Well, that was the text my sister sent when I was really getting back into dating. And it is true!
Okay, I've been holding back. I have been doing a lot more dating than what I have had the courage to admit. I've just kept myself open to the possibility these past few months and for whatever reason, guys have been come into my life from left, right, and center. It has been amazing and I have been having fun with really, truly dating for the first time in my life. And it is not to say it is always easy because it has its own ups and downs. But it is a roller coaster ride I am happier to be riding instead of sitting on the sidelines. Dude, I have a lot to learn.
I married young and to the first person in which I had a real relationship. It is not to say that I would have regretted the lack in prior dating had we been able to sustain the marriage as an equal, respectful, and loving partnership. But as this is not the case, I am embracing this opportunity to explore the world of dating. At times I feel weird for not having done this earlier, but I cannot change the past. And it can be a little scary, considering dating has changed a lot since I was an undergrad. I am grateful to have my own mini-dating guru--my younger sister who is in college and loves to poke fun at our age gap. It can be humbling to take advise from my little sister, as I can sometimes feel protective of her and feel like I am the one who should be looking out for her. But, I guess this is a form of giving back in the times that I helped her, so I will take this gift. As helpful as she is with her own take on dating advise, I think she is also finding my adventures amusing. But I have to say that she laughs with me and not at me! And I am happy to have friends who also will indulge me in listening to my silly stories and ramblings about dating, as I find better grounding in it all. Thank you!
Oh, and something else that ties into all of this exploring into the realm of dating...the class I was taking at Pitt was on adolescence this past semester. (It is also the reason why I have not posted recently...finishing up end of the semester projects.) Reading about the different domains of development could be difficult for me at times because it could hit so close to home. It made me really face some areas of my life that needed some hard reflection and it was not always easy. There were times when I would ask myself, really? REALLY? Could I really not read about this now?
Case in point, sex. Without going into a lot of details, Jamie did not have a whole lot of experience during adolescence with sexual exploration. And upon reading research, yep, it is developmentally appropriate for teens to do a certain amount of fooling around. Frick'n catholic guilt. No, it is not entirely fair to blame it on that. Stink'n goodie-goodie. Okay, I cannot be so hard on myself.
So, I have some catching up to do. And in addition, I have had to let go and allow myself permission to put myself out there. This is not to say that I am running around like a wild woman! It is all relative. But I want for me to be open to these experiences and to be in the moment and to enjoy them. Plus, I have put a lot of thought into where I would draw the line with lightening up and having some fun, but also staying true to myself and my values. Taking this time to define that for myself has been freeing and empowering because I know my limits and more importantly, I can enjoy the time I do have with someone in that magical moment.
I know, I know...I am so cheesy!