Is it too early for resolutions?

19 Nov

how to keep it real

In talking with a good friend recently about my latest (non)dating exploits – of which I owe an update (don’t get too excited, there is no real new news) – she told me that she’s noticed a pattern in my communication with potential mates.  That there is a “veil” to my communication.  That I am not direct; I don’t say what I’m actually thinking or feeling, that I come off as chill, or cool, or worse, kind of flippant.  To be upfront readers, I know this.  I struggle with vulnerability and exposure of my feelings when it comes to matters of the heart, especially with someone whom I haven’t built up enough A. trust or B. initmacy.  So when I say things like, “Hey, hope you’re having a great Friday – just wondering if you’d want to hang out again sometime,” and almost add an unsolicited out (?!) of “if not, or if you’re too busy, then no worries :)”, what I really meant was, “Hey, I’m a little sad that I haven’t heard from you in four days, are you still interested?”  I know.  The thought of saying that makes me want to vomit in my mouth, but my friend has a point.  She said that at least then they know what they’re dealing with (I mean let’s be real, as much as I pretend to be the cool, chill girl, I am not) and by being honest about what you are feeling you are speaking your truth.  If they react harshly or negatively, you are just weaning them out sooner.  It sounds so convincing and empowering…Speak my truth! YES!!! Truthfully, the thought of being that honest and exposing that much of myself terrifies me.  And it’s not because of a fear of rejection – I’ve been rejected enough times by now that I’m not affraid of that.  It’s something else, maybe it’s a fear of judgment, maybe this need for privacy and possession of my feelings…I don’t know what it stems from, but hopefully this will be a journey in figuring it out!

I really thought about this conversation and started to think about why it’s so hard for me to be so raw when something is new or potentially budding – I’m positive it’s connected to patterns formulated when I was a child – but as an adult, I can work to reform a path and develop healthy behaviors around communication.  Why haven’t I?  Do you find yourself struggling with raw honesty, with speaking your truths or being vulnerable?  That last example I gave you about communication was actually me being assertive and I experienced a huge sense of satisfaction with that.  Won’t I feel much more when I actually say what I mean rather than making it an easier situation for someone else? I know that there is power in vulnerability and that those who are more vulnerable are more happy (generally), so why is it so damn hard for me to expose myself in those ways?  What ways have you struggled with communication in a dating or (non)dating scenario? 

I resolve to be more vulnerable and honest in my communications! I know it’s only November, but why not get a head start?  It’ll give me more time to work on it.  Readers, I need you to hold me accountable!  It’ll be super easy for me to fall right back into the pretense on being cool and chill.  We’ll say this is an expereiment in raw honesty.  I will be truthfull!  I will say what I mean!   I will be direct!

Vomit. In my mouth.

In life and raw honesty,

e.

 

 

nope. not for me.

18 Nov

Wellllllll…

I gave tinder a try.  One week.  What did I find in one week?

1. It’s real fun to hit “NOPE!” on people’s photos.  

2. It’s real superficial because when you hit “HEART” to like someone, you’re really only doing it based on their photo, whether you have Facebook friends in common, or any similar Facebook likes…pretty limited in terms of what you know about the person.

3. I only had a few VERY BORING text-y conversations with a few liked fellas.

4. Apparently tinder is a new app.  I might try it again in a few months – to see if there are more options.  So far in Anchorage, AK, there are not too many options.

5. I know I want more than a hookup.  I have a friend who has actually gone on dates with a guy she met on tinder – and it sounds promising.  But something about the fact that it’s rep is a hookup app kinda creeps me out.

6. I despise having to use my real name.  I like a bit of anonymity.

So, that is my tinder review.  It’s back the Bulk Food Aisle for me.  And OkCupid.  I seem to have slightly more luck on OkCupid.

Have you used tinder?  If you have, tell me what you think!  

More soon.

xoxo

S.

to tinder or not to tinder?

13 Nov

tinder

Oh hello lovelies,

I swear, I look in every Bulk Food Aisle in each and every grocery store I enter, but I wonder if I have jinxed them for myself by writing this blog.  It seems that I never see attractive men in the BFA.  Dang it!!

It’s been a little while, because despite saying I was not going to hang out casually with Mr. AbsolutelyAdorable&WonderfulBUTNotEmotionallyAvailable…I did anyways.  That’s right.  And he’s just fantastic.  Really.  I have nothing to say other than good stuff. I’m so happy I got to know him more, and that I experimented with casual to see what would happen.  But last week I realized I’m a third party in an ongoing relationship between him and his former wife ~ they are not divorced yet and it seems they might try and work things out still.

Now that I cannot handle.  It’s one thing to get to know someone slowly, knowing that they have moved on and are just going through the paperwork and emotional torture which seems to be divorce, but it’s another thing to be sorta kinda dating someone who might get back together with his ex.  Not okay with me.  So I stopped it.  For reals.

I would be lying if I told you I didn’t *hope* that maybe things will work out in the future. I have this weird feeling they might.  Call it intuition.  Call it wishful thinking.  I’m not sure.  But, as my wise friend says, “Time will tell.”

In the meantime, a brilliant friend introduced me to the app: TINDER.  Have you come across it yet?  I read some reviews of it and it seems that it might be just a hookup app.  I’m not sure how I feel about that.

YES. I want to have S.E.X.  Seriously – it’s been over a year.  I cannot believe that.  It’s great to wait for someone you have feelings for, but REALLY!????  It’s about time.

But…hookup app?  Ewwwww.  I’m not sure I can do it.  Although I’m intrigued from what I’ve heard so far.

Is it inauthentic or unethical of me to use a hookup app when I’m really looking for true love?  Ha ha.  This is what I’m considering.  I think, in the name of “research,” I’m going to give it a try.  I’ll report back.  I gotta distract myself from Mr.Wonderful somehow.  (Yup, that’s healthy, I know.)

In the meantime – do you have an online dating site you love?  Will you tell me about it?  Someone just told me about Zoosk and I wanna know more.  I’ve tried Match, OkCupid, and EHarmony… What else ya got for me?

xoxo

S.

A tale of two fellas…sigh

25 Oct


Dear dear bulk food aficionados,

I sincerely wish I had some juice for you. Some good grown up juicy juice-ness.  Alas, I have, yet again more flopped souffles.
flopped souffle
Yup, souffles. Plural. This post is about more than one fella who has crossed my path within the last month or two. (How did that happen?!) Side note: Anyone who’s figured out this whole “dating” thing please, reveal your secrets! I need help!  

So to bring you up to speed on Mr. Catalano.  Buckle up, you’re in for a ride…well…not really.  Not at all actually.  There’s not much to say about this one.  My recent interactions with Mr. Catalano have been few and far between.  I literally went a month without seeing him and barely communicating, i.e. texting.  Whenever we would text, he would throw in how busy he was and how he was seriously stressed out about his life and work.  I got the message and gave him space; I didn’t pressure anything or make that much contact. I let him get a hold of me and just backed off.  Eventually, I heard from him.  He told me he appreciated that I respected his space, and that he was feeling really overwhelmed with his life in general, but didn’t want me to, a. think he was an asshole, or b. take it personally.  I didn’t, on either account.  I did pull back and told him to let me know when he felt like he was ready to re-enter the world and come up for air.  I heard from him a few weeks later.  He sent me a “Boo” message and maybe a “Hi” message as well.  Pretty sure this was his way of poking his head out again.  We texted for a while but didn’t make any plans. At one point he got really flirty and suggested I send him a sexy picture.  Now.  I’m not totally opposed to a, dare I say it…a sext, but, really?! You gotta work for that!  I haven’t seen you in over a month and you want a naughty photo.  I don’t think so. Instead I sent him a picture of the unsexy work table in front of me.   A day or so later he wrote me again and this time indicated that’d he’d have some time at the end of the week and that it’d be nice to see me.  The end  of the week came and went and I didn’t hear from him.  I did hear from him the following week though and he told me he was a week off in is free time estimation and again that it’d be nice to see me.  Ok folks, see how draining this is already?! It should not be this hard.  I heard from him that Saturday – but again not plan making.  Just a witty message.  So I put it out there and asked if he’d want to do anything that night.  What I got in return was a big red flag.
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Ok, Ok, it's not like Catalano is a drug dealer or has two wives, but still, I'm gonna call it what it is.  He sent me this long, rambling email talking about why he felt hesitant to hang out with me linking it to his stressful, over-committed and overwhelming life.  Now, I'm super empathetic to that, and I can relate.  I am consistently over-involved myself and feel overwhelmed a lot.  Skipping to the end… I called the guy – we chatted – I thanked him for communicating where he was and how he was feeling.  We decided to hang out that night anyway – oh by "hang out" I should clarify that we mostly "make out" when we see each other. Sure there is some talking and laughing, but making out is pretty much how we've been "hanging out". We "hung out" (winky face) and talked and ate some delicious dessert.  And it was fun and then…I left. There was no talk about plans in the future, aside from a, "we should watch that movie." Then, while driving home, I thought, 'I'm pretty sure this type of dating relationship is not one that I want.'  I like Mr. Catalano.  I think he's super clever and witty and fun to be with, but dude does not have it together to the point where it is interfering with his happiness.  I want for him to find that and I want to share time with someone who knows what that looks like!  He doesn't have that right now and that makes me sad for him.  We texted very briefly, but other than a few texts, I really haven't heard from him.  That's not what I want. Hrmmff.   Boo.

Then there’s Oscar.  I ran into Oscar during the month I hadn’t really seen or talked with Catalano much.  Oscar is a friend of friends and I ran into him one night while I was out at the bar with friends, S was included in this group.  That night I, admittedly, had some cocktails in me. I saw him sitting alone and tried to get him out on the dance floor with me.  He wouldn’t, but did smile a whole bunch and return the eyes I was making at him. I was making eyes, it was intentional.   Eventually, I went over to say hello.  Two tips for peaking interest in this lady at a bar folks:  1. be reading feminist poetry. (Whhaaat?!) 2. be wearing carhartts that have obviously been worked in. (Yes, please!)
you look cold<
  To read more about "you're Carhartt boyfriend," go here Rarrr.  Anyway.  We start chatting and have a really easy and rolling conversation.  We actually start talking about some deep things.  I start to feel like I want to know more about this person.  The bar night is coming to an end and everyone starts packing up their things.  A fella S was crushing on suggests we take the night back to his place and keep the dance party going!  Why would I object to an offer like that, especially after many a cocktail?! So we do.  But, just us four.  Oscar, S, Crushing on fella and me.  Eventually, at some point later, the night turns into a college style make out session.  What?! I never even did that when I was in college, but whatever, I was going with it!  Oscar and I have a lot of fun making out and don’t even take it too far!  The next morning was a bit awkward and I felt this guilt, like I had done something wrong or misleading to Catalano and Oscar.  I know rationally this is not the case.  I didn’t owe anything to Catalano and hadn’t seem him in a month and barely communicated with him. We hadn’t established anything and he clearly was not interested in building something.  Yet, I still felt guilty.  After lots of reflection, I have been able to figure out why.  It’s because I am loyal to the person I am interested in.  I don’t like dating multiple people and when I start investing in someone, I am pretty focused on developing something with them.  So making out with another fella while I was still thinking about the potential of something with Catalano felt strange.  So, I pulled back a little bit in the morning.  Anyway.  We  (Oscar and I) ended up seeing each other the next day at a mutual friend’s house.  It was pretty casual in the beginning, but then by the end of the night we were holding hands and being flirty.  He was leaving in just a few days for several months and asked to see me again before he left.  So we made plans to go on a walk the next night.  It was super nice. I brought hot chocolate and we walked and talked and got to know each other.  I kept thinking, I think I could like this guy.  There were a few red flags, one being that he didn’t have a place to live and bounced between friends, the other big one was that he didn’t have a steady job or income.
anarchist red flag warning
  He’s anti-estbalishment and anti-structure really.  He prefers to live by trade rather than money.  He’s principled, which I do respect.  Anyway, we hung out a couple more times before he left and then I drove him to the airport.  A couple of days later I was spending time with our mutual friend and…I basically got a laundry list of why I shouldn’t get involved with him.  I am big for not judging people based on others’ interactions with them, but my friend cares a lot about me and doesn’t want to see me with someone who wouldn’t treat me right, and she really felt like he wasn’t in a position to do so.  Later I was talking to AD about it and was waxing and waning.  Eventually, she says, “You can’t date a homeless guy.” Well, that about sums it up. Right??. I decide to still communicate with him but really pull back.  But, similar to the Catalano situation, I really didn’t need to do anything, because I quickly there after stopped hearing from Oscar. He didn’t reply to a message I wrote him and then when he did, it was a “hi,” just, “hi.” I wrote back and asked how he was and again, nothing.  So, there’s that.  All that worrying and thinking and figuring out for nothing.  Just some ball dropping and petering out. 

Side note: In talking to a co-worker about this scenario and saying that I wish I could take the good qualities of both guys and merge them into one, I mean, really,  could they be on more opposite ends of the spectrum?! One’s work and career obsessed, the other’s jobless and homeless and anti-establsihment!! Anyway, I digress, She replies with, ” Oh honey, he is already married.”

WHAT?! Why would you say that?! Coming from a newly married gal no less. Double hrrmfff.

So…back to the bulk food aisles for me. 

In life and love and perseverance,
e

Go ahead, wear red lipstick.

8 Oct

red lipstick
Ok. I am feeling feisty. I’ve also started wearing red lipstick. Not everyday, but on the weekends.
I spent years thinking red lipstick did not work for me. I was too fair-skinned, my lips weren’t full enough, it made me look trashy (a bit judgey, no?), on and on. Finally, a couple of weekends ago, I thought, “F* all that internal noise! I’m putting on some red lipstick!” And I did, and I felt good about it.
Now…I’m a huge advocate of beauty within; that external appearance is just a mask, that it doesn’t really matter. But, I’m going to go out on a limb here and say…sometimes, just sometimes, how you feel on the outside can help how you feel on the inside. And, if it’s a little red lipstick that does the trick, awesome. I also think the lipstick is more of a reflection, or metaphor, for some other realizations, risks or learned lessons as of late.
Like many women, I’ve struggled with poor body image. I dealt with disordered eating and body dismorphia for around 15 years and although my behaviors around this have changed and improved, the thought patterns still pop up every now and again. This summer I was having some struggles with body appreciation. I realized I had started to degrade myself again; blaming my body for my shortcomings, feeling guilty and vengeful about food, and then I had a moment where I thought, “This just isn’t working.” So I stopped and reframed my thinking around it. I paused for a long while and thought, “Ya know, I’ve spent close to 20 years hating my body and what has that gotten me?… I think I’m going to try loving my body and see how that goes.” So I did. It’s not been easy or perfect. I’ll have dips in my bodylove path every now and again, but then I try to reflect on that affirmation, on loving my body: flaws, cellulite, wobbly bits and all. It’s been a good practice in thought reframing and persistence. I feel like loving your body despite all of the messages we’re bombarded with about how our bodies are not good enough, firm enough, thin enough, tall enough, strong enough, smooth enough, at all enough, is like putting on some dark red lipstick and giving a metaphorical middle finger to the dark cloud of bodyhate, it’s kind of political in a way.
selfLoveFortune-e1317052441533<
I've also experienced a shift in my own self value and worth in a romantic way. I used to think that if a potential partner lost interest, or didn't try hard enough or wasn't into me, that it was a reflection of some major self-flaw. Some big deficiency, some/whatever "not enough" thing I could think of. Recently, I've begun to feel something completely different. I've felt that it's their loss. I know what I have to offer and it is much more valuable than some unachievable external image of female perfection. I feel this internal red lipstick saying, "They are missing out on someone really great." As my friend Ray told me in a moment of rejection consolation, "He's a dummy." Yes, dear Ray, he is.
I know red lipstick isn't everyone's confident sword, but find whatever it is that puffs up your chest a little and rock it!
Love yourself. Take risks. Be bold. I know I am trying.

Yours in love, life and red lipsticks,
E

High Class in the BFA

30 Sep

Image

 

I was Sunday afternoon grocery shopping, which does not seem to be the best time for finding attractive others in the Bulk Food Aisle (Mental note: Go at 9 pm on a Tuesday – it’s good then).  Today, however, something happened. As I wandered for the third time back to the BFA for something I’d forgotten, a man I’d walked passed earlier said, “Hey, excuse me, girl, but I just wanted to tell you you’re looking goooooood today.” 

I paused, to see who it was giving me this compliment in the BFA.  I realized that, at least from my first impression, and the way this fellow was eyeing me, I was not interested.  “Oh, thank you!” I said with a smile, and started to turn away.

 “Yeah, girl, you looking goooooood.” I could feel his eyes and realized I could not quite turn away yet.  “Let me give you my card.”  

 “Okay,” I smiled, as I took his card.  (Friends will say I’m way too polite, but I admit to some slight curiosity about who this person is and what will happen next.  I love a good story.) 

 “I own a limo business.  You look good. You like to go out?” 

(Mentally prepared for this question 30 seconds prior) “Um, I have a boyfriend.” 

 “Aw, girl.  I wasn’t asking you out.  I just wanted to know if you like to go out.  Like – in a limo?” 

 “Oh, errrr, sure, maybe?” I was relieved, but I cannot think of…ONE TIME when I have needed a limo.  

“Well, you give me a call.” 

“Errrr, okay.  Thanks!”  

 So, I was not asked out in the BFA by a limousine company owner, but he does want me to take a ride in his limo.  Hmmmmmm.

The end.  

xoxo,

S.

Time will tell

24 Sep

0753c043ba1220ed93888a399df9c289

Oh dear readers ~

I have so much to catch you up on in the world of Love in the Bulk Food Aisle.  While I have yet to have much luck in the actual bulk food aisle (I swear, I look every time I walk in a grocery store, just to check and see if the man of my dreams is waiting around the aisle) , I do have some everyday interesting dating stories from life to share.

Here’s one:

A few weeks ago I met someone who most definitely shops in the BFA. Though I’ve never seen him there, I’ve seen bulk quinoa on his kitchen counter.  He is pretty wonderful and I have a huge crush on him. I met this fellow online initially.  He told me he was going through a divorce, and I thought to myself, “Okay, that’s fine.  He’s being upfront about what’s going on in his life, and he might be an idiot anyways since 80% of the men I meet online are idiots.”  (What? Negative? Me?!)

After agreeing to meet at a local pub, and having a few drinks and dancing a bit, I realized I actually felt rather fond of this fellow.  We have mutual friends and some unusually neat things in common.  The first meeting was followed by another drink, and then he invited me out to meet some of his friends.  He was being super present and cool. By the third time we “hung out,” we ended up kissing…a lot.  The whole evening had been really fun, and so it was one of those make outs that is just chocolate syrup and whipped cream on top of ice cream.  I was already delighted by the ice cream, and the chocolate syrup and whipped cream just made me happier about the ice cream.  (Yes!  Don’t you love make outs like that!?)

At some point during the night I commented to him that I liked him.  This did not seem unusual, since we’d been having a good time together, laughing, and making out.  I noticed a little pull back, though.  It was subtle, but I felt it.  I noted it – and we kept making out.  I ended up sleeping over at his house, and the next morning, as I was leaving, he looked at me very seriously and said that he didn’t want to lead me on, and that he thought it was important for me to know that he wasn’t looking for a relationship.  I took that in stride (my intuition knew there was something up) and I said I appreciated him telling me, and that was too bad because I am looking for a relationship, and I didn’t think I could handle being friends with benefits.

I think we both felt sad about that.  I mean, I’m not sure he did, but I know I felt sad.  He said maybe someday he’d be looking for a relationship, but not right now.  I know he has a lot of complicated things going on in his life, so this is legitimate, but also disappointing.  I’m not quite sure what I expected, but I guess I had indulged a little in imagining that though his life was complicated, he was open emotionally.

While I’m so glad for his honesty, it’s just such a bummer of a timing thing. I’ve since seen him a couple of times, and it’s clear that we both have an attraction to the other.  We’ve spent some time together – some platonic and some not-so-much.  I thought perhaps I might experiment with this casual – I can be a friend who cuddles and kisses sometimes – thing.  But, it’s been a couple of weeks now, and I just have to say I keep liking him more and more.  A year ago I made a list of four qualities that I want in a romantic partner – he must be kind, passionate, fun, and smart.  This guy seems to be all those things – plus a lot of neat other things.

In wanting to give him his space and not seem too “into it,” I realize I feel like I’m not being true to myself.  What is the truth?  The truth, my truth, is that I’m totally into this guy, and yet I know that he’s not ready to be in a relationship.  I wish the truth were different.  I wish the timing were different.  I wish…  But it’s not.

So, in an effort to protect my heart and be honest with him and myself, I know I need to step back.  I really don’t want to do that, as I *like* this guy, and i *am* open to a romantic relationship, but I think it’s the most responsible thing for both of us.  I’m good with boundaries.  I think we can be just friends friends.  I may have a crush from afar, but I just don’t think I can be casual.

Yesterday I was discussing this with E, and she reminded me of the article she recently posted. She said, “Don’t pretend to be the chill, cool girl if that’s not what you are.”  Now, in some contexts, I might be the chill, cool girl.  I can be both of these things. But I know the truth about me when it comes to my heart.  I’m not chill or cool when it comes to meeting a really fantastic guy with whom I have chemistry.  It doesn’t happen very often, so to me it’s real special.

I have no idea what this guy is thinking, but I’m guessing nothing’s changed.  He’s got a lot to deal with, and I respect that he’s self-aware enough to know that he shouldn’t really get involved.  I get it.

In the meantime, I need to move on and take my heart with me.  Another dear friend keeps reminding me that “time will tell.”  I realize that unlike other situations in my life – in which I want answers – I cannot Google whether this guy really, truly likes me back – or whether he’s just enjoying my presence as a temporary distraction from his stressful life situation.  I cannot Google the future to know whether he might be open to dating me at another time, or whether I’ll meet someone ten times better for me than him in the meantime.  (Oh, how I wish I could sometimes!)  So, I am going to try and be true to my heart, to take care of myself, and to step back.  Time will tell what happens next.

Wish me luck ~

In-the-midst-of-a-crush-on-a-most-likely-emotionally-unavailable-yet-super-awesome-guy-sigh,

S.

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