Making My Way Back into Dating


By Deborah

I’ve written a lot about easing my way back into dating, reveling in the single space that I don’t necessarily want to share with anyone right now. And I think the easing in has been a gift. It’s allowed me perspective, which has come in handy recently.

Several weeks ago I got a random message from a cute boy on okcupid who lives in Denver. He seemed fun and smart and had a great sense of humor. As a sweet distraction we started writing to each other, sharing silly quirks and deeper work we both were committed to. So, when I went to visit my best friend in Denver for the fourth of July weekend, we set up a time to meet. And we did. And honestly, it was pretty great. He was really good looking and a great conversationalist and as we moved from happy hour to a restaurant to a bar I also recognized how fun he was. Eventually, at a dance club (it was a long night) with both his friends and mine, I learned that, better yet, he could dance and was an excellent kisser. The rest of the weekend we stayed in touch and we spent another evening together before I went back to Oakland. More great conversations, amazing chemistry, amazing kissing. He mentioned that he’d like to visit and I figured it might be a fun distraction while still allowing me to maintain my independent lifestyle.

When I returned home I had no idea what, if anything, would come of it, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t kind of excited. We exchange a few texts when I got back and then…radio silence. I was super confused and slightly pissed, definitely hurt. Six days later I received a text commenting on how busy he had been and mentioning the “impressive text drought.” I figured I had three choices. I could write back and ignore the lapse in communication, ignore him and go about my life or show up- practice saying exactly what I need and giving him an opportunity to rise to the occasion. So I wrote this long email about how important communication is to me and how it was great to meet him but the past week was confusing and kind of hard. And…crickets. Five days later I get this long email about how he’s bad at communication, loved meeting me and would love to visit, and sorry it took so long to write back “I’ve been really busy and my internet wasn’t working”…

Perhaps the universe threw me a softball just to allow me the practice of flexing those emotional muscles that demand more than mediocrity. I didn’t respond. I had no reason to. I stood up and embraced the vulnerability that allowed me to say, This is hard but this is what I need. And through his actions, more than his words, he was able to articulate how very incapable he was at meeting me there. So, I dusted myself off and continued on, proud to have shown up and demanded what we all should demand: someone who can give you the connection you need. Someone outstanding.

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I am a writer, reader, lawyer, lover of the mountains and things that inspire. I am also, most recently, the owner of a broken heart and slightly shattered life plan. My hunt for work that is more inspiring and less stressful and the breakup of a three year relationship with the man I believed I was going to marry coincided perfectly. This is my journey through. May it speak to your experience and help you, too, find a way to let the light in.