Life Goes On

So I imagine you are wondering, what about guy number four?

He is still in the picture. We actually had a date. Actually three dates and are meeting again tomorrow for a hike. Yes, I went on an actual date. And surprisingly it was not terrifying. I was insanely nervous but Four was really kind and thoughtful and understanding.

We met to play mini golf which was actually a great choice. Something to do but we could still talk. On the 3rd hole (I think) I got a hole-in-one. Total miracle shot. And I beat him by one stroke overall which surprised us both. We checked the scores like three times. And then we sat and talked for about two hours.

Easy questions, hard questions but I could feel myself becoming more comfortable with him. A hug good-bye, nothing more.

And then we went for a hike and then we went bowling with the loser agreeing to buy lunch after. We didn’t set any ground rules and he beat me two of three games. But total pins? I won by two so kind of a tie. But I still bought lunch.

Turns out he is one of Santa’s elves and will be leaving for the North Pole after Thanksgiving until Christmas. Okay actually he is a supervisor for a subcontractor for the post office and is working up in Phoenix but I like my story better, even if he is too tall for an elf. 🧝‍♀️

I am sort of glad for the chance to catch my breath and think about exactly what I am doing here. He is a very nice person and I keep thinking he is too nice for me, which is an odd thought. I have been totally honest with him, he is aware of my current family situation and seems okay with making up the rules as we go. I am taking things one day at a time, which I have also told him.

Obviously this is the start of a new chapter in my life and I feel like I need to really think things through. So I will attempt to do so. Please stay tuned.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

The Mixed Bag of My Life

As always days pass in a series of ups and downs.

UP

I finally figured out what I wanted to do as a part-time job. It only took three separate people mentioning it to me! I am working on becoming a notary and then getting my signing license to do real estate closings. Will take a few weeks but I am patient.

DOWN

My hot flashes have returned. I am getting them a few times during the day and one or two at night. They aren’t super bad but it is still depressing.

UP

I started a new writing class. A little something to stretch my brain and get me motivated. The instructor liked my first writing assignment, said it made her laugh!

Directions were: In 300 words or less and using dialog, start with one of 5 phrases provided and add a twist at the end. Here is what I wrote:

“Looking at Paris in this light makes me long for color,” I said aloud. “It is so monochromatic”.

A nearby woman dressed all in black glared at me while she muttered under her breath, “All you Americans are so whiney.”

“Everything is so gray and dark right now”, I muttered back.  “The sky, the drizzle, the Eiffel Tower, umbrellas and raincoats.  There is not a single pop of color anywhere,” I said as I made a sweeping motion with my arm. “Not a circus red umbrella or aspen leaf autumn yellow rain boot or unicorn pink trench coat in sight.”

The woman huffed at me and crossed the street.

I looked at the gray sky again. Tarnished tea set gray? Downy owl gray? I am so depressed gray? Silver lining gray? Silver lining gray. That sounded nice. I had to admit to myself that really this weather was timed perfectly. Color would be back in my life soon enough, I just needed to get through this gray stretch.

I walked into my office and took a deep breath and slowly exhaled. “I will be so happy when we are done with this latest batch of paint colors,” I told my boss as I stared at the wall of gray paint samples that still needed names.

DOWN

I have become quite proficient at being out of touch with the world right now and maybe a little too good at taking things one day at a time. I happened to glance at the calendar and holy crap Batman Thanksgiving is next week! I didn’t notice the time of year since temps are back into the 90’s again. (Not helping the hot flashes!) So I went to the commissary Tuesday night to get a turkey and all the non-perishable foods for the big feast. And really that is all that was on my list so I skipped some aisles. But as I walked past the end of the paper products row I was shocked to see that it was nearly empty.

Apparently I missed the start of the panic buying. Why are people panic buying here? I talked to a Doc from the VA hospital last weekend and he said Tucson and Arizona are doing okay. Will this year ever end?

UP

I am giving myself an early Christmas present this year…3 nights and two days up at Mount Lemmon in early December. By myself. Pure peace and quiet. Cold enough to wear sweaters. Long hikes amongst trees. Christmas movies and popcorn.

It will be like sleeping in a tree house!

Looking over the past week or so I certainly feel like I have had more ups then downs so it is all good.

Wishing you more ups than downs this week!

A Conversation with Myself

Time to empty out my head so I (MC) will be interviewing myself (ME) about my recent dating app experiences.  Is it wrong to meet and tell?  Maybe, but I won’t use any names.

MC:  So how does this online dating app experience feel over all?

ME:  Kind of disappointing and certainly stressful.  I felt like I swiped right a fair amount but got very few matches.

MC: Why do you think that is?

ME:  Cause I am middle-aged?

MC:  Right, well let’s talk about the people you did match with.  How many have you actually gotten to know a bit thru texting?

ME:  Four so far.  

MC:  Only four?  That’s not much of a sample size.

ME: There were a few more matches, two didn’t respond at all and two more I have only exchanged a few lines with. One disappointment was B.  He is the one I texted during the night when we both had insomnia and then he deleted his account.  😞 He showed up again so I swiped right and saw that he had already matched with me.  I was kinda excited and sent him a text asking if we had talked before…and he never responded. 

MC: That is rather disappointing.  But what about the other four.  Let’s start with the first guy.

ME:  We texted quite a bit and then talked on the phone a few times but didn’t meet.

MC: What happened?

ME: Had rather a lot of drama in his life.  Last girlfriend called the cops on him and he seemed to spend a lot of time at his ex-wife’s place who he “Still loved with all his heart”.

MC: Sounds like a good call to move on.  Okay, how about number 2.

ME:  He was a really bad texter, I actually thought he was drunk our first exchange which I ended after just a few texts.  Then two days later I asked him how drunk he was that night and he said he didn’t drink.  He was just a really bad texter which never changed. Incomplete sentences, tons of typos, very short answers. Turns out he was really shy.

MC: Did you meet him in person? 

ME: I did. Probably not the best choice for a first meet since we were both really nervous.  I tried to make him feel at ease but it just wasn’t happening.

MC: So how did things end?

ME: Badly. He sent me a text asking if he could see me again and I had to say I didn’t think I was a good fit for him.  I felt terrible because I can only imagine how hard it was for him to meet me. His only reply was “ok” and then he unmatched me.

MC: That sounds rough. Let’s move onto number three.

ME:  We seemed to have a lot in common but we also have a lot of differences. I didn’t always get his sense of humor. We did talk on the phone and then agreed to meet.

MC: How did that go?

ME: While I had been hopeful there really wasn’t any chemistry between us.  And our differences seemed magnified in person.

MC: That’s too bad. No hope at all there?

ME: I don’t think so.  He was really COVID sensitive but at the same time he was straight up about how he didn’t need another “friend” (translation he just wanted to have sex) and then asked questions like “When did you end your work with the Census?  and When was the last time you kissed someone?”  Obviously worried about being “contaminated” and concerned over my lack of concern.

MC: So how did it end?

ME:  We said good-bye and haven’t contacted each other since.

MC: Hmm.  Do you expect to hear from him again?

ME: Kind of hope so because I loaned him a movie.

MC: Do you really think you are going to get that movie back?

ME: No. 

MC: So, we are down to one final candidate. Tell me about number four.

ME: Well, he is the one I feel the most connected with, at least via text. He wanted to meet last weekend but I chickened out.

MC:  Chickened out?

ME: I hadn’t met anybody in person yet and I wasn’t sure I was ready.

MC: Are you ready now?

ME: I think so.  We have had some fun exchanges, no serious conversations though. I am not sure I am ready for another in person non-connection. I am really enjoying talking to him and would hate to lose that already.

MC: So what are you going to do?  

ME: Maybe talk to him tonight, get a feel for what he thinks and I am curious as to how this dating app stuff has been working for him.  And maybe set up a meeting?

MC: That’s a lot of maybes. 

ME: Well he might not be available to talk tonight.

MC: That’s true. But let’s face it, at some point you are going to need to gather your courage and move the potential relationship along. He has already said he would like to meet you in person.  The ball is in your court.

ME: I know, I know.

MC: So I guess that is everything. Any final words?

ME: I really miss all the chemistry I had with M* and how easy it all was. 

MC:  Too bad it was all lies and he bruised your heart.

ME: I know, I know.

No water at all going over the dam. 😦 Just as dry as me attempting a dating life.

This was a fun format to write. Please tell me it was more funny then pathetic. I know, I know…..

Patience

“With patience comes choice and with choice comes power.”

Another quote from Louise Penny”s “All the Devils are Here”

And the patience and perseverance have paid off. I have picked up the pieces of my life again.


Yesterday I went to lunch with a friend and then to Trader Joe’s. We all know I love me some Trader Joe’s. I bought a few snacks for football this weekend, stocked the freezer with a few ‘I don’t feel like cooking meals’ and the milk that was my justification for stopping there in the first place.
And on the drive home I cranked up the radio and found myself smiling for no real reason at all.

Here is my haunted house from Trader Joe’s. My son didn’t want to decorate it so I did! And yes I am totally getting the little turkey’s this year and using them as place cards.


Yes the yoga and meditation and walking have helped. And my word for the year “Embrace Today”. Funny how you pick a word (or two) at the beginning of the year and it really resonates at some point. I was finally able to shut up the voice in my head that kept imagining what I would say to M* if he ever tried to contact me:

There was the icy stare or cold silence option.
The puzzled “who is this” question?
The breezy “hey (cause you never meant anything to me at all) how’s it going” in a cheery voice.
The neutrally voiced “why are you talking to me, we are not friends,” statement of fact.

Once I started focusing on just today the voices in my head retreated. I wake up and think about what do I want to do TODAY? I typically pick one household type chore and then see what else appeals to me. And I do it.

It is a relief to climb into bed at night and feel good about the day and not dread tomorrow. It is good to stop the endless loop of the past and rumination on the future. To be back in the present moment. To sleep through the night again.

My gut is telling me this is a time for waiting. Change is coming but I need to be patient. Not one of my strong suits but the need to pause and be still is very strong at the moment. I need to heed it while at the same time living my life as it is right now. I can do this!

Lovely fall color in my Susan Branch bird vase.

Step after Step

I have to admit that yoga, meditation and now walking every evening have turned out to be very healing. I am enjoying exploring Sabino Canyon more fully and last week I finished my walks under the very bright moon which I loved more that I thought I would.

My son has returned to in person school four days a week providing me with some badly needed solitude. And a chance to have the kitchen stay cleaned up for more than 5 seconds.

I think I may have fell in love just a little with Ethan Hawke after watching his short TED talk:

Once again my “word” of the year is proving to be quite beneficial:

Life is so much easier when you live in the moment and not worry or plan so much for the future or keep reflecting on the past.

The only thing I am wishing for right now is cooler temps. We are back to the 90’s and I had to turn the a/c back on. 🥵 Despite the heat I am enjoying crock-pot meals, pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes and watching football.

I am not liking all this new WordPress crap. Some of my photos won’t upload “for security reasons”. Does someone think I have some sort of code embedded in my Trader Joe’s haunted house? And now there are blogs that I cannot comment or like anymore. (Sorry L.A.!) I admit to being a little weary of trying to keep up with technology. 🙁