Half of me can’t even believe I am writing this post. Dating is gruesome, isn’t it? Like most of life, I suppose.
The weekend that Jim died I was standing there, a wreck, while my phone was blowing up. Alayne goes “who is texting you so much?”
I respond “oh those are just my tinder matches”
and I know that not everybody gets the hilarity and all I can say is until you are in the fire, you don’t see the need for a respite from getting burned.
anyways, i was talking to my therapist about dating and i commented “single, widowed mom, sole custody of two kids… it’s a tough sell” and it is.
i have this story that literally leaves people speechless. most people when they hear it don’t even really know how to interact with me much less get involved romantically. and i know eventually it won’t be such a big part of my identity, this widowed, grieving mom, but right now it is and if i want anything to do with the person then it’s like they have to know it.
again, it’s a tough sell.
i remember when alayne was dating and i was in the “smug married” camp and i would literally be listening to her dating stories while secretly thinking to myself “thank GOD you don’t have to do that, dating with the internet sounds horrible” well jokes on me, not only am i internet dating but i also have my entire story on basically every social media outlet, including this blog.
here are common openers from online dating that literally lead to a dead end for me:
“what brought you to raleigh?”
“what do you do for work?”
“what’s your IG?”
the first date i went on, God bless this guy. i picked that poor soul because i knew i didn’t like him and i just wanted to get what would most likely be an extremely awkward date out of the way so if i actually did like someone in the future, i would be chill, the opposite of myself normally.
do you know how hard it is to date if you don’t want them to know anything about you? i sat there at coffee for an hour and gave no info about myself, he didn’t know i had kids, didn’t know i was married, nothing. i sat there and silently shredded a napkin into my lap and was AWKWARD, gave him a hug goodbye, hopped in my minivan and drove away.
i can only imagine that he got out of that experience thinking “what the hell”
and then the time comes when you do start to like people again, and it’s hard and messy and difficult and my requirements right now are crazy. i want all of the benefits of a relationship with none of the responsibility. and then i can only imagine what most guys think about my situation, i would say half want to take advantage of what they perceive as my emotional vulnerability (nice try buddy!) and the other half are like “hmm…. no thank you” and i get it, i totally get it. thank god i stayed skinny through all those pregnancies so at least i still look good otherwise this would be bordering impossible.
and this is the tricky part too right? everyone liked me when i am in pain because i needed help and it’s like seeing a puppy out in the rain, everyone wants to adopt it. but then you bring the puppy in and it starts chewing up your shoes and you think “oh no puppy, oh no this is not how you act”
that’s why it’s so great to be down here. no one to say “oh no, oh no bria, this is not how being a widow is done” by the way 100% of those people are not widowed because anyone who is will just tell you “do what you want, hall pass for the first year AT LEAST”
and so what do we do? right, there is nothing to do but keep trying. keep meeting people, keep making connections, keep throwing out lines. if you have breath, then you want to be loved, if you want to be loved you gotta love too.