Dating. Whoa! Stand back, keep your arms and legs inside at all times, don't hold your breath, and don't make eye contact!
This is the stuff science fiction movies are made of. Facebook, Tinder, Match, Zoosk, ...friends of friends. My head is spinning!
After my long, long separation, I decided to get back out and try to date. Here are my few, but eye opening experiences with dating.
Online dating: I have friends that did the online dating scene with some success, and much failure. I thought about it, but lying online about who you really are is just so easy. I need my sources! I need to know why you're single, from an outsiders perspective. I need to know how old that picture really is! I found that most (note this is not all-encompassing) men online were only interested in casual connections that don't require much clothing. No thanks.
Dating apps (Tinder): I had no interest in Tinder, that is too modern for me.
Fix-up: Friends of friends...oh, there's a good idea. The age-old attempt of 'fixing up' that ALWAYS fails. This one I tried. Why? I like feeling like a social outcast for having manners and standards. (insert blank stare here) Don't do this type of dating. You'll only get a big build up from the mutual friends, and then find out that person is completely different around their other friends. Ever wonder why you didn't meet this amazing person whilst hanging out with your mutual friends? Because THEY aren't that close of friends; and for real reasons. Duh.
I have finally stumbled upon a great man. How? Being brave. Being confident. Being bold. Also, sharing mutual friends with a quality guy can make a world of difference. (I randomly PM'd a guy on facebook ok? His picture was really cute. This opportunity falls in to the 0.001% that he isn't a psycho or basement dweller. Results not typical)
I did spend a lot of time with God, talking about love, my future, my expectations, and His expectations. Guess what? His plan is way better than mine. God sets limitations for us, for love and the falling in love experience, for good reason. He knows what He is doing. He created love. He IS love. I have my wishes, of course, and He listened. I'm not sure though if they were really my hearts desire, or the desires of my heart as set by Him. Either way, they're good, and they were met.
Take your time. Make sure you are happy with you, happy being on your own, and in a place where you don't feel you need someone. When you get there, wait some more. God has someone set aside for you, and He will deliver. While you get out there though, smile, laugh, meet new people, and have new adventures. Most importantly, stay true to you. Don't let anyone make you feel like you aren't worthy of pursuit. If they give up, they weren't worth it.
All that said, I'll end with this. Don't date just to date. Date with purpose. Love is amazing. Falling in love is truly a special adventure. Don't rush it. Enjoy each little step it takes to get from "Hello" to "I love you". If you fell in love before, and love failed, do not be bitter toward love. If you are getting a second chance at love, do not rush love. You can't make someone love you, and you can't make yourself love someone. Keep in mind that love is a choice, an action. You choose to love, and you show it in how you respect others and pay attention to their needs. Love is not kisses, and gifts, and facebook statuses. Love is a deep desire to see someone else as a greater need than yourself. You love them, because they are valuable.
The clouds have parted, the sun is shining, and this curly girl is alive again.
A very dark winter took me away from many of the things I loved, including blogging. As I mentioned in a past post, I went through a divorce in 2014. It wasn't a terrible divorce, or a lengthy, angry divorce. It was however a lengthy separation; 2+ years. When the final court date arrived, and the papers were signed, I felt a huge weight lifted off of me. I've taken some time since then to adjust to the thought of no longer bearing the label of 'wife' or 'partner' or 'companion'. I started that adjustment when the separation started in 2012, but it became real when the divorce was filed. Once it was final, the idea fit better, like pair of running shoes after a few miles. :) You just have to wear it a bit in order for it to become part of you. Although my identity is not defined by my relationship labels, it is something we wear, and therefore should take time to be comfortable with it.
I dated a bit during the end of the proceedings, which did not work out. I was pushing forward before God was ready for me. We do that sometimes, it's OK, it's a learning experience. I had to see what I didn't want in order to recognize what I do want. God has it set aside, just be patient my dear. (I kept hearing this in my heart. Oh, if only we'd listen all the time!) I'll do a post in the near future on dating again in your 30s. My how times have changed! I don't think I even had Facebook the last time I dated.
Now! Now it is spring, and my heart is light, the sky is bright, and my mind is open to a new plan.
Here is a quick run down of things on my agenda, and in my life. I hope you enjoy them as much as I am, and will!
March 20th-22nd: Camping (cabin-ing), fishing, fireplaces, rain storms, sunshine. I'm so ready for a few days away from everything, and getting to spend it with someone really awesome just thrills me.
March 28th: FireFly Run in Dallas. My first official race since taking 8+ months off for injury and personal reassessment. Held in the evening, this run is done with glow sticks and reflective gear and crazy lights! Running it with one of my favorite people, MLand, we are ready to be back in the game.
April 26th: Here it is! The BIG one. My first half-marathon. I'm behind on training, but my heart and head are ready. 100% run or not, I'll cross that finish line, best friends waiting. I already know my emotions will be running high. I can feel the goosebumps slinking across my skin as I think about it even now. 20 years making our state stronger, 20 years of stories and memories from all around, 20 years of learning to forgive. 13.1 miles below my feet. Countless hugs at the end. A smile that will be created and never taken away.
2015 is turning into a very good year. I know God is using every moment of my day to guide me into my future. I find my value in His love, and not in anything else. I am not measured by how many friends I have, how much money I make, or on which rung I stand on the social ladder. I am beautiful, I am valuable, I am loved. I am His beloved.
This summer I have taken breaks from: blogging, running, yoga, ummm...*clears throat* marriage, church, and....oh, my brain.
Most of this isn't soooo bad. The bad part is that all of it is what makes me, well, me. Without any one part, I'm not totally me. I'm ok with that though.
Let me explain a bit better.
I stopped blogging because 1.) I don't have a computer or Internet at home, and I H.A.T.E. blogging on my phone. 2.) work has been too busy for me to blog in between deadlines. 3.) my blogging inspiration comes from the blogs I typically read, and since IE 9 no longer wants to support blogger, I was without viewing ability until I discovered FireFox. Now I'm inspired again.
I stopped running and yoga due to a serious foot problem. I was told I may need surgery, but after a new MRI and about 16 weeks of rest and no high heels, I am back-ish. I still need custom insoles so it doesn't happen again, but I can start back now.
I 'stopped' marriage because my marriage took a break from me. I went through this for the last 2 years, and another few years before that. I've mourned the loss of my marriage for a long time. I don't talk about it because it isn't your business and it's really kinda boring.The papers have been filed, the court date is set. Let's just leave it at that.
I stopped church because it is summer and I 'live' at the lake and on the road during the summer. That is not a good excuse though, just know that I know that. I didn't quit God, let me make that perfectly clear. God and I grow closer in the times when I'm away from the physical church because I'm forced to interact with Him on a personal level only; no 'putting on' or being 'churchy'. Just Him, me, and the truth.
I took a break from my brain. ....uh.....what was I saying? :)
I took a short trip out to the west coast for a friends wedding. I met God around a bend in the road, at the base of a mountain. Sometimes you have to go a long way to realize just how small you are. Maybe small, but of major importance.
Now that I can run again, yoga again, and breath again, I think I'll get back to business as usual.
What have you stepped away from recently?
How did those around you react?
Have you ever been to the wind farm in the Mojave??
Ok, I'll be honest. Most of my good news is just good to me, and no one else really cares. But, you'll care about this one!
I got my 1st sub30 5k time!!!
I gotta say, I'm totally stoked. I ran hard. Really hard. Even the ladies that go walk while I run said I ran hard. My fastest mile was a 9:05. It was my 1st mile, and I had positive splits from there, but I barely cracked the 10 min/mile mark just last week with a 9:59, so this is VERY exciting.
I have to keep going, I have my 1st 10k next month. I did a trial run (pun totally intended) to see if I could even survive the distance. I did. I survived it for the whole 6.2 miles at a blazing time of 1:14:5?. I wasn't too depressed about that....until I looked at the 10k times from last years race. Last place: 1:04:?? Ruh-roh. Hey, at least I know I will finish, eventually!
My neighbor wanted to get back into running. She conned talked me into going at 5:15 am. I had been going to the gym at this time, but running that early? Ugh.
You should see my hair at 5:15. I won't post a picture, you didn't do anything to deserve that torture. I don't have one of those 'woke up this way' looks. J-lo I am not.
She's a lady, whoa whoa whoa, she's a lady..... monster.
I've stuck to it though. We are on week 3 and I've only missed once, because of an eye infection. No, I can't run with an eye infection...on a Monday....at 5:15 in.the.morning.
It's mostly cleared up now, I just can't wear contacts. I'm basically blind without contacts or glasses, so you can imagine my fear while trying to decide what that thing was coming after me on the football field today. It was a tackling dummy. And it wasn't moving; I was. Uh....I promise I'm smart.
Worst part is my Nike running app keeps screwing up. Anyone else have this problem? I am still too cheap to buy a Garmin, so I have to live this way, counting laps around the field. It's a real drag to have to keep mental track of your distance when you are trying to not think about your distance.
I'm back from the Cali coast. ...I know, I don't know why I came back either!
Friday morning I got in a 5 mile run, on the California hills. I want you to know that I didn't plan to run 5 miles because I can't run that far; or so I thought. I was TRICKED into running 5 miles by being told we were running 3 to 4 miles.
West coast running coach: We'll do 3-4 miles. Can you handle that? Running Curl: Yeah, I think so!
Cut to 45 mins later.
WCRC: Ok, so if we add one more mile,...
RC: ANOTHER MILE?!?!?!
WCRC: As I was saying...if we add another mile, you'd have your 10k. That was 5 miles. Congrats!
RC: (wheeze, wheeze, pant, pant) Huh? Awesome! I'm going to kill you! Can we walk now? I feel amazing. I think I'm dying. Ok, I'm good. It's time for a mimosa.
I spent time in the pool, the hot tub, and on the rooftop deck. I did morning yoga on that deck btw. I'm sure our friends' neighbors enjoyed that scene.
We visited Mission Beach, old downtown San Diego, and Escondido. We stopped by Comic-Con, saw 3 of the Impractical Jokers, and enjoyed great food.
I'm so happy to be back home though, despite our Oklahoma humidity.
Whatever you do this day, week, month, or season, make sure you enjoy it! This life is short, so take in the beauty that has been bestowed upon us.
What fun thing did you do this summer?
What is your longest distance? Intentional or not...