Ramblings of the middle-aged woman on her own.
By kelly1596 on June 03, 2012
I have been on my own outside of a serious committed relationship for 4 and a half years now. It is a strange, sometimes painful but sometimes wonderful place to be. To those who find themselves on their own at a time in their life they never thought they would be, the experience is unique. You change so much when you are on your own. You may not yet realize it but when you get to the point at that I am you look back you can definately see it. So very much to process during this time.
You need to adjust to coming home alone. I had a really hard time with this and so I got a puppy. I went from a house with a husband and several children to a completely empty house overnight. It was soul shattering to say the least. It hurt to breathe at the time and I very much needed something to take care of. I thank the universe for giving me the sense to buy a puppy rather than go out and jump immediately into another relationship to fill the void. Brody, my dog, saved me in a big way back then.
While on your own you have to figure out who the hell you are again. You lose what you were and what your life used to be. You lose all the pieces of being a wife, mom, co-worker and all the activities that went with it. You complain about how busy and rushed you are but you have no clue what it is like to have it and then have it suddenly stop. And then it did for me and there I was staring at the face of a woman I didn't know. She looked familiar but she was again wife, mom, co-worker. I had no idea who "me" was. She had been shelved. She was going to have priority "some day when I have time" and that time really was never going to come until my life exploded.
So the journey began. Dealing with the pain and withdrawal of a life I had become dependant on to define who I am and what I mean to this world. Dealing with the fact that I had no idea who "I" was or even if I would like her once we got to know each other again. Would I? Not at first.
I realized I really wasn't anybody but the roles that I had played for so long. Don't get me wrong, I do not regret any of it. The running around, the lessons, the sports, the shopping, commuting, working, cooking. It was all good and I did enjoy it at the time but the piece missing here, the piece that would have made it better for me and those around me was simply that "me" didn't exist.
The burying of "me" happened slowly and over time. Nobody made me bury her. Nobody asked me to let her go or reduce her to the bottom of the priortiy pile. I did that and in the process I became less than who I should have been. I became a person who my ex-husband could easily dismiss as unimportant. Now, don't get me wrong, this does not absolve him of what he did and how he handled our break up but I own my piece of it. I do. Afterall if I was not important to me why would I be important to him or anyone else? If I don't love me then how can I expect anyone else to love me? It is a simple concept but a hard one to completely wrap your head around. I am still doing it. Still figuring it all out 4 and a half years later.
During this time I have dated. Off and on sporadically. I have met a lot of people. I have drank an insane amount of coffee. I have had one date, two, three and then nothing. I have had the beginnings of a relationship twice but I can't hold it. There is a part of me that is still locked up and she can't get out. At least not yet.
I don't know how I feel about the online dating thing. It has it's good points and it's bad but for me it feels a bit empty, a little less real and the patterns for the psuedo-relationships that come about from it get to be predictable.
I mean it is an online smorgasbord of people. An "all you can eat" buffet of single (and sometimes not single) people some of whom keep going back to find someone better, someone just a little more perfect than the last one they met. I mean the beginning is exciting. You chat and feel you have some kind of a connenction and it feels good. You start to think you know them and you look forward to their messages everyday and the times they are online with you so you can "chat". I think it can become addictive and it can become a way of avoiding the fact you may be wandering around your home alone in the evenings when you get back from work. Avoidance can be the name of the game when you are alone until you really start to deal with it. A lot of people do this and I did it too for awhile.
The chats feel great but at some point you need to meet and that is the "make or break" part. If someone has been dishonest about appearance in any way this is where it comes out. Perhaps the coffee date goes well and you go out again but again it is still not reality. You don't really "know" them. Both of you on your very best behaviour if there is any attraction there. I mean why the hell would you want someone to want you for who you really are? I have no desire to pretend to be someone else or lose myself ever again but at the same time I do want someone to want me. It is a basic human need afterall. To those that say you need to stop looking for "the one" and it will happen I am going to tell you that I happen to think that is a load of garbage. We never stop looking for that human connection. Never. We may decide to live our lives anyway, do what we want to anyway and stop fearing doing things and going places on our own but nobody stops looking. I just don't believe that.
Right now I am not on any online dating sites. I need a break. And the romantic part of me really wants to have, whenever it may happen, the real, honest connection with someone that just evolves on its own without any pushes by technology or the internet. It has it's place, that is for sure, after all here I am blogging about it using technology and the internet. So instead of actively searching, rushing home to read my emails, worrying about when I don't get any and second guessing every move of every man I meet there I have decided to go it on my own for now.
I am open to dates. I would seriously consider any request for my time from any man who crosses my path and that we spark an interest in each other. I am just not actively chasing this through the online thing. I will just continue to explore myself and my new world for now without this interference, which is exactly what it was becoming for me.
Ramblings...........more to come. LOL!
Back at ya!
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