I know it was unnecessary for me to text his wife. I’m unsure if I would change it though.

That action created a release in me and I’ve been in the road to recovery since Feb 11th. Maybe not perfect – I’ve sent him text from the burner which I wrote about earlier – but much better. This little bird box (that’s what we call a virtual high five) was actually me being pretty much an asshole for no good reason.

This is what the blog is here for. My honesty. Don’t much care that I did it. Made me laugh at both of us. I laughed even harder when he went to the length to change his screen name.

Forgot about it for several days as I got busy in life.

I’ve been back on social media a bit more again as I’ve found my time to scroll, rather than letting it suck up time that is better spent elsewhere. I’ve always like IG better than Facebook so tend to post there and they have a feature called “stories” where your post only stays up for 24 hours. I usually put my Peloton work up every day to keep accountable with my Peloton tribe. Once you post a story, you can see who viewed your story. Sometimes I look, sometimes I don’t. I pretty much know my regular followers. Once in a while I get some random ones based on the hashtags I use.

Guess who has been peeping my stories?

He hasn’t been there for months and months. Gosh, maybe the last time I saw his name was April or so?

I figured he would look once and then go back into hiding, but he’s been looking every day now.

I don’t feel anything about this other than the curiosity I generated to write this post. I have no desire to reach out to him or speak to him. I assume my little bird box prompted him to look at my profile.

Doesn’t matter much. He will see a different person and a lot of positivity. He can pat himself on the back that I’ve recovered from him. I hope it makes him feel better for what he put me through.

And if it doesn’t, I don’t care anymore.

It’s taken way too long to get here and feel this ambivalence- but at least I’ve made it.