Two Years To the Date of When I First Saw Your Face

Celebrating usIt’s been two years today since that fateful afternoon we first met face-to-face. After hours of talking, as late afternoon turned into night, warmth turned into a chill we tried to recapture by the outdoor stove, we realized we’d both been holding in our pee until we were about to burst, just so as not to part company. Unfortunately, by then every store in the area was closed. I suggested the Taco Bell that was less than a minute drive away. We laughed at ourselves that we wouldn’t stop talking until our bodies insisted we do, and we are still laughing about it today.

Not much has changed when it comes to the endless talking, which now continues right up until you fall asleep. We make each other laugh so hard, tears come out of our eyes sometimes, or I snort, which only makes us laugh harder. We cherish how words and emotions just pour out of ourselves when we’re together. There’s no façade or hiding parts of ourselves we’d like to keep in the dark. Together, we sort through the darkness until we find light, tend to each others wounds until it feels safe to breathe strong again.

You have done so quite literally for me on and off over the last six or so months. When my exuberant old, energetic physical self eventually sizzled out on me, you were there to pick me up, to hold my limbs until I stopped trembling, to care for me when I could not do so for myself, to feed and nourish my body, mind and soul.

You never stopped believing in me. You never gave up. You continued to search for answers, and rejoiced when I was able to strongly stand on my own two feet again. You gave me another reason to not give up and sink back into pity or despair.

Life is not perfection, nor do I think it’s meant to be. Stress has weighed on us in various ways along the path that has only tested our resolve. Our imaginations sometimes get the better of us. We super-sensitive souls occasionally face bumps when we misinterpret what the other really means but think is not really saying. A little more than a year ago, we almost allowed that to break us apart completely…But we always wind up reaching to come back to each other, stronger, more committed to filling our lives with joy and harmony together.

We have created so many wonderful memories over the past two years. We’ve created a home and life together that promises to only get better and better with age. You inspire me and encourage me every day. You lift me out of my despair. You rejoice in my accomplishments and triumphs as if they were your own, just as I beam with pride over your own success. I’m proud of how we’ve grown individually and together since we decided to take this journey. I love who we are now and where we are headed.

No matter how long it has been since we last set eyes on each other, I look forward to your embrace as we return to each others presence. I look forward to the time we will fill with our voices and laughter tonight and the next night and the next night. I look forward to all the amazing adventures and experiences we have stretched out endlessly before us—together.

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How to Turn Your Online Flirting Into a Real Life Date

When Dating Online Turns to Real Life

Couple on a date, Src: Flickr/sblackley

When it comes to meeting dates online, there will always be an interim period where you get to know each other through messages before meeting up. This can be an exciting time, where every new email in your inbox can make your heart beat faster and you look forward to the next stage in the conversation. But what about when it comes time to meet? How do you turn your online flirting into a real life date? Here are five steps to lead you in the right direction.

1. Take it Slowly

There’s no need to rush. While you don’t want to spend too long going back and forth with messages, if you want to get to know your match a little better then feel free to wait. If the first meeting is awkward, you’ll be less likely to want to meet up again, so it may be better to wait until it feels right.

2. Don’t be Too Forward

Flirting online is all about keeping things light. You might have already discussed what you’re looking for in a relationship but using loaded words like ‘marriage’ or ‘motherhood’ may not be a good idea before you’ve even met. You’re looking to suss out the potential for a match, not commit yourself for life.

3. Ask for Their Personal Email

If you’ve been messaging each other for a while on a website such as eHarmony, and you’re getting impatient waiting for the next step, try asking for their personal email address. It’s a good first step towards a face-to-face meeting and it’s not too intimidating.

If they’re hesitant to give it, they may just be enjoying the attention without wanting to take things further.

An online dating success

An online dating success? Src: Flickr/adam_jones

4. Suggest a Relaxed First Date

When it comes to meeting up for the first time, you might both be feeling nervous about talking through the details. Try keeping things simple – if you have a favourite coffee shop or laid-back bar, ask your interest if they’ve heard of it and suggest meeting there for a drink. A relaxed, familiar atmosphere will help set the scene for a good first date.

5. Look for Partners Close By

If you’ve been messaging someone who lives far away, there may always be a reason why you can’t meet up. Long-distance relationships can blossom into long-term partnerships, but it’s hard to get things off the ground when you’d have to take a week off work to arrange to even meet them.

Try finding singles in your area by using online dating (click here to find out more) and you’ll be better placed for real-life encounters with potential matches.

**This is a sponsored post by eHarmony**

Match.com Shares What Modern Singles in America Are All About

Singles in America Match.comLast weekend, Match.com hosted a livestream event that shared plenty of surprising stats about singles across the country, covering tantalizing topics such as friends with benefits (FWB), casual sex and sexting. For instance, would you believe that almost a quarter of all singles have shared received sexts with others? And men might be surprised by how much women are willing to go to have transparency in their relationships. According to one Singles in America study statistic, twenty-two percent of single women have checked a date’s pockets, drawers or closet.

These were just some of the many fascinating findings that Match.com‘s Chief Scientific Advisor Dr. Helen Fisher presented from Singles in America, the 2012 study of more than 5000 single men and women (and approximately 1000 married individuals), aged 21-71+, to gauge their beliefs and behaviors about love, dating and marriage. This is the third year of studying singles; 2012 focused on technology and the Internet, while also including a comparison of married people to singles.

While media and pop culture would have us believing that the state of marriage is doomed, Fisher said most singles in their 20s and 30s still want to get married and believe that marriage to one person can last forever. She observed from study results that singles today are focused on looking for personal connections with their mates, as opposed to 10,000 years of history where commonality in ethnic and religious background, as well as pleasing family and community, were paramount. While I have personally endured a family’s disapproval of my ‘ethnic disharmony’ with their son, in general, I can see increasingly more of the younger generations breaking the mold, looking beyond skin color and creed when it comes to love.

The Match.com study found that more than 90 percent of singles are looking for people who respect them, whom they can trust and confide in, and who can make them laugh. And brush up on your vocabulary, ladies and gents, as well as your teeth—the study found your teeth and grammar are the top two things you are judged by when someone first meets you.

The smile and expressiveness of eyes are the what I notice when I first meet someone. As a wordsmith, I do take notice of horrific grammar right away, but if we can easily be conversational, I’m not going to end a conversation.

Fisher has noticed a new trend in dating and relationships in just the last year. “We’re seeing an emergence of a new stage in the courting process,” she said. This year, 45 percent of singles reported having a FWB relationship turn into a long-term partnership. “I’m not surprised because any kind of sexual stimulation of the genitals drives up dopamine, which can push you over the threshold into falling in love. And with orgasm, there’s a real flood of oxytocin that is linked with feelings of attachment.”

I guess I was ahead of the curve in this respect—my longest relationship began somewhat as a FWB situation. However, it wasn’t too long it turned into a loving relationship that lasted four years.

In 2011, only 20 percent of participants in Match’s Singles in America had developed something long-term from a FWB situation. Fisher theorizes that due to a long middle age and the pain of divorce, “we’re trying to know everything we possibly can about a human being before we step into that first commitment stage, and that this is a pre-commitment stage that is emerging in America.”

To hear more about these trends, online dating, texting etiquette, differences between men and women in love, dating in the golden years, and of course plenty of stats about sex, watch Dr. Helen Fisher’s presentation here.

**This is a sponsored post for Match.com**

Taking Off the Blinders: When It’s Too Good To Be True

src: seattlestagedtosell.com

If there is one grand lesson I’ve learned about life and love, when it feels too good to be true, it usually is. If you stow that little nugget of truth in the back of your head, it will force you to keep at least a little part of yourself safely back—even when it’s tempting to just dive into the glorious beauty of what feels like the most delicious love affair with drunk blindness.

Though I didn’t really see signs, I felt them in my gut. I tried to explain why to a friend of mine. If we meshed so well intellectually, emotionally, and physically, had wonderful times together, and he seemed so into me, where did my hesitation come from? I rattled off a few concerns—that I wasn’t going to live up to his larger than life impression of me, that he was probably moving back to his native country in a year or so and that I had some worries that I would wind up wanting more from him emotionally time-wise than he had in his schedule to give.

It’s interesting because he chose that word—a gut feeling—to describe how he has felt that things might be a little off between us the last two weekends, like we were on different trajectories. This was after having two amazing weekends filled with dancing nights, lazy mornings twisted in each others arms, and hours of intimate conversations that he agreed made us feel like we’d known each other much longer than the period that we have.

This was after I’d spent the last 4 nights and 4 days in his home, two days longer than I’d intended because he’d said, “I don’t want to think about it,” when I asked him when he thought I should head home. That same day he bought a ridiculous amount of groceries, asking me what I wanted and needed as if I was going to be staying for another week, if not visiting again for a long visit soon.

Then, the next night, after we’d had a particularly bonding conversation, he went to do his nightly meditation. After we snuggled into bed, he brought up that if it were okay, he would like a couple of days to himself to quiet his thoughts and reconnect with himself. I said that was totally fine, reassuring him I wasn’t upset by his request because I needed to get back and take care of things at home.

The next day, he was in constant contact as I got ready to go, then took a taxi to take a train to take a bus back home. After a few days, however, I realized that while we were still keeping in touch, I was doing most of the initiating. I started to get a little suspicious. As the weekend was on the brink, and we hadn’t yet made our normal confirmation of our plans, I asked him if he wanted to get together. He said something about still needing some time to himself. I told him that I thought he might need that.

His reply:

 Thanks for understanding. You are very mindful and wise and I want to let you know that I value and respect that a lot!

After all the effusive, romantic and affectionate words he’s used with me in the past, these words struck a wrong chord with me. Something wasn’t right. But later that night, he sent me a message from the bar with his friend asking, “How is my honey doing?” To some joking request I’d made on his Facebook page where he’d posted a photo of the night, he’d say, “For you, SoloAt30, always… J”

Yesterday I heard nothing from him all day, so I finally decided to confront him. Was this needing time for himself actually code for wanting to see other people? Call it women’s intuition—or just a reality check. Though he was supposed to be working, he took time to make the phone call.

Blinders On by Angie Warren

I sat stunned, listening to the spew of bullshit, couched in words in attempt not to “cause suffering or hurt feelings.” He told me he did in fact have a drink with a girl this past week, but his friends said it would be okay since we weren’t exclusive, like boyfriend/girlfriend or anything.

Seeing each other exclusively for several weeks now, driving three, sometimes six hours a week to see me; being intimate with each other exclusively; calling me his girlfriend to me, to his roommate, his friends, family; telling his father in another country about me and introducing us informally via phone; making every effort to get close to my family, including calling himself “Uncle” around my nephew…I’m not sure what else I was supposed to think. Hey, maybe they run things differently in that central European country of his, but if he had to hide things and talk code to me about it, I am thinking not.

The worst thing about it is that he wasn’t going to talk to me about any of this—didn’t think he had to—if I hadn’t asked him. Said he hadn’t really put these thoughts and feelings into words yet, and struggled to even do so now, which was apparent because he couldn’t even give reasons for this off feeling in his gut.

Well, that off feeling in his gut I think is really that he met some other girl who intrigued him enough to want to go on a date with her, but he wanted time to see how that and maybe other dates with other women go before he possibly made any decisions with me. I told him that, and he got all huffy that I was accusing him of this American term of the “fade out.” But really, we both know that’s what this is, even if he is saying he’d like to meet me again sometime. Really?

Come on, seriously, grow a pair of balls. Just be real. Some of you guys wonder why we flip out. It’s not that you make a decision to move on. It’s that you toy with us and then lie about it to our faces before you cut us loose. It’s that you are secretly moving on before you finally tell us about it. That’s what pisses me off.

If you’re genuinely confused about how you feel, just be honest about that. This is supposed to be the king of communication, the one who kept urging me to talk and tell him how I was feeling about this and that. Why didn’t he feel like he should reciprocate?

Believe me—when I say I can handle it, I can. And by handling it, I mean hitting flush and moving on.

‘Twas A Bittersweet—More Sweet than Bitter, Bitter Than Sweet—Year

For me, 2011 was the year of truly living SingleInMy30s. At age 33, it was in fact the first time in my 30s I was not involved in some exclusive—usually long-term—relationship for the vast majority of the year. The V-Man and I finally ended our second attempt at being together a couple months into the year…and from then on, I was free.

I can’t say that it was an easy year. My body slowly stopped allowing me to beat it into submission, to work it day and night with little to no rest. Soon my dream job became a nightmare job for my immune system, and I was left facing four months of chemotherapy.

I was forced to go on medical leave from my job, and when I wasn’t back on my feet fast enough, I had to leave it outright. To be honest, I think that hurt more than saying goodbye to V-Man, though those losses are somehow linked. Still, saying goodbye to that old dream, that exciting chapter of my life has led to an awesome new career path and wonderful opportunities I would never have expected.

Most importantly, it re-taught me something I thought I already had down cold—how to listen to my body. Now I truly do understand it’s not worth Hurtling Against the Brick Wall—again. My mantra for 2011? Find your balance.

From the dating perspective, I enjoyed dating a variety of men, broadening my horizons a bit more than ever before. There was the Ballroom Dancer, the Christian Rocker, the Cop, the Karaoke Crooner, to name but a few Up Next On the Stage… I didn’t regret every single one, though there were a couple of opportunities for a bruised ego–most famously, the experience captured in The Appeal of the Exotic Woman. Yet I didn’t allow myself to get too involved in the hunt. Timing was certainly off in 2011.

With all the time I had for myself this last year, there was plenty of time for self-reflection. I dealt with the love I’d left behind in 2010 and finally learned how to say goodbye, with A Letter to a Love Lost & A Lesson Learned and several other entries. I gave the bird to societal expectations of where I should be as a woman of a certain age, Tossing Out the Ticking Time Clock, and embracing my own unique path.

I also focused on my self, recognizing my own faults and weaknesses, and embracing my new strengths, while acknowledging the me-ness that I sometimes allow to get buried behind bitterness/reticence/resignation or tucked under the plastered on happy face for show. With a little help from surprise, surprise Shania Twain, I was reminded about Finding Your Voice Again.

And then finally, sweet romance did sneak up on me when and where I least expected it. We fell hard and fast. Since it is my love life, it couldn’t stay smooth sailing for too long. So I wound up the year with the realization that I wasn’t actually in a relationship. It looked like one, smelled like one and tasted like one, but apparently it wasn’t one. And after that was established, it acted even more like one…conveniently for the holiday vacation anyway.

So I’m not sure where that leaves me in 2012, except that I’m not looking to bring drama from 2011 into this year. I am a survivor of last year. I more than survived, I thrived and feel more alive than I have in a really long time, and I plan to only go up from here. Nothing and no one is allowed to take me down.

Why You Shouldn’t Yell Fire In a Relationship Red Alert

I’m not entirely sure what men are thinking sometimes when, while trying to address an obviously concerned and potentially upset woman, they feel the need to toss in the incendiary, “you are coming off a little nuts right now.” Once the word “nuts” or “crazy” is brought into the conversation, there is often only one direction things can now go—downhill, and fast.

Src: simpsons.wikia.com

It’s kind of like going into a crowd of people during an emergency and calmly trying to herd them out of a smoking building by yelling, “Fire!” Obviously people are not going to stop, look for the closest exit and walk in single file, being polite and thoughtful of their neighbors as they make their way out. No, people will go into a chaotic panic, running around like chickens with their heads cut off, cutting off people—possibly injuring them—because they are reacting with their fear instead of acting rationally and practically to get as many people out of harm’s way in the safest way possible.

It would seem that in a relationship red alert, the wisest thing would be first to slow things down, to speak slowly and calmly. Ask questions so that you’re clear what is really being asked. “Are you asking this because you think that I want to be with someone else right now, or are you asking this because you are concerned that I haven’t been completely honest with you?”

Someone with his own severe trust issues, one would think, would be especially sensitive and empathetic to respecting why another person would ask questions if they were concerned about confusing, seemingly contradictory statements or situations. Most often, in healthy relationships, these misunderstandings are frequently due to that quirky little he said/she said, where one person’s “hooking up” means “casually dating on and off” to another person, one’s “just friends” means “friends with benefits” to another, “hanging out with some friends” means “going out to a platonic dinner with my ex, but I’m afraid you’ll freak out so I’ll just buffer it by saying others are coming along”… I think you get the picture.

Of course, rational thinking often goes out the door when one person throws out a zinger meant to sting in the heat of emotion. “What’s your incentive to keep lying? What do you have to be ashamed of?”

It’s hard not to react when you feel personally attacked. And it’s hard to hear what is really a need for reassurance when someone demands to know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth…particularly on an issue that’s been covered more than a couple times before. But it’s even harder to take back the emotional scars of searing words you really didn’t intend to ever say out loud.

Src: skreened.com

Over the years, I’ve painfully been learning the lesson that being right isn’t always the point. It’s often not as important to an argument discussion as simply letting each of your voices be heard. Of course there are huge things you absolutely can’t and shouldn’t just brush under the rug. Yet when it comes to the past and a difference in choice of words, is it really worth feeding the flicker of a flame you will only have to both fight to try to put out?

As Buddha said, “Better than a thousand hollow words, is one word that brings peace.” Fellas, crazy is not that one word.

Sometimes When It Feels Just Right

Sometimes everything just feels wrong. He shows up looking like he’s come straight from the gym, though you know he hasn’t. With his long, baggy shorts, tank top and bandana around his head, you wonder why you made the effort to get out of your similar-looking pjs to take a shower and pick out an outfit to try to look cute for him.

You ask him about the big project in his life, the one that you found so fascinating and made you especially eager to get to know him in the first place, and he informs you that it’s on indefinite hiatus. Instead, he talks about his ex-wife, her lack of intelligence and poor mothering skills. He’s watching the clock as he tells you about his three daughters.

After reading a text message that comes in, he tells you about his truck that broke down in front of a friend’s and is going to be towed away if he can’t sell it on Craigslist. He doesn’t bother to ask much about you, and you don’t bother to reveal a lot about yourself because it’s obvious he wouldn’t really be listening.

The meal is done. Check please. He pays the bill. You leave the tip. There’s no, “I’ll call you later” or “Let’s get together again.” This is perfectly fine with you.

Sometimes everything just feels right. The moment you see each other for the evening, he flashes a smile that knocks you a little off your center. It’s been a while since someone’s had that effect on you. He looks comfortable in his jeans and dress shirt even while you know he’s made some effort to look nice. The heels you traded the flip-flops for were totally worth it.

At dinner, he asks you to select two of the four choices for tapas. He won’t let you get away with, “I’ll eat anything – you choose.” You find yourself thinking there’s just something too darn cute about how he puts on his reading glasses to look at the menu.

Even when the servers and waiters come, you and he are talking away about your respective lives up until now – discussing relationships, religion, politics and anything else that springs to mind. There are no awkward pauses, and in fact, the only silences are when you are in the midst of chewing.

After a stop for dessert, you decide to take a stroll with no destination, except to find a comfortable bench on which you can sit. Every now and then, your bodies brush against one another. After a while, you can’t tell if it’s by accident or on purpose, until the touch on the arm becomes more pronounced and lingers.

You find a rocking bench. You talk about your dreams and goals. You talk about where you came from, going beyond the surface and shedding light on some of the darker shadows of the family portrait. You head to a bookstore where you confirm you have even more in common in literary tastes (Wow, someone else who actually reads!!), but most of all, he starts sharing jokes that make you laugh from the belly.

On the way back to the car, you are suddenly holding hands. “Is this okay?” he asks. Yes, yes, yes,

You ride home listening to jazz and holding hands. You share sweet kisses and words in the car before realizing sleep has to come sometime, and he has more than an hour drive to get back to his home.

When you walk through the door, your best friend asks, “How was it?”

“It was wonderful,” you giddily sigh, wanting to hold this happiness close to you, capture in a jar like fireflies so it can light your room up every time the world is looking dark and a little hopeless.

But the best part is knowing that you can feel this way again before too long.

Why I’m Not Cut Out For Reality TV

Yesterday I was invited, as I know many of you have been in recent days, to be on a “major network reality” TV show about singles. While it is kind of cool to be asked to apply to a show, even though it refers to itself as “Real Housewives only with single people”, there are several reasons why I cannot even give it a second thought.

For one, I unfortunately do not live in NYC. A lot of the time, I’d like to say that I do, and perhaps one day I shall. But right now, I live the state next door.

For two, my life really is not cut out for reality TV.

It’s true—I can be flirtatious and a total ham. I’ll talk with foreign accents and skip in public. I can perform my own music to a crowd, and I’m not afraid to pick up the mic to belt out a song at karaoke. I’ll serenade a stranger or break dance on city streets for an urban scavenger hunt.

At times, I can do such spontaneous and out there things, I even surprise myself. When I was 19, I met a Canadian halfway in Toronto for romance. Several years later, I flew to the other side of the world for an adventure, after only three weeks of thought and preparation.

But in general, I am pensive and often quiet. When I’m not being a workaholic, it’s not uncommon for me to spend a couple hours a night reading a novel with pleasure. Sometimes I choose that over picking up the phone to answer the calls of my friends who undoubtedly will desire a ridiculously long conversation.

While I wouldn’t say that I am shy—I can literally spend hours talking to strangers—I rather like to observe and study people. As an editor and writer not a TV personality, I prefer taking the time to carefully craft my words rather than try to be on-the-spot witty and charming. And then of course on TV there’s that whole deal that you also have to be incredibly photogenic—though an ex said in undisguised envy that I never take a bad photo, he is sadly mistaken; I just know my good angles and how to hit delete with the digital camera.

I can be warm, generous, and kind. Friends and former lovers have called me “the sweetest thing.” But on the other side of the coin, I can sometimes be cold, shut-off and sarcastic. And though I hate to do this, and rarely do, I have an English major’s vocabulary to verbally toss barbs that people are still picking out months later.

While I am not proud of this, I am also the Queen of the Dear John letter. Afraid of conflict after months of a boyfriend trying to convince me I don’t really want to leave, I feel like writing a letter is the only way I can make my exit.

Yes, I voluntarily blog about my dating life. I relish sharing tales I selectively pick from my adventures in romance. Notice I said selectively. While some stories I seem to spill in all the nitty-gritty detail, in truth there are a lot of things I choose to leave out.

For instance, I’ve only lightly touched upon the whole disappearance of the V-Man. I’ve brushed it aside with first dates and ridiculous correspondences from OkCupid.

It’s not so much that I’m trying to hide it from you. It’s more that I’m trying to process things, and when I do, I tend to draw into myself. I cut off contact with friends. I become a hermit, spending a lot of time alone in my dark bedroom. I swim in these deliciously gray and rainy days and write fiery entries in my paper journal.

I haven’t poured out my heart on here how it feels to be abandoned by one of the only people in my life who I thought would never, could never, abandon me. One of the few true friends through some of the lowest lows and greatest peaks of my life just disappeared out of a crack in the window like a wisp of smoke from the last fire of the winter. Offering no explanation, I came up with two not-very-flattering reasons for that exit, and naturally, he neither admitted to it nor denied it. He said nothing at all.

Just the thought of putting these emotions and all the rest of my single self out there in front of a camera makes me freeze like a deer in headlights. My blog is anonymous for a reason. A few of my readers know my name. I believe only one of you knows me personally.

It’s not that I am ashamed of who I am—it’s just there are parts of me that I don’t think my parents or siblings need to see. There are parts of me I don’t want some of my happily-married-with-kids friends to see. Not to leave out the exes and former lovers. Ay.

So that’s why you won’t be seeing me on reality TV any time soon. I am sparing you from the awkward, odd, sometimes ugly and cruel, single world of SingleinMy30s in the flesh.  There’s something to be said for the mystery of just words.

Adiós, The Brit; Bonjour, Confusion…Again

I know that several of my readers were rooting for The Brit. We had a really nice date a few weeks ago, and I assumed he was eager for another date as he had been the previous few weeks, but then he basically disappeared into thin air. Now I usually take The Fade in stride, particularly if there is no serious emotional investment, but the sudden backing off of The Brit surprised me. At first, I attributed it to the end of the summer course he was teaching, that he must be busy with grading. And perhaps he was also really into researching and writing more for his next book. I’d get a couple texts now and again, but then he’d fail to respond for a while.

To be honest, with all the other men in my life, The Brit was not at the top of the list. He’s intelligent, funny, a decent kisser, and we had fun all the times we hung out. Yet he really didn’t blow me away with his personality or his looks. I write about relationships and health. He is obsessed with the psychology of politicians. This isn’t to say we didn’t have plenty to talk about, but his status updates on FB were all about which British political figure was doing what, along with his acerbic analysis; mine were about feelings, links to my YouTube music videos and my other blog articles. Then there was the fact that he was a vegetarian (because of a recent ex).

Still I was very curious what had changed to the nights of snogging in the car to infrequent polite texts. So, I asked him. He never picks up the phone, rarely texts, but he’s been on FB very frequently this week, so I decided to send him a message. Here’s how things went down.

SingleInMy30s July 18 at 10:40pm
did i do or say something that completely put you off me? Or have things just run the course “dating”? I’m more curious than anything else, so please don’t feel like I’m upset, just intrigued. 🙂

Hope you had a great weekend

The Brit July 19 at 4:03pm
Aw, it’s not that SingleInMy30s. You haven’t done or said anything. And I am attracted to you. It’s just you seem to really like me, and it seemed unfair to keep seeing you regularly.

SingleInMy30s July 19 at 4:06pm
That’s funny. I thought you were the one who really liked *me*. I don’t know you well enough to really like you, and I have in fact been seeing other guys besides you. So no harm, no worry.

It’s funny how this exchange made me feel: relieved. One less guy to worry about, without worrying I might be hurting his feelings.

I’m still pondering whether it’s in my best interest to get back together with V-Man. We spent Saturday night together. It turned into that all-too-familiar routine of him working on house stuff while I assisted when necessary. We didn’t eat dinner until 9, and we grabbed The Hangover from Redbox. He really enjoyed it, which wasn’t surprising (I’d seen it before). Yet as soon as it was over, he picked up the damn iTouch I bought him a couple months before I broke up with him the last time, and was busy perusing eBay for bike parts, his latest obsession. Things in the bedroom are still fun, exciting and passionate, but lacking tenderness. After doing more house work Sunday morning, he dropped me off, and simply said, “Thanks for all your help.” Not exactly what I am looking for from the man I’ve been considering getting back together with.

I realize things haven’t really changed a great deal. His best girl friend got engaged last weekend and he refused to go their celebration. He keeps “forgetting” to call or text her a congratulations. His house will always come before people. And he will also frown on marriage–don’t blame him, since he has very poor examples of positive marriages, but that doesn’t bode well for my future with him. I don’t want to be one of those girls who has to drag her man to the altar after a ridiculous number of years dating. I don’t think he’d want that either because that would just prove him right about “how everyone woman just wants x…”

Mr. Etiquette is still calling and texting, trying to prove his love. I appreciate the romantic gestures, the backing up he did when he I told him I needed space. Yet I still carry that pain that he wanted to go back with FMG, despite her treating him like shit for so long, and despite the fact that he had the kind of woman offering just the kind of relationship he wanted right in front of him but let go of, however temporarily.

And of course, Harlequin Hero is back in town, moving into his new house. He texted me the other night, asking when I was coming by. He doesn’t really understand the concept of invitations still, does he?

Is it really too much to ask for a love life that’s easier and more fulfilling?

Steamin’ It Up, Old-School Style

“How do you always get mascara all over your face?” my mom asked coming out of her bedroom when I came in tonight from my third date with The Brit. “Maybe you should stop wearing any mascara at all.”

“It’s raining out,” I said. She gave me a look that told me she wasn’t buying it. “And I’m always rubbing my face,” I added, which is true. It might also be because I just spent the last half hour making out in The Brit’s car in our driveway, I thought, but I knew to keep that one to myself.

“This is a bit dodgy, isn’t it?” The Brit commented, as we paused for breath, in the close quarters of his VW Bug. “D’ya think your parents are going to get upset that we’re basically parking in their driveway?” It was a good question. But his car wasn’t too big, it was dark and raining, and we were safely tucked under the cover of some lush tree branches in the side driveway. “Your dad’s not the type to come out here with a bat or anythin’, is he?”

I responded by leaning in for another kiss. (No, Jaysey818, it turns out we didn’t need a lesson at all this time.) And no, Dad wasn’t home. Otherwise, he’d have the binoculars and flashlight out the window, recon-style.

After a lovely dinner at an Indian restaurant that The Brit likes–my stomach was totally fine, thank you very much, you guys–we didn’t want the date to end quite yet, but we didn’t know where to go. it was raining, otherwise we could go for a walk. Neither of us felt like doing any drinking. The Brit thought of taking me to his place, and I could meet his cat, but he said it was embarrassingly messy right now. Most of the stores would be closing soon, but we decided we’d pop into the nearby Marshall’s just for something to do.

The Brit looked at a few shirts, asked my opinion, and then the store announced it was closing. Not wanting to be pressured by time into a sale, The Brit left without any new clothes. We shrugged, restless but lacking too much imagination, so he ended up taking me home. I did notice he parked the car in the side driveway instead of just pulling up idle behind my unused car, so I smiled as he came in to kiss me. I wasn’t prepared for how much we were going to steam up the windows.

“Perhaps we should have gone to the park for a proper parking after all,” he mused later.

This of course reminds me of Bridget Jones’ Diary, where Bridget tells Mark Darcy: “Wait a minute…nice boys don’t kiss like that.” His reply, “Oh, yes, they fucking do.”

The only unfortunate incident of the night is that I started talking about blogging. I wasn’t even drinking, I tell you. I was talking about my health blog, which covers a range of health topics, from unusual disorders to alternative medicine to nutrition transformations in schools to traveling while disabled. This was all well and good until I started babbling about my other blog; yes, this very one.

“Am I in it?” he asks. Then throughout the rest of dinner, he tries to throw in, so you talk about x in this blog, which is called y? Fishing for the name, which I refused to give. I told him there is nothing negative to report about The Brit. However, it’s too soon for him to see this side of me, or to hear way too many details about my messy dating life. If he ever earns that right, or if I ever get up the cajones to share this blog with anyone in my personal circle…that’s because I will have reached the stability in my romantic life where I feel free to be completely open about my past because it is…in my past.

I did say that I may copy my personal guide to having great sex and email it to him, however. Though I do personally (through pseudonyms) mention previous lovers, which is not a good thing. But that can be easily edited.

Speaking of previous lovers, Harlequin Hero of course informed last night that he’s coming back up here at the end of the month. Don’t know how long he’s staying but he said of course he wants to see me. And it should surprise no one that Mr. Etiquette called me while I was on my date. I ignored the numerous buzzes I received from various people during the date, but I just knew one of them was from him. He surprisingly didn’t leave a message, which only leads me to conclude he knew I was on a date. T must have told him I was “out.” Screw him and his jealousy. He only calls when things are bleak with Sara, which of course is frequent lately, especially now that we’re talking again. Might need to cut off this “friendship” deal completely.

The Brit brought up a wedding in Michigan he was invited to go to this summer. He is friends with the groom, met the bride once, but knows no one else at the wedding. He feels terrible if he says no to it, though. I was wondering if he wanted my opinion, or if he was putting out feelers if I might want to go so he’d know someone else at the wedding. Seems a bit early for him to ask, since he’s a laid-back, average-paced guy. He brought up getting there via a road trip, asked my opinion on whether I thought it’d be a decent ride, etc.  Probably was just asking since I know this part of the U.S. better than he does. The groom’s not a best friend, so I honestly think it could be fun if we were still seeing each other, but whatever. I won’t ponder it further unless he specifically asks me.