Heather and the Happily Ever After

I was feeling nostalgic the other day and went exploring through old videos on YouTube of songs I used to listen to years ago. I came across a song that talked about not needing a man because they were happy being free, doing their own thing, etc… They didn’t need a ring around their finger, so on and so forth. I find this comical, when on the same album majority of their songs are about finding a man and falling in love. Isn’t that the perfect picture of human nature? We are, all of us, walking contradictions. None of the feelings that provoked the writing of these songs are any less legitimate just because one school of thought may be in opposition to another. I think, as women, we want to be independent and self-sufficient because it’s a necessary part of life and it’s also greatly empowering. I think we also want to be loved and taken care of. These are two very real and valid parts of who we are. Furthermore, I don’t think one should be sacrificed on the altar of the other.

The issue is when any one side dominates an individual’s life. I was always a hopeless romantic even before I really understood the concept of love. It was everywhere and in everything. Movies, music, human behavior, etc… All I had to do was step outside my door and it was there. In every kiss, intertwined hand, hug, etc… I was conditioned from my early years to desire love and relationships. Now, there are all kinds of love. The love between a parent and a child, between siblings and friends; but the one kind of love that everyone seemed to be inspired by and clamoring for was the romantic kind.

I was raised by a single mother, so I knew the instability of romantic relationships, yet I still held onto a lot of my naïve sentiments. My mother was also very strong-willed and independent. She taught her children to be the same way. She never told us what out lives were ideally supposed to look like. She never discouraged our dreams, but she also never encouraged them with much beyond a few words. To be plain, she was pretty hands off when it came to guiding us toward a clear path. I was left to look to media and my church family for direction. I think you can tell where this is going. Love. Love was the ultimate goal, the thing to aspire toward, to grab a hold of.

I spent twenty-eight years working toward this goal. After I got saved I talked to married couples, gleaned from experienced woman, read books, listened to sermons, etc… I was preparing myself for my husband. I was confronting my baggage, so that I could have a clean slate in my marriage. I had never worked harder at anything in my entire life. Meanwhile, everything else was put on the back burner, left to simmer and ultimately grow cold.

As I got older and relationships came and went with no wedding ring, no blissfully ever after I became disillusioned, angry, bitter and depressed. I came to realize that I was trying to control the one thing that is uncontrollable and letting die all the things that could have made me happy in the here and now. It was a hard pill to swallow, but I knew I had to come to terms that my focus had been wrong all these years. Don’t misunderstand, this is not about not wanting to be married or find love. This is about having more going on in your life that makes you happy and fulfilled than marriage.

Now, I don’t regret all the growing and learning I went through for marriage because it made me the person I am today. Someone who is whole and happy on her own. However, I do regret that I didn’t focus on my dreams, in terms of my career, sooner. Now, regret is a wasted emotion, so rather than wallow in self-pity I went back to school. It’s true, I will be thirty when I graduate, but I will finally be on the path I always wanted. The one that was overshadowed and placed on the back burner because I thought I had time, that what I was currently doing was more important. The truth is that I may still be single when graduation day comes. I can’t allow my happiness to be entirely dependent on the “one day prince charming will come”; and if I am not doing anything to better my life now, than I can claim that’s not what I am doing all day long, but it would be a lie. So, I’m active, I’m moving forward and making changes for a happier tomorrow; and I’m proud of me.

I am also ecstatic to see that media has finally seen the light and is following suit, encouraging young girls to pursue their dreams and become trailblazers. Be their own knights in shining armor, rather than sitting around, twiddling their thumbs waiting for one. Maybe this generation will finally be the ones to find the balance between independence and love.

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Resting Bitch Face Syndrome

The semester is over and so I am back on the blogosphere. Truth be told I never left. Yes, it’s true… I had a blog affair. I was taking an Upper Level Elective writing class for my degree and a large chunk of my grade depended on maintaining a focused blog throughout the session. My blog was centered around book reviews, Young Adult novels in particular; but it’s over now and I am back to my true love, these diaries.

I wish I had some crazy stories or amazing news to give you guys, but the last two months have been the standard daily grind of work and school. I did go to a The 1975 concert and yell at some Laguna Beach looking white kids who were smoking weed in an indoor venue. Look, you want to get high, that’s your own prerogative, but do it in an open space. I’m not for forcing a second hand high on people inhaling your cheap weed cause you don’t have any consideration for others. I’m also not for doing it at their age, they couldn’t have been more than sixteen. I’m also not their parents, though I felt like it in the moment. To be fair, I endured it through two crappy opening bands and had had enough. Weren’t they sufficiently high by this time? So, I threatened them and they stopped for the three minutes I stuck around them.

Things like this are easy for me. I have what they call, “Resting Bitch Face” Syndrome. It doesn’t matter what I am doing or what kind of mood I am in, people only ever have three first impressions of me and I have heard them over and over my entire life: I’m mean, I’m intimidating or I hate them. This is literally the story of my life.

I have spent my entire life explaining myself or apologizing for myself because of this. It’s like people expect me to change my entire personality or my physical appearance to make them feel more comfortable. My state of being affects people’s whole worlds. I have the superhuman ability to shatter their entire existence based on my mood; and no one ever takes my word on how I am actually feeling. Why would I lie about this? I am not passive aggressive. I have no qualms about telling people what I am thinking or what emotional state I am in.

Just recently I went through an incident at work where someone who is related to one of  my co-workers decided that I was just like her husbands ex-girlfriend. Talk about projecting your issues. I had literally said two words to this woman at this point, but she felt comfortable enough to tell me exactly who I was like. In fact, people tell me all the time what they think of me as if because I am a strong person, I am made of steal and devoid of the ability to be hurt or affected by people’s words. It’s always some backhanded compliment, like I am nicer than they expected. How am I supposed to respond in these situations? What are people expecting of me? Do they want me to thank them? Comfort them? Explain myself to them so they can move on with their lives?

This incident with my co-worker’s relative is nothing new for me. I have spent my whole life trying to make other people happy by constantly holding myself back or bending to accommodate their personalities; and never was it reciprocated. All the while, I am miserable thinking the problem is me because I am the common denominator. I’m too strong, too unreadable, too intimidating, too me; but I don’t know how to be anyone else. So, I’ve spent practically my whole life thinking I was wrong, thinking I was too much to handle, too much of a challenge, too difficult. Nothing I did helped this. No amount of smiling, laughing, joking around or quirkiness could undo it. No amount of kindness, consideration or compassion could overshadow it. I was and am, marked for life.

However, something shifted after this particular instance. It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I was finally done explaining. I was done apologizing. I no longer cared to cater to other people’s opinions of me. Now, I know this might not make me anymore friends. In fact, it could just end up creating more enemies, but I will finally be able to stop beating myself up for something that isn’t actually my problem. I can finally be free to be happy living in my own skin, loving all of me, not just part of me; and that’s enough for me

If you have “Resting Bitch Face” just know that you are not alone. More importantly, you are understood. You have my empathy. What I would like you to know is an age old saying that has literally saved my sanity, “our reactions are our responsibility.” How people respond to you is not your issue or burden to carry around. You have no obligation to justify yourself to anyone. If they don’t understand you than a conundrum you will remain. It’s not your job to bring peace to their world over who you are and what you are about. Be yourself unapologetically. Be free.

The Reemergrance of John Doe

I guess you can’t really qualify what I’m about to say as serendipitous. It’s not one of those things that couldn’t exist without the hand of fate. This is simply interesting. So, for those of you who’ve read my previous entries, you’ll know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, than I suggest you go back and visit, “John Doe and Mr. Wrong” and “The Death of Mr. Wrong and John Doe Revealed”.

Out of the blue, my friend texts me to go see a local band at this bar with his friends. At first I thought he had accidentally text the wrong person, because it was so out of the blue and if you know me, you’ll know I’m not exactly the partying kind. However, I was working at the time and decided that I needed it, so I said yes.

When I met up with my friend I expected it to be awkward. I didn’t know his girlfriend or any of his friends, but I was told that others I knew would be there. Long story short, a guy in the group made his way over to me and monopolized my night trying to get to know me. Trust me when I say, I’m not complaining, but again, it’s not something I’m used to. We ended up leaving at the same time and we exchanged numbers, in a roundabout way.

Talking with him over the course of a few days, suddenly this random thought struck me. His name sounded familiar. Like I had heard it before I ever met me. Then the dots started connecting and my eyes nearly bugged out of my head. “No, it can’t be.” I rushed to this very blog, scrolling down to where I knew the information I needed would be found. Sure enough, his name was there in black and white. Jeff, the guy I met at this random bar, the guy I seemingly hit it off with was John Doe. The same John Doe that my friend (Mr. Wrong) was going to set me up with for my birthday.

Now, before you get excited, let me bring you back down to reality. Nothing has happened with Jeff. In fact, I’m pretty certain nothing will ever happen with Jeff. Plainly, I just don’t think he’s interested. I don’t have an explanation for how a person can appear interested one minute, even going as far as getting your number and then it fizzle out and things go on as they did before you ever met them. I wish I knew what went on in the head of such people. What was the turning point? When did you make up your mind that nothing was ever going to happen? How can you decide such a definitive thing after such little interaction?

In conclusion, I know I am a bit inexperienced, despite the amount of relationships I have had in my life. I have no idea how dating is supposed to work. More importantly, I feel like the current state of being single and putting yourself out there is fairly pointless when you think about the condition of the dating world today. What do I mean? There is only one person who can make my feelings about the subject so plainly clear. Enjoy!

The Romantic and The Real World

It’s cold here in Kansas City. Last night was the perfect weather for a bonfire, s’mores and flirting with a random looking at you through the flickering flames. I, however, am a native Floridian and it was a little too chilly for me to stand outside next to a fire barely giving me enough warmth to keep my fingers from going numb. Instead, I decided to curl up on my couch, wearing my elf-like knitted booties, wrapped in my green fleece blanket, with my dinner and a movie. My pick, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. The Kiera Knightley version, not the torturous 5 hour BBC Colin Firth version. As a Janeite, I am aware that the one I choose is not accurate to the novel. There is a lot about Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy that is romanticized. However, it does cause heavy sighs, tummy flutters and floaty swoons; and what more can a girl ask for?

Half way through the movie one of my roommates came home and decided to plop down on the couch and watch the movie with me. I loved it because we both have seen this numerous times and so we spent the remaining time giving commentary on all the scenes as they were unfolding. All was right in the world until the last scene of the movie. Of course, it’s the scene with the most feels. The culmination of the journey, the point in which the characters and the audience find resolution. I spent this sweet moment laughing and consoling my roommate as she writhed in agony over this fictional scene that she desperately wanted to happen to her in real life. I kid you not, at one point she was upside down, sliding head first off the couch. She was half hope, half agony (Let the reader understand).

At one point, she was reasoning with herself out loud about these swoon worthy moments. Her argument is that she knew that she couldn’t base all her romantic ideals on movies like the one we were watching. That life has a lot more going on than one feet sweeping moment after the other. However, she wanted to believe that there were times, though rare, where things like this could happen. Moments when a guy, who is genuinely in love would spew an epic monologue that could make any girl weak in the knees, complete with grand gestures and confessions of undying devotion. All I could do was smile and nod.

I have had this discussion or debate with myself numerous times. The results are usually based on whatever is happening in my life at the moment. That says a lot. A truth is supposed to be resolute, not subjective; so I am probably the last person who should be giving advice about this. On one hand I figure that if these stories can be conjured up that there has to be some point of reference, some example to help it along. Yes, there is fluff added and we only see an ounce of the whole journey, but still, somewhere in the world, at certain points ridiculously romantic things must happen. These are the very things that inspire the stories that fill the pages of our books and the movie screens at our local theater. As soon as this thought crosses my mind, it goes into devil’s advocate mode. It could just be that people write or create the moments they want to see happen, the things that don’t really exist. Both ideas take a certain amount of faith to believe.

Then there is the other hand. The one that holds the real life experience. In my life I can number on one hand instances you might deem movie worthy moments, and that’s stretching it. So, what do I say to my roommate who is teetering between heaven and hell, looking for something or someone to push her toward the “right side”? My response is to say nothing really. How can I sway her to any side, when I’m not sure which one I’m even on? Maybe the point is that there is no side, but a balance. That we shouldn’t be the pendulum sweeping back and forth and never steadying; but rather, we need to find the middle and settle there.

The thing that struck me most was that she is a true picture of every woman I know. There are so many women who have no idea what to do with the desire they have burning inside them. The desire that goes unfulfilled as they endure disappointment after disappointment. The desire that causes them to make decisions based solely on their need to see that well inside them touched. Ninety-nine percent of the time these decisions are irrational and unwise, with heartbreaking consequences. That does little to deter them from carrying out this behavior time and time again, all because of this consuming thorn in their side called hope. It’s the thing that will keep them holding on, against all odds and in the face of impossible circumstances. Even if it’s false and barely hanging on by a thread. Why? because the thought that something so extraordinary could happen to them is like a drug; and the alternative is too depressing to consider.

Is this insanity? The same behavior over and over expecting a different outcome. Is it a noble pursuit that will bear good fruit for your suffering? What do I say to these woman in their emotional swirls? What do I say to them in their bitter rants? Where is the balance? the line. Is there even a line? The universal thorn in women’s side. The curse going back to the Garden of Eden, “Your desire will be for your husband.” I’m pulling out all the stops here. Whatever the case may be, it’s time we either lay it to rest or start seeing some results.

Red-headed Step Child Syndrome

The other day I was on an ALL MALE shift at work. This is a rarity. Woman outnumber men on my job 3 to 1. This was the first time I got a taste of what they must go through on a nearly daily basis; and let me tell you, it was bitter. First off, suddenly I was invisible and my voice shrunk down to the size of pea. This is a difficult task considering that almost everyone who meets me describes me in one word, Intimidating. I was trying to train a new employee, but my instruction was overshadowed by the need to discuss video games or tv shows. My b%&ch switch almost got triggered, but I refrained with this little thing called self-control. This isn’t even my point of contention.

Inevitably the conversation turned to girls and crushes. An area I was included in as “one of the guys”. I have no qualms about this usually. In fact, I like getting the inside scoop and helping to make those “love connections”. What can I say? It’s the Emma Woodhouse in me. However, this time it hit me differently. Two of the three guys on the shift had an attraction to the same girl, and it was so not who I thought. This never happens!!! We, as human beings, are as predictable as the stereotypes we form, but I never saw this coming. What’s more, is I never saw my reaction coming. I was jealous.

I consider myself a fairly attractive person. I am intelligent, funny and personable. My one fall back has always been the color of my skin (which I love) and the intimidation factor. These are my go to reasons of why I am still single or why so and so is not interested in me. This girl that was being crushed on is me in a white body. Our personalities are nearly identical in all their stubborn, strong-willed, sarcastic glory. In addition, she is not the typical classical beauty. In fact, she is a tomboy to the max, curvy and pale. She has all the “short-comings” of a normal woman. Acne, bad hair days, unwanted pudge, etc… My jaw dropped and I was overjoyed to find that there are males in the world that weren’t so predictable and superficial. Don’t misunderstand, this girl is beautiful; but since she isn’t pin-up beautiful a lot of guys would turn her down. Treatment a lot of women endure in our culture of impossible beauty standards.

The issue isn’t that they liked her, despite obvious incompatibility and her total lack of interest. The issue is that suddenly one of my main “go-to” reasons for why a guy may not be interested in me was suddenly ripped right from under me. This was a blatant contradiction to what I’ve always told myself and now I feel robbed and pissed. I’m pissed at the guys for never seeing me that way, though I have no interest in either of them, so it’s completely irrational. I’m pissed that my bubble was burst and now I only have one excuse that was already barely hanging on by a thread.

You would think I would be overjoyed to find guys that are not dissuaded by strong woman, even if they are intimidating. Goodness, I thought I would be. All it did was make me feel like their must be something fundamentally wrong with me since I am constantly being overlooked or passed up. Now, I know this isn’t true and I tell myself this all the time. I actually like who I am and how I look (most days); but damn if the thought didn’t cross my mind and practically depress me for the rest of the day.

So what now? I had my moment of gloom and then I moved on. There really isn’t anything that can be done about it and remaining upset is a waste of energy and time. Life goes on and you go on with it, end of story. I’m not sure what the lesson was here. Maybe there was no lesson, but my eyes have certainly been opened; and maybe in time I will learn to stop looking at my strong personality as a negative and start viewing it as a positive. After all, it ain’t going anywhere.

50 Shades of Pain

I’m an award winning ranter. I mean I should get a freakin’ medal for all the venting I have done in my life; and I’m not talking bronze status. I always go for the gold! It’s no surprise, since I’m a verbal processor that I can be a bit long winded too. Ask any of my personal priests and they will tell you that my confessionals can go on for days. Once I get on my soapbox, sit back and relax cause it’s about to go down.

Really, I have the kindest friends who constantly sit through this till I’m tired of the sound of my own voice. The conversation usually ends with a line like, “So, anyway… I’m gonna shut up now because I’m annoying myself.” I don’t know how they haven’t stuck hot pokers in their ears or stuffed a sock in my mouth.

My latest victim was my older sister, Tanya. I spent a good hour on the phone with her ranting about my ex and the suck factor of the aftermath of our failed relationship. Most days, I want nothing to do with my ex. He too closely resembles the “good cop, bad cop” from the Lego Movie, without the redemption. One day he just flipped a switch and my whole world went into a tizzy. The worst of it is that it hasn’t found it’s balance again. I’m still sifting through the debris from the tornado that was our short relationship.

After we broke up I felt like I couldn’t trust people or myself. How had I made such an error in judgment? How did I not see this coming? How can someone be so two-faced? Trust flew out the window like a flock of doves and I was left with deep pain, confusion, anger, etc… Eventually, the pain subsided. Thank God, because there were days I didn’t think I was going to make it through. Days were I was sure I was gonna cave in on myself. Truth be told, I had never felt heartache like that in my whole life. Finally coming out of the other end was more than a relief, it was salvation to my burnt out emotions.

However, every now and then the scar aches; and all this sh$t gets stirred up that I don’t know what to do with. I already know all the well intentioned advice. You’ll heal. Things wont always be like this. You wont always feel like this. All of which means nothing in those moments. All that really matters is the raw emotion coursing through your veins. The need to scream, to fight, to curse, to be angry over the injustice you feel in your heart. That you were wronged and yet you are the one still dealing, still feeling. That he doesn’t deserve to be missed by you, but he is. That he isn’t worth the upheaval he caused, the energy you exert just trying to feel like your old self. The one without the bitterness and cynicism. That you have to live in the unknown, thinking he’s doing just fine and your still struggling, without an apology or explanation. Without feeling defended or avenged. Without finding the better thing. With nothing. You get nothing; and for all the lessons you learned and the personal growth you went through, it still doesn’t feel worth the pain you endured.

It’s this kind of thing that makes you realize that life sometimes sucks; and that there are cases where there is no rhyme or reason to it. It just is what it is, end of story. Six months later and very little has changed. You would give anything to return to the blissful ignorance of days past. You would do anything to trade in your “wisdom” for the naive hope you used to hold on to. I have been so angry I couldn’t think straight. So distraught I physically ached. So changed I don’t recognize who I’ve become; and all I can think is that it’s this a&$hole’s fault.

The one saving grace I have, is also the thing I fume over most. None of what I just said was present when we broke up. I still felt so much love and kindness toward him. So much compassion that I was able to be the bigger person. I said my peace with class and sophistication. As grateful as I am that I didn’t degrade myself or stoop to an ugly level, I’m also pissed because it’s more than he deserved. Now I want to tell him like it is, I want to inflict physical harm, whatever it takes to wake him up. It’s that need for him to understand what he did to you; and maybe in some weird way you think that if he did, it might fix you.

The conclusion is that life goes on and you go on with it. Maybe there isn’t some higher purpose to what you’ve just gone through. Maybe nothing ever gets resolved and you’ll remain hanging there for all your days. Some things don’t get closure. Some things just are. It’s harder when things are this way. It makes it more difficult to heal, to feel like it wasn’t all for nothing. It makes it harder to move on and open up again because we, humans, are great at hurting each other and not so great at loving each other. That is what’s real. The end.

Congratulations, you all have just become another one of my priests! And you got the mild version.

Confessions of an Ex-Romantic

Love is a tricky subject. It seems our opinions of love morph with every tide of change of in our own lives. One minute we are hopelessly optimistic, that when we least expect it Mr. or Mrs. Right is going to come waltzing into our lives. Of course it would be right at the time when we’ve gotten everything “figured out” and have finally tapped into the true essence of who we are and what we’re all about. Self-love is attractive after all. The next minute however, you can’t even look at an attractive potential, who keeps glancing in your direction because cynical thoughts overrun your mind, pulling at the last remaining thread of optimism you have left. Thoughts like,Yeah, they look, but they wont do anything further or It wont last, so why bother? I seem to be on that end of the swinging pendulum these days.

My best friend is in town for my birthday and has confidently informed me that I have been in this place before. Making my declaration of love scorned and swearing off relationships, period. This times feels different though. Maybe it’s because I am still picking up the pieces from my last relationship that obviously shattered me and robbed me of my naive hopeless romantic side. I used to be the type that believed that against all odds and in the face of impossibility love would prevail. Even in my discouraged rants when I was lonely and craving love and affection, I always held on tight to this, even when it really was just grasping at air. What’s the difference now? The difference is my inner dialogue, the first thought that pops into my mind is one of pessimism and doubt; and I feel shaken to the core because of it. Like I’m having some kind of outer body experience and some dark and evil twin has taken over. I just don’t feel myself, if you know what I mean. How do I get back?

Time heals all wounds, right? I can attest to that, but the scar left over is permanent. What if the wound heals wrong, leaving you with a nasty, twisted looking scar that still aches every now and then? How do you get rid of that scar?

My best friend feels pretty confident that I can get back on track and be who I once was, but I feel changed; and not temporarily. I think she knows that. I think she knows that I wont ever be who I was. Heartbreak changes you; but I do think she believes that I can change for the better. Take the wisdom I gained from my experience and move on, move forward with a more mature perspective, but learn to hope again. That just maybe, my first thought when it comes to attraction and love wont be so self-defeating. It’s hard to picture, to fathom that as a real possibility. Even as I write this post I feel my heart ache for the blissful ignorance of my past, but what is done is done. I know this because I can also feel the resistance to going back.

Maybe I just need more time. Maybe I need a Men in Black memory eraser or a time machine. Either way, something has to give. I can’t be in limbo forever, so either I heal and move on or I sink deeper. I know theoretically what is right? but I am realistically torn between fear and belief. There are places in me, still hurting, wanting to self-protect; but there is also a part of me scared of this new person I’ve become and wanting to be my old self again. I would love to say that the motivation for wanting to return to my happy loved up days is because I genuinely wanted a relationship and true love, yatta yatta; but I literally don’t have the desire. It’s like something in my brain goes to immediately cock block me when I see a cute guy from taking it any further than noticing his looks. It’s because I want to have hope to hope again, whatever that means. What can I say? I’m all tied up. Here’s to hoping the web unravels and fast!

The Death of Mr. Wrong and John Doe Revealed

Last night I was at a crossroads. I knew, with stunning accuracy might I add, that as soon as I posted the entry I would receive a phone call from my best friend, who would then proceed to tell me, in the most loving way, that I was being a complete moron. There was no doubt in me that it was because she is actually a good friend. One that keeps you accountable and holds you to the standards you hold yourself to. Not to mention it’s what I would have done if the shoe was on the other foot.

Truth be told, I agreed with her. I was achingly aware that I was making unwise decisions for my friendship and my heart. That’s what we do though, isn’t it? We make the decision we want, even when we know it’s bad, and then we fool ourselves into thinking their wont be consequences. Friends will administer the proper dosage of well intentioned advice, and we smile and nod genuinely taking it all in, hoping to God that when the time came we would listen to the angel on our shoulder and not the devil. We would listen to reason and sound council. Then… then the moment comes and it’s a hit or miss. It’s like shooting in the dark. Depending on how your feeling that moment it can go either way. When it comes to the opposite sex, however, it usually goes one way and one way only. The wrong way. Heart’s still in a tizzy and though the small voice is screaming on the inside to “do the right thing”, it’s barely a whisper above the raging storm of desire bubbling inside.

It all came down to this simple truth, that put this decision under the heading of “Soon to be Regret”. If there was even an ounce of possibility that either one of us could lose our minds and do something that crossed the line, something we couldn’t take back, than obvious wisdom is to step away and refrain. Did I think that was going to happen? not likely, but the chance of it was gnawing at me like a starving animal. I’m not talking about sex here. If you have read my blog it all you know I am virgin and proud, so that’s not I am referring to. Here is the other half of this truth. In all likeliness I would have gone out with my friend, had a great time and that would have been the end of it. Nothing scandalous or noteworthy, but it would have definitely had repercussions. If there is even an iota of attraction there, you would be fooling yourself to think that it wouldn’t end up blossoming into something more. As much as we kid ourselves into thinking we can handle it. That we are grown up and can just simply overcome, our track records show otherwise; at least mine does. I mean the definition of insanity is doing the same behavior over and over and expecting a different outcome. It’s what I’ve been doing, practically my whole life. So, you justify and reason yourself into thinking it’s okay, and what happens?  The bitch blows up in your face. Then you usually wind up with the hurt feelings, the wounds to nurse and the crap to work through. The other person in your heartbreak scenerio walks away seemingly scott-free. I knew this would be my fate if I went through with this.

So, there I was, not five minutes after I published the post and my phone rings. As soon as I pick it up laughter fills my ear. What the?!?! Has she lost her mind? Nope, she just thinks I have. Especially because we had just had an hour long conversation about why it was not a good idea and by the end of it we both felt somewhat safe about the outcome of all of this being in my favor. Again, barely audible whisper and raging storm. She spends the next hour laying things out, searching her own soul and all that jazz. I was slowly coming around; but what did it for me, what made me see the light, was scrolling through my Facebook feed and seeing at the top of my page that he had just checked into a restaurant with his girlfriend at that very moment. I kid you not, it was like a fog had lifted to reveal a freight train coming right at me. What the hell was I thinking? This was never gonna play out the way I saw it in my head. Never! It was suddenly very clear what I had to do.

It took some courage building, but after getting off the phone and stuffing my face with a delicious Smash burger I texted him and told him it wasn’t going to happen. I half truthed it and told him I wasn’t comfortable going on a “friend date” when he had a girlfriend. I felt it would have been counterproductive to dive into the deeper things behind it, like “I want to have your children,” just kidding guys. I said that purely for shock factor. He responded a few minutes later telling me that it was fine. He was trying to be there for a friend and then asked if I still wanted to be set up with John Doe, who I found out has a name… Jeff. Jeff is still a mystery to me and I decided to keep it that way. Makes life more interesting. What didn’t help me in this dialogue was the tack on comment of, “I like our conversations!” Well, me too, but now there over.

In conclusion, I am still in a swirl. My head is still in a funny place, as it has been for the last couple of months and I am actively staying away from the coffee shop he works at because (A) I am embarrassed and (B) I need time. Time to heal, time to get down from the insanity cloud I have been floating on for the last couple of months. Truth be told, I don’t really know when the ride will be over. Soon, I hope. Till then Mr. Wrong had to die or at least go into deep hidding. But never fear my Little Darlings, I will still have my birthday adventure. It will consist of my best friend, whom I haven’t seen in over a year, coming to visit; and will involve book nerdom, tattoos, hysterical laughing, birthday cigars and just good, clean fun! So, don’t weep for me. A single tear will do nicely.

John Doe and Mr. Wrong

So, the saga of John Doe continues… or does it? If you’re wondering who John Doe is you might want to back track on this blog to the entry entitled “28 and Never Been on a Date”, it will explain everything. Here is the update for all you curious readers. As soon as my head lifted off the pillow the next morning and what I had done popped into my head, like I was recovering from a drunken stupor, the first words to enter my thoughts were, “O, no!”. The thing of it was that I didn’t have the luxury of blaming intoxication for my poor decision making skills. Nope, this was done entirely sober, though I will say I did have a “mind-altering” substance coursing through my veins called feelings. The idiotic, girly kind that can throw every ounce of wisdom you have out the window in a matter of seconds. Currently, I am still under the influence;  and I will tell you why.

The next time I saw my friend I asked him if he had contacted John Doe and told him about me and he said he had. I had every intention of recinding my request, but when I heard that I figured it would be too much drama to have to go through the trouble of taking it back once it was already out there. I did vocalize my hesitation, to which he responded with reassurance and positivity, even telling me John Doe got all nervous and blushy when the blind date was mentioned. How endearing right? Well, it did nothing for me but cause the feeling of dread to rise higher and higher in my chest. Suddenly visions of two complete strangers sitting across from each other at a dinner table painfully trying to fill the awkward silence began dancing like sugar plums through my head. Is this what I really wanted for my birthday adventure?

Let’s face it, the great fantasy of spontaneity and flying sparks that I had imagined was just that, a fantasy. Reality was overwhelmingly disappointing in comparison; and with my track record it would guarantee to be a disastrous evening. I love myself, but I am not the girl that “gets the guy”. I am not the girl that guys fall in love with. I am the girl that guys think about momentarily and quickly forget. Guys have definitely liked me and maybe one or two fancied being in love with me, but it was far from a fairy tale. No sparks, no undeniable gravitational pull, no madness.

So, remember when I said I suddenly was having visions of my friend taking me out on this date instead? Well, he casually brought up the idea of him taking my out if his friend didn’t. Granted, I feel like this was more out of pity and obligation than anything else, but I immediately jumped at the possibility. The idea of being with someone I knew wouldn’t be awkward or hard to talk to was more than appealing. Not to mention I would still be getting my birthday adventure. Noticing my not so subtle preference, we both settled on it. This is an example of being “under the influence”. My friend is not a good choice for be to be going out with for the reasons previously mentioned in my older post. I can just see my best friend rolling her disapproving eyes as she’s reading this. Now she’s rolling them because of what I just said. The point is, I did it, I said yes. So, we are going out on this “friend date” and I’m suddenly feeling like a teenager.

I’m trying to decide what I think and feel. The uncertainty is making me feel like a kid with raging hormones and not a lot of sense. I am master at justifying things and reasoning things I want into being acceptable. “He’s my friend, nothing is going to happen.” Right? Then the other side of my brain hears the voice of my best friend saying, “All it takes is one second of weakness to make a huge mistake that you can’t take back”. So, what’s really in question is my self-control. If at the root I really am who I think I am, who I claim to be. His is a friendship I don’t want to give up and I know most of this is coming from simply being at a vulnerable place in my life. Unfortunately, times like this make me more emotional than rational. So, this may be the time to batten down the hatches and wade out the storm in safety. We haven’t made any definite plans and I am actively staying away (juvenile, I know). That doesn’t mean he wont contact me to set everything up. It also doesn’t mean that I wont do it. Sorry, Little Darlings, the jury is still out on this one? But, I will definitely keep you posted.

A Jane Austen Girl Living in a Sex in the City World

I know the title screams cliche, but it’s the best one I could come up with when trying to explain to my co-workers why I am on the verge of 28 and still single. To be honest, I’ve reached my limit. I’m at the breaking point, because if I have to hear one more person tell me they don’t understand why I am not married or pat me on the back and tell me it will happen when I least expect it, I’m going to light it up and burn it down. I will go all Office Space on someone if I get one more “well intentioned” suggestion on how to find and keep a man. Trust me, no one is more aware than I am that my ovaries aren’t getting any younger, but my problem is bigger than my lack of trying, the city I live in (which is one of the worst for dating and singles in the country), my job or circle of friends. The issue is that I am a Jane Austen girl in a Sex in the City world. I am an eighty-five year old woman in a twenty-seven year old’s body. I am half modern woman and half 1950s house wife.

Some people would read this and think that’s exactly what every man wants, WRONG! That’s what every man wants in movies and novels, not in the real world. Now, let me prequalify by saying that I do not live with my head in the clouds. People hear Jane Austen and they think I want to bust out Regency Era garb, british accents and needlework. That’s not the case. I’m all about finding the balance. So, while I’m not about to decorate my room with Mr. Darcy posters, neither am I going to light my bra on fire.

What I love is the solid morality, the propriety and modesty of that time. Men were men and woman, woman. Love was simple and straightforward. On the flip side, I also love the advances of my age. I like my iPad and air conditioning. I like that I have tattoos and piercings. I like that I can be an intelligent, strong and ambitious woman who gets to kick ass and take names in her career. I’m the girl who knows how to change the oil in her car but still expects men to open the door for me when they see me coming. I love being a woman and though I am unashamed of my femininity, I refuse to use it as a weapon. I am the proud prude who is so looking forward to having sex one day. I plan to be really good at it by the way. To me being a “good girl” isn’t a front for being a freak behind closed doors. I relate more to Nancy Drew than I do Beyonce. Do you see my dilemma here?

Let’s be honest people, the skirts are getting smaller and the times looser. I live in a world where I am constantly being told to throw the rule book out of the window. Do whatever floats your boat; but here is the thing, I like the rule book. The rule book has served me well up to this point. Because of it I have avoided a lot of heartache, brokenness, STDs and baggage.

I stand firm in who I am, what I’m about and what I want; but does being this way destine me for a life of spinsterhood with all the stereotypical trimmings of cats, moth balls and pathetic dinners for one? True, I like the way my heart flutters when I watch a sweet “happily ever after” scene on the movie screen or read one in a novel. I take them in and I enjoy them, but that’s where it stops. I don’t let these things shape my expectations. I don’t daydream about my own knight-in-shining-armor riding in on his noble stead to finally put a ring on it. I don’t let the fantasy become my reality. I know what the world is like cause I live in it Every. Day. All I am asking for is a good man with his crap together. Someone with integrity, respect and honor, which are words that have seemed to have lost their value in our current culture. A grown up without the mommy issues. Ok, so maybe I am looking for a modern day Mr. Darcy. Maybe that means I will die alone. At least I go to the grave knowing that I didn’t settle. That I didn’t attach myself to someone for the rest of my life who I don’t admire or respect.

I already know what some of you are thinking. Everyone settles and eventually so will I. Why? Because the desire for marriage will become too much? It’s called self-control and I have gotten abnormally good at it. Not to mention that marriage isn’t the end all. It’s not my means to happiness. There is a lot in life to desire and look forward to. What about sex? My Vag doesn’t control my decisions now, so why will it then? Besides, you can’t really miss what you never had. Well, what about companionship? It’s called friendship. Any other arguments?

So, in conclusion, to all my Jane Austen girls. Keep you chin up and your fans held high. Decide what’s important to you, being in a relationship or being happy with who you see looking back at you in the mirror; and maybe, just maybe, one day you can have both.