Ahh, new year, new beginnings. As I said before 2013 wasn’t my year. While I’ve been through a lot lately, I feel strong enough to dive right back into the dating world, because let’s be honest, sometimes you need nerves of steel for this shit. I haven’t been single in Portland since I was 22, so now that I’m the ripe old age of 25, I know things. Anyways, I’ve made a few dating resolutions below, just three simple rules I’m going to follow in my love life. Enjoy!
1.) Be honest. I have spent the last quarter century trying not to offend anyone’s sensibilities (my mother was Southern) and I am no longer really interested in doing that. It’s too much work and it’s not all that helpful to anyone to go through life without ever being challenged. Lately I have been in awe of characters in sit-coms who just say what they are thinking like it’s no big deal. “That’s not real life! No one can come up with comebacks that fast and also be brave enough to say them to the OTHER PERSON’S FACE!” I don’t mean that I am going to go to bars and be all, “Ew. What makes you think I would ever accept a drink from a guy with less than three popped collars?” I simply mean I am not going to be afraid of having feelings and expressing them. Sometimes I think that whoever wrote the modern dating rules wanted women to be ice princesses. If you like him don’t let him know too soon. Don’t text him back right away. Do not share your hopes and dreams for the future (clingy!) especially if they include having a family (crazy!). If you can’t be honest when meeting someone new, when can you be?
2.) Set the bar high. The last few times I have been “actively” dating I was very…let’s call it open-minded. I went on dates with a surfer/fire-fighter, dirty (but incredibly talented) musician, passionate carpenter, neoliberal activist, devout Catholic, Marine combat engineer, Navy diver, Air Force pilot, Communist sympathizer, hipster mechanical engineer, Nebraska farm boy, mountain man who lived off the grid (literally), and suburban work-for-the-weekend type. Aside from the apparent military motif, these gentlemen are all over the place! I used to accept dates with whoever asked thinking, “If it’s bad, at least I get free dinner.” (Shameless). Well I’m older now and I like my couch a lot more than I did in my early 20s. It’s time to go for quality over pure availability. Remember that Air Force pilot I told you about here? He is going to be my new bar. I liked him so much because he was just a good person. The kind of person who snowboards behind you the entire time to make sure he can get to you if you need help because you slightly misrepresented your skiing ability when you invited him to go up to the mountain. I don’t want a rich/exciting/super-fing-hot man, I want a good man. I’ll do my best to find one as good or better than the Pilot. My hopes are not very high.
3.) Be brave. I have been in survival mode these last few months, no doubt about it. Grief is an incredibly powerful, physically exhausting emotion. Somewhere, in the midst of being sad, I somehow started being scared. I don’t know why but I’m not going to beat myself up over it, just fix it. I am going to say what I mean. I am going to get on the ski lift and not need to put the bar down. I am going to take that jazz class I’ve been thinking about for months. I am going to ask boys out on dates (maybe). Has life killed me yet? No. After all I have been through, I came out OK. Time to take a few risks* because guess what? Life doesn’t kill you (until it does.)
What are your dating resolutions for this year? I’d love to hear them!
*I don’t mean sexually. Practice safe sex folks!